Business Development Fund

Queensland’s Business Development Fund (BDF) has supported more than 25 Queensland start-ups to help businesses turn their ideas and innovations into commercial realities – supporting over 100 new jobs and attracting new industries to Queensland.

As part of the 2018-19 budget, the Palaszczuk Government committed an additional $40 million, bringing its total investment for the Business Development Fund to $80 million.

Investment decisions are made by an independent panel of experienced investors, and co-invests between $125,000 to $2.5 million through the fund – which must be at least matched by a private sector co-investor.

The BDF is part of Advance Queensland which is a comprehensive suite of programs designed to create the knowledge-based jobs of the future, drive productivity improvements and build on Queensland’s natural advantages.

About the Business Development Fund

The Business Development Fund (BDF) helps Queensland businesses commercialise cutting edge research, or innovative ideas, products and services. By focusing on the growth of innovative businesses, particularly in emerging industries, the Fund supports the creation of high value, knowledge-based and skilled jobs now and into the future.

Through providing early stage co-investment funding, the BDF promotes angel and venture capital investment in Queensland-based businesses. The BDF is part of a wider Queensland Government strategy to support a sustainable private market for venture capital finance in Queensland.

How investment decisions are made

The Queensland Government has appointed an independent Investment Panel consisting of experienced private investors who have a strong background in entrepreneurship, and early stage investment, particularly in innovative start-ups or growing technology businesses.

The Panel reviews the applications and those that best meet the investment criteria are invited to pitch. Panel members make the final investment decision based on a majority vote.

There are no Government representatives on the Investment Panel and members make an independent investment decision.

Panel members

Dr Adam Kossak is a venture capitalist. He is currently Non-Executive Director of Find-Me Technologies Pty Limited and the founding partner in Aequora Capital Pty Ltd. Mr Kossak has strong commercial and analytical skills and extensive experience in start-up companies. He is a member of the Australian Medical Association and the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD).

Dr Patrick Silvey has extensive experience in commercialisation and is currently the Managing Director of VenturePro Pty Limited which provides business advisory and commercialisation assistance to universities, early stage technology companies and government agencies involved in research, development and commercialisation. Dr Silvey prepared the business case to establish QUT’s commercialisation arm – qutBluebox Pty Ltd. He is also a member of the QUT Research and Innovation Committee and the i.lab technology incubator Advisory Panel.

Troy Haines is the founder of theSPACE, a regional incubator in Cairns. Along with his team, Troy has worked with hundreds of entrepreneurs across a wide audience, from high school students, SME’s to corporate employees to help them commercialise their ideas.

Dr Elaine Stead is an experienced venture capitalist and management consultant to the venture capital industry across Australia and the United States. She has spent the last decade within the innovation and investment spectrum, initially in technology commercialisation assisting public institutions and founders translate and commercialise their technology across a broad range of industry sectors including agriculture, healthcare and IT.

Nicola Vaisey is currently Director and Secretary of Constructionarium Australia, which seeks to develop hands on practical skills in young engineers. Ms Vaisey has worked on innovation projects in the medical, engineering and infrastructure space, including developing proposals for multi-stakeholder Vaccine Pipeline projects, Big Data and Strategic planning projects with UQ, CSIRO (Pullenvale), and strategic research and partnership planning for QUT’s advanced robotic vision Centre of Excellence. Ms Vaisey has executive experience in pharmaceutical and medical devices industries.

Monica Bradley is the Director of Purposeful Capital. She designs business models and strategy for boards, corporates and social impact organisations. She is a strong advocate in the social impact and enterprise investing.

Anne-Marie Birkill is General Partner and Executive Director of OneVentures. She has worked with companies in the biotechnology, clean technology and technology sectors as a consultant, mentor, advisor, director and coach.

Michael Zimmerman is an entrepreneur, CEO and investor/board member with experience in building technology companies in enterprise software, internet and energy sectors. Mr Zimmerman has 20 years’ experience working with a diverse set of venture-backed technology companies, including a number that have expanded and developed overseas. He is currently an Entrepreneur in Residence at CSIRO.

