Who is it for?

Government grants for the Textile, Clothing and Footwear (TCF) Small Business Program (SBP) is supported by the Textiles, Clothing and Footwear innovation package announced by the Australian Government in 2009.  This provides $401 million for Australia’s textile, clothing and footwear (TCF) industry.

Funding for the program started in July 2006 and ends in June 2016, with $2.5 million available for grants in each year of the program. AusIndustry calls for grant applications in annual selection rounds.

Who is eligible to apply?

The TCF Small Business Program is a competitive, merit-based government grants program. It is open to any eligible TCF small business or to a consortium that includes an eligible TCF small business.

A TCF small business has fewer than 20 employees, and undertakes eligible TCF activities as defined by the TCF Post-2005 (SIP) Scheme.

For example, a TCF business that manufactures, or designs for manufacture in Australia, is eligible to apply for funding under the program. However, a business that solely imports products made overseas, or only undertakes retail activities, is not eligible.

What is the program objective?

The objective of the TCF Small Business Program is to improve the business enterprise culture of established TCF small businesses that are unable to receive assistance under the TCF (SIP) or TCF Post-2005 (SIP) Schemes.

What is ‘business enterprise culture’?

Business enterprise culture refers to the nature and style of decision-making and production processes of a business. It describes to what extent the values, attitudes and norms within a business are entrepreneurial.

Entrepreneurial behaviour can be reflected in any or all of a business’s management, communication, decision-making, production (including design) and financial processes. A business with a strong enterprise culture typically:

  • emphasises initiative, self-reliance and creativity
  • focuses on maximising commercial returns on products and services
  • is skilled at securing and maintaining a competitive market edge
  • generates and manages change largely from within, and
  • demonstrates goals of financial growth and expansion (emphasises growth).

What are the eligibility criteria?

To be eligible for a TCF Small Business Program grant, the project must meet the following eligibility criteria.

1    The project must meet the needs of a TCF small business that:

(i)     has not received funding from either the TCF (SIP) Scheme or the TCF Post-2005 (SIP) Scheme

(ii)   is not likely to receive such funding for the financial year in which the application is made, and

(iii) is not likely to receive such funding for the financial year in which the project is undertaken.

2    The project must be aimed at improving the business enterprise culture of the TCF small business.

3    The applicant must make a cash contribution to the project for which funding is sought. This contribution should not have come from a Commonwealth, State or Territory Government subsidy.

TCF Small Business Program applications that do not meet the eligibility criteria will not be assessed against the merit criteria.

What are the merit criteria?

TCF Small Business Program applications that meet the eligibility criteria will compete on merit against all other applications, for that round, from across Australia.

The TCF Small Business Program merit criteria are:

1    Whether the project’s outcome will meet program objectives, assessed by how the project will:

(i)   contribute to the TCF small business’s willingness and ability to take risks

(ii)  contribute to the TCF small business becoming more creative

(iii) improve the flexibility or adaptability of the TCF small business, and

(iv) contribute to the growth strategy of the TCF small business.

2    The level of commitment to the project demonstrated by the applicant, including the level of time and resources that the applicant will contribute to the project.

3    Whether the project can be started and completed within a single financial year.

What government grants are available?

A maximum of $50,000 in government grants is available for a particular project. The maximum applies to any project, regardless of its size or the cash contribution made by the applicant.

Government grants are only to be used for approved expenditure incurred during, not before, the project period. Routine business expenses, such as salaries of ongoing employees, advertising, or routine accounting are not eligible for grant support.

How will successful applications proceed?

TCF Small Business Program applicants will be informed in writing of the outcome of their applications.

Successful TCF Small Business Program applicants must enter into a grant agreement with the Commonwealth of Australia within 30 days after being notified of the outcome of their application.

What is the payment process?

In most cases, there will be two government grant instalment payments. The initial payment is made on contract execution. The final payment is made once we have received a satisfactory final report and an audited statement verifying expenditure. However, sometimes AusIndustry may choose to schedule payments over three instalments rather than two.

TCF Small Business Program Application Form

Closing date for TCF Small Business Program applications is 5.00pm, 25 February 2011.

We are specialists in preparing and winning government grants. If you require assistance with a government grant application please contact us to discuss further.