Are you looking for a way to give your business some extra financial support? Applying for the market readiness assistance grant, or MRA is a great way to do so.
If you’re hoping to learn more about what a MRA grant is, as well as how to apply for one, keep reading. In this guide, we’ll go over the top 10 things to know about Market Readiness Assistance Grant for SME owners.
Market Readiness Assistance Grant: The Basics
Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) will receive an international boost with the Market Readiness Assistance Grant (MRA) to help take your business overseas. The key focus of the grant is to give SMEs support to grow the business overseas.
There are three different categories that the MRA projects focus on. One focus is overseas market expansion, which focuses on helping the company to grow overseas, overseas business development and overseas market setup. Eligible SMEs are entitled to the following things:
Eligible SMEs will receive the following support:
- Up to 70% of eligible costs, capped at S$100,000 per company per new market* from 1 April 2020 to 31 March 2023 that covers:
- Overseas market promotion (capped at S$20,000)
- Overseas business development (capped at S$50,000)
- Overseas market set-up (capped at S$30,000)
1. Most SMEs in Singapore Qualify For The Grant
The eligibility criteria is really simple. It is common with most Government grants that are available in Singapore.
- Business entity is registered/incorporated in Singapore
- New market entry criteria, i.e. target overseas country whereby the applicant has not exceeded S$100,000 in overseas sales in each of the last three preceding years
- At least 30% local shareholding
- Group Annual Sales Turnover of not more than S$100 million; OR Company’s Group Employment Size of not more than 200 employees
You should be able to qualify and you can find out more information about Market Readiness Grant here
2. One Special Criteria
Although it looks the same, there is one criteria that stands out:
New market entry criteria, i.e. target overseas country whereby the applicant has not exceeded S$100,000 in overseas sales in each of the last three preceding years
This means that your company must be genuinely wanting to enter or grow in the overseas market. From our experience, they will ask for the past 3 years financial statements to ascertain if you qualify
3. It Is Quick To Apply
Companies can apply through the Business Grant Portal and the form is pretty quick to fill up and submit. However, a company must submit your applications no earlier than 6 months of project start date.
4. You Will Need To Apply For The Grant Before Work Commence
You will need to speak to the vendors before the work is actually carried out. You can get a quotation from us and tell us about your internationalisation plans. Do note of the 3 segments that you can explore – overseas market promotions, overseas business development and overseas market setup.
5. You Can Only Promote Your Own Product/Services
This might be sad news for resellers and traders, you can only promote your companies own product or services. The products/services must belong to/represented by the Singapore applicant and/or its subsidiaries.
6. You Cannot Do Your Own Marketing/PR Activities And Get Funded.
Marketing/PR Activities that are executed on an individual basis are not funded by Market Readiness Assistance Grant (MRA) unless it is part of a holistic marketing/PR campaign executed by a professional marketing/PR agency/vendor with relevant expertise in the overseas market. In other words, only serious companies wanting to go overseas need apply.
7. Your Airfare And Hotel For Overseas Trade Shows Are Not Claimable.
With the Covid19 situation, we are unlikely to travel overseas physically for trade shows and conference. However, only the booth design/construction and the booth rental is claimable under the MRA Grant.
8. MRA Covers The Salary Of Your Overseas Business Development Person
If you are looking to send a business development person on the ground in your overseas market, MRA grant covers the salary of that person.
Supportable expenses will be pegged at 80% support level for SG/PR, 60%
support level for foreigners. Staff need not be a new hire
9. You Can Be Matched With Prospective Customers In Your Target Country
The MRA Grant covers the cost of Business Matching in the targeted country. If you find a vendor that helps in business matching, it will be supported under the MRA Grant.
10. Virtual Trade Fairs Are Supported in MRA
Virtual trade fairs are supported by the Market Readiness Assistance Grant. So if you are locked down in Singapore due to the Covid19 situation, you can also attend virtual trade fairs and be supported by MRA.
If you’re hoping to grow your business overseas, but you need the financial support to do so, consider applying for Market Readiness Assistance Grant today. This grant can help companies that are looking for the financial assistance to complete some of the company goals mentioned above. We have supported many companies applying for MRA Grant, you can chat with us as well.
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Disclaimer: This article is written on the date that is published and based on our point of view. Final approval and disbursement is subject to approval by the relevant authorities. This article is not approved or written to represent the Singapore government authorities.