Investments made in Queensland businesses

Business Development Fund investment recipients include*:

JESI Management Solutions

JESI is a global management software company which has developed an affordable and scalable journey management software designed to assist companies track and monitor the safety of their staff whilst they travel.

www.jesi.io

Media release:

http://statements.qld.gov.au/Statement/2016/6/21/palaszczuk-government-invests-in-townsville-technology-for-safer-work

Tritium

Brisbane-based Tritium’s business model includes the development of fast-charging electric vehicle technology that will enable low-emission, vehicle charging. Tritium received both an investment and follow-on investment through the BDF.

www.tritium.com.au

Media release:

Palaszczuk Government investment drives electrical vehicle innovation

Brisbane-based manufacturer Tritium charges ahead while Qld launches new EV strategy

MiCare Global Pty Ltd

MiCare Global operates cloud and mobile-enabled communications portals and compliance platforms which aggregates multiple apps, programs, functions and solutions into the one system.

www.micareglobal.com

Media release:

$2 million to help Queenslanders age in place

EFTLab

EFTLab focuses on the electronic payment market with innovative software architecture that is customisable and scalable, enabling them to meet the future growth and changing needs of their customers.

www.eftlab.co.uk

Media release:

$2 million to help Queenslanders age in place

Five Good Friends

Five Good Friends provides software platform connecting technology, people and the community by reinventing ‘traditional home care’ for the aged.

www.fivegoodfriends.com.au

Media release:

$2 million to help Queenslanders age in place

Water and Carbon Group

The Water and Carbon Group designs, builds and operates wastewater treatment systems using innovative systems with low energy and sustainable engineered solutions. The Water and Carbon Group received both an investment and a follow-on investment from the BDF.

www.waterandcarbon.com.au

Media release:

Wastewater treatment business gets $1.5 million boost

GO1 Pty Ltd

GO1 operates a learning management system which helps organisations deliver compliance to their staff and volunteers. Go1 successfully exited the Fund in 2017.

www.go1.com

Media release:

Online training business score $1.5 million funding boost

PlantMiner

PlantMiner Group operates an online marketplace that provides construction companies with a cloud-based supplier engagement and procurement platform for plant and equipment and other key resources.

www.plantminer.com.au

Intrepica Pty Ltd

Gold Coast-based Intrepica, through its LiteracyPlanet business, runs a cutting edge, cloud-based English literacy education featuring curriculum-aligned games and exercises kindergarten and school aged students.

www.literacyplanet.com/au

Media release:

$1 million to support innovative literacy education resource

Lawcadia Pty Ltd

Lawcadia operates a legal procurement business which aims to help companies and governments in global markets rethink the way they procure and manage legal services and use data on their legal matters through its web-based application. Lawcadia received both an initial and follow-on investment through the BDF.

www.lawcadia.com

Media release:

http://statements.qld.gov.au/Statement/2017/5/5/innovative-legaltech-firm-gets-500000-funding-boost

PERKii Pty Ltd

PERKii has developed a world-first, low-calorie water and juice-based probiotic drink believed to have immunity and gut health benefits.

www.perkii.com.au

Media release:

The Palaszczuk Government backs home grown world-first probiotic drink company

Find-Me Technologies

Find-Me Technologies has developed the Carer’s Watch featuring GPS tracking and back to base connectivity for personal security particularly targeted to loved ones and carers of older people and people with dementia.

www.carerswatch.com.au

Sustainable Organic Solutions

Sustainable Organic Solutions have created ‘bridging’ fertilisers that allow farmers to transition to organic farming without impacting crop yield. Trials of the fertiliser show that nitrogen runoff has been reduced by up to 80 per cent.

Website: http://www.sosbio.com.au/

Croomo

Croomo Pty Ltd (Valti Pty Ltd) is an enterprise cloud-based platform that is redefining how modern blended learning is delivered and managed in organisations of all sizes.

