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Arts and Creative Industries Business Growth Package FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

Applications will open on 3 July 2017 and will remain open until otherwise advised.

Up to $500,000 is available each year to an individual or organisation under the Business Growth Package to support Torres Strait Islander and/or Aboriginal business development in the Torres Strait Region. Additional support is available through the TSRAs Arts and Creative Industries Into Business Workshops, mentoring and support services, the TSRA business support standing panel and the TSRA business loan scheme.

The Arts and Creative Industries refers to a broad grouping of individuals and organisations (businesses) that turn original creativity into commercial outcomes. Highly dependent on creative talent, Arts and creative industries can be distinguished from other industries by the fact that creativity is their primary source of value.

The Arts & Creative Industries include six broad segments or types of creative individuals and businesses.They include: Music, Visual & Performing Arts (e.g. musicians, singers, dancers, actors, jewellery-makers, weavers, sculptors and hair & make-up artists); Film, TV & Radio (e.g. video producers, media professionals, radio journalists and radio presenters); Writing & Publishing (e.g. creative writers, authors, curators and journalists); Software and Digital Content (e.g. computer animators, software designers, video game designers); Advertising and Marketing (e.g. marketing and advertising specialists, copywriters, public relations specialists); Architecture and Design (e.g. architects, landscape architects, graphic designers, web designers, photographers, illustrators, fashion designers, interior designers). Note: As a creative individual or business, you may fit more than one of the categories listed above. That’s OK.

Traditional and contemporary Torres Strait Art includes, for example, music, singing, dance and the visual arts. These artistic endeavors are often non-commercial or not-for-profit in nature and their value is recognised in the contribution they make to individual and community wellbeing through artistic expression and enjoyment. These Torres Strait Arts, if transformed into commercial outcomes, also form part of what is a broader collection of activities known as the Arts and Creative Industries.

The term insolvent or insolvency can apply to either an individual or a business, but is more often used in relation to a business or company. A business is said to be insolvent when it cannot pay its debts when they are due.

Commercially-viable refers to the ability of a business, product or service to compete effectively and make a profit (without permanent ongoing government support).

Value for money is a term used to assess whether or not the TSRA, in delivering the products and services it provides, will obtain the maximum benefit possible within the resources available to it, to achieve stated economic development policy and strategy objectives in line with the Torres Strait Development Plan, 2014-2018.

Economic development is about growing the Torres Strait Regions income and wealth and distributing that wealth to the communities through business creation and employment. It involves Indigenous people in employment, business, asset and wealth creation in the communities and regions where they live.

These two terms mean to the same thing, which is the ability of a business to generate sufficient income to meet business operating expenses, debt commitments and where applicable, to allow for profit and growth.

No. In this case you might like to check out the Business Product Selector tool on the TSRA website to see what other products and support is available. If you need help with this, you can contact us at economic@tsra.gov.au.

Yes. You may wish to consider partnering with a Torres Strait Islander and/or Aboriginal entrepreneur or business bearing in mind that the business must be at least 50 per cent Torres Strait Islander and/or Aboriginal owned and based in the Torres Strait Region.

An Entrepreneur is someone who starts up and runs a business to make a profit, taking on financial risk to do so. You can learn more at; https://www.business.qld.gov.au/business/business-improvement/being-an-entrepreneur

For a business to be finance ready, it will need to demonstrate, to the satisfaction of a lender, that the business proposal is or has good prospects for commercial viability and financial sustainability. Individual lenders such as banks will have their own criteria and procedures for determining whether or not a business proposal is finance ready.

Collateral refers to security offered by a borrower to a lender for the payment of a loan. Collateral can take a number of forms, for example, the borrowers house or other assets, which would be forfeited (lost) by the borrower in the event of a default on (failure to repay) the loan.

Yes, as long as your registered principal place of business is in the Torres Strait Region and you are a Torres Strait Islander or Aboriginal person living in the Torres Strait Region, then you are eligible to apply for support under the Business Growth Package.

An unincorporated body refers to a business that does not possess a separate legal identity from its owner(s). The owner(s) bear full liability for any action or inaction of the business: they may sue and be sued for business activity or inactivity. Unincorporated enterprises include sole proprietorships, partnerships and family trusts.

