Keeping the business community connected
Our first Management Committee meeting for 2016 was held last Wednesday where we discussed a large range of topics from the proposed Motorsport Complex to the long list of events coming up including the preparation for this year Shoalhaven Business Awards.
2016 will be a busy year for the Chamber and its members. An extensive events calendar now includes numerous training and educational opportunities for everyone. We hope you will see value in the various delivery methods and the topics available to you.
The Council merger has been a hot topic of late and the Mayor requested SBC provide its views on the matter. It was agreed by the Committee that the SBC’s position was to oppose a merger in its proposed form. This conclusion was made based on the facts presented showed no real positives to be gained by business and employment growth in our region.
Last week, the SBC received a meeting request from the Minister for Small Business, The Hon. John Barilaro MP following a letter we sent his office in December. John Lamont and I will be meeting with the Minister at Parliament House to discuss business development and funding opportunities but more specifically, the Motorsport Complex and its application process.
In January I met with Shoalhaven City Council Economic Development Manager, Greg Pullen, and following negotiations we signed a three-year financial MoU partnership with the Council to provide educational and business development programs to our members. This includes events such as Lunch & Learns, Business Information Breakfasts, Women in Business Events and other educational seminars as they arise. The agreement also includes the delivery of the Annual Business Awards event.
I believe this agreement highlights the reputation our organisation has as the leading business group in the Shoalhaven and also underscores the strength of our relationship with Council. I look forward to working with them more closely over coming months to deliver the best benefits to our members.
Our Membership and Communications committee have been busy over the Christmas break and has finalised our new SBC brochure and new member prospect pack. A special thanks goes to committee member Jamie McAinsh from The Marketing Clan for his generosity on this project. The brochures will be printed and available in time for the Feb Business After-hours.
I hope you enjoy this month’s edition and look forward to seeing you at the next event.
The Chamber Committee voted against the merger in its current format. There is no option to put an alternative option to the delegate at the moment. Based on the information given, the 45% inequity in the level of rates, along with the freeze on rate increases and no staff reductions except for senior staff, the proposal did not give any significant fiscal benefit to the Shoalhaven City Council.
Other items including the impact on every business branded as “Shoalhaven” and the potential loss of this identity in a new council, many members would face significant financial costs in their own organisation’s re-branding.
Your Committee has voted in favour of this development based on the positive financial impact for the region. Many of the environmental concerns have now been addressed forcing a re-design of the track. This means the whole proposal will go back on public exhibition in mid-February, once Council releases the new development application. Chamber Members are requested to write letters of support to Council on this project.
The Hon. John Barillo MP, The Hon. Shelley Hancock MP, Brendan Goddard and John Lamont are meeting at NSW Parliament House on March 9th to discuss issues facing small business, and topics such as the Motorsport Park.
Any special topics effecting Chamber Members should be forwarded to the Chamber Office as soon as possible so we can brief the Minister. This is great recognition for the Chamber to be invited to Sydney for this meeting.
Additional voice for the Shoalhaven Business Chamber
Recently the SBC was invited to nominate as part of the Illawarra Regional Advisory Council (RAC) for the NSW Business Chamber. Our position on the RAC is to represent the local businesses and Chambers of Commerce of the Shoalhaven region and to dig deep into policy issues affecting local businesses and economic growth.
As a result we now have access to the policy and research resources of the NSW Business Chamber and the Illawarra Business Chamber, with a distinct focus on the Shoalhaven region as part of the Local Chamber Alliance.
The RAC has 5 representatives from Local Chambers including the RAC Deputy Chairperson, Paul Boultwood (Corrimal Chamber of Commerce), Marie Beikmanis (Kiama & District Chamber of Commerce), Kurt Newman (Southern Highlands Chamber of Commerce & Industry), Mike Leask (Warilla Business Chamber) and SBC is represented by our own Vice President, Deb Langdon. This gives the southern Illawarra and Shoalhaven regions a significant voice to the new structure of the Illawarra Business Chamber.
The Events Committee welcomes you to 2016. We will be keeping you, the website and Facebook up to date with the events as we book them in so you can save the date.
Wednesday 10th February, SG Technologies are proudly sponsoring the first Business After Hours of the year.
Time: 17:30 to 19:30
Location: Quest Apartments, 130 Kinghorne St, Nowra
RSVP: By COB 8th February 2016 to Jeni at the Chamber office on 02 4423 3582 or email@example.com
Please advise of dietary requirements at time of booking.
Maximum of 2 guests per business, additional guests welcome at $20 per head.View Event
Thursday 11th February is the fourth and final installment to the Energise Shoalhaven series: ‘Discover the tools you need to thrive in 2016’.
This one-day workshop with Steven Dixon will teach you how to become more efficient using the right programs, leverage resources from around the world to get fast results.
Steven will present automated processes and technologies for your business that can improve communication to your staff and customers.
Location: Quest Apartments Nowra
Cost: Members $47, Non-members $97. Free to all attendees of Energise Shoalhaven.
RSVP: COB 9th February 2016 to Jeni at the Chamber office on 02 4423 3582 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Thursday 18th February, The Shoalhaven Business Chamber, in collaboration with NSW Department of Industry and AusIndustry Invites business owners, operators and key staff to attend a Government Business Assistance Information Breakfast.
This event will have brief presentations a number of State and Commonwealth agencies to provide businesses with information about what programs and services are available to assist them to start, run and grow their business.
Venue: Destiny’s Restaurant, TAFE Illawarra Nowra Campus, Block A, 60 Beinda Street, Bomaderry. Disabled car parking is available off Beinda Street outside Block A
Registration is essential as numbers are limited for this subsidised event.
To book please contact Jeni at the Chamber office on 4423 3582 or email@example.com by COB 15th February 2016.
Please advise of dietary requirements at time of booking.View Event
Wednesday 24th February is the annual Bundanon Trust Riversdale Super Dinner. This year we have a new sponsor for the event the University of Wollongong.
For those of you that have attended in the past you will recall the prestige views on the Shoalhaven River, which you can again enjoy whilst enjoying a wonderful meal catered by Duck Duck Goose. Melva Crouch CSM, University Of Wollongong’s Chief Administrative Officer will be the guest speaker on the night. Keeping you entertained throughout the evening will be soprano singer Annette Tesoriero and pianist Linda Baraldi.
Location: Riversdale,170 Riversdale Rd, Illaroo.
Cost: Members $80pp, Non-members $100pp
RSVP: By COB 19th February 2016 to Jeni at the Chamber office on 02 4423 3582 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Please advise of dietary requirements at time of booking.View Event
In 2016 we are bringing the Lunch and Learn series. These business lunches are hosted by a member business that can provide valuable and insightful information to assist you with your business strategies, business growth and/or development. Examples of lunch topics include business insurance, business cash flow, taxation, business leases, social media and staff recruitment.
If you would like to host an event, please contact Jeni at the office.
The events committee look forward to see you at the next event!
Membership & Communication
Be a Part of something bigger.
One of our objectives this year has been to improve the way we communicate to our existing members as well as encourage new members to join.
We started by producing this new monthly newsletter to better inform our members of what’s happening in the community. We encourage you to let us know what you think of the newsletter and if you have any suggestions on what you would like to read, please send us a message here
Additionally, we have started to produce some new marketing material to better position the benefits of joining the Chamber.
We would like to thank you for contributing to the survey we sent out in December. The good news is that the responses confirmed what we are already doing. 90% of survey responses confirmed that the Chamber meets the needs of its members by providing the following benefits to its members:
- Business networking events and business building opportunities
- Strength of lobbying power with the 3 levels of government
- Education & Training Opportunities
- Access to information and services via our email newsletters and the NSW Business Chamber
This has given the Committee the encouragement to continue focusing on these areas and help sharpen the message that we will use to increase our membership.
The first cab off the rank was to re-work the member brochure. We have given the design a bit of a refresh but more importantly strengthen our positioning of being the only business network in the Shoalhaven that really listens to the needs of the local business community.
Here’s a sneak preview of the brochure and will be available for you to take at the February Business After Hours. It will also be available to download from the website.
There’s more to come so keep an eye out for more information.