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					Commercialising
Emerging Technologies
(COMET)


Customer information guide
December 2008




COMET
Customer information guide
V3.1 December 2008           i
About this customer information guide


The Commercialising Emerging Technologies (COMET) customer information guide helps
customers to:

    find out about the program

    determine whether they may be eligible to apply

    understand how to apply

    understand the requirements of our customers whose applications are successful.

A number of terms specific to COMET are used in this customer information guide. Please
refer to the glossary at the end of the guide for a more detailed explanation of these terms.

For further information about COMET, visit the AusIndustry website at
www.ausindustry.gov.au or contact the AusIndustry hotline on 13 28 46.




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Contents
                                                                                            Page
1            Introduction to the program ............................................ 1
1.1          How is COMET delivered?..................................................... 1
1.1.1        What is the COMET National Manager’s role? .......................... 2
1.1.2        What is the COMET business adviser role? ............................. 2
1.1.3        Success fees ...................................................................... 2
1.2          What funding is available under the program? ........................ 3
1.2.1        What is funded? ................................................................. 3
1.2.2        What is not funded by COMET? ............................................. 4
2            Applying for assistance .................................................... 5
2.1          Who is eligible to apply? ...................................................... 5
2.1.1        Can an individual receive assistance? .................................... 6
2.1.2        Turnover limits for applicants?.............................................. 6
2.2          What is the merit criteria used for COMET funding? ................. 7
2.2.1        Actual or potential management capability ............................. 7
2.2.2        Market opportunity and strategy ........................................... 7
2.2.3        Technical feasibility of the innovation .................................... 7
2.2.4        Demonstrated need for COMET funding ................................. 8
2.3          Where do I get an Application Form? ..................................... 8
2.4          What is the assessment process? .......................................... 9
2.4.1.       What if a decision is not made? ............................................ 9
2.4.2.       Can I resubmit an application? ............................................. 9
3            Information for successful applicants .............................10
3.1          What is a COMET Grant Deed? ............................................10
3.1.1        Are there taxation implications? ..........................................11
3.2          Can I vary the COMET Grant Deed? .....................................11
3.3          What are the reporting requirements? ..................................11
3.4          Will I be involved in any evaluations of the program? .............12
3.5          Will I be involved in any promotion of the COMET Program? ....12
3.6          What if I am using genetic materials as part of my project? ....12
3.7          How is confidential information handled? ..............................13
4    What if I have a complaint?                                                               13
Appendix A – Additional information                                                            15
Appendix B - AusIndustry office locations                                                      16
Appendix C - COMET National Manager and Business Advisers                                      17
Glossary                                                                                       20




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1        Introduction to the program
The COMET Program is a merit based assistance program with the aim of increasing the
commercialisation of innovative products, processes and services, by providing, early-growth stage
companies, spin-off companies and individuals, with a tailored package of support to improve their
potential for successful commercialisation.

The objectives of the COMET Program are to:
        (a)     increase Australia's sustainable economic growth through stimulating the successful
                commercialisation of Australian innovation; and
        (b)     build sustainable and high-growth firms by increasing the prospects for successful
                commercialisation of innovations through the attraction of capital and partners.

COMET helps customers to commercialise their innovation in a number of ways, including through:
       building management skills
       raising capital from business angels or venture capital funds
       borrowing money
       joint ventures or strategic alliances
       licensing
       manufacturing
       launching a product or service.

COMET provides business assistance in two ways through access to private sector consultant
COMET business advisers, and through merit based financial assistance (grant funding). The
financial assistance is used to obtain business assistance in a number of areas. (See section 1.2.1)

A list of successful applications and examples of funded activities is available on the AusIndustry
website www.ausindustry.gov.au under COMET Reports, Media Releases and Success Stories.

To receive updates about COMET or AusIndustry's range of products, subscribe to email updates at
www.ausindustry.gov.au or phone the AusIndustry hotline 13 28 46 for information.

1.1           How is COMET delivered?
COMET is administered by AusIndustry, the program delivery division of the Australian
Government’s Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and Research.

Program delivery is assisted by Innovation Australia (the Board) and the COMET/ICIP Committee,
under directions from the Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research. These directions
are made under the Industry Research and Development Act 1986 (IR&D Act).
The Commercialising Emerging Technologies and Industry Cooperative Innovation Program
Committee (COMET/ICIP Committee), on behalf of the Board, oversees the delivery and
performance of the COMET Program. The Committee does not make decisions on applications.

AusIndustry engages a private sector consultant COMET National Manager and a network of private
sector COMET business advisers to assist in the delivery of the program.



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1.1.1       What is the COMET National Manager’s role?

The COMET National Manager oversees some of the functions involved in administering the
program. These functions include:
     recommending applications to the Board Delegate
     assisting in the management of COMET business advisers
     ensuring success fee arrangements are consistent with program parameters.

1.1.2       What is the COMET business adviser role?

COMET business advisers play a central role in assisting customers. Their functions include:
     helping potential customers with their application
     providing assessments on applications to the COMET National Manager
     helping successful customers develop and conduct a tailored package of assistance which is
      detailed in the customer's COMET assistance plan.

