SMEs receive grants to link with global markets

The federal government has announced grants worth $1.6 million to help SMEs and researchers to connect with global markets.

Twenty researchers and 14 small businesses are being supported in Round 4 of the Global Connections Fund (GCF) Bridging Grants.

Industry minister Karen Andrews said: “These grants provide a critical pathway for Australian businesses and researchers to not only build capacity and skills, but grow in scale to attract potential investment.

“Through this fund we are supporting Australian businesses and researchers to engage with international partners and undertake product development, market testing and commercialisation activities.”

The 34 successful projects cover areas including advanced manufacturing, food and agribusiness, medical technologies and pharmaceuticals.

The funding will support projects such as the development of a safer cochlear implant surgery, a laser nose to improve wine quality and health, and machine learning to improve diabetes management.

“Past Bridging Grants have helped recipients collaborate with partners from 31 different economies, raising working capital of almost $9.5 million.

“(This means) every government dollar has been leveraged more than twofold.”

Previous grants have helped the University of Sydney partner with a US company on a project that uses nanotechnology to improve non-invasive early detection and diagnosis of cancer and other diseases.

They also helped fund a device for diagnosing Parkinson’s disease, virtual reality to improve health check-ups, and renewable fertiliser.

Bridging Grants provide $25,000 to $50,000 per grant as seed funding and support partnerships between small and medium sized businesses and researchers.

Picture: Karen Andrews

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