An incorporated body is a legally declared corporate entity in its own right that is separate from its owners and which continues regardless of changes to its ownership or membership. Incorporation under Australian legislation is under the Corporations (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander) Act 2006 or the Corporations Act 2001.

A partnership is an arrangement in which two or more people pool their money, skills and other resources, and share profit and loss of a business venture in accordance with the terms of the partnership agreement. Various arrangements are possible. For example, all individuals involved in the partnership (the partners) might share liabilities and profits equally, or some partners may have limited liability.

A consortium is a group of individuals, businesses, investors or organisations joining together as one for a common purpose such as the establishment of a new business venture (joint venture).

A joint venture (JV) is a contractual business arrangement between two or more individuals or organisations without actual partnership or incorporation meaning each party to the joint venture retains their distinct legal identities.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) defines small business as a business that employs fewer than 20 people.

Categories of small business include:

  • Non-employing businesses (sole proprietorships and partnerships without employees)
  • Micro-businesses (businesses employing between one and four people including non-employing businesses)
  • Other small businesses (businesses that employ between five and nineteen employees)

Small businesses are more likely to have independent ownership and be operated independently. Owners or managers of small businesses tend to have close control of operations, undertake principal decision making and contribute most of the operating capital.

Funding is the act of providing financial resources, either in the form of money or other in-kind values such as effort or time, to finance a program or project, usually by an organisation or government.

Financing on the other hand refers to the act of providing money for business activities, making purchases or investing. Financial institutions and banks are in the business of financing as they provide capital to businesses and investors to help them achieve their goals.

The Business Growth Package is focused on more mature businesses and proposals with a well-developed business case. It may be that your business is not yet ready for Business Growth Package support and instead, other forms of assistance such as the TSRAs Into Business Workshops may be more suited to your needs. If you are unsure, you should undertake the REIS self-assessment tool here.

No. The Business Growth Package is not available for not-for-profit organisations. However, your organisation may be eligible for support through other TSRA Programmes such as Healthy and Safe Communities and Culture, Art and Heritage common funding rounds. You may also be eligible for other government and non-government programmes such as the Community Development Programme or Indigenous Enterprise Funding delivered by the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. Information on these and other programmes is available on the TSRA website www.tsra.gov.au.

No. The Business Growth Package is focused on providing support for the development of commercially-viable businesses. It specifically targets entrepreneurs and businesses from start-up to expansion. If you are looking for support to develop your arts centre or cultural centre, you may be eligible for a grant or other support delivered by the TSRAs Culture, Art and Heritage Programme. For more information, contact the TSRA at economic@tsra.gov.au and we can put you in contact with a Culture, Art and Heritage Programme team member.

A: Yes, so long as you are a registered business and the business owners are Torres Strait Islanders or Aboriginal people living in the Torres Strait Region and you meet all the Business Growth Package eligibility criteria.

Yes, so long as you are a registered business and the business owners are Torres Strait Islanders or Aboriginal people living in the Torres Strait Region and you meet all the Business Growth Package eligibility criteria.

If you are unsure, you should first complete the online self-assessment tool on the TSRA website www.tsra.gov.au or if you need further assistance contact us on economic@tsra.gov.au and we will help you work out if you are ready to apply. If you haven’t run a business, but have experience in the Arts and Creative Industries, or have worked in a general business environment, or have experience from other activities you have undertaken, the TSRA may be able to assist you to progress your idea through the TSRAs Arts and Creative Industries Into Business Workshops. The workshops are designed to help you to develop your business past the idea stage to a well-researched business proposal that is finance-ready.

A business plan can be very simple so you may already have enough information to put something together. If you need help with this, you should contact us on economic@tsra.gov.au as you may be eligible to attend the TSRAs Arts and Creative Industries Into Business Workshops. The workshops are designed to help you to develop your business past the idea stage to a well-researched business proposal that is finance-ready.

Training may be included in the package of support services offered to successful applicants.

No. Under the Business Growth Package grants will only be available to cover part of the funding you require to help grow your business. The grant will help you get started and may give the TSRA or a commercial lender the confidence to give you a loan. Research shows that when an owner has a financial stake in their business, long-term success is more likely. And paying off even a small loan is a good way to build your credit history and demonstrate your reliability. This will allow you to grow your business and better manage your businesss finances.