Website: http://croomo.com 

Spare Workspace

Spare Workspace, (Spare IP Holdings) an online marketplace that allows people to book, hire or share short-term commercial workspaces.

Website: http://spareworkspace.com.au/find-space

Travelshoot

Travelshoot (Pearce Holdings Co Pty Ltd) connects global travellers with local and professional photographers that turn holiday memories into something extraordinary.

Website: www.travelshoot.com.au/

iSeekplant

iSeekplant Pty Ltd is an online marketplace connecting companies with hire equipment to companies who need equipment for mining, construction and commercial projects.

Website: http://www.iseekplant.com.au/

Dog and Bone

D&B Backbone, a technology brand that pioneers new ideas via disruptive innovation in the consumer electronics market across areas such as protective phone cases, smart locks and headphones.

Website: http://www.dogandbonecases.com/

Serene Medical

Serene Medical Pty Ltd has developed new technology to locate and treat motor nerves for facial applications.

Website: www.serenemedical.com/

Lode

Lode Solutions Pty Ltd is an online employment marketplace that connects employers with talented university students ready to embark on their careers.

Website: http://lode.com.au/

Mindhive

MindHive Pty Ltd is an Idea Management Software that leverages the power of crowdsourcing for problem solving and idea generation with a particular focus on servicing the opportunities presented in the growth of civic technology.

Website: https://mindhive.org/

REDEYE

RedEye Apps Pty Ltd provides cloud and mobile solutions for asset and work management.

Website: https://redeye.co/

RISKWISE PROPERTY RESEARCH

RiskWise Property Review is an independent property research and risk-rating FinTech company allowing people and organisations to individually assess investment property benefits and risks.

Website: http://www.riskwiseproperty.com.au/

CRUISETRAKA

CruiseTraka (Fortress Capstone Pty Ltd) is a smart phone based solution used by passengers to share their cruise experience with family and friends back home in almost real time via social media and email.

Website: http://www.cruisetraka.com/

Healthcare Logic is a software company dedicated to improving patient care by centralising patient-information in one place and making it available to health care professionals to improve patient-centred care and outcomes.

Website: http://www.healthcarelogic.com.au/

Obzervr Pty Ltd is an innovative, adaptive and intuitive data collection platform that helps organisations achieve a seamlessly connected field-to-headquarters process; improving efficiency and productivity, operational performance and data accessibility.

Website: http://www.obzervr.com/

Nexgen Plants is an emerging plant trait company delivering non-genetically modified solutions for agriculture-dependent communities. The investment will help to commercialise two related platform technologies – a new intragenic trait development platform and a plant virus resistance platform.

Website: http://www.nexgenplants.com/

*Please note: This page includes links to other websites which are external to Queensland Treasury. These links are provided for the interest or convenience of users. The material found by using these links is not created, controlled or approved by Queensland Treasury and no responsibility is taken by Queensland Treasury for the consequences of viewing or using such material.

How to apply

We are looking for businesses that are:

  • commercialising cutting edge research, or innovative ideas, products or services
  • based in Queensland, with the majority of their assets and employees located in Queensland
  • not engaged in property development, land ownership, finance or construction as a predominate business activity.

Private sector co-investors can be:

  • individual investors
  • angel investors
  • investment businesses, including venture capital funds
  • investor syndicates.

The co-investor must commit to play an active role in supporting the business requiring investment. Therefore, it is highly desirable that the co-investor has a proven track record of prior investment in start-ups and/or early stage investments, including successful investment exits and returns.

The investment must create opportunities for new, high value and skilled employment, and must have a realistic prospect of becoming commercially successful.

For more information or to apply online visit the Advance Queensland website.

More information

For more information on the Business Development Fund email bdf@treasury.qld.gov.au.

Details on other Queensland Government programs can be found on the Advance Queenslandwebsite.

Last updated: 19 July 2018