Regional New Industries Fund to support Wheatbelt business innovation
May 11, 2018 at 10:57 AM
On 1 May, the Regional New Industries Fund workshop was held in Northam, hosted by the Wheatbelt Development Commission. Approximately 20 participants from stakeholder organisations including Heartlands WA, Regional Development Australia Wheatbelt, RSM Business Local, Grower Group Alliance, National Trust, Innovations Central Midlands Inc. and local government representatives attended.
Participants discussed the creation of a partnership and development of the Wheatbelt Innovation Roadmap for ‘seed’ projects that:
- Support start-ups;
- Accelerate Small-Medium Enterprise growth; and
- Support broader innovation initiatives.
The New Industries Fund (NIF) is a $16.7 million State Government initiative designed to support venture creation and accelerate business growth to diversify the WA economy and create new jobs. This approach to innovation helps support the priorities and targets outlined in the Wheatbelt Blueprint (2015) of a vibrant economy, clever people, liveable communities and valued natural amenity, that will underpin the future growth of the Wheatbelt region.
A total of $4.5 million has been allocated across the State’s nine regions for the Regional New Industries Fund, as a sub-program of the NIF. The Wheatbelt allocation of $300,000 will be guided by the Wheatbelt Innovation Roadmap, which will be collaboratively developed to outline Wheatbelt innovation opportunities and priorities. All innovation initiatives will be considered by the WDC Board before they are recommended to the NIF assessment process.
$1.4m is available for priorities with cross region impact. The WDC will work with other Development Commissions on those projects that will benefit the region and are aligned to the Wheatbelt Innovation Roadmap.
The NIF Program recognises four underpinning pillars to develop strong innovation eco-systems: Talent, Skills and Entrepreneurship; Investment and Infrastructure; Culture and Collaboration; and Marketing and Promotion.
For additional information on the fund please go to www.newindustries.wa.gov.au where you can download the guidelines and the application form. If you are intending to make an application, you are urged to contact the Commission early in the process on 9622 7222.