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BlueChilli launches program to help startups be “ripe and ready” for innovation statement investment surge

Thursday, 17 December 2015 | By Denham Sadler

Startup founders need to brace for a dip in investor interest in the first half of next year in anticipation of the taxation changes in July coming into effect, BlueChilli general manager of corporate innovation Colette Grgic says.


BlueChilli has launched a new accelerator program in collaboration with the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland (CCIQ) and Suncorp that Grgic says will help give startups runway for the first half of next year and prepare them for the increased interest as the innovation statement comes into effect.


“They should be graduating right when the changes come into effect,” Grgic tells StartupSmart.

“They’ll be ripe and ready for that.”


Bracing for impact


A number of taxation changes were announced in the $1 billion innovation statement in an effort to unlock capital. Venture capitalists will be exempt from capital gains tax for 10 years and receive a 20% non-refundable tax offset capped at $200,000.


A 10% tax offset will also be introduced in the Early Stage Venture Capital Limited Partnerships (ESVCLP).


These changes will be introduced in July next year.


“I’m worried we’ll see a little bit of a dwindling from now with angels investing in startups, and there’ll be a bit of a dip with investors before that,” Grgic says.


“So this is the perfect timing for this program – it will give entrepreneurs runway until the changes.”


Runway in the meantime


To apply for the program, startups will have to solve 10 SME problems posed by CCIQ. The best 100 responses will receive a free online accelerator program usually valued at $2000 and the top 50 will get free desk space in Brisbane.


The top 20 will be selected for a two-week accelerator bootcamp where 10 of the startups will be picked to receive an investment of up to $100,000 from CCIQ and Suncorp.


“That’s enough money so they can go and build a prototype, get a little traction and not run out of money and stall before the changes,” Grgic says.


It’s an ideal program for very early-stage programs looking to take advantage of the taxation changes, BlueChilli evangelist Alan Jones says.


“You should be ideally placed to raise investment from seed investors hoping to qualify for the income tax and capital gains tax deductions on early-stage startups,” Jones tells StartupSmart.

“You’ll be at the right valuation, the right age, you’ll have the endorsement of having completed the accelerator program and you may have CCIQ and Suncorp as your lead investors.”



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