Are you a small business looking for information about government grants? The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has issued a public warning notice about the conduct of Australian Business Funding Centre Pty Ltd (also known as Australian Business Financing Centre or ABFC) which operates the website http://www.australiangovernmentgrants.org/.
The ABFC purports to offer, for a fee, access to an online database of the Australian government grants and loans available to small businesses. However, the ACCC has received numerous complaints from small businesses alleging ABFC made false or misleading representations on its website and over the phone:
- about the availability and extent of government grants a small businesses was eligible to receive
- about the uses and benefits of ABFC’s online searchable database of government grants and loans
- that the small businesses providing testimonials on the ‘success stories’ section of ABFC’s website had used the ABFC service to obtain government grants, when this was not the case.
Small businesses who signed up to access ABFC’s database have told the ACCC they paid fees ranging from $497 to $701, only to find there were no suitable grants or they were not eligible for any grants listed in the database.
Always remember that legitimate information about government grants can be obtained for free at www.business.gov.au and other websites ending with .gov.au.
This warning was issued by the Small Business team Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC)