New Australian government support for intellectual property commercialisation
- Financial assistance for IP-related expenditure including patenting and trade mark protection costs, searching costs, freedom to operate advice and licensing costs.
- Priority given to identified growth sectors: food and agribusiness; medical technologies and pharmaceuticals; advanced manufacturing; mining equipment technology and services; and oil, gas and energy resources.
As part of the Entrepreneurs’ Infrastructure Programme, the Australian Government has now launched ‘Accelerating Commercialisation’, an initiative designed to provide assistance for the commercialisation of intellectual property. Administered by AusIndustry, this replaces the previous government’s Commercialisation Australia programme.
The programme is open to individual entrepreneurs, researchers, start up companies and larger businesses. Importantly, the programme is open to commercialisation offices of academic and other publicly funded research institutions (where the office is a corporation) and other Eligible Partner Entities, being corporations whose primary focus is research but also seek to commercialise the IP of their researchers (such as a private research institute). To be eligible, applicants must have an annual turnover of less than $20 million for each of the three years prior to lodgment of the application.
The programme provides financial assistance as well as mentoring and advice, including access to an Expert Network that can assistance with capital raising and access to new markets, for a maximum of two years. The financial assistance takes the form of matching grant funding of up to $1 million (or up to $250,000 in the case of commercialisation offices and Eligible Partner Entities). The money received may be used towards a variety of expenses including legal fees relating to the protection of IP (but not the defense of IP), freedom to operate searching, licensing costs, as well as travel, training and labour costs.
The programme is not designed to fund research and development projects. Rather, applicants must have a novel product, process or service with at least national market potential.
While open to applications across all technologies, priority is given to applications that operate in, or can show applicability and benefit to, one of the designated growth sectors, being: food and agribusiness; medical technologies and pharmaceuticals; advanced manufacturing; mining equipment technology and services; and oil, gas and energy resources.
There are no deadlines for applying. Applications may be made at any time and are considered every six to eight weeks.
More details on Accelerating Commercialisation can be found at www.business.gov.au/advice-and-support/EIP/Accelerating-Commercialisation.
Please feel free to contact Davies Collison Cave for more information.