The advice and guidance given by the COMET business adviser in the commercialisation of an
innovation is provided as part of a customer's participation under the COMET Program and is free.
However, an applicant who is successful in raising capital for the innovation may be required to pay
a success fee to the COMET business adviser. (See section 1.1.3)

1.1.3       Success fees

Success fees are a standard form of payment for commercialisation services and are in keeping with
business practice in the venture capital and financial sectors. Success fees payable reflect the
expected amount of time, effort and expertise that the COMET business adviser has contributed to
position a business so that it is attractive to potential investors. These fees are paid directly by a
COMET customer and are payable at the time that capital is raised.

Success fees act as an incentive for COMET business advisers in the capital raising and
commercialisation activities of customers. The agreement to pay a success fee is finalised between
the customer and the COMET business adviser prior to executing a COMET Grant Deed, with
oversight from the COMET National Manager to ensure that the agreement is consistent with the
parameters listed below.

The Australian Government is not a party to this agreement and does not participate in any
discussions, but requires that success fees conform to the following parameters:
    the amount of success fees payable is 2 per cent of capital raised, to a maximum of $100,000
     (exclusive of GST) per COMET customer
    success fees apply only to customers where COMET grant funding is at least $20,000 (exclusive
     of GST)
    the success fee may apply to capital raised by either equity or borrowing
    success fees are payable on capital received within 2 years from entry into the program – that is,
     two years after the commencement date (identified in the COMET grant deed). This includes
     where a customer ends its participation in COMET before completing their assistance plan
    government grants and/or assistance cannot be included as capital.
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COMET business advisers are not able to enter into a success fee arrangement with customers
outside of the above parameters.

Customers may obtain a sample success fee agreement through their COMET business adviser or the
COMET National Manager.

Customers who wish to raise capital, but are not prepared to enter into a success fee agreement with
their COMET business adviser will not be eligible for COMET assistance.

         For further information in relation to business advisers, please refer to Appendix A COMET
          You and your business adviser .
1.2          What funding is available under the program?

The total amount of financial assistance available under COMET is capped at $120,000 (exclusive of
GST) per customer. Financial assistance to individuals is limited to a maximum of $5,000 (exclusive
of GST) for the purpose of management skills development. There is no minimum COMET grant
size.

COMET financial assistance is available through a two-tier funding structure:
Tier 1:          Grant value of up to $64,000 (exclusive of GST). The rate of assistance is available
                 at 80 per cent of the eligible expenditure; and
Tier 2:          Grant value of up to an additional $56,000 (exclusive of GST). The rate of assistance
                 is available at 50 per cent of the eligible expenditure.
Tier 2 grants may be approved by the Program Delegate if commercial progress has been made on
Tier 1 activities.

COMET’s overall program funding is allocated yearly by the Australian Government. Grants will
not be provided beyond the life of the program, which concludes on 30 June 2011.

1.2.1        What is funded?

COMET funding is used to subsidise a successful applicant's access to third-party service providers
for activities that have been agreed to by a COMET business adviser. The COMET Program is
specifically designed to use third party service providers in order to ensure that the insights gained
by the service provider are focused on and transferred directly to the customer. This also allows the
customer to gain the benefits and an appreciation of value-added professional expertise offered by
the service provider.

The COMET grant is used to obtain business assistance in one or more of the following areas:
    management development including participation in approved management skills development
     courses
    engagement of mentors
    strategic and business planning, including an export strategy if appropriate
    market research
    market validity
    intellectual property strategy
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       proven technology (including finalising working prototypes).

The final decision on whether expenditure is eligible is decided by the Program Delegate.

For customers located more than 200 Kilometres from Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and
Perth, COMET funding may be used to subsidise travel relating to working with service providers.
This financial assistance may be up to five per cent of the COMET grant, to a maximum value of
$3,200 and is part of the total grant amount. International travel is ineligible and will not be funded
by the COMET grant.

        For further information in relation to service providers, please refer to Appendix A COMET
         You and your service provider



1.2.2        What is not funded by COMET?

The following activities are ineligible for assistance under COMET and will not be funded by the
COMET grant:
       activities conducted outside of the grant period
       a specific activity that has received or receives support from another state, territory or
        Australian Government program for the purpose of the COMET assistance plan. The amount
        of approved COMET assistance will be reduced by that amount
       costs associated with applying for other Government funding/assistance
       commercialising an innovation that has previously been funded by COMET, either through the
        applicant or any other entity, except in the case of individuals who have previously undertaken
        management skills development activities
       activities included in a Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) work program by companies
        registered by a CRC
       costs or activities that are not included in the agreed COMET assistance plan.

The following expenses are ineligible and will not be funded by the grant:

       fees for services provided by related parties such as companies with common shareholdings or
        a directorship with the customer, individuals, COMET business advisers, employees or
        immediate family related to the customer
       salaries for executive staff
       recruitment costs for the management team;
       Australian Government charges (e.g. patent registration fees)
       research and development and production expenses
       in-house running expenses (e.g. accounting fees, office expenses)
       international travel incurred by the customer.

COMET funding is used only to subsidise access to third-party service providers. Consequently, any
costs incurred and paid for by the customer directly which have not been undertaken by a third party
service provider are not eligible expenses e.g. the purchase of off-the-shelf items by the customer to
construct or improve a working prototype directly by the customer.



