Bring your idea to life and establish your own small business

If you have a business idea and have always wanted to start your own business, then New Business Assistance with NEIS can help. Funded by the Australian Government, NEIS provides FREE support to bring your ideas to life and set you up for small business success.

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Attend an online information session

To attend one of our upcoming training programs, please book into a NEIS online information session.

NEIS (New Enterprise Incentive Scheme)

NEIS logoNEIS provides small business training and support to help you become a self-employed business owner.

Chisholm has been involved in the delivery of this program for over 20 years and has supported thousands of eligible participants to achieve small business success.

In this small business start-up program, you will receive, at no cost to you:

Frequently asked questions

If you’d like further information, fill in the enquiry form on this page and we will get back to you within a business day. Alternatively, please contact (03) 9238 8447 or email us at for further information about our small business start-up programs.

Adam McIntyre, ASM Mowing"I loved that everyone shared their ideas in class discussions.

Listening to the teachers also really inspired us. It was fantastic!"

- Adam McIntyre, ASM Mowing


NEIS (New Enterprise Incentive Scheme)

To be eligible for NEIS you must meet both the Personal and Business eligibility criteria detail below.

Personal eligibility

  • Be at least 18 years of age (when signing your NEIS Agreement)
  • Not be prohibited by law from working in Australia, or be an overseas visitor on a working holiday visa or an overseas student studying in Australia
  • Not have received NEIS assistance in the past 12 months
  • Not be an undischarged bankrupt
  • Be available to participate in NEIS training (if relevant), and work the required hours in your proposed new business (which is typically 35 hours per week)
  • Be receiving an eligible income support payment (such as JobSeeker, Parenting Payment Single, Disability Support Pension, Carers Payment and Age Pension)
  • Working or studying 25 hours or less per week.

Recipients of certain Services Australia or Department of Veterans’ Affairs pensions may be able to remain on these payments while participating in New Business Assistance with NEIS.

Business eligibility

  • Not currently operating on a commercial basis


  • An existing micro-business owner/sole trader seeking to refocus your business in response to COVID-19
  • Able to demonstrate that the business has the potential to be commercially viable
  • Be lawful and capable of withstanding public scrutiny
  • Established, located, and operated solely within Australia
  • Structured to ensure that the NEIS participant(s) can maintain a controlling interest in the business while participating in NEIS
  • Able to secure and maintain appropriate business insurance.

How to apply

Attend one of our weekly NEIS online information sessions or watch our NEIS pre-recorded webinar.

Complete a NEIS application form. You can download and complete the application form and return it to us or fill in the online application below. We will then contact you within 48 hours to discuss your application with you further.

Download the NEIS application form

Use the online NEIS application form

"NEIS was a turning point for me, providing really tangible and current information and tips about what really matters for a small business and how to build a viable business with a really thorough business plan run by experts in the field, with financial support which was really helpful to get going.”

Read about Mel's story.

- Mel Chamberlain (award winner pictured)