Queensland start-ups and SMEs working on innovative circular-economy solutions could win the chance to pitch solutions to a target audience of decision makers from government agencies under the Queensland Government’s SparkPlug program.

Expressions of interest for the program close next Friday 25 October, and are invited from Queensland businesses, including exporters.

SparkPlug aims to connect innovators with the right Queensland Government contacts, potentially opening doors to project opportunities, trials or even adoption.

As a first step, applicants need to identify a problem and then explain how their solution will deliver improved outcomes.

Successful applicants are then given information on how to pitch to government before attending a SparkPlug pitching event.

A circular economy maximises a product’s value at each point of its life by closing industrial loops and turning outputs from one manufacturer into inputs for another.

This reduces both the amount of virgin materials consumed during production and the amount of waste generated.

Strategies based on the circular economy are attracting more attention as disposal of waste becomes increasingly challenging worldwide.

SparkPlug is an Advance Queensland program that calls for solutions to government challenges in different service or technology areas.

This is the second round of the SparkPlug program, with the first round focusing on drone technology.

To be eligible, applicants must:

  • employ fewer than 200 people, including contractors
  • have an Australian Business Number (ABN)
  • have their main place of business in Queensland.

Additionally, the solution proposed for the pitch event should:

  • be fully developed and validated with at least 1 customer
  • consider the regulatory requirements needed for the Queensland Government to implement the solution
  • create new value in one of the following sectors: advanced manufacturing and re-manufacturing, agriculture and food, biofutures, biomedical, energy, infrastructure and building, or tourism.

Applications close at 2pm on 25 October, and successful applicants will be notified in late October.

The pitching event will be held on 15 November.

You can find out more on the SparkPlug webpage.

Supporting start-ups is a priority in the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.