The Federal Government has just launched a new grant for third party service providers to help small and home-based businesses with:
- ‘Free or low cost’ IT skills development
- Training and mentoring services
- Improved web presence and e-business capability
The program is called the Small Business Online (SBO) program and is provided by AusIndustry. In launching this program, the Government has acknowledged that for businesses to grow and achieve profitability, they need access to information, advice, knowledge and expertise.
SBO is providing total funds of $10 million in one round only. Individual grants can range between $50,000 and $500,000, with applications closing 25 September 2009.
SBO is designed to support small business owners and managers, including home-based business. Note this grant will not be awarded to support companies that want to go online, but only to third-party service providers that can assist by making the process clearer, cheaper and easier. If you are assisting businesses that have already gone online, the funds can be used help expand their market influence or improve services through their website.
We suggest that if you are already providing these IT services to companies, get your applications in now. If you’re applying, consider supporting rural and regional businesses.