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2        Applying for assistance
There are two main stages in the COMET application process:

i.    determining whether the applicant and the proposal meets the basic eligibility criteria to apply
      (see section 2.1)
ii.   assessing the merits of the proposal against the merit criteria. (See section 2.2)

Before applying for assistance, customers should consider whether they are likely to be eligible.

To help determine eligibility, as a first step, customers are encouraged to fill out and submit to
AusIndustry a COMET Customer Pre-Application Checklist. The checklist is available from:

     AusIndustry state or territory offices
     the AusIndustry website: www.ausindustry.gov.au
     the AusIndustry hotline 13 28 46.

This checklist helps determine whether a product or project is suitable for COMET funding. Once
submitted, an AusIndustry customer service manager will contact you with advice on the eligibility
of your proposal and, if appropriate, put you in contact with a COMET business adviser who will
discuss whether you should proceed with a full application.

A COMET business adviser will assess your application and provide you with reasons as to why they
will or will not recommend your project for COMET assistance. COMET business advisers make
confidential assessments of applications and provide them to the COMET National Manager. While
it is not essential that a COMET business adviser supports an application, it is necessary that a
COMET business adviser assessment accompanies an application for consideration by the COMET
National Manager, the Board Delegate and Program Delegate.

If unsuitable for COMET assistance, an AusIndustry customer service manager or COMET business
adviser will advise applicants of any other Australian Government assistance programs that may
meet the customer's business needs.

2.1         Who is eligible to apply?
To be eligible to apply for a COMET grant, applicants must meet the following conditions:

     the proposed innovation has commercial potential
     the majority (at least 51 per cent) of the applicant’s current business activities, employees or
      assets are within Australia
     the applicant must be prepared to become a body corporate under the Corporations Act 2001
      prior to receiving assistance on execution of the COMET Grant Agreement (except for
      management skills support). (See section 2.1.1)
     the applicant must have ownership of, or the beneficial use of, any intellectual property
      necessary to commercialise the innovation
     the applicant company must be less than five (5) years old. Applicants may be exempted from
      this criterion by demonstrating through documentary evidence that the company has traded for
      less than five (5) years


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     if the applicant is:
       1) not related to a university, the total turnover for the applicant company and its taxable
             related companies (see section 2.1.2 below) over the last two (2) years must total less than
             $8 million, with not more than $5 million in either year; or
       2) related to a university, the total turnover of the applicant over the last two (2) years must
             total less than $8 million, with not more than $5 million in either year.
For the purposes of these guidelines, an applicant is related to a university where the applicant is a
related body corporate of a university or other public sector research organisation. This will include
cases where the applicant is a related body corporate of an entity that is a related body corporate of a
university or other public sector research organisation.
     the applicant must be solvent and demonstrate the ability to fund the cost of the COMET
      assistance plan not met by program assistance
     the applicant must be prepared to enter into a success fee agreement with the COMET business
      adviser, if the applicant wishes to receive a capital injection
     the applicant must pay a $250 (GST free) non-refundable application fee. (See section 2.3).

2.1.1       Can an individual receive assistance?

An individual may apply for assistance of up to $5,000 (excluding GST) for management skills
development activities that facilitate the commercialisation of their innovation.
Note that individuals must have an Australian Business Number (ABN) before they will be able to
receive assistance under the COMET Program.

2.1.2       Turnover limits for applicants?

For the purposes of calculating turnover of the applicant and related entities, the following tests
apply. The information below summarises sections 46 and 50 of the Corporations Act 2001.
Applicants are advised to seek their own legal advice on how those sections may apply to them.

Section 46 of the Corporations Act 2001 provides that a body corporate is a subsidiary of a second
body corporate only if:
     the second body controls the composition of the first body’s board
    the second body is in a position to cast, or control the casting of, more than one half of the
      maximum number of votes that may be cast at a general meeting of the first body
    the second body holds more than half the amount of issued share capital of the first body
      (excluding the issued share capital that carries no right to participate beyond a specified amount
      in a distribution of either profits or capital)
    the first body is a subsidiary of a subsidiary of the second body.

Section 50 of the Corporations Act 2001 provides that one body corporate is related to a second body
corporate when it is:
     a holding company of the second body corporate
     a subsidiary of the second body corporate
     a subsidiary of a holding company of the second body corporate.
For the purposes of calculating turnover of groups of related companies, tax-exempt related bodies
are excluded for the calculation.

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2.2         What is the merit criteria used for COMET funding?
If the applicant satisfies the program eligibility criteria, applicants will be assessed on a competitive
basis against the following merit criteria:

2.2.1       Actual or potential management capability
An applicant is required to demonstrate actual or potential strategic understanding of the business
and provide details of the management skills and level of expertise in their business field.

Merit against this criterion may be demonstrated against the following indicators:

     an appropriate level of general business experience
     an appropriate level of expertise and skills of their business field
     complementary skill sets of team members
     commitment to the company’s objectives
     a current business plan which includes and supports the proposal
     an appropriate level of sound financial management
     an appropriate level of strategic planning
     management flexibility to adapt as needed
     any other matters that the applicant considers to be relevant to demonstrating that they meet
      this criterion.

