New opportunities: David Brooks, Managing Director of Social Traders will be at the Social Traders Road Show at The Mining Exchange on Wednesday, 27 March. Photo: SUPPLIED

Social Traders matchmaking Ballarat social enterprises

March 21, 2019 BY

BALLARAT social enterprises looking for new clients or business opportunities should head to the Social Traders Roadshow at The Mining Exchange on Wednesday, 27 March.

The aim of the event is to connect social enterprises, businesses, government agencies and community organisations to help drive business growth and create jobs.

David Brookes, Social Traders’ Managing Director, said that many businesses operating with social and sustainability causes at their core don’t realise they’ve qualified as social enterprises.

“Social enterprise is defined as any business set up to intentionally tackle social problems, improve communities, provide people access to employment and training, or help the environment,” Mr Brookes said.

“We estimate that there are more than 40 social enterprises operating in the greater Ballarat area, all with the potential to make a significant contribution to the local economy.”

Social Traders, established in 2008 as an independent not for profit company limited by guarantee, together with its partners Victorian Government, VicRoads, ACRE and ArcBlue, will provide information on the Victorian Government’s Social Procurement Framework at the roadshow.

Social Traders conducts certification for social enterprises suppliers, at a cost ranging from $250 to $500, dependant on number of individual enterprises within an organisation, and will also work with the business or group to help them grow.

Mr Brookes said the certification process generally takes four to five days.

The businesses that take up buyer membership can take advantage of introductions, host networking events, and work with corporate and government buyers to update their tender processes to open new opportunities for social enterprises.

Large companies and government departments pay $15,000 annual feel for buyer membership, which covers tailor-made training, network events and social impact reporting if required.

The annual fee for mid-size business is $8000 while small business and local councils pay an annual membership of just over $2000.

The Social Traders Roadshow will be held on Wednesday, 27 March at The Mining Exchange, 8 Lydiard Street North, Ballarat from 2pm to 4.30pm. Entry is free.