Business Grants Available

Are you aware that your business may be eligible for assistance in the form of grants, business advice or even overseas office space?

From research and development to hiring labour, there is a wide variety of assistance available to New Zealand businesses. It is commonly misconceived that the help is only for start-ups, but there are also a number of initiatives for mature organisations of all sizes. Grants may be given to develop new products and markets, including research and development and commercialisation of your ideas. There are a number of subsidies available if you are in a position to provide roles for the long-term unemployed, disadvantaged or people with disabilities. In addition, if you are exploring international markets, there are also services provided by overseas organisations such as the Japan External Trade Organisation.


CAL Callahan Innovation
MBIE Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment
MPI Ministry for Primary Industries
NZECI New Zealand Export Credit Office

NZTE New Zealand Trade and Enterprise
NZVIF New Zealand Venture Investment Fund
TPK Te Puni Kōkiri
WINZ Work and Income New Zealand

OrganisationGrantPurposeAmountCriteriaNotesWebsite details
MBIEFund FinderLists available funds in the science and innovation ecosystem, for research or building a business.Not applicable.Not applicable.Search function to find available funding.MBIE Fund Finder
Regional Business PartnersInformation & connections14 regional organisations that provide information and advice to New Zealand businesses.Not applicable.Not applicable.Advice, information, referrals and connections to any business seeking support on their growth journey.NZTE Business Partners
Local CouncilInformation & connectionsInformation for start-ups, running and growing businesses.Not applicable.Not applicable.Advice and information.Council central directory

Example for Auckland
Business Improvement District (BID) ProgrammeInformation & connections48 BIDs operate across the Auckland region representing over 25,000 businesses. There are also voluntary business associations in Auckland and nationwide.Not applicable.Not applicable.Promotion and marketing events, networking, training, web listings.Auckland Council Business Improvement Programme
CALCallaghan Innovation R&D Project Grants
  • Build your R&D expertise by giving your business an opportunity to push the boundaries and uncover new scientific or technical knowledge and understanding
  • Break new ground in an R&D project for the development of new or substantially improved devices, products, processes, systems or services
  • Develop your business into a stable and substantial R&D performer
  • Grow your investment in R&D.
40% for the first $800,000 of eligible R&D then 20% for the remainder, or if previous Growth Grant then flat 20% funding, or if business has had more than $800,000 of R&D Project funding then flat 20% funding applies.Businesses with smaller R&D programmes and businesses new to R&D. Must not be receiving or be eligible to receive an R&D Growth Grant.Companies must have the aspiration and opportunity to grow significantly through R&D. General eligibility criteria:
  • Company registered under Companies Act 1993
  • Limited partnership under Limited Partnerships Act 2008
  • A Maori incorporation or a trust established under Te Ture Whenua Maori Act 1993, or
  • A trust established on behalf of Maori claimants to receive and manage assets as part of the settlement of a claim under the Treaty of Waitangi, or
  • A Maori statutory body, or
  • A business that is controlled by one or more of these types of Maori entities.
Callaghan Innovation Project Grants
CALCallaghan Innovation R&D Growth Grants
  • Add scale to your R&D investment for greater market impact
  • Be flexible by allowing you to adapt to where you want to take your R&D programme, outside the constraints of traditional R&D grant criteria
  • Continue to grow your investment in R&D for maximum return.
Receive 20% of your eligible R&D expenditure, up to $5m per annum.Firm has spent at least $300,000 per annum and 1.5% of revenue on eligible R&D in each of the last two years; OR plan to exceed these levels over the next year (transitional application).As AboveCallaghan Innovation Growth Grants
CALCallaghan Innovation Student Grants
  • Access the latest thinking and fresh talent in science, technology, engineering, design or business - at minimal cost
  • Commercialise the new knowledge originating from the student’s research project
  • Build links between your business and New Zealand universities to access additional R&D opportunities and support universities in producing skilled graduates
  • Provide a student with the opportunity to develop their technical skills and gain commercial experience.
$6,400 + GST for an intern for 400 hours work experience in R&D during the summer break; 50% of annual salary costs up to $30,000 + GST (based on a salary of $60,000) for a six month internship, or funding for a PhD/Masters student.Firm has an active R&D programme as well as meeting the general eligibility criteria.As AboveCallaghan Innovation Student Grants
CALCallaghan Innovation Technology IncubatorsTechnology incubators invest in and actively help commercialise complex technologies. They concentrate on taking your concept to the next level by building a business around the technology - with the aim of growing globally competitive hi-tech businesses.Technology incubators have access to Callaghan Innovation pre-incubation grants and repayable loans for eligible projects. The incubator co-funds the project for which the loan is provided.The business must be partnered with a Callaghan Innovation funded technology incubator.As AboveCallaghan Innovation Technology Incubators
CALCallaghan Innovation AcceleratorsDesigned to support the rapid formation of early stage ICT and digital technology start-ups that will drive growth in New Zealand’s digital technologies industry.Co-funding is at a rate of 1:2 Government to private sector funding (for example: $250,000 from government is matched $500,000 from co-founders).Deep IP-based start-ups.Accelerator programmes typically run over three to five months and focus on rapid and intensive product development to establish and investment ready start-up.Callaghan Innovation Accelerators
CALGlobal ExpertGlobal Expert can help you find the innovation expertise you require; it can help you to:
  • Find a specialist with technical expertise in a particular field or area
  • Find a supplier of specialist products, devices, equipment or technologies
  • Find commercialisation partners
  • Find a specialist to evaluate new ideas, technologies and opportunities.
Not applicable.Summary of willing and validated experts matching your requirements will be provided, usually within 15 to 20 business days.Callaghan Innovation Global Expert
CALBetter by LeanReview your business processes and management systems to improve productivity, reduce waste and enhance customer experience.Contact Callaghan Innovation to discuss whether Better by Lean could be right for your business.Lean Appreciation one or two-day workshops at the University of Auckland for business owners, innovators, leaders and senior managers.Callaghan Innovation Better by Lean
Japan External Trade OrganisationBusiness supportPromotes mutual trade and investment between Japan and the rest of the world.Not applicable.None specified.Offers foreign investors with abundant information on all aspects of doing business in Japan, by providing expert consultation and offering free temporary office space in major business areas across the country, plus potential government subsidies. Recently JETRO decided to offer subsidies for IOT and regeneration medicine related business from overseas.JETRO Who We Are