2.2.2       Market opportunity and strategy

The applicant will be required to describe the market for the product, process or service (i.e.
customers, market size, price, results of any market research, planned distribution channels, current
channel partners and market endorsement).

Merit against this criterion may be demonstrated against the following indicators:

     how the innovation differs from other competing products, processes or services
     a record of sales
     evidence of market need, and how well the product, process or service will address this need
     a clear indication of market size
     an understanding of market access channels
     a clearly defined target market
     the development of an appropriate marketing plan
     a credible analysis of competitive advantage
     identified barriers to market entry
     the potential for export
     details of support from applicant
     any other matters that the applicant considers to be relevant to demonstrating that they meet
      this criterion.

2.2.3       Technical feasibility of the innovation

The applicant needs to:
     describe the innovative aspects of the product, process or service

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     describe the current stage of development of the product, process or service
     provide any technical endorsements.

Merit against this criterion may be demonstrated against the following indicators:
     intellectual property strategy
     the stage of product, process or service development
     the product, process or service range
     the level of novelty in the innovation
     any other matters that the applicant considers to be relevant to demonstrating that they meet
      this criterion.

2.2.4       Demonstrated need for COMET funding

In this criterion the consideration will be given to whether the applicant has:
     the appropriate skill base required to undertake the project
     the capacity to obtain financing from alternative means
     the need to complete the project in a timeframe that would not be possible without grant
      support.

Related companies (see section 2.1) will be taken into account for this criterion.

2.3         Where do I get an Application Form?
Customers may view a sample-only form and access the on-line COMET Grant Application Form at
www.ausindustry.gov.au. Select 'AusIndustry products' and follow the links to the COMET
webpage.

The application form allows applicants to describe their business proposal and demonstrate how it
will address the merit criteria. (See section 2.2)

Although it is AusIndustry’s preference that applications are lodged electronically, a hard copy of the
COMET grant application form is available on request by contacting the AusIndustry hotline on 13
28 46, or by writing to the Manager COMET Program, GPO Box 9839, Canberra ACT 2601.

Applications may be lodged at any time.

A non-refundable $250 (GST free) application fee is payable at the time the application is submitted.
The application fee can be paid by cheque or money order, made payable to ‘AusIndustry’. Please
note that processing of an application will not commence until AusIndustry has received and
acknowledged payment of the $250 application fee.

Applicants will be notified in writing confirming receipt of:
     the COMET Grant Application Form
     any attachments lodged with the form
     the application fee payment.

For further information see COMET General notes on completing the application form, available
from the website www.ausindustry.gov.au.


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2.4         What is the assessment process?
When the application for COMET funding has been submitted to AusIndustry, the application will be
checked for completeness and eligibility before it is assessed against the merit criteria. In checking
for completeness and eligibility, AusIndustry may need to clarify information provided by either the
applicant or the COMET business adviser to substantiate completeness and eligibility.

The application will be accepted and ready for assessment against the merit criteria when both a
COMET business adviser assessment has been completed (and received by AusIndustry) and the
eligibility criteria has been fully satisfied by the applicant (i.e. satisfactory evidence has been
provided and accepted by AusIndustry) in respect of each eligibility criterion.

AusIndustry will inform the applicant in writing when the application is considered ready for
assessment against the merit criteria.

All eligible applications for assistance are considered by the Program Delegate on a competitive
basis against the merit criteria (see section 2.2). A COMET business adviser makes a confidential
recommendation on the application. The application, together with the recommendation of a
COMET business adviser is provided to AusIndustry for assessment.

Applications are considered by the COMET National Manager who makes a recommendation to the
Board Delegate and Program Delegate. The Program Delegate has the final decision as to whether
an application is approved, taking into account advice from the Board Delegate and program funding
matters.

A decision on whether or not COMET assistance is to be provided will be made within 30 days of
AusIndustry accepting a complete and eligible application. Applicants will receive a letter on the
outcome of the assessment within 14 days of the Program Delegate's decision.

In the case of a successful application, the letter will detail any special conditions that need to be met
by the applicant before the COMET grant is awarded.

For unsuccessful applicants, the letter will provide reasons as to why their application was not
considered competitive. If appropriate, they will also be contacted by a customer service manager or
regional manager from the AusIndustry office in their state or territory, to discuss other potential
sources of Australian Government assistance relevant to their business needs.

2.4.1.       What if a decision is not made?
There may be insufficient information provided in the application to enable a decision to be made
against the merit criteria. In this case, consideration of an application may be deferred and additional
information sought from either the COMET business adviser or the applicant.

Applicants will be advised if further information is required.

2.4.2.       Can I resubmit an application?
An applicant may resubmit an unsuccessful application for consideration by the Program Delegate.
In order to enhance the chances of a different outcome, an applicant should provide additional
information that was not available at the time of the Program Delegate’s decision.




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Applications that are resubmitted within 60 days of the advice that their funding was not supported
will not attract the $250 application fee. Applications that are resubmitted after 60 days will be
treated as a new application.

Customers will receive a letter within 14 days of the Program Delegate’s decision.


3        Information for successful applicants
Customers who are successful in obtaining COMET funding will need to develop a tailored package
of assistance detailed in the COMET assistance plan. The COMET assistance plan is a schedule to
the contract with the Commonwealth (refer to the COMET Grant Deed).

