Fieldays Debate: Can technology save regional small business?

26th May, 2015

Excuse the provocative title. I’m not suggesting regional small businesses are in imminent danger. That’s simply the title of the upcoming MYOB Small Business Event coming up at the Fieldays® on June 10.

New Zealand SME Business Network founder Tenby Powell will host a lively debate at the Verandah Café in Hamilton itself – located at Hamilton Lake Domain, off Ruakiwi Rd.

Those involved in the debate include William Durning, Waikato Chamber of Commerce CEO;  Jordan Carter, Chief Executive of InternetNZ; Professor Jacqueline Rowarth, Professor of Agribusiness at University of Waikato; and Don Carson, General Manager of Strategic Communications at Federated Farmers. The event is introduced by Small Business Minister Craig Foss.

So what topics will be covered? There’s no doubt that the last 20 years have seen a seismic shift in the way many industries do business. Not since the industrial revolution has there been such a dramatic change in the fundamentals of how we work.

And while most urban businesses have adapted to the online evolution, there’s still a lag in rural uptake of new technologies. To that end, the debate will cover:

  • Why are regional communities slow to adopt online technology?
  • If businesses are focussed on online interaction, what is the point of having a bricks and mortar presence in the community?
  • What are the barriers to going online for rural / regional SMEs?
  • What is the ROI for regional SMEs going online?

This event will be highly relevant for accountants with rural clients (which, let’s face it, is pretty much everyone) and small business owners. I strongly recommend you add this event to your diary if you’re in the Waikato region.

There’s no cost involved, although you will need to RSVP by Friday 5 June to Sarah Putt.