Innovation Seed Fund

What is the Innovation Seed Fund?

The Innovation Seed Fund is a program that provides funding to WA start-ups to help them develop early-stage proposals for novel processes, products and/or services in the health/medical sector.



The Innovation Seed Fund provides the opportunity for Western Australian innovators to develop their novel health and medical solutions to prime WA’s commercialisation pipeline, create high-level health sector jobs and bring innovations that improve the health and wellbeing of the community to realisation.

Funding will be provided on a competitive basis to innovators with early-stage proposals for novel processes, products and/or services that demonstrate potential to be commercialised and that may have a major impact on the health and wellbeing of the WA community.

The Innovation Seed Fund is open to innovators based in Western Australia.



The objectives of the fund are to:

  • increase the number of new health and medical innovation start-up companies in WA
  • advance the innovation maturity level of the majority of funded innovations
  • improve the success of WA innovation initiatives in accessing additional funding to assist in taking the innovation to market.



Successful innovators will be awarded funding of $250,000 to $500,000 to undertake key de-risking activities that advance the innovation to a maturity level where it is positioned to attract investment through traditional funding sources to commence, or progress, the commercialisation process. Funded activities must be completed within no longer than a two-year period.


Eligible Activities

Funding will be in accordance with the following:

  • Salary costs:
    • Salaries must be directly attributable to the delivery of the activity outcomes.
    • Salaries of up to $150,000 per annum, including on-costs, may be requested for each individual, with this limit adjusted to a pro rata amount for fractional Full Time Equivalent (FTE).
    • Salary on-costs may be requested to up to 30%
    • However, WA public health system applicants must claim salary on-costs in accordance with the WA Health Financial Management Manual s521 ‘Internal Salary Recoup (within WA Health entities)’ table.
    • Salary funding can be used for leave entitlements that accrue during the innovation activity, however leave entitlements accrued outside this period must not be paid through this funding. In addition, severance and termination payments must not be paid through this funding.
  • Innovation activity costs:
    • Activity costs may include funding for essential services, equipment, consumables, and other additional expenses directly related to the innovation activity.
    • Travel costs will not be approved unless these are strongly justified as being essential to the undertaking of the activity.
  • Overhead charges:
    • Overhead charges (also referred to as indirect/infrastructure costs, e.g. utilities) may be requested up to 10% of the total budget.
    • However, WA public health system applicants cannot claim standard overhead charges, as per the Financial Management Manual s522 (RIO is an exempt organisation).

Requested FTE, salary level and activity costs must reasonably reflect the proposed innovation activity.


Eligible Applicants

To be eligible for the Innovation Seed Fund, applications must be made through a responsible entity, which must:

  • have an active Australian business number (ABN)
  • have a physical and operational presence in WA
  • not have the funding constitute their entire financial base.

The innovation applicant must:

  • be an Australian citizen or permanent resident
  • reside in WA for the period of the grant
  • be employed by the responsible entity for the period of the grant.



Applications close 2 May 2022


More Information


Latest News

12 July 2022 – 17 recipients awarded $8M to commercialise their medical inventions

The Western Australian government has announced $8 million in early-stage funding to help proceed medical and health innovations developed in the state.

The first round of the Innovation Seed Fund provided assistance to 17 startups and publicly-funded institutes. The funding would “support the successful recipients to undertake activities to de-risk and advance their innovations along the pathway to commercialisation,” according to the Future Health Research and Innovation Fund’s website.

One company was awarded $500,000 to develop its prototype VeinWave device. Device fits in the palm of hand and helps visualise veins, making injections easier and more successful.



Latest Recipients

Innovation Team Lead

Responsible Entity

Project Title

Funding Awarded

Mr Nikhilesh BappooVeinTech Pty LtdDeveloping a commercialisation-ready and clinically compatible prototype of the VeinWave to reduce cannulation insertion failure$500,000
A/Prof Jenny DownsTelethon Kids Institute on behalf of the Centre for Child Health Research, UWADetecting pain in kids who can’t tell you it hurts: PainChek® for children with disabilities$392,820
Dr Sarah DoyleWhat the Doctor Said Pty LtdAn innovation to provide personalised, mobile-accessible discharge instructions for opioid medications for patients attending the emergency department, ambulatory care and hospital outpatients department at East Metropolitan Health Service$462,332
Prof Wendy ErberThe University of Western AustraliaPrecision Diagnostics for Blood Cancers$499,632
Prof Sue FletcherMurdoch UniversityModulation of the Autophagy Pathway to treat Neurogenerative Diseases$497,956
A/Prof Juliana HamzahCurtin UniversityNovel medicine to improve blood circulation in patients with peripheral artery disease$496,715
A/Prof Tim InglisThe University of Western AustraliaFAST STRIDES: Flow cytometry-assisted Antimicrobial Susceptibility Test Software to Translate Innovative Diagnostics for trEating Sepsis$497,190
Prof Terrance JohnsTelethon Kids Institute on behalf of the Centre for Child Health Research, UWARepurposing ion channel drugs to treat brain cancer$499,406
Prof Yogesan KanagasingamMedivitals Pty LtdAI based remote monitoring platform with medical grade wearable bioband technologies$383,250
A/Prof Anthony KicicTelethon Kids InstituteMaking bacteriophage therapy a reality: Implementation of a novel treatment pipeline to treat antimicrobial-resistant infections$500,000
A/Prof Joost LesterhuisTelethon Kids Institute on behalf of the Centre for Child Health Research, UWAActivating the power of anti-cancer immunity using small molecule drugs$496,351
A/Prof Joost LesterhuisTelethon Kids Institute on behalf of the Centre for Child Health Research, UWAIntraoperative immunotherapy to prevent cancer recurrence after surgery$497,156
A/Prof Samuel LundinBiotome Pty LtdDevelopment of Helitope, a precision immunological diagnostic to determine gastric cancer risk$497,000
Prof Bill MorganAECONA Pty LtdOcuLinx™: A portable hand-held device for non-invasive measurement of intracranial pressure via the eye$500,000
Dr Matthew PayneThe University of Western AustraliaRefining a novel molecular diagnostic test for prediction of women at high risk of preterm birth$357,017
A/Prof Ming YewInnova Medical Pty LtdTaking the Fuss out of Pus: A novel medical device for the percutaneous treatment of skin abscesses in an ambulatory setting$498,973
Prof Minghao ZhengThe University of Western AustraliaBio-textile collagen rope as a novel substitute to autografts for Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) reconstruction$484,396


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