JETRO Incentive Programs
NZTE (partly funded)Business mentorsProvides 12 months of confidential one-on-one advice for owners of small and medium-sized businesses that are currently trading and who want to grow or need help to solve specific business challenges. Volunteer business mentors with experience and empathy for small business offer guidance, act as a sounding board, challenge your thinking and provide you with an independent and fresh perspective.Non-monetary.Business/organisation currently trading, a start-up or a not-for-profit; employs/will employ fewer than 25 employees; provides owner with primary source of income.Clients of the Business Mentoring Programme pay a $225 + GST registration fee; after registration the mentoring is free for up to 12 months, volunteered by your experienced Business Mentor.Business Mentors
NZTECapability Development VouchersAvailable to businesses to use as partial payment towards the cost of capability development and training.Used to co-fund up to 50 percent of capability development training up to a maximum of $5,000 per year per business. The business must pay at least half of the training costs.Must be operating with 50 or fewer FTEs; be GST registered in New Zealand; be operating in a commercial environment - ie. you’re currently trading; be privately owned or a Maori Trust or Incorporation under the Te Ture Whenua Maori Act 1993 or similar organisation managing Maori assets under multiple ownership; must have undergone assessment by a Regional Business Partner; must have the potential and desire to innovate and grow.Allows eligible businesses to choose accredited training provider.NZTE Regional Business Partners

Regional Business Partners
NZTENZTE Beachhead OfficesNew Zealand Beachhead advisors support NZTE’s strategy and provide advice and insight to New Zealand businesses to help them grow bigger, better, faster internationally.Business development or project manager, networking and advice, office space in some countries.High-growth NZ companies looking for physical presence in offshore markets, with revenues of $5 million, aiming for $100+ million.Beachheads connects participating companies to a network of private sector advisors in New Zealand and around the world who can act as mentors and provide insights into the realities of growing internationally successful businesses.NZTE Beachheads
NZTEInternational Growth FundPart of tailored package of services NZTE offers that help exporters accelerate growth in international markets. NZTE market development funding has been extended to Australia.Funding for businesses working closely with NZTE is accessed via an NZTE Customer Manager and skewed towards supporting fast-growth export businesses, and sectors and regions that present the greatest opportunities for international success.Businesses that receive this funding need to at least match the level of investment that NZTE makes.NZTE International Growth Fund
MPIPrimary Growth Partnership (PGP)A joint venture between government and industry that invests in long-term innovation programmes to increase the market success of the primary industries.The minimum amount that industry co-investors must contribute is $500,000 (GST exclusive) over the life of the programme. This means that the total value of a programme must be at least $833,333 over the life of the programme (ie. a minimum of $500,000 from the industry and $333,333 from the Crown).PGP programmes must focus on activities in one or more of the primary industries:
  • pastoral and arable
  • horticulture
  • seafood
  • forestry and wood processing
  • food processing
Organisations can submit new PGP programme proposals at any time; MPI no longer holds annual funding rounds for PGP applications.MPI
NZVIFVenture Capital FundInvesting in privately-managed venture capital funds, which then invest into New Zealand originated technology companies.Up to $25 million providing there is at least matching private sector support, a demonstrable track record and an experienced team.Focus on high growth potential companies.NZVIF Venture Capital Fund
NZVIFSeed Co-Investment FundEarly stage direct investment fund aimed at early stage businesses with strong potential for high growth.The fund provides $40 million of matched investment alongside selected Seed Co-investment Partners on a 1:1 basis into seed or start up high growth New Zealand businesses; maximum $250,000 in any one company or group; possibility of another $750,000 follow-on.Available to NZ businesses, excluding investment in financial intermediaries, property development, retailing, mining and hospitality industry businesses.Contact NZVIF, Angel Association NZ or local business incubator. Regional economic development agencies can also be a useful source of information.NZVIF Seed Co-Investment
NZECOInformationProvides financial guarantees and trade credit insurance products for New Zealand exporters, banks and insurers.Can provide up to 95% cover against non-payment when the claim is due to a political or commercial problem.Transactions supported by NZECO must have a direct financial and or indirect benefit to New Zealand. NZECO is also required to meet NZ Government and other internationalSells a range of New Zealand government backed trade credit insurances and financial guarantees that mitigate credit risk.NZECO
TPKMaori Business Facilitation ServiceProvides business information, support, guidance and advice to Maori business owners as well as Maori entrepreneurs starting out. Can help with facilitation, brokerage, coaching, problem solving, networking, workshops, mentoring, and accessing resources and referrals to other business services.Non-monetary.Are of Maori descent, are the company director or business owner.Allocated an account manager who will:
  • Discuss the nature and viability of your business or business proposition;
  • Identify if and how they can help you;
  • Identify your capabilities as a business operator;
  • Identify any other critical issues and business needs.
Workbridge (administers funding on behalf of the Ministry of Social Development)Job Support FundProvides financial assistance to cover additional costs related to an employee’s disability; targets those seeking work or those already in employment who want to retain their employment.Funding limit for each individual is $16,900 in any 12 month period.Employee must have a disability which is likely to continue for at least six months.One-off grant.Work Bridge
WINZFree recruitment and employer servicesQuick, easy and no-cost recruitment services through a dedicated Work Broker who will work with you to help you find the right people for your business.Non-financial.None.Can also help you with training and/or a wage subsidy you may qualify for if you employ someone through WINZ.Work and Income Recruitment
WINZWage SubsidiesA subsidy provided to an employer for wages and/or training for people to develop work habits and general on the job skills.As at 1 April 2014, a Flexi-Wage subsidy of $427.50 (including GST) can be paid per participant per week for a fixed period of time.For employers, the employee should meet the eligibility criteria and the position be ongoing and continue after the subsidy finishes. The employee must be paid market wages. If the business is undertaking project-based work, the project must be a fixed term community or environmental project that would otherwise not be done.Extra funding can be provided to help with the costs of training for the new employee which may include mentoring or in-work supportWINZ Wage Subsidies

WINZ Flexi Wage
WINZModification GrantA payment which helps people with disabilities pay for workplace changes or equipment that makes it easier for them to stay in or get work.Depends on requirements. The maximum amount of a Modification Grant available to a participant in a 52 week period is $10,000 (including GST).Disabled persons may get a Modification Grant if they have a disability that’s likely to last at least six months, the modification will help them stay in work or get work, they don’t get weekly payments from ACC and they are a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident.The Modification Grant pays for things like:
  • ramps and handrails
  • visual aids
  • computer equipment
  • other changes in your workplace.
WINZ Modification Grant
WINZBusiness Training and Advice GrantProvides training and advice to those on a WINZ benefit who want to start up their own business.Dependent on courses desired.The business owner is getting some form of government assistance, and is planning to take up, or are already getting, flexi-wage self-employment subsidy.Will also need to write a brief summary about the business and the course or service the owner wants the grant for.WINZ Training and Advice
WINZRedundancy supportRather than making staff redundant, this service helps employees find suitable jobs elsewhere while allowing the business to continue its day-to-day operations.Not applicable.Businesss must be experiencing changes such as downsizing, closing or relocating of their operations.The services include meetings, co-ordinating services, training and other assistance to support your employees find other jobs.WINZ Redundancy Support

Information current as at April 2017.

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