Posts Tagged ‘South Australia’

Team of young South Australians recruiting next wave of business people

Wednesday, May 14th, 2014

The Engine Room team of Sean Clarke, Marcus Bailey, James Sargent, Sally Noonan, Leigh Morgan, Toby Bensimon, Toby Strong and Steve Dorman. Photo credit; Matt Turner from News Corp Australia

A group of young business people from South Australia who dub themselves The Engine Room are looking for the future of South Australian business.

Launched by investment bankers Marcus Bailey and James Sargent, and wine and hospitality entrepreneur Leigh Morgan, the group aims to recruit 500 business owners aged 18 to 40, turning over a billion dollars a year, and representing more than 25,000 employees.

So far, they’ve gotten about 100 signed up.

Members will have access to events, mentoring, investment advice and a network of peers with the same enthusiasm and drive to succeed in South Australia.

Members of The Engine Room are:

  • Sean Clarke,
  • Marcus Bailey,
  • James Sargent,
  • Sally Noonan,
  • Leigh Morgan,
  • Toby Bensimon,
  • Toby Strong and Steve Dorman.

Bailey, who co-founded Adelaide-based investment bank Fortis Ago three years ago, said The Engine Room was about fostering real business growth.

“If we can stand up and say, ‘In our group there’s 500 company owners representing over a billion dollars of revenue’, we think what that will do is start to build on the entrepreneurial spirit in SA, whereas what we’re seeing at the moment is individual acts of brilliance dotted around the place,” he said.

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Keane family takes organic digital with great success

Monday, December 30th, 2013
Photo credit; Umstwit on Flickr

Photo credit; Umstwit on Flickr

The Keane family started their organic fruit and vegetable delivery business, Keane’s Organic Food almost by accident in 2008 and thanks to a cleverly designed website, it’s been growing ever since.

Melissa Keane, a former marketing executive at the University of South Australia, runs the business with her husband Simon,  a former South Australia Police detective and their daughter Millie.

The couple set up the business in 2008 as a part-time co-operative venture, sourcing and delivering organic produce in bulk for a few neighbours in the Unley area.

“I’ve always eaten organic food for its nutrition and taste, but when I was pregnant I wanted to find an easier way to purchase it in bulk and did a simple letterbox drop in my street to see who was interested in a co-op arrangement,” Melissa says. “The demand among other mums was clearly there, and before we knew it our business was born. In the past three years alone, sales have increased threefold and we’ve now employed two part-time delivery drivers to support our growth into new regions.”

Most of the orders come from mums who have little time and some older people.

Growing demand through mostly word-of-mouth referrals led to the more formal set up as Keane’s Organic Food, which now delivers to multiple regions within South Australia.

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Fresh fruit and vegetables over the internet? Why not?

Wednesday, September 18th, 2013

Loveday fruit and vegetable growers Megan and Mark Whateley shut down their roadside produce stand in the Riverland region of South Australia and have opted instead to make sales online and deliver the produce directly to consumers’ front doors.

The convenience of online purchasing has proved popular for people in metropolitan areas.

Photo credit; Umstwit on Flickr

Photo credit; Umstwit on Flickr

“We know it’s quite a popular thing in other country areas and in Adelaide, we’re not sure that anyone else has trialled something like this up here, so we’re going to give it a go,” Megan said.

The couple decided to start off slow with just a Facebook page but will soon launch a website to go along with it.

“Friends of ours would buy from us and we thought there was a bit of a need for it and we trialled it with a few people and it’s grown fast,” Megan said.

The service has appealed to the younger demographic including working families.

“It’s just the convenience, working people, busy families, mums, they can just have everything brought to their door,” Megan said.

“It’s what people are looking for, a lot of shopping is done from the comfort of your home, without leaving the house.”

The family grows primarily sweetcorn, broccoli and cabbage for South Australian and interstate markets.

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Google announces Australia’s most web savvy towns

Friday, August 16th, 2013

Google yesterday announced Australia’s most web-savvy towns with its second eTown Awards, celebrating cities and regions whose small businesses make the best use of the web to connect with customers and grow.

Australia’s winning eTowns by state and territory are:

  • Cockburn, WA
  • Darwin, NT
  • Holdfast Bay, SA
  • Launceston, Tasmania
  • North Sydney, NSW
  • Port Phillip, Vic
  • South Canberra, ACT
  • Sunshine Coast, Qld

Claire Hatton, Head of Local Business, Google Australia, told Dynamic Business that business operators who successfully integrate digital strategies are simply more competitive.

“We see through our research that small businesses that actually use digital are more successful — they grow revenue and employ more people,” Hatton said. “This web advantage also extends to towns and regions which need no longer rely on a single local resource or industry to prosper. A town’s real assets are now their small businesses owners and employees,” Hatton said.

The link between digital engagement and commercial success has been firmly established, and a recent report by Deloitte Access Economics published in April this year found that Australian small businesses with high digital engagement are twice as likely to be growing revenue, and earn twice as much revenue per employee. They are also four times more likely to be hiring additional staff.

“The location of your shop front or size of your workforce doesn’t matter online. Every business has the opportunity to engage customers and grow,” Hatton said. “Whether you’re a boutique hotel, beautician or surf school, if you’re not online you’re missing out on a direct line to thousands of potential customers.”

To read more on this story, click here.