The COMET assistance plan is developed by COMET customers in conjunction with their COMET
business adviser and details a range of activities the customer will be undertaking to commercialise.
Proposed expenditure under the COMET assistance Plan must be consistent with the agreed
commercialisation objectives and agreed to by the customer and COMET business adviser.
Customers with a commercialisation objective to raise capital are required to enter into a success fee
agreement with their COMET business adviser.

Customers who are successful in obtaining COMET funding need to meet a number of Australian
Government compliance requirements.

Broadly, these are:
     executing a COMET Grant Deed
     completing specific reports
     participating in ongoing program evaluation activities.

3.1         What is a COMET Grant Deed?

A COMET Grant Deed is a contract between the successful applicant and the Commonwealth.
Successful applicants are required to execute a COMET Grant Deed within 30 days from the date of
the letter of offer, and address any particular conditions of offer set out by the Program Delegate
prior to executing the COMET grant deed.
The grant deed sets out several requirements under the program, including:

     payment and acquittal of the grant
     warranties
     reporting
     termination
     notices
     goods and service tax (GST).

A copy of the standard COMET Grant Deed is available at www.ausindustry.gov.au on the COMET
webpage.
The COMET assistance plan (see section 3 above) forms part of the COMET Grant Deed as a
schedule. A COMET assistance plan is developed by COMET customers in conjunction with their

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COMET business adviser. COMET assistance plans are for a period of 2 years from the
commencement date (date of execution by the Commonwealth) of the COMET Grant Deed.

3.1.1        Are there taxation implications?
COMET grant assistance may have tax implications for successful customers and COMET grants are
subject to GST. To ensure that the value of the grant is maintained, AusIndustry increases grants by
10 per cent to take into account the rate of GST.

A customer is obliged to remit part of their COMET payment to the Australian Taxation Office in the
same way that they do with other payments that they receive that are subject to GST.

A COMET grant may also attract income tax.

Customers are encouraged to seek legal and financial advice if they are uncertain of their taxation
obligations, as AusIndustry is unable to provide this advice.

3.2          Can I vary the COMET Grant Deed?

A customer may vary their COMET assistance plan at any time, in consultation with their COMET
business adviser. Variations such as allocation of grant amounts to activities or changes to
nominated key personnel are dealt with as part of the reporting requirements to the Commonwealth.

Customers seeking additional COMET funding under the COMET Grant Deed are required to
complete a COMET assistance plan variation form. The variation form must be lodged with
AusIndustry prior to the completion date (maximum 2 years from commencement date of the
COMET Grant Deed). The decision to apply for additional funding is made by the customer in
conjunction with their COMET business adviser.

All COMET assistance plans under the COMET Program must be completed within two years of the
project’s commencement date.

       For further details in relation to variations, please refer to Appendix A Section 4 of the
        COMET Guide to managing your grant.

3.3          What are the reporting requirements?

The COMET Grant Deed specifies in detail the reporting requirements for COMET customers.
Starting from the date of executing a COMET Grant Deed by the Commonwealth, customers are
required to provide progress reports, by submitting a COMET assistance plan progress report to
AusIndustry through their COMET business adviser.

The report proforma is available on the AusIndustry website on the COMET page. COMET
customers will be mailed/emailed the necessary data to complete those sections of the report
associated with previously reported information. The customer will be notified of a report being due
before the end of the reporting period.

The program allows the payment of advances for expected expenditure for a period of six months.
Grant payments are made following receipt of a satisfactory report.

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Customers are required to keep all records of their expenditure for five years from the completion of
the COMET assistance for auditing purposes. AusIndustry may seek to undertake a compliance audit
on your grant records.

3.4          Will I be involved in any evaluations of the program?

AusIndustry will monitor each customer’s progress once they have left COMET to establish the
extent of any benefits. This will help evaluate and improve the COMET Program.
Customers will be contacted for details of commercialisation progress for up to three years after
completing the COMET assistance plan.

AusIndustry also conducts customer satisfaction surveys and this feedback is taken into account in
improving AusIndustry business operations and customer service.

3.5          Will I be involved in any promotion of the COMET Program?

AusIndustry will use information on customers who have received assistance from the COMET
Program as part of its promotional activities.
This may involve press advertising, information on the COMET website and case studies.
Customers will be consulted before their projects are used for case study purposes. Under the
COMET Grant Deed, customers are required to acknowledge any Australian Government
contribution in publicity material.

Following approval of an application for grant funding, some details of successful applications (i.e.
name of the recipient, amount of funding, explanation and outcomes of the project) may be disclosed
by the Department for governmental purposes such as:
     promoting the program
     reporting on its operation
     policy development and outcomes.

This information may be used in answering questions from the Australian Parliament and its
committees.

3.6          What if I am using genetic materials as part of my project?

AusIndustry may make its own enquiries of relevant regulatory agencies to determine whether
relevant approvals have been obtained, and are being maintained, where activities assisted under the
COMET Program involve:
     technology using genetic material from humans (including human embryos, stem cells and all
      other human organs, tissues and cells) animals or plants
     experimentation in humans (including human embryos, stem cells and all other human organs,
      tissues and cells) or animals.

