Victoria Launches 2008 Innovation Statement

4 September

Media Release

Two Brumby Government initiatives worth $185 million will expand and help commercialise Victoria’s world-class science, technology and innovation base.

The new funding is part of Innovation: Victoria’s Future, the 2008 Innovation Statement launched today by Premier John Brumby and Innovation Minister Gavin Jennings.

Mr Jennings said the funding boost would give the sector the confidence it needs to plan for the future.

“Victoria has established a strong national and international reputation for excellence in science and technology so it is vital to invest in capabilities to effectively respond to health, sustainability and productivity challenges,” Mr Jennings said.

“The Brumby Government is taking action to boost innovation in Victoria through the $145 million Victoria’s Science Agenda and the $40 million Boosting Highly Innovative SMEs (Small to Medium-sized Enterprises) initiative.

“Victoria’s Science Agenda will deliver targeted programs to generate economic and social benefits while Boosting Highly Innovative SMEs (BHIS), an initiative based on the successful US Small Business Innovation and Research fund will drive the creation of new technology enterprises focussed on developing innovative technology products and services.

“Technology SMEs are the most efficient and effective innovators within the economy, typically showing fast rates of growth and job creation.

“Research shows most new technology products and services originate within SMEs, so to keep pace with international competition, we need to build on our existing strengths in this sector. The Victoria’s Science Agenda is dedicated to strengthening Victoria’s research precincts in priority areas, such as biomedicine, life sciences, advanced manufacturing, climate change and energy for maximum breakthrough. The BHIS initiative will provide $12 million for a Technology Commercialisation Program, to establish and develop technology SME growth by reducing the time and resources needed to bring technology to the global market place.

“A $28 million Market Validation Program will also be offered through BHIS to help technology SMEs to interact with customers and secure expansion capital and a larger customer base,” Mr Jennings said.

“Victoria has a long history of excellence in developing innovative technology, through innovative local companies and a skilled workforce.

“Through supporting Victorian companies and local industry, we have the capacity to further drive the establishment, growth and international competitiveness of Victoria’s science and technology industries.”

Source: Premier of Victoria website

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