If you are a small to medium enterprise (SME) looking to grow your exports in international markets, you may be interested in the Export Market Development Grants (EMDG) scheme. This is a financial assistance program administered by Austrade that helps Australian businesses market and promote their goods and services globally.
Below is an overview of the EMDG scheme, its benefits, eligibility criteria and application process.
What is the EMDG scheme?
The EMDG scheme is a key Australian Government initiative that supports SMEs to start, expand or diversify their export businesses. The scheme provides partial reimbursement of eligible promotional expenses incurred by SMEs each year, up to a maximum of $150,000. The scheme has 3 tiers of grants, each offering a different level of support depending on the stage and needs of the exporter:
– Tier 1: Exporting. This grant is for SMEs that are new to exporting or have limited export experience. It provides up to 50% reimbursement of eligible expenses up to $40,000 per year for 2 years.
– Tier 2: Expanding. This grant is for SMEs that have some export experience and are looking to grow their existing markets or enter new ones. It provides up to 50% reimbursement of eligible expenses up to $80,000 per year for 3 years.
– Tier 3: Strategic shift. This grant is for SMEs that have significant export experience and are looking to make a strategic shift in their export business, such as entering a new region, sector or product category. It provides up to 50% reimbursement of eligible expenses up to $150,000 per year for 5 years.
What are the benefits of the EMDG scheme?
The EMDG scheme can help SMEs:
– Increasing their brand awareness and recognition in international markets
– Developing new contacts and networks with potential customers, distributors and partners
– Generating more leads and sales opportunities
– Enhancing their marketing skills and capabilities
– Reducing the financial risk and uncertainty of exporting
– Accessing expert advice and guidance from Austrade
Who is eligible for the EMDG scheme?
To be eligible for the EMDG scheme, businesses must:
– Have an Australian Business Number (ABN)
– Have an annual income of less than $20 million
– Have incurred at least $15,000 of eligible expenses in the grant year
– Have promoted one or more eligible products or services for export
– Have carried out eligible promotional activities in one or more overseas markets
Eligible products or services include:
– Goods made in Australia
– Goods made outside Australia where Australia will derive a significant net benefit from their sale overseas
– Services delivered outside Australia or delivered in Australia to non-residents
– Intellectual property or know-how that mainly resulted from work done in Australia
– A trade mark that was owned, assigned or first used in Australia
– A tourism service provided to non-residents visiting Australia
Eligible promotional activities include:
– Online advertising
– Website development and maintenance
– Social media marketing
– Search engine optimisation and marketing
– E-commerce platforms and tools
– Market research and testing
– Trade fairs and exhibitions
– Trade missions and visits
– Samples and giveaways
– Brochures and catalogues
– Advertising in print, radio or TV media
– Public relations and publicity
– Registration and protection of intellectual property rights
– Engagement of consultants or agents
– Engagement of marketing staff or contractors
How to apply for the EMDG scheme?
The EMDG scheme operates on a financial year basis, from 1 July to 30 June. Applicants can apply online through the EMDG Online Lodgement portal with an approved EMDG consultant.
How we help as an EMDG consultant
- Completing an online application form with details of the applicant’s business, products or services, markets, promotional activities and expenses.
- Preparing marketing business plans to comply with Austrade’s requirements
- Submitting supporting documents such as invoices, receipts, bank statements, contracts, reports and evidence of promotional outcomes.
- Agreeing to a grant agreement with Austrade that specifies the grant amount, payment schedule and reporting requirements.
- Lodging milestone reports to request milestone payments as per the grant agreement.
- Complying with the EMDG guidelines, rules and legislation.
Austrade assesses all applications based on eligibility. All eligible applicants receive a grant from the available funds. The grant amount depends on the number of eligible applications in the round and the available program budget.