Victoria’s National Business Event Program is back with increased cash grants

Applications are now open for the next round of the National Business Events Program, offering eligible event organisers more choice and more cash to offset costs for hosting events anywhere in Victoria.

The funding program has been topped up to provide a three-fold cash boost to attract events to Melbourne and a new funding stream is now available for events hosted in regional Victoria.

The expanded program boasts increased funding amounts, up to $90,000 per applicant to hold multiyear business events in Melbourne, plus grants available up to $25,000 per applicant to hold events in regional Victoria before 31 December 2023.

Cash grants offered under the National Business Events Program can be put towards accommodation, venue hire, transport and other event costs, and depending on where the event is held, 50 per cent may be payable before the event commences to cover upfront expenses.

The National Business Events Program launched in May, with Melbourne Convention Bureau (MCB) receiving more than 200 expressions of interest, with 73 events approved to date.

MCB Chief Executive Julia Swanson said business event organisers from anywhere in Australia can apply for funding, which will provide a much needed helping hand to business event organisers.

“There are now two funding streams available to offset actual costs for hosting events in Victoria – for events to be held in Melbourne and now for events held in regional Victoria,” she said.

“We have worked closely with Business Events Victoria (BEV) who will administer the regional arm of the program, which is designed to stimulate short- and medium-term recovery of the business events sector right across our state.”

BEV executive officer Chris Porter said this funding is a crucial step in aiding the recovery of the business events sector.

“After an unfathomably challenging year, this funding program will help rebuild confidence amongst event organisers, so they start booking events again, both regionally and in Melbourne,” Porter said.

Grants are available for a limited time with applications closing 31 December 2021, or earlier, if available funding is exhausted.