If the amount of money you need is quite small (less than $20,000), we may refer you to a micro-finance lender. Micro-finance lenders specialise in lending to very small businesses (typically from one to four employees), and provide tailored support before, during and after the loan has been approved. Check out our website for further information about how the TSRA can assist you with access to micro-finance lenders such as the National Australia Bank. If you need help with this, you should contact us at economic@tsra.gov.au.

If you already have a mentor, consultant or business advisor, and you want to continue working with them, let us know. We might also ask you to consider another advisor, because sometimes fresh ideas can really help a business move to the next level or open up your business networks.

We will make sure your business proposal undergoes a commercial viability assessment. If your preferred commercial lender declines to review your application, we will review your application for a TSRA business loan.

No. The Business Growth Package funding is only available for Torres Strait Islander and Aboriginal people residing in the Torres Strait Region. You may wish to consider partnering with a Torres Strait Islander and/or Aboriginal entrepreneur or business, bearing in mind that the business must be at least fifty per cent Torres Strait Islander and/or Aboriginal owned.

No. Business support services for businesses will be procured by the TSRA. The TSRA has established a business support services panel to facilitate the procurement of these services.

No. The Business Growth Package is focussed on providing support for the development of commercially-viable businesses. As an artist looking for support to attend the Cairns Indigenous Art Fair or another similar event, you may be eligible for a grant or other support delivered by the TSRAs Culture, Art and Heritage Programme including the Torres Strait Dance Strategy Expression of Interest process. For more information, contact the TSRA at economic@tsra.gov.auandnbsp;andnbsp;and we can put you in contact with a Culture, Art and Heritage Programme team member.

You can receive funding as long as you meet the eligibility criteria. To be eligible, your business must be 50 per cent owned by a person(s) of Torres Strait Islander and /or Aboriginal descent who resides in the Torres Strait Region, for- profit and have commercial potential, and funding you must represent value-for-money. To help us assess value-for-money, you should outline how much assistance or funding your partner is proposing to give you and why you require additional support from the TSRA. We may work with you and your partner to get more information or try to facilitate more private sector support for your application.

Value for money is a term used to assess whether or not the TSRA, in delivering the products and services it provides, will obtain the maximum benefit possible within the resources available to it, to achieve stated economic development policy and strategy objectives in line with the Torres Strait Development Plan, 2014-2018.

No, to be eligible for support under the Business Growth Package your registered principal place of business must be in the Torres Strait Region and you must be a Torres Strait Islander or Aboriginal person living in the Torres Strait Region.

No. The Business Growth Package is focused on providing support for the development of commercially-viable businesses. It specifically targets entrepreneurs and businesses from start-up to expansion. If you are looking for support to develop your skills as an artist or you would like to learn how to develop your profile as an artist and your career in the arts industry, you may be eligible for a grant or other support delivered by the TSRAs Culture, Art and Heritage Programme. For more information, contact the TSRA at economic@tsra.gov.au and we can put you in contact with a Culture, Art and Heritage Programme team member.

No. The Business Growth Package is focused on providing support for the development of commercially-viable businesses. As an artist looking for support to attend or participate in an event, you may be eligible for a grant or other support delivered by the TSRAs Culture, Art and Heritage Programme. For more information, contact the TSRA at economic@tsra.gov.au and we can put you in contact with a Culture, Art and Heritage Programme team member.

When submitting a hard copy application, you must print off the online application form, complete it, and submit two unbound copies to the address at the front of the application kit. If you require more space for the written responses, please attach additional pages.

In the application form, the authorised person who is completing the form and filling in the declaration should sign their name under the box labelled: “Position of Authorised Officer”.

If you are supplying information as part of your application in the form of multi-media files/presentation or videos, these must be supplied on a USB drive or portable hard drive along with your hard copy application.

Staff in the TSRA are available to answer any queries you have on the application or the funding, however they cannot help you with financial or business planning.

If you are unsure, you should undertake the self-assessment tool available on the TSRA website www.tsra.gov.au. If you need further assistance contact the TSRAs Economic Development Programme on economic@tsra.gov.au and we will help you work out if you are ready to apply.

As a first step you might like to check out our website, if you still need more information, you can send your enquiry to economic@tsra.gov.au.

Torres Strait Islanders and Aboriginal people are advised this website may contain names, images and recordings of people who have passed.