Frequently Asked Questions

About ANU Enterprise


Here’s a summary of the frequently asked questions about ANU Enterprise, our relationship with Australian National University, and our services including Business Development and Project Management.

Why did ANU create a company like ANU Enterprise?

Over 40 years ago ANU needed to secure some discreet research funding for a solar energy-related project called the White Cliffs project.  The ANU set up a separate legal entity – now known as ANU Enterprise, to secure the funding, own the entity that ran the project, and to ensure that the University remained a stakeholder in this important research opportunity with a profound impact on society.

About our founding project – The White Cliffs project.

Emeritus Professor Kaneff founded the Energy Conversion Group, within the ANU Department of Engineering Physics, which had the objective of ascertaining the feasibility of the mass utilisation of solar energy.  Emeritus Professor Kaneff led the first major flagship project undertaken in solar energy in Australia, the White Cliffs facility. The White Cliffs project led directly to the 400 m2 ANU “Big Dish” in the 1990s, and another in Israel, as well as several other major projects. When it was commissioned in the 1990s the Big Dish was the world’s largest solar dish collector.

Is ANU Enterprise separate to the University?

No. ANU Enterprise is the engagement company of ANU and sits within ANU Research and Innovation Portfolio. Whilst being a not-for-profit company makes us separate from a corporate and legal standpoint, it allows us to provide flexible and commercial services assisting ANU to engage with Industry and Government in a professional and agile manner.

Why are you a not-for-profit?

Our constitution notes our ‘for purpose’ nature, meaning that our activities are limited to supporting ANU with its research and education activities. ANU Enterprise is a not-for-profit entity registered as a charity with the ACNC. We only have one Shareholder – ANU. Any surplus generated goes back into subsidising new or existing services to ANU community.  We also do not pay dividends to ANU.

Is ANU Enterprise the same as ANUTech?  Didn’t ANUTech go broke?

ANU Enterprise was established in 1979 under the trading name of ANUTech.  In 2005, ANUTech changed its trading name to ANU Enterprise.  The legal structure, ABN and tax registration remained the same.

ANUTech did not go broke, it simply changed its trading name.  In 2000, the University did seek to recapitalise following a series of research, development, and technology commercialisation costs, and injected $4.5 million of share capital into ANUTech. 

Does ANU Enterprise report to ANU?

Yes.  Reporting is governed by the governance framework put in place by the University.  We report twice a year to the University Audit & Risk Committee, four times a year to the University Finance Committee, twice a year to the University Council, as well as ad-hoc reporting requests as part of the Research & Innovation Portfolio.

Are you audited?

Yes.  Externally and internally.  We are externally audited by the ANAO, the same auditors as ANU.  ANU Enterprise has a rolling three-year internal audit plan.

How is the performance of ANU Enterprise assessed?

ANU Enterprise performance is assessed yearly by ANU against an agreed set of value metrics which encompass both agreed financial and non-financial value creation targets.

Does somebody check what you are up to?

Absolutely.  Our strategic plans, our business plans and our annual budgets are reported to ANU Council and form part of the broader ANU Research and Innovation Portfolio strategy.

Is ANU Enterprise subject to ANU policy and process?

Whilst we have our own operational processes to run the company, everything we do for ANU incorporates compulsory alignment with ANU policies and processes e.g. delegate approvals and costing and pricing policy.

How does ANU Enterprise make money?

Our income is derived from paid project management and other services for ANU and external clients, together with dividends from our subsidiaries.

Do you charge overheads?

We do not charge for the Business Development/tender support service. However, where we are required to provide project management assistance a management fee that includes our input and associated overheads is charged to the project budget (usually incorporated in the budget accepted by the client). See our Fee Guide.

Why are your overheads different from the rest of the University?

Our size and scale enable us to keep overheads low.  We enjoy the benefits of being a separate and smaller entity than ANU, without the infrastructure costs.  

About Business Development services

Can you help me secure Category 2 and Category 3 research funding?

Yes, we can.  Contact our Head of Business Development to get moving on your next opportunity.

Do you work on Grant Applications? 

If it’s a grant, ANU Enterprise generally doesn’t get involved.  Contact your college research office to action grant applications. 

Can you find funding for my project?

We’d love to say we have a big bucket of research money ready for distribution to ANU Academics – but that is not the case.

The best way to maximise success using ANU Enterprise is to make sure you are in contact with us to ensure you are notified of new project opportunities.  We monitor new tender opportunities daily.  As new opportunities arise, we send you notifications aligned with your expertise.  Once you are receiving notifications, it can be as easy as replying by email to say you are interested in responding to a new request.

Contact our Head of Business Development to get on the notification list for new research opportunities.

Will HERDC eligibility alter or be compromised if I use ANU Enterprise?

Whilst all research work should be driven through your school or college, ANU Enterprise provides support for consulting and executive education. From time to time, the client might request some additional work that could be categorised as a research component. The good news is that because ANU Enterprise is a wholly-owned entity by the ANU, ANU can capture the HERDC eligibility associated with this component if applicable.

I am an Emeritus Professor OR an ANU Affiliate, can I access services from ANUE?

Absolutely, but we ask that you contact the school or college that hosts you before approaching us.

How much notice should I give if I have a tender that I would like support with?

