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This Week’s Highlight: Drought Resilience Commercialisation Initiative

The Federal Government’s Future Drought Fund (FDF) invites tenders for a partner to deliver the Drought Resilience Commercialisation Initiative. The limited pilot program aims to support a small number of innovators commercialise their drought resilience product or service. The Delivery Partner will work closely with each innovator to identify barriers to market.

The Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry incorporates a Farm Resilience Division responsible for drought policy, including the FDF. The Australian Government regards the FDF as an investment that will build drought resilience in Australia’s agriculture sector, the agricultural landscape, and communities. It is a $5 billion commitment and allocates $100m each year to drought resilience programs.

The Request For Tender Initiative is an FDF proposal seeking a commercialisation specialist to deliver it. The Delivery Partner will supply one-on-one facilitation services and allied professional advice to innovators while they commercialise their drought resilience product.

This RFT intends to establish a contract for the services and activities the successful tenderer can achieve within the departmental budget of up to $10million (GST exclusive).

The Department expects the agreement for the service to start in May/June 2023. It will conclude on 30 June 2025. To support the success of the Initiative, the Department encourages tenderers to outline the quality of service they can deliver within the $10m budget. The value-for-money assessment for this Initiative will focus on the breadth and depth of experience, skillsets, and services tenderers offer to innovators.

Subject to negotiation with the Delivery Partner, the plan is to execute the Initiative in the following phases.

Start-up phase: the Delivery Partner will work with the Department to develop necessary documentation and processes to find, select, and onboard appropriate innovators for the duration of the Initiative.

Delivery phase: the Delivery Partner will work with innovators to develop a commercialisation plan that identifies barriers to market, and the support required to overcome these barriers. The Delivery Partner will work one-on-one with innovators to implement the commercialisation plan. This includes supplying commercialisation services, facilitation services, and allied professional advice and support to each innovator.

Evaluation and learning phase: the Delivery Partner will conduct a follow-up assessment and provide a qualitative analysis of the impact of the Initiative on the market-readiness of the innovator.

While the Initiative aims to increase the commercial viability of an innovator’s drought resilience product or service, the Department expects related public benefits. Tenders will remain open for acceptance by the Department for a period of six months after the closing time.

The closing date for responses is 2pm Canberra AEDT on 10 March 2023

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