Department of State Development

Supporting collaboration between SMEs and world-class research and development organisations.

The program aims to stimulate innovation in small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs) through collaboration with public and private research providers to develop new manufactured products or processes and drive productivity and business profitability.

Vouchers up to $50,000 are awarded on a competitive basis to eligible research and development projects that partner with SMEs with an annual turnover of less than $200 million. SMEs are required to provide a financial contribution to the project which is determined by annual turnover.

Eligible research and development businesses include public research organisations and companies that provide services for research, development and design.  Research and development services for projects include, but are not limited to:

  • technical research
  • design development
  • design validation
  • prototype development 
  • the development of innovative production processes.

What projects can be funded?

Projects must:

  • involve technical problem solving by an external organisation
  • be innovative
  • relate to manufacturing
  • have potential for economic benefits for South Australia
  • contribute towards a commercial opportunity for the SME.

Are you an SME seeking to partner with an R&D provider? 

The industry partner must:

  • be a financially viable Australian company with a majority of its business conducted in South Australia, or have significant business activity aligned with program objectives
  • own the right to use any existing intellectual property necessary to commercialise the project
  • have an annual turnover of less than $200 million
  • have been in operation for longer than 12 months
  • be able to fund the required co-contribution.

Are you an R&D provider seeking to work with an SME?

The Research Service Provider (RSP) must:

  • be capable of providing scientific or technical expertise and resources to perform research and development (R&D)
  • ideally be located or have facilities in South Australia, however, the services of interstate RSPs may also be engaged.

Projects underway

Some successful IVP applicants include:

  • The Australian Wine Research Institute (AWRI), has partnered with Scholle Industries Pty Ltd to develop a purpose built in-line carbonation system for Scholle’s bag-in-box packaging technology, to produce a demonstration unit for sparkling wine.
  • Flinders University’s Centre for Marine Bioproducts Development is developing proof of concept samples to demonstrate the potential of high value new food products, derived from otherwise discarded lobster components, for local and export markets. 
  • TGR Biosciences engaged the Ian Wark Institute at UniSA to develop a cost effective microfluidic chip device to deliver faster standard laboratory tests, for an estimated market of $400 million, by enabling multiple simultaneous tests for detecting substances in liquids.
  • Acacia Research developed technology, designed a prototype and conducted field trials for expanding the capability of Oystek's automated oyster sorting machine. The development aimed to improve its speed and performance, including detection of dead shells, to strengthen Oystek’s competitive advantage and enhance value for identified customers in targeted export markets.


Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis and generally assessed within six weeks.

Applicants must meet the eligibility criteria and all candidates are encouraged to read the program guidelines before lodging an IVP application form.

If you need help to find a research and development provider, contact 

Resources and downloads

Innovation Voucher Program Guidelines
Download PDF | 92 KB
Innovation Voucher Program Application Form
Download PDF | 551 KB

For more information, contact:

Sarah Treasure
Senior Project Officer, Science and Research
Department of State Development
Phone: (08) 8207 8778