Small businesses in the Bundaberg Region have just one week to go until they can prepare their applications for the State Government’s regional only round of the popular Business Basics grants program.
Minister for Employment and Small Business Di Farmer said the $5,000 grants are a part of the government’s Big Plans for Small Business Strategy and the $14.2 billion COVID-19 Economic Recovery Plan.
“The hugely popular Business Basics grant was launched on May 31, and as we had acted on the feedback from my Small Business Roadshow and shared details and an example application form in advance, we received thousands of applications very quickly,” Minister Farmer said.
“While it was fantastic that there were so many people ready to go with strong applications, the last round was oversubscribed so it’s running again exclusively in regional Queensland.”
Member for Bundaberg, Tom Smith encouraged local businesses to get ready to apply.
“We know that the first round of grants went quickly, so it’s important that local business get their application ready to go,” Mr. Smith said.
“The guidelines will be up next week on August 25, and you’ll have two weeks to prepare before the grants open for applications at 9am on Wednesday September 8.
“The Business Basics grants, aimed at sole traders and small businesses with a turnover of up to $300,000, are designed to help businesses in Bundaberg increase their core capabilities and ability to adopt current best practice.
“They can be used for activities such as training and coaching, website development and upgrades, and strategic marketing.”
Bundaberg’s Nathans Boutique was one of the businesses to receive money in the first round of Business Basics that opened earlier this year.
Owner Sue Hargreaves said the $5000 would make a real difference.
Sue said the business, which has been going for more than 30 years, had reinvented itself three years ago to start designing and making their own ladies clothing from their new location.
“I am thrilled to be getting this Business Basics grant and the first job is upgrading the website and getting it ready for the new season because along with my other seamstress we’re kept busy with pattern making and stitching the clothes, and I don’t get time to upgrade the website,” Sue said.
“I also want to revamp the shop front here to help promote that this is a custom-made local dressmaking business along with our social media. We have suffered during the lockdown like many others and this grant will be invaluable for us.”
Mr. Smith said Business Basics were the first of three Big Plans for Small Business Grants programs to be awarded.
“The recipients of the new Business Boost and Business Growth Fund grants will be announced in coming months,”
“The different grant programs target specific groups within the sector and continue to deliver on the government’s commitments under the Big Plans for Small Business Strategy.
“The Business Boost grants of up to $15,000 will help small businesses to improve their efficiency and productivity through organisational development, while the $50,000 Business Growth Fund grants will allow businesses to buy highly specialised equipment to seize and accelerate growth opportunities.
“The type of grants, business requirements and the application process are a direct result of feedback from the Small Business Roadshow.”
Minister Farmer said the Business Basics Grants are in addition to the recently announced COVID-19 Business Support Grants jointly funded by the State and Federal Governments.
“We have moved the opening date of this grant program slightly to avoid confusion with the recently announced COVID-19 Business Support Grants,” Minister Farmer said.
“Applications are now open for grants of between $10,000 and $30,000 for businesses in Bundaberg that have been impacted by recent lockdowns – with money already on its way to the first businesses – as well as information for non-employing sole traders.
“There’s also the cleaning rebate for exposure sites and nearly $50 million in support and benefits for tourism and hospitality businesses.
“As well as financial assistance there is a range of tailored one on one support including our Mentoring for Growth program, Small Business Financial Counsellors, and the Queensland Small Business Commissioner.
“I’d encourage all businesses to head to www.business.qld.gov.au to make sure you’re taking advantage of the range of support available.”
For tips and advice on preparing a grant application visit www.business.qld.gov.au/starting-business/advice-support/grants/prepare-write-application.
This round of the Business Basics Grants program will close when funds are exhausted.
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