Aug 24, 2013

Small business innovation fund

A re-elected Rudd Labor Government will create a $10 million Small Business NBN Innovation Fund to help small businesses across the country unleash the full potential of the National Broadband Network (NBN).

Federal Labor wants to see Australia’s information, communications and technology (ICT) sector create new applications that will allow small businesses to cut costs and become more productive and competitive.

The new Innovation Fund will back businesses, researchers and entrepreneurs in developing innovative NBN enabled applications which deliver practical benefits for small businesses across the nation.

Once developed, the new applications would be made available free of charge to all small businesses through

This will allow small businesses to realise the benefits of Federal Labor’s investment in the National Broadband Network.

Federal Labor understands that with the Chinese mining investment boom coming to an end we need to diversify Australia’s economy so we don’t have all our eggs in one basket.

The NBN is a central element of Labor’s positive plans to create economic growth and jobs for the future.

It will open up new ways of doing business – and our new Innovation Fund will ensure small business owners and operators can tap into these benefits.

Streamlining business administration means small businesses can spend less time doing the books and more time with their customers.

The NBN is a game changer for small business across Australia. It is the biggest ever investment in small business infrastructure this nation has ever seen.

Research shows that small businesses who are engaged in the online world and use broadband grow their business faster and are more likely to be hiring new staff.

This commitment would be delivered through the Federal Labor Government’s Economic Competitiveness Fund that is already included in the budget.

Under Federal Labor, small businesses will get fibre connected to their premises for free.

In stark contrast, the Coalition will cut the NBN and slug small businesses as much as $5,000 to have fibre connected. For Australia’s 3.2 million small businesses, this cost could hit as high as $16 billion.

Labor’s Small Business NBN Innovation Fund comes on top of:

  • The biggest ever infrastructure investment for Australia’s small businesses – the National Broadband Network.
  • The Digital Enterprises Program – providing small businesses with the skills and knowledge they need to get online and take advantage of the NBN.
  • The Digital Business Kits – a suite of targeted resources and information that will help small and medium enterprises in ten specific sectors get online and make the most of the NBN.

Federal Labor would work with the Australian Computer Society and the Australian Information Industries Association on the design of the scheme to ensure it best utilises the resources of the ICT sector.