Customers are required to cooperate fully to assist AusIndustry’s enquiries.



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V3.1 December 2008                            12
3.7          How is confidential information handled?

The use and disclosure of information provided to AusIndustry and a COMET business adviser or
COMET National Manager, by applicants for the COMET Program is regulated by the relevant
provisions and penalties of the Industry Research and Development Act 1986 (IR&D Act), the Public
Service Act 1999, the Public Service Regulations, the Privacy Act 1988, the Crimes Act 1914, the
Criminal Code and general law.

The Department, COMET National Manager, COMET business advisers and the Board will use the
information provided in your application for the purposes of discharging their respective functions
under the program and for related uses. These functions include determining eligibility for
assistance under the program, assessing merit, preparing grant agreements, calculating the amount of
funding that will be paid to successful applicants, assisting with compliance activities and evaluating
program outcomes. Information received in applications and during the course of the assistance plan
may also be used in any other legitimate Departmental or the Board business.

While we will seek to protect sensitive information from disclosure to external parties, disclosure of
some confidential information may occur as specified in the COMET Program guidelines or as
mentioned in the application form. The Board may also disclose information it receives in
accordance with section 47 of the IR&D Act.

As part of the assessment of an application, the Department or the Board may need to consult with
and provide material from the application to other government agencies or bodies, other
organisations and/or relevant individuals, in order to substantiate any claims or statements made in
the application form, or to otherwise assist in the assessment of the application. If this occurs, the
Department will endeavour to ensure that the parties who are consulted observe appropriate
confidentiality.

Detailed confidential information contained in applications may be disclosed for audit purposes to
contractors engaged by the Department and to other Commonwealth agencies for audit, reporting
and law enforcement purposes. Further, the Department or the Board may release confidential
information if it obtains your consent or is required or permitted by law to do so. This could happen,
for example, if the Department is required to respond to a resolution of the Parliament, or the order
of a court.

Following approval of an application, the broad details of an application (for example, the identity of
the successful customer, the amount of payment and a brief description of the project) may be
disclosed by the Department for purposes such as promoting the program, reporting on its operation
and policy development. This information may also be used in answering questions from the
Parliament and its committees.


4        What if I have a complaint?
AusIndustry will deal with any customer service complaints in accordance with the procedures set
out in the AusIndustry Customer Service Charter, which is available at www.ausindustry.gov.au.


COMET
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V3.1 December 2008                             13
An applicant or customer who has a complaint about the service provided to them under the COMET
Program should contact the Manager, COMET Program, who will follow up to ensure the complaint
is resolved. The Manager, COMET Program, should be contacted through the AusIndustry hotline
on 13 28 46.

If customers do not believe that AusIndustry has adequately addressed their concerns, they can refer
the matter to the Office of the Commonwealth Ombudsman.




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V3.1 December 2008                            14
Appendix A – Additional information
       COMET You and your business adviser


       COMET You and your service provider


       COMET Guide to managing your grant


These documents are available from the AusIndustry website at www.ausindustry.gov.au on the
COMET webpage




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V3.1 December 2008                         15
       Appendix B - AusIndustry office locations


New South Wales                   South Australia/ Northern        Western Australia
                                  Territory
Level 5                           11th Floor                       Level 25 St Martins Tower
341 George Street                 Terrace Towers                   44 St Georges Terrace
SYDNEY NSW 2000                   178 North Terrace                PERTH WA 6000
                                  ADELAIDE SA 5000

GPO Box 9839                      GPO Box 9839                     GPO Box 9839
SYDNEY NSW 2001                   ADELAIDE SA 5001                 PERTH WA 6848
PH: 02 9226 6000                  Ph: 08 8406 4700                 Ph: 08 9287 3500
Fax: 02 9226 6002                 Fax: 08 8406 4717                Fax: 08 9287 3511
email: ainsw@innovation.gov.au    email: aisa@innovation.gov.au    email: aiwa@innovation.gov.au



Victoria                          Tasmania                         Australian Capital Territory

9th Floor                         4th Floor                        6th Floor
KPMG House                        AMP Building                     Industry House
161 Collins Street                86 Collins Street                10 Binara Street
MELBOURNE VIC 3000                HOBART TAS 7000                  CANBERRA ACT 2601


GPO Box 85                        GPO Box 9839                     GPO Box 9839
MELBOURNE VIC 3001                HOBART TAS 7001                  CANBERRA ACT 2601
Ph: 03 9268 7555                  Ph: 03 6230 9900                 Ph: 02 6213 7625
Fax: 03 9268 7599                 Fax: 03 6230 9901                Fax: 02 6213 7644
email: aivic@innovation.gov.au    email: aitas@innovation.gov.au   email: aiact@innovation.gov.au



Queensland
Level 12
100 Creek Street
BRISBANE QLD 4000


GPO Box 9839
BRISBANE QLD 4001
Ph: 07 3227 4700
Fax: 07 3227 4730
email: aiqld@innovation.gov.au




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     V3.1 December 2008                       16
 Appendix C - COMET National Manager and Business Advisers

