The Innovation Connect (ICON) Grant provides matched funding grants of between $10,000 and $30,000 to businesses with innovative products in the pre-market-ready or pre-investment stage that demonstrate high-growth potential.

The grant will fund innovative ideas, products, and services, primarily to develop a prototype or prove their technical or commercial viability, and secondarily to assist with market testing and developing a go-to-market plan, software, hardware, and professional services.

What could a strong application look like?

You should be demonstrating how your business achieves the following:

  • A deeply innovative product
  • Has high growth potential and is scalable
  • Has the potential to go global
  • A clear path to market
  • The team has the ability to make it happen and execute on the idea
  • How funding can make a difference to make the company investable / market ready

Things to consider

You might want to consider the following questions when preparing your application and 60 second video:

  • Who is the customer that I’m targeting?
    Pro-tip: Don’t just use demographical descriptors to describe your customer – describe where you can find them, what they do, and what their behaviours are.
  • What is the problem that the customer is experiencing?
    Pro-tip: Remember to talk about the customer’s problem (not the world’s problem) and show proof that you’ve spoken directly to the customer about the problem.
  • How am I solving that problem for the customer?
    Pro-tip: Describe how the features of your product directly solve the problem that the customer is experiencing.
  • How is my solution substantially different to competing solutions and the status quo?
    Pro-tip: You are competing against the current way your customer deals with the problem, so talk about why your solution is so special. Show proof that customers are looking for a solution.

What activities will the grant fund?

ICON is a prototyping grant – to be successful in receiving the grant, you must be working towards the development of a first prototype or working to advance an existing prototype.

What’s the process for applying?

  1. Book an Intro meeting at the Canberra Innovation Network.
  2. Read and agree to Terms and Conditions.
  3. Submit an EOI & 60 second video pitch.
  4. EOI’s are shortlisted by the Independent Assessment Panel.
  5. Shortlisted submissions are invited to present a 3-minute pitch to the Panel.
  6. Applicants are advised of outcome and successful applicants will enter into a Funding Agreement with the Innovation Network.