Darussalam Enterprise (DARe) is introducing co-matching grants of up to $20,000 to help local micro, small and medium businesses (MSMEs) and cooperatives grow.
The “co-matching” component of the grant requires MSMEs to put forward 30% of the total project cost, with DARe’s grant investing the other 70% for a maximum of $20,000.
Matching grants are a widely adopted approach to funding startups globally, with shared investment demonstrating the applicant’s commitment in delivering their target project or activity.
DARe’s co-matching grant is separated into two categories: Starting Up which provides up to $10,000 and Expansion which provides up to $20,000. Both require businesses to be 100% locally owned by Brunei citizens or permanent residents and fall into the category of MSMEs, which is defined nationally as enterprises with less than 99 employees.
Those seeking up to $10,000 under the Starting Up category must be businesses registered under 12 months old who are looking to use the funds to obtain certification, equipment or market their business within a period of 12 months. They are also required to attend DARe’s capacity building programmes including DARe’s Accelerate or Micro Bootcamp.
Those seeking up to $20,000 under the Expansion category meanwhile should be able to provide financial records and implement the funding within 12 months for activities that can expand the company and its productivity; including the adoption of technology and software, equipment, marketing and consultancy services for accredited certifications.
Before funds are disbursed, applicants must also submit quotations or invoices for the products and services they seek to procure. The grants cannot be used to pay salary, director fees, rental, office renovations or debts.
Each application must showcase a business plan demonstrating the potential for further development and commercialisation, including specifics on target markets, potential competition, revenue streams, uniqueness of products and services, scalability as well as realistic projections and timelines.