Tuesday, 1 December 2020
Leading the way in Connecting with Local Businesses

Leading the way in Connecting with Local Businesses

A Muswellbrook mining company is leading the way in community support in a manner not seen before in the Hunter.  Bengalla is participating in a project that will deliver services that will inform, strengthen and enable local companies via a process new to this region.

The project is a collaboration between Bengalla, Austmine, and the Federal Government’s Department of Industry, Innovation & Science, along with support from local organisations such as the Muswellbrook Chamber of Commerce.  The Bengalla Supply Chain Facilitation Project will provide genuine and relevant support to develop the capabilities of current and prospective suppliers.  The end goal is to assist proactive local companies move towards “strategic supplier” status with their key customers, in tune with, and capable of meeting, their customers’ needs.

Austmine Business Facilitator and project manager, Anthony Holzwart, commends Bengalla’s participation in the project, stating that it demonstrates a clear commitment to their social responsibility.  “Research tells us that vibrant and healthy regional communities don’t happen by chance.  They rely on local leadership, collaboration, local business vitality and a practical development agenda.  Via their participation in this project, Bengalla is ticking all of those boxes and more.” 