When you find an opportunity that works well with your research and expertise, the deadlines begin. Our full tender service will see us co-ordinate contributions from multiple academics, manage profiles, complete the budget response, complete forms, compile documents, ensure compliance, harmonise written responses and handle document submission. For us to provide this full service we need at least 2 weeks’ notice. With less than 2 weeks’ notice, we will still help as much as we can (depending on capacity) but can only commit to give you advice about your budget, help with compliance and give you support to lodge your documents.

What is the difference between using ANU Enterprise, ANU Research Office, and Innovation ANU Office of Business Engagement and Commercialisation, for a research opportunity?

The University is a big place.  Here’s a guide that may help:

Diagram on the difference between BEC and ANU Enterprise

ANU Enterprise: Helps win and deliver project-based opportunities with Industry and Government e.g. consultancies and executive education.

Innovation ANU Office of Business Engagement and Commercialisation:  assists with large scale Research Initiatives (ITRPs, CRCs etc.) Commercialisation and IP advice and new ventures (e.g. start-ups) and Entrepreneurship. 

Research Office: drives and support research grants and activities at the College level.

Please note that all the above offices work together as one team to ensure your opportunity gets the most appropriate assistance/support.

Do you look after start-ups?

No. Contact the office for Business Engagement and Commercialisation for assistance.

Do you look after IP protection and commercialisation?

No. Contact the office for Business Engagement and Commercialisation for assistance.

How much do you charge to co-ordinate and manage my tender response?

There is no charge to use our business development services.

Contract management and project management (not tender support services) does incur a fee but is typically charged to the client via the project budget included in the bid.  Contact our Head of Business Development to get a quote.

I’ve heard ANU Enterprise Contract and Project Management services costs a lot, is that true?

Fact check: No – pricing is designed to provide accessible and flexible support to the ANU. See our Fee Guide.

How much does insurance cost if I go it alone? 

It’s best to speak to an insurance broker so that you get a comprehensive quote that covers professional indemnity, public liability insurance, workers compensation insurance and travel. However, our data tells us that getting the cover through ANU Enterprise services is one of the most competitive alternatives (not to mention the other benefits of working with us).

If ANU Enterprise works with me to respond to a tender, do I have to use your Project Management office to run the projects the tender covers?
No. You are in control of your project and can elect to secure the support you need from elsewhere. No hard feelings. We are happy we help you win the tender.

About Project Management services

I have a new project on the horizon. How do I go about getting support?

Call our Business Development team to get the contracting and budget support to set up your project in the most effective way, including how our Project Management team can support you during delivery. We can support and enable your existing relationships with industry or government, or help you set up a new relationship and kick the project off on the right foot.

If you’ve already got an industry relationship, you’ll still need to set up your deal correctly for the project with our team.

What projects is ANU Enterprise working on right now?

From working internationally with DFAT funded projects to a domestic consultancy with a local government, our project portfolio changes all the time.  Check out our latest Year in Review.

How is COVID-19 affecting your projects?

ANU Enterprise has navigated the effects well with the majority of our projects adapted to online or mixed delivery. On our international projects, we have continued working with local delivery partners enabling ongoing logistics and stakeholder engagement despite the restrictions on travel. Further information can be found in our 2021 Year in Review.

Do you work internationally?

Yes. We regularly work internationally including in the Pacific, Asia and Africa in addition to working throughout Australia.

Have you worked with project funders like the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, The United Nations Development Program and the Asian Development Bank?

Yes (and others).

What is ANUE’s style of OR approach to Project Management?

We adapt to suit the project’s needs rather than subscribing to a narrow framework.

 Can I speak to a researcher that has used your services in the past two years?

Yes.  Call us and we can connect you to someone who has used our services before.

Do I have to use ANU Enterprise if I undertake projects under the Paid Outside Work or 52 Day rule?

No, but work with us and you’ll get the benefits of insurance coverage, financial, contract and management support and a payment regime that make your work sing rather than be a burden.  Use us as a conduit to maximise and legitimise the association between your professional reputation and the ANU brand.

Do I need an ABN?

If you have one: great. 

If you don’t have one: let’s talk about your options as provided through the ATO, usually, the ATO Statement by Supplier form will suffice.

Do I need insurance?

For Paid Outside Work or 52 Day rule, ANU Enterprise has a range of comprehensive insurance coverage as part of the overall ANU Insurance umbrella.  

For all other project types, email us at

Can I put all my commercial research projects through ANU Enterprise?

It’s not that simple. Everything we provide support on will need approval and endorsement from your school and comply with ANU policies and processes.

How do I commence a Personal Consultancy or 52-day rule project through ANU Enterprise?

To commence a personal consultancy please fill out the forms on this page. You can expect a reply within one business day.

For further information or assistance in completing this form, call ANU Enterprise on (02) 6125 6101 or email us at

What can I expect when getting assistance with a Project?

We support you to achieve your project goals in whatever way you need.  We can provide advice, relationship management, subcontract management, financial management (budgets and administering payments), tailored insurance to project-specific risks, scheduling, logistics and or negotiation on your behalf.

If I use ANU Enterprise, will you take the credit for my project?

No, we are there to support you.

Do you have access to Wattle and ARIES?

Yes, as we work with ANU policies and processes. We have access to many ANU systems. All our staff have U numbers and University ID. We can access, understand, and navigate these systems.