New $21m growth grants to boost R&D in NZ

New Research and Development (R&D) Growth Grants worth more than $21 million over three years have been approved by Callaghan Innovation for another 15 high-tech companies.

The latest Callaghan Innovation R&D Growth Grants have been approved for a wide range of companies from across the high-value manufacturing and services sector (HVMSS) who have shown a strong commitment to research and development conducted in New Zealand.

“Through these grants, which pay 20 per cent of each company’s R&D costs, high-value manufacturers and service providers will be able to innovate faster and grow further,” says Steven Joyce, Science and Innovation Minister, Government.

“That in turn will help lift New Zealand’s export revenues, job numbers, and the incomes of Kiwi families.”

The latest companies to be approved for R&D Growth Grants operate in a range of sectors including software solutions and services, transport management, manufacturing, natural health and wound-care, medical devices, diagnostic and monitoring, wireless power transfer, aluminium casting, environmental monitoring, digital publishing, visual communications, and electronic componentry.

R&D Growth Grants were introduced last year as part of changes to R&D funding designed to encourage more research and development to be undertaken by businesses in New Zealand.

They provide 20 per cent public co-funding for qualifying firms’ eligible R&D expenditure, with an expanded cap of $5 million per annum – up from the previous scheme’s $2.4 million. After two years of funding, businesses can be granted a further two-year extension of funding.

In order to apply for a Growth Grant, a business needs to commit to spend at least $300,000, and at least 1.5 per cent of revenue, a year on R&D occurring in New Zealand. Once approved, a company can claim for funding quarterly in arrears.

So far this year a total of 65 companies have been approved for R&D Growth Grants worth a total of around $220 million over three years.

R&D Project Grants are available for smaller companies and those that are new to research and development, while incubator support programmes assist start-up businesses.

The new Callaghan Innovation grants – R&D Growth Grants, R&D Project Grants, and R&D Students Grants – were announced in Budget 2013.

A total of $566 million is available over four years to encourage R&D through Callaghan Innovation’s business R&D grant schemes.

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