                             COMET NATIONAL MANAGER, COMET Program

    Name               Business Address                           Email                 Telephone
                    Lysiana Pty Ltd
Robert Bowen                                        robert.bowen@innovation.gov.au     Ph: 07 3227 4700
                    PO Box 10532
                                                                                       Fax: 07 3227 4730
                    Brisbane Adelaide St
                    QLD 4000
                    C/- AusIndustry
                    Level 12
                    100 Creek Street
                    BRISBANE     QLD      4000


                    GPO Box 9839
                    BRISBANE     QLD      4001



                                          COMET BUSINESS ADVISERS

                                                     Victoria

Name               Business Address                 Email                            Telephone
                   Beauchamp Pty Ltd                                                   Fax: 03 9923 6744
Bob Beaumont                                        Australian@ozemail.com
                   406 Queens Parade                                                  Mob: 0415 597 080
                   Clifton Hill VIC    3068
                   KJW Consultants Pty Ltd                                            Mob: 0414 611 674
Jim Paulyshyn                                       jim@kjwconsultants.com.au
                   PO Box 2023
                   Ivanhoe East
                   MELBOURNE VIC          3079



                                                 Western Australia
                   CLASE Ventures Pty Ltd                                              Ph: 08 9278 2414
Akshay Bhandari                                     akshay@claseventures.com
                   Level 28, AMP Tower                                                 Fax: 08 9278 2525
                   140 St Georges Terrace                                             Mob: 0402 134 771
                   PERTH WA 6892


                   PO Box 6835
                   EAST PERTH        WA   6892




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                                   Australian Capital Territory/Newcastle
                    Kizmet Consulting Pty Ltd                                                 Ph: 02 6295 8210
Phil Chynoweth                                          p.chynoweth@kizmetconsulting.com
                    PO Box 9623                         .au                                  Fax: 02 6295 8217
                    DEAKIN     ACT      2600                                                Mob: 0415 919 191




                                                      Queensland
                    Spin Consulting Pty Ltd                                                   Ph: 07 3378 0551
Ian Crebbin                                             icrebbin@bigpond.net.au
                    22 Morningview Street                                                   Mob: 0410 465 748
                    CHAPEL HILL         QLD    4069


                    Cernotech Pty Ltd                                                         Ph: 07 5556 0887
Michael Murtagh                                         cernotech@bigpond.com
                    PO Box 1300                                                              Fax: 07 5556 0789
                    OXENFORD QLD           4210                                             Mob: 0410 451 887
                    Steele Business Solutions Pty                                             Ph: 07 5444 3987
Keith Steele                                            steelekeith@bigpond.com
                    Ltd
                                                                                            Mob: 0410 127 161
                    PO Box 1297
                                                                                             Fax: 07 5444 8387
                    Buddina QLD 4575



                                       Northern Territory/North Queensland
                    Northern Territory:                                                      Toll Free: 1800 232
  Peter Towers                                         peter@towersbusiness.com.au
                                                                                                             088
                    Towers Business
                    Development Pty Ltd                                                      Mob: 0418 190 181
                    C/- BKR Walker Wayland
                    First Floor
                    24 Cavenagh Street
                    DARWIN        NT    0800


                    North Queensland:
                    Towers Business
                    Development Pty Ltd
                                                                                           Toll Free:1800232088
                    12 Eclipse Street
                                                       peter@towersbusiness.com.au            Ph: 07 47241118
                    Rowes Bay
                                                                                             Mob: 0418 190 181
                    TOWNSVILLE          QLD    4810
                                                                                              Fax: 07 47242911




                                                  New South Wales
                    Argo Partners Pty Limited           richard@argopartners.com.au           Ph: 02 8257 3330
Richard Dale
                    Level 12, 37 Bligh Street                                                Fax: 02 8233 6199
                    SYDNEY        NSW    2000




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                    Freebird Pty Ltd                                                             Ph: 02 9037 2600
Matthew Griffiths                                         Matthew.griffiths@freebirdgroup.com
                    PO Box 319
                    BALMAIN     NSW        2041
                    Business Tree Pty Ltd                                                       Mob: 0412 764 552
Peter Milla                                               pmilla@businesstree.com.au
                    PO Box 687
                    CROWS NEST        NSW        2065




                                                    South Australia
                    LeMessurier Solutions Pty Ltd                                                Ph: 08 7221 2136
Hugo LeMessurier                                          lemsolutions@intermode.on.net
                    23 Sunnyside Road                                                           Fax: 08 8379 0286
                    ST GEORGES        SA    5064                                                Mob: 0407 977 553




                                                         Tasmania
                    Corporate & Leisure                                                          Ph: 03 6248 8644
Kim Newstead                                              knewstead@calm.net.au
                    Marketing Pty Ltd
                                                                                                Fax: 03 6248 8646
                    23 Thompson Way
                    CLIFTON BEACH          TAS    7020




