‘Always up to date on constantly changing rules’
Agriculture cooperative AgruniekRijnvallei has been working with Subsidiefocus for years. “It’s very straightforward. We tell Subsidiefocus what we’re dealing with and explain the latest developments and their consultants do the rest.’
AgruniekRijnvallei produces and supplies feed for cattle, horses, pigs and poultry. In addition to standard feed, the cooperative also produces feed supplements, organic feed and made-to-order feed. AgruniekRijnvallei also supplies a wide range of fertilisers, pesticides, seeds and other inputs for plant production sectors such as fruit farming, agricultural contract work and landscaping.
The cooperative was established in 2012 following a merger. The predecessor organisation had been working successfully with Subsidiefocus for some time, so it was natural to continue working together. Subsidiefocus helps AgruniekRijnvallei apply for R&D tax credit under the Research and Development Promotion Act (Wet Bevordering Speur- en Ontwikkelingswerk - WBSO), a law that provides tax incentives for innovation projects.
AgruniekRijnvallei’s Head Nutritionist, Dennis van Vilsteren, tells us more. “Every six months, we review our projects with Subsidiefocus consultant Roy Hoven and discuss any new projects we are planning. Roy knows exactly what makes a project eligible for WBSO R&D tax credit. The rules are constantly changing and he’s always up to date on the latest requirements. So he can advise us on how to adjust a project to make it eligible for WBSO R&D tax credit.” Subsidiefocus prepares the applications in close consultation with AgruniekRijnvallei and submits them to the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (Rijksdienst voor Ondernemend Nederland - RVO). Subsidiefocus also identifies other possible sources of funding for particular projects and has successfully secured European funding.
Funding for practical training
In addition to R&D tax credit, every year AgruniekRijnvallei receives funding from the Dutch government's Practical Training Grant Scheme (Subsidieregeling praktijkleren). The cooperative is a recognised training company and trains student employees for specific roles in its various divisions. Subsidiefocus ensures that no funding opportunities are missed. AgruniekRijnvallei provides Subsidiefocus with a list of work placement students trained by the cooperative each academic year. Subsidiefocus assesses the work placement contracts and identifies those that are eligible for funding of up to € 2,700 per student per year.
Stricter assessment process
Van Vilsteren: “It’s very straightforward. We come up with ideas and Subsidiefocus consultants do the rest, from preparing and submitting the application to liaising with the funding body. So far, the applications have always succeeded, but it is increasingly difficult to get them approved. The funding body is imposing more rigorous demands and subjecting the applications to stricter scrutiny. This makes submitting an application more difficult. Subsidiefocus also assists us with project management to ensure that we supply the funding body with the right information.” Van Vilsteren is very pleased with the collaboration. WBSO R&D tax credit significantly reduces the cooperative’s payroll tax bill. “We have many more plans, but the size of the cooperative now excludes certain grants. We have 330 members. Most grant schemes are for small and medium enterprises. However, we’re not going to create projects just to be eligible for grants. Projects have to be aligned with our activities.”
To find out more about Subsidiefocus, email Roy Hoven or call him on +31 (0)73 646 5475.