April 14, 2023

Grants for New Zealand Startups and Established Businesses


Grants can make it possible for early-stage startups to test new ideas and access resources which may not always be accessible. In New Zealand, we have many startup grants and initiatives available to support new business. We also have funding available for established businesses. Here’s a rundown of some of New Zealand’s top grants provided by the government and government organisations.

Work and Income New Zealand Flexi-Wage for Self-Employment

Flexi-wage is one of the ways Work and Income New Zealand (WINZ) is supporting more New Zealanders into self-employed work. WINZ can help you start your own business and help with costs while you get started. This option is available if you are interested in starting a new business or if you are in the early stages of setting up a business but lack the funds to be self-sufficient.

Fore more information about Flexi-Wage for self-employment, the criteria and what you can get, click here.

Work and Income New Zealand Self-Employment Start-Up Payment

If you are starting a business and need assistance with essential costs, WINZ might be able to provide support. WINZ will require a business plan to ensure that your business is viable.

For more information about Self-Employment start up payment, the criteria and what you could receive in terms of support click here.

Work and Income New Zealand Business Training and Advice Grant

The Business Training and Advice Grant is another initiative by WINZ. If you’re starting your own business, WINZ may be able to support you with developing a business plan, business skills training, advice and project reports.

For more information about the WINZ Business Training and Advice Grant, as well as who is eligible for this grant, click here.

Callaghan Innovation R&D Tax Incentive

The Callaghan Innovation R&D Tax Incentive (RDTI) aims to support more businesses in New Zealand to invest in research and development to help them grow, and to boost New Zealand’s economy. The RDTI offers a tax credit equal to 15% of eligible R&D expenditure. You can use this credit to reduce the amount of income tax you pay.

To read more on Callaghan Innovation’s R&D Tax Incentive and how to apply, click here.

Callaghan Innovation New to R&D Grant

The Callaghan Innovation New to R&D Grant offers funding and support to help businesses develop their capability for long-term R&D for up to a two-year period. The grant has a maximum cap of $400,000, half of which can be spent on R&D and half on Capability Development.

For more information on Callaghan Innovation’s New to R&D Grant, click here.

Callaghan Innovation Student Grants

Callaghan Innovation’s Student Grants are designed to help increase your business’s R&D capability by giving you access to fresh talent. Callaghan Innovation offer three types of Student Grants, including R&D Experience Grants, R&D Fellowship Grants and R&D Career Grants.

For more information on Callaghan Innovation’s Student Grants, including the criteria, click here.

Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment Te Pūnaha Hihiko: Vision Mātauranga Capability Fund

Te Pūnaha Hihiko: Vision Mātauranga Capability Fund invests in the development of skilled people and organisations that plan to undertake, or are undertaking, research that supports the themes and outcomes of our Vision Mātauranga policy.

Te Pūnaha Hihiko: Vision Mātauranga Capability Fund aims to:

  • strengthen capability, capacity, skills and networks between Māori and the science and innovation system, and
  • increase understanding of how research can contribute to the aspirations of Māori organisations and deliver benefit for New Zealand.

About $2.0 million (excl. GST) per year is available to fund successful proposals in the Te Pūnaha Hihiko: Vision Mātauranga Capability Fund 2022 investment round. This funding is available through a Connect Scheme and a Placement Scheme. The Connect Scheme aims to build new connections between Māori organisations and the science and innovation system. The Placement Scheme aims to enhance the development of one or more individuals by placement in a partner organisation.

For more information on the Te Pūnaha Hihiko: Vision Mātauranga Capability Fund, click here.

Waka Kotahi Innovation Fund

The Hoe ki angitū – Innovation Fund set up by Waka Kotahi supports the private and non-government sectors to develop and accelerate innovative solutions that help solve transport challenges.

For more information on the Waka Kotahi Innovation Fund, click here.

Callaghan Innovation Ārohia Innovation Trailblazer Grant

The Ārohia Innovation Trailblazer Grant is a contestable grant which supports non-R&D innovation activities not covered by other Government funding initiatives. The Grant aims to help businesses whose innovation activity is likely to build capabilities or create opportunities with wider benefits for New Zealand’s innovation system. It will be targeted at businesses doing pioneering innovation or building platforms to help other innovators within New Zealand. This Grant is expected to be available later in 2023.

For more information on Callaghan Innovation’s Ārohia Innovation Trailblazer Grant, click here.

Management Capability Development Funding

The Management Capability Development Funding is provided through the Regional Business Partner Network (RBP) and aims to help business owners access training services by providing them with a subsidy of up to 50% of the registered service costs. The training services will need to be pre-approved by the RBP to be eligible for funding.

For more information on the Management Capability Development Funding, click here.

Ministry for Primary Industries Funding

The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) offers many different types of funding and support for businesses, including:

  • Māori agribusiness funding and support;
  • Funding for new innovations in the food and fibre sectors;
  • Fishing and aquaculture funding and support;
  • Tree planning and research funding programmes;
  • And others.

For more information on MPI’s funding and support schemes, click here.

New Zealand Trade & Enterprise

New Zealand Trade & Enterprise (NZTE) can be a useful source of support for established businesses looking to access investment expertise and funding for large capital projects.

For more information about NZTE’s available support, click here.


If you would like more information on what grants are available to you and how James & Wells can support your business, contact Britta Fromow or your usual James & Wells advisor.

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