Defence Industry Development Grants Program - Sovereign Industrial Priorities Stream

Defence Industry Development Grants Program – Sovereign Industrial Priorities Stream

  • The grant value is between $50,000 to $1,000,000
  • While applications are accepted on a rolling basis, they will be reviewed every 3 months in batches

The Australian Defence Industry Development Grants Program announced it will award grants as part of the Defence Industry Development Strategy, offering $153.6 million over four years from 2024-25 to 2027-28 to support businesses in areas critical to national defence. This program was unveiled as part of the Defence Industry Development Strategy released on February 29, 2024. Through this funding, the government aims to strengthen Australia's defence industry by building sovereign capabilities, global competitiveness, and technical superiority. The program also supports national security by enhancing Australia's Defence capabilities.

To achieve these outcomes, the program provides funding through four distinct grant streams: Sovereign Industrial Priorities, Skilling, Exports, and Security. Each stream is tailored to address specific aspects of the program's overall goals.

The Sovereign Industrial Priorities Stream of the Defence Industry Development Grants Program (DIDG) is offering funding to Australian small and medium enterprises to invest in equipment and manufacturing plants that help develop programs critical to the nation's defence priorities as outlined in the Defence Industry Development Strategy.

The Sovereign Industrial Priorities Stream will have approximately $100 million in available funding over the 4-year period from 2024-25 to 2027-28. This equates to around $25 million in funding per year for this particular stream.

Key Requirements

The primary objective of the Defence Industry Development Grants Program is to develop the industrial base needed to achieve priority Defence outcomes for Australia. The key intended outcomes are:

  • Fostering a more capable, resilient, and competitive Australian defence industry aligned with strategic Defence priorities
  • Supporting the skilling and development of the Defence industry workforce to meet current and future priority capability needs
  • Boosting defence exports to enhance the resilience and competitiveness of the Australian defence industrial base
  • Improving the security posture of the Australian defence industrial base to address the challenging strategic environment

The Sovereign Industrial Priorities Stream provides up to 50% of eligible expenditure, with a minimum of $100,000 required.

The Sovereign Industrial Priorities Stream helps qualified small and medium-sized businesses invest in manufacturing equipment needed to create or deliver programs that directly support the Sovereign Defence Industrial Priorities. The intended outcomes of this grant opportunity are:

  • Enhance the capacity and capability of the Australian defence industry to effectively address critical defence capability priorities
  • Foster the scalability and responsiveness of the Australian defence industry to ensure it can adapt and grow in response to evolving defence priorities, particularly during periods of heightened demand
  • Cultivate a more robust, competitive, and innovative Australian defence industry that consistently delivers on national defence objectives in areas of strategic importance

What is eligible for funding?

The Defence Industry Development Grants Program’s Sovereign Industrial Priorities Stream is focused on enhancing the capability of Australia’s defence industry in the following key priority areas:

  • Routine maintenance, repairs, overhauls, and upgrades to ensure optimal performance of Australian Defence Force aircraft
  • Continuous construction of new naval ships and ongoing support for existing vessels
  • Maintaining and improving the capabilities of the combined-arms land system
  • Domestic manufacture of weaponry, explosives and ammunition
  • Advancement and incorporation of autonomous systems
  • Integration and optimisation of battlespace situational awareness networks
  • Testing, certifying, and guaranteeing the reliability of defence systems.

In order to be eligible for funding the project must meet the following criteria:

  • Meet the minimum expenditure of $100,000
  • Be carried out in Australia
  • Consist of eligible activities
  • Maximum timeline of 24 months
  • Be directly connected to the grant outcomes and objectives
  • Must not use funding from other Commonwealth, state, territory or local government sources to fund your portion of eligible expenditure
  • Be complete by March 31 2028

Funding is capped at $3 million over a three-year period.

An authorised officer within the Department of Defence will have the discretion to redistribute the funding amounts between the different grant streams. This flexibility allows the program to ensure the most meritorious applications across all streams are funded, regardless of the initial funding allocation.

What companies are eligible for funding?

Applicants must:

  • Have an Australian business number (ABN)
  • Be a small to medium enterprise (SMEs)
  • be registered for GST
  • have an Australian financial institution account
  • be non-income tax exempt

Your entity must be one of the following:

  • incorporated in Australia
  • a company limited by guarantee
  • an incorporated trustee on behalf of a trust

Organisations may submit joint applications by partnering with one or more other eligible entities. However, a single organisation must be designated as the lead applicant and will be responsible for the following:

  • Filling out the application
  • If approved for the grant – will sign the grant agreement and take responsibility for your group in following the rules of the agreement

Is this grant competitive or entitlement based?

Competitive. Your application will be assessed among other applications by a judging panel.

How can I increase my chances of winning this grant?

By engaging an accredited government grants consultant, such as Avant Group.

Competitive grants often require significant business case development and project analysis to support the application, this may include detailed presentations supporting the project’s merit, projected sales, cost-benefit analysis and more.

As part of your engagement with Avant Group, your account manager will assess the required documents and will provide the following as needed to support your grant submission.

Grant application writeup including a detailed presentation illustrating how the grant funding will contribute to your project, how the funding will contribute to the project’s budget, a project milestone plan, delivery timeline, impact on employment if applicable and a breakdown of the management and leadership team for the project

  • Industry analysis presentation
  • Competitor Analysis Presentation
  • Marketing and Sales Analysis Presentation
  • 3-5 year Cashflow Forecast
  • 3-5 year Balance Sheet Forecast
  • Cost-Benefit Analysis of Grant Funding
  • End-to-end grant application including information collating, analysis and application writing
  • CAPEX (Capital Expenditure) cost-benefit analysis
  • Stakeholder relations and Risk Mitigation Plans
  • Any other relevant forecasting that will support your application

How can I get help with my application? Or know if I’m likely to win funding?

Avant Group offers a no-obligation assessment of your eligibility for funding and will assess your likelihood of a successful grant application.