Exchange a big boost for small business

Small business owners were given a helping hand at the 2017 Small Business Exchange, held at Castle Grand, in Castle Hill, on March 8.

More than 400 business owners, entrepreneurs or those looking to start a business within the north-west region registered for the opportunity to speak to and consult with organisations and government departments on questions, problems and challenges in numerous areas of business during the free day-long program.

Mayor of The Hills Shire, Councillor Yvonne Keane said the Small Business Exchange was a “big success” with many businessmen and women coming together, learning skills and taking back new knowledge so they can make better and informed business decisions.

“The Hills is one of the two highest annual GDP growth areas in Sydney,” Mayor Keane said.

“We scored 5.9 per cent growth along with Ryde which came in at six per cent in the SGS Economics and Planning Report. This contrasts to several other leading areas in Sydney including Parramatta at 2.3 per cent growth, the CBD at 4.8 per cent and Blacktown at 2.8 per cent.

“This is an outstanding result – and great news for business people because it indicates our local economy is not just alive and well, but booming.

“We want to see our local businesses grow and succeed – not only to continue our wonderful level of economic growth, but so residents can enjoy more jobs close to home.

“That is why Council is providing genuine assistance and support for local businesses in order to maintain the developing, progressive nature of our region and the economy.

“It’s our vision to facilitate sustainable economic development to promote industry growth, attract skilled employees and develop local employment prospects,” Mayor Keane added.

As well as providing networking opportunities and the chance to attend a series of innovative workshops on topics of interest, Small Business Exchange attendees also had the opportunity to book 15 minute, one-on-one appointments with the exhibitors of their choice including five government agencies – the Australian Securities and Investments Commission, Australian Taxation Office, Department of Industry, Innovation and Science, Office of State Revenue and SafeWork NSW.

Mayor Keane said the event wouldn’t be possible without the support of the Exchange partners.

“To our wonderful support partners, 360HR and The Sydney Hills Business Chamber – you are always there for local business and we simply couldn’t have done it without you,” Mayor Keane said.

“A huge thanks to our Principal Partner, Telstra. We are absolutely honoured to have had you on board and we know you have provided loads of fantastic advice and information that will help our local businesses in a race to the top.

“Also, a big thank you to our Government partners: ASIC, Safe Work NSW, the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science, the NSW Office of State Revenue and the Australian Tax Office – we truly appreciate you making yourselves available to businesses in The Hills,” Mayor Keane added.