With more than 60%  of small businesses shutting down within their first three years, Australia’s leading tax accountants, H&R Block are offering small business and start-up’s a helping hand with the initiative; ’Grants for Growth’.
Now in its second year, the grant offers support to budding entrepreneurs who need an extra boost to transform a dream from ideation or start-up phase to mainstream.
New research commissioned by H&R Block finds  that the biggest struggles for small businesses across Australia are:
- ‘cashflow’ (35%)
- ‘marketing effectiveness’ (30%)
- ‘lack of support’ (19%)
- ‘hiring the right people’ (18%)
H&R Block has identified the sheer number of challenges that small businesses face, not only when it comes to financial funding and backing, but more significantly the need for education and up-skilling across; business administration, finance, and accounting.
H&R Block’s Director of Tax Communications, Mark Chapman said: “Having a great idea is just the start of the journey for a budding investor. The hardest part of the journey is finding finance to turn that idea into a viable small business and that is where Grants for Growth can really help entrepreneurs turn their vision into reality”
1 in 5 (20%) small businesses across Australia have said that a ‘lack of funding’ is the reason that most restricts their business growth. More specifically, 73% of small businesses said that a ‘lack of sales’ is not the biggest hindrance to their business growth.
“Getting seed investment for a new business is harder than ever. Bank lending can be hard to get for a new business with no track record and even if you can get it, the funding costs can be considerable. Grants for Growth gives H&R Block the opportunity to give something back to the community and boost entrepreneurship in Australia by providing the sort of capital injection that can turn a good idea into a great new business”, Chapman adds.
H&R Block has partnered with Home Baker and Author, Katherine Sabbath to launch the campaign who stated: “The grant is a hugely exciting opportunity for small businesses to achieve their goals through winning cash and valuable financial advice.”
“I WISH there were grants available to me at the time I started (H&R Block’s Grants for Growth would have been really handy!), but I had to save up my money for almost 1 year before I could even reach my ‘start-up’ phase,” Katherine said.
The ‘Grants for Growth’ competition is open to small businesses and sole traders operating in Australia that have less than 20 employees. There will be 12 lucky winners of the grant who will receive $5,000 in cash and $5,000 towards H&R Block Business and/or Bookkeeping services. Runners up prizes will also be issued each month.
“Providing a prize that is a mixture of cash and professional services is a great combination for small businesses. The cash obviously helps the business to grow but giving professional services is a great way for businesses to get advice that can really boost their business. Whether its advice about how best to structure your business, planning for tax effective growth or simply making sure that all those key tax deadlines that so many small businesses miss are fully complied with, H&R Block can provide the support that all new and growing businesses need”.
With one 1 in 3 SME’s across Australia stating that they had forgotten (33%) and missed a key business date, the H&R Block ‘Grants for Growth’ aims to help small businesses already starting to make their mark on Australian communities by giving them one less thing to worry about.
H&R Block is hoping to give a boost to these budding small companies and sole traders, so that their creators can focus on growing their business and upskilling their leaders, instead of worrying about staying afloat.
 Australian Bureau of Statistics
 The Digital Edge Omnibus 2019