         COMET
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         V3.1 December 2008                                   19
Glossary

    applicant                    An applicant is the person or persons wanting to receive a grant or
                                 entitlement or other assistance, either as an individual or business,
                                 company or other entity. The definition of ‘applicant’ does not
                                 include the authorised employee, officer or agent who may be
                                 completing the application on the applicant’s behalf.
    assistance plan              A tailored package of support developed by a customer in
                                 conjunction with their COMET business adviser to assist in the
                                 commercialisation of the customer’s innovation. The COMET
                                 assistance plan is prescribed in Schedule 1 of the COMET Grant
                                 Deed and can not be extended by more than two years from the
                                 commencement date.
    beneficial use               Where the applicant can demonstrate access to any intellectual
                                 property necessary to carry out and commercialise the project. It is
                                 normally expected that a successful customer will own any
                                 intellectual property associated with the project. If this is not the
                                 case, the applicant can demonstrate their access at the time of
                                 application by a letter of understanding or an agreement relating to
                                 the intellectual property. If the application is approved, these
                                 arrangements will need to be formalised before a COMET Grant
                                 Deed is executed. The COMET Grant Deed will also address the
                                 way you can deal with project intellectual property to ensure that the
                                 planned outcomes of your project are achieved.
    business angels              Private individuals who provide early-growth stage capital.
    conflict of interest         A situation in which a person has a duty to more than one person or
    (actual or potential)        organisation, but cannot or does not appear to do justice to the actual
                                 or potentially conflicting interests of both parties. This includes
                                 when an individual's personal or business interests are inconsistent
                                 with the best interests of a customer, or when a public official's
                                 personal interests are contrary to his/her loyalty to public business. A
                                 lawyer, an accountant, a business adviser or realtor cannot represent
                                 two parties in a dispute or transaction and must avoid even the
                                 appearance of conflict.
    COMET business adviser       A private sector consultant to assist AusIndustry in the delivery of
                                 the COMET Program. A COMET business adviser provides
                                 guidance with COMET applications, makes recommendation on
                                 applications, advises and assists successful customers through the
                                 commercialisation process by providing expert knowledge of
                                 industry and commercialising innovation.




    COMET
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    V3.1 December 2008                            20
COMET National               A private sector consultant that oversees the delivery of the COMET
Manager                      Program by the COMET business adviser network, and assists with
                             assessing and making recommendations to the Innovation Australia
                             (the Board) Delegate by rating the merit of applications.
COMET/ICIP                   A committee of the Board that oversees the delivery and
Committee                    performance of COMET and the Industry Cooperative Innovation
                             Program (ICIP).
commencement date            The date of execution of the COMET Grant Deed by the
                             Commonwealth.
completion date              A maximum of two years from the date of execution of the COMET
                             Grant Deed by the Commonwealth.
customer                     Customers are those who inquire about AusIndustry products, use its
                             services and, if their application is approved, receive grants or
                             entitlements or other assistance through AusIndustry.
customer service             Departmental employees of AusIndustry, who deal with customers,
manager                      provide business assistance advice and make recommendations
                             regarding assistance. A customer service manager strategically
                             manages the overall relationship between a customer and
                             AusIndustry.
early-growth stage           A company that is in the early stages of commercialising an
company                      innovation. To be considered, companies should have an average
                             annual turnover in the previous two years of $4 million or less,
                             turnover not exceeding $5 million in either year and be less than five
                             years old at the time of application.
grant deed                   The contract between a successful COMET customer and the
                             Commonwealth, represented by the Department of Innovation,
                             Industry, Science and Research.
individual                   A person acting on their own behalf, according to common
                             understanding. An application lodged by an ‘individual’ on behalf of
                             a company/organisation will be taken to be from the
                             company/organisation.
innovation                   For the purposes of the COMET Program, is defined as a new or
                             improved product, process or service.
Innovation Australia (the An employee of the Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and
Board) Delegate           Research who has been empowered by the Board to provide an
                          assessment of merit for the Program Delegate’s consideration.
intellectual property (IP)   Means statutory and other proprietary rights and includes patents,
                             trade marks, designs, confidential information/trade secrets,
                             copyright, circuit layout rights, plant breeder’s rights and so on.


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V3.1 December 2008                            21
management skills            Assistance is provided to develop management skills required to
development                  progress innovation towards commercialisation. This includes
                             participation in approved management skills development courses.
Program Delegate             An employee of the Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and
                             Research who has been empowered by the minister or otherwise duly
                             authorised person to administer the program. Funding decisions are
                             made by the Program Delegate.
proven technology            Expenditure related to validating the performance of the product in
                             the field or by external assessment.
regional manager             Manager of an AusIndustry regional office. A regional manager may
                             perform the same role as a customer service manager.
related party                Examples include:
                                  COMET business adviser companies that may have a
                                   shareholding or directorship of the customer or service
                                   providers
                                  customer and service providers with common shareholding or
                                   directorships
                                  an employee or relative of an applicant/customer, in relation to
                                   a customer who is a body corporate – a related body corporate
                                   or related entity (within the meaning of section 9 of the
                                   Corporations Act 2001).
service providers            Third party entities employed by customers to provide services
                             identified by COMET business advisers through a customer’s
                             participation in COMET. Services for which service providers may
                             be employed include: business planning, market research, assistance
                             in securing Intellectual Property ownership, certification of a
                             working prototype or any other activity as defined under a COMET
                             assistance plan by a COMET business adviser.
spin-off company             A company formed from either a public or private research
                             institution with a written agreement/licensing arrangement to exploit
                             technology developed at the research institution.
venture capital              Involves the provision of equity financing and management advice to
                             early-growth stage companies.
working prototype            Activities related to the final development of a product prior to
                             market / field testing.




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