The Boosting Female Founder (BFF) Initiative was recently expanded to Round 2, providing additional funding for grants and introducing a new mentoring element to further support women entrepreneurs grow their startups. Approximately $11.6 million in grant funding is available for Round 2.
What is the BFF Initiative?
The BFF Initiative commenced in 2020 and is designed to help female entrepreneurs overcome the disadvantages faced in getting access to finance and support to grow their startups. The program provides grants between $25,000 and $400,000 on a co-contribution basis and is open to startups that are majority owned and led by women who want to expand their business into domestic and global markets.
Here are few examples of successful grant recipients from Round 1...
Akin Australia Pty Ltd - The project is focused on Home AI intelligent home managers, which are able to talk naturally across devices and help run the home. This project will assist families and people living with a disability by supporting social connection, activities and exercise to reduce the burden of running a home.
Bring Me Home Pty Ltd - The project is focused on connecting customers with food wholesalers and manufacturers that have surplus food to sell, reducing food waste in the commercial sector, and helping businesses and consumers save money.
Champion Life Education Pty Ltd - Champion Life Education is upgrading the Champion Life platform for schools, which helps improve young people’s mental and physical wellbeing and delivers tailored solutions to increase physical activity and health behaviours in a sustainable way.
Discodtours Australia Pty Ltd - The project will focus on building the next iteration of Discodtours Australia’s silent disco technology platform to product stage, and developing sales infrastructure and capabilities to expand into the Australian and New Zealand markets.
How to apply?
Before you apply, make sure you:
The application process is comprised of two stages. In the first stage you will need to apply via an Expression of Interest (EOI). If successful, you will be invited to submit a stage two Grant Application.
Close date: 22 April 2021 at 5pm
What are the assessment criteria?
Stage 1: Expression of Interest assessment criteria
1. How a grant will help you to scale-up, expand into domestic and global markets, and become self-sufficient:
- how grant funding will assist in removing barriers and help you to grow your startup
- what growth looks like for your business (e.g. in terms of revenue, employees, etc.)
- how ready your product or service is to take to market (expected Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 6 or above)
2. Your capacity, capability and resources to grow:
- about you and your team
- if you have received any investment from external sources (including how much and the funding source). If not, why not?
- if you receive any non-financial assistance (e.g. mentoring, access to networks, advice or other guidance, etc.) If not, why not?
3. The impact of grant funding
- how much grant funding you require and how you propose to fund your contribution
- how the grant will help you to leverage additional partnerships or support from other organisations
Stage 2: Grant Application assessment criteria
The Grant Application requires more details than provided in your EOI as well as evidence to support your answers.
1. How grant funding will help you to overcome disadvantages to scale up, expand into domestic and global markets and become self-sufficient
- how grant funding will be used to support and grow your startup
- how grant funding will enable your startup to develop, scale-up, and expand into domestic and global markets
- how grant funding will assist in removing challenges and barriers faced by you, as a woman, in growing your startup.
2. Your capacity, capability and resources to deliver the project
- your and/or your team’s qualifications, experience or track record in startups and managing large or complex projects
- your business plan, including:
- your revenue model
- your addressable market and profile of your ideal customers
- your customer acquisition strategy
- your company’s organisational structure
- the rationale and scope of the project or activity for which you are requesting funding
- project timeframes and budget
- expected outcomes
- how you will measure the success of the project
- your plan to finance growth. What is your plan to seek additional or follow on investment, or to build a sustainable self-funding business?
3. The impact of grant funding
- your need for funding, i.e. the extent that you need this grant to achieve your projected growth (you must have a genuine need for funding)
- how your project leverages additional partnerships or support from other organisations
- the benefits to Australia, your region and/or community from your project.
If you need help with application or to find out more visit business.gov.au or give them a call on 13 28 46.
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