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RSM has urged Australian SMEs to be proactive in their pursuit of innovation, and to avoid sitting on the fence.
Recent research conducted by the mid-tier indicated that fewer than half (45 per cent) of SMEs expect to benefit from the Coalition government’s recent $1.1 billion National Innovation & Science Agenda (NISA).
Andrew Graham, national head of business advisory for RSM, said that instead of assuming they will not benefit from the government’s innovation policies, Australian SMEs, and in particular start-ups, should seek advice from a research and development (R&D) tax specialist to see whether they qualify.
“Tax incentives for early-stage start-ups would be a highly cost-effective way to increase your company’s R&D output, and SMEs should watch out for greater disclosure on the rollout of such initiatives,” he said.
According to Mr Graham, SMEs should be buoyed by the initial $22.6 million committed to 11 industry-led projects as part of the first round of the Cooperative Research Centre-Project (CRC-P) program.
“In order to develop a high-tech Australian economy, we expect future phases of the innovation agenda to target more established businesses by boosting the availability of later-stage capital, and SMEs need to watch this space closely,” he said.