The government is boosting funding for New Zealand technology incubators by $9 million to support businesses to scale up and commercialise their ideas, research, science and innovation minister Megan Woods announced today.
The additional funding, over three years, has been allocated specifically to the technology incubator programme as part of a recent budget reprioritisation package.
“Today’s funding announcement is on top of the $25.5 million support allocated in Budget 2019 for initiatives to promote the commercialisation of innovation," Woods said.
“The government has already introduced the 15 per cent R&D tax incentive through Budget 2018, and more recently we announced refundability measures, meaning pre-profit business will be able to get cash back, which is of more use to them than a credit."
Callaghan Innovation is running a request for proposals process to select incubators that are internationally connected, backed by sufficient capital and focused on pathways to global markets.
Woods said Callaghan Innovation had a great track record of supporting successful start-ups.
"And, as the government’s innovation agency, their incubator programmes have produced 45 new start-ups and attracted more than $50 million in private capital, making a strong case for continued government investment,” she said.
Callaghan said success stories from the program include Croplogic, Invert Robotics and Onesixone.
"Armed with increased government funding we will be introducing a much more ambitious programme from 2020, underpinned by significant international experience and connections to markets, channels and investment," Callaghan said on its website.
Callaghan funding will include contributions to operational costs and access to repayable loan funding of up to $750,000 for each venture incubated.
"International incubators will be expected to establish a significant presence in New Zealand, including the permanent location of key management and incubation expertise in New Zealand – this could be by establishing a New Zealand-based subsidiary," it said.
The RFP is open to current, local and international providers who meet the new criteria, and will close on 4 October.