Indigenous Business Australia announces second conference to grow women’s businesses

Attendees at the 2018 Strong Women Strong Business Conference. Photo supplied by IBA.

Indigenous Business Australia (IBA) has officially confirmed the second Strong Women Strong Business conference for Indigenous businesswomen in 2020.

The announcement comes after the inaugural conference in 2018 was a huge success, which brought together 200 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander businesswomen and aspiring businesswomen in Adelaide.

The second conference will see the IBA partnering with Indigenous businesses to deliver the conference and build upon the current online network of over 1,400 businesswomen.

As of the 2016 Census, only 0.25 percent of business owners in Australia are Indigenous women and of all Indigenous business owners and operators, only 33 percent are women.

The Strong Women Strong Business conference aims to increase that number.

Since 2017, the IBA has grown its support for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander businesswomen with almost 700 entrepreneurs receiving either finance or business support.

“We developed Strong Women Strong Business in direct response to the increases we saw in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women starting and growing their businesses over the past three years,” said Stella de Cos, IBA’s Business Solutions Director and Arrernte woman.

Ms de Cos said IBA is excited to confirm the second conference will take place in early 2020, with more information being released in the coming weeks.

“Strong Indigenous women in business have always led their communities and other Indigenous businesswomen to learn and succeed.”

“Following our inaugural conference, it was clear that we needed to create a way for women to connect, share and learn from one another outside of just events and this is what inspired the creation of our online platforms,” Ms de Cos said, referencing the 1,400-strong Facebook community.

Minister for Indigenous Australians Ken Wyatt supports the conference in professionally growing Indigenous businesswomen.

“The platform allows our female entrepreneurs to connect with other strong Indigenous women and access support and resources to start or grow their businesses,” Minister Wyatt said.

“The network comes from all around the country, and it’s particularly important for those women in regional and remote areas to know they are not alone.”

For more information on the conference or to join the Strong Women Strong Business network, visit: https://www.strongwomenstrongbusiness.com/.

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