2018 Commonwealth Games, SCBC Annual Strategic Directions Workshop, How Universities Contribute to Regional Economies, and more…

2018 Commonwealth Games

Back in 2012 the SCBC was a member of the inaugural Sunshine Coast Opportunities Forum put together by the then Sunshine Coast Regional Council to provide advice to Council on how the region could maximise the benefits from the staging of the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.

In the lead up to the games the Sunshine Coast hosted sports teams from nine countries including Australia, and many locals were enthusiastic supporters of the Games. This was reciprocated as some Gold Coast locals sought refuge from the Games by visiting the Sunshine Coast and other areas. We thank the visitors for spending some time in this region and hopefully, with the Games over, many of the visitors have stayed on to visit more of the state and country.

On a pragmatic note, maybe the State Government’s members will now turn their minds to the critical infrastructure needs of other regions and have the time to meet with the regional industry groups such as the Business Council to discuss our infrastructure priorities.

SCBC Annual Strategic Directions Workshop

The annual workshop to set the direction for the Business Council was held early February with approximately 40 members and stakeholders attending to discuss tops such as:

  • Regional highlights covering regional economic performance; REDS and Noosa economic direction in 2018
  • Industry groups provided their view on what is happening both at state and regional level in 2018, challenges, road blocks and opportunities
  • Roundtable discussions occurred on four challenging topics
    • How do we manage the political environment (federal and state) for the next period to benefit the region? What are the key regional issues to be addressed at both levels?
    • Is the University of the Sunshine Coast reaching its economic significance for the region? What are the implications for business and regional development strategies and how can the university’s contribution and impact be maximised?
    • What transport initiatives will best future proof the region in terms of growth opportunities, jobs and lifestyle, and be most likely to secure private and public funding?
    • What are the key challenges facing regional job growth and what do we need to improve to consistently outperform the state average job growth and participation rates.

The overview of the focus for this calendar year is available on the SCBC website by following the link


How Universities Contribute to Regional Economies

This week the Business Council hosted a lunch to hear from Jonathan Chew of Nous Group on findings from a recent economic modelling study they conducted on behalf the Regional Universities Network (RUN). University of the Sunshine Coast and CQ University, being Business Council members and two of the six RUN universities, sponsored the lunch.

The findings validate what many of us already understand. That is, that universities are critical to our regional economies, not just as tertiary education institutions but through the ripple effect that is stimulated from their research and operational expenditure.

The lunch was informative and it was good to see Senator Claire Moore, Shadow Minister for International Development & the Pacific, Andrew Wallace MP, Member for Fisher, Ted O’Brien MP,
Member for Fairfax, Mark McArdle MP, Member for Caloundra and Marty Hunt MP, Member for Nicklin supporting regional universities and the SCBC event.

The research is expected to be published by the Regional Universities Network soon.

Retail Evolution Conference – Wednesday 30 May 2018

SCBC is holding its first major conference for the year on 30 May 2018, sponsored by Lendlease, as part of Small Business Week.

We have again attracted exceptional speakers such as:

  • Mr Gary Horwitz, Managing Director, Retail – Investment Management Lendlease
  • Mr Martin Lakos, Divisional Director, Macquarie Wealth Management
  • Prof Gary Mortimer, Business School, QUT
  • Mr Jonathon Ingle, EY Advisor
  • Aaron Blackman, Founder & CEO, Retail Express

These speakers will cover the topic from a variety of angles including global trends and markets, digital disruption and technologies that have changed the way we shop, the future of bricks and mortar and how regional retailers can respond and succeed.

Securing speakers of this quality says a lot about how we are regarded, and the Board of the Business Council look forward to seeing you at the event. We hope you will support us, again.

Sunshine Coast ‘Game Changer’ Projects and the Ripple Effect

SCBC first began to think about the ripple effect stemming from major projects back in July 2010 when it held its first conference. That event attracted about 40 people to hear from three (3) speakers talking about the proposed new hospital development and what this might mean in terms of employment and growth.

That conference was followed in May 2011 by a boardroom lunch which discussed for the first time the vision to bring the broader ‘Health Precinct’ to life, how value would be maximised for the region and how this would be communicated within the community.
In August 2012 we conducted our first full day workshop with around 70 people to hear from speakers from the state government health sector, Urbis, USC, TAFE, Sunshine Coast Regional Council, Fiona Simpson MP and Mayor Jamieson. The second half of the day was devoted to collaboratively working toward an action plan to identify the sectors and decisions that needed to be considered in understanding the potential of a ‘ripple effect’.

A 12-month action plan was formulated by SCBC and SCC from that work, monitored by SCC and reported quarterly on the SCBC website.
In July 2013 the Business Council and SCC held a stakeholder forum to review the output and status of the action plan.

Meetings and briefings were held during 2014 and 2015 as the university hospital and health precinct were under development and in September 2016 the next major conference was held, again focused on realizing the ripple effect. That conference attracted close to 150 people.

In March 2018 the Business Council commissioned new research with the goal to design an evaluation framework to better assess the financial and economic benefits of major projects. That framework will then be applied to projects such as the Sunshine Coast Health Precinct. It will also consider how to optimize project benefits in the future. Regional Development Authority is a research partner, with funding support also from Sunshine Coast Airport and Property Council of Australia.

Unifying Regional Values

SCBC is collaborating with Sunshine Coast and Noosa Councils, and looking to involve other members of the business community, in a project that will aim to crystalise the region’s values and develop a ‘common language’ to better articulate what is important when seeking investment for critical infrastructure and representing the region at trade events.

This will no doubt be a huge challenge and if you are interested in knowing more, and perhaps contributing funding for the project, please give Sandy Zubrinich a call to discuss on 0408 835 954.

New Members

The Board would like to welcome CQUniversity as a new member. We look forward to your participation and ideas – making the Business Council an even stronger business advocate.

Thank you also to Sunshine Coast Airport which joins Lendlease, Sekisui House and Stockland as Business Partners.