$250m Vic government growth fund for SMEs

The Victorian state government will establish a $250 million Victorian Business Growth Fund for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to help them access capital and create jobs to grow the Victorian economy.

Treasurer Tim Pallas has announced a $50 million contribution towards the Fund, which will be developed with leading industry superannuation groups First State Super and VicSuper.

The Fund will reportedly be the largest of its kind in Australia according to the state government of Victoria, and will be seeking to create thousands of jobs by investing in established Victorian businesses with compelling potential for growth and jobs creation.

The Labor Government, First State Super and VicSuper are said to be continuing to work together to finalise the design of the fund, which is subject to a formal agreement. The state government report mentioned that a high-quality, independent fund manager will be appointed through a competitive process.

Many of the state’s small and medium enterprises are said to find it difficult to access affordable capital, limiting their ability to expand their business.

The Reserve Bank and the Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman have repeatedly noted that the economy is being held back by a lack of access to finance.

The Fund will complement the Labor Government’s programs which already support businesses, such as the Victorian Jobs and Investment Fund and payroll tax cuts announced in the Victorian Budget 2019/20.

Treasurer Tim Pallas  said, “The Victorian Business Growth Fund will give some of our best small and medium sized businesses the incentive to take on new ventures and employ more Victorians.”

Minister for Jobs, Innovation and Trade Martin Pakula, “Industry super is a partner for people through their working life and we’re proud to join with First State Super and VicSuper to help businesses grow and provide even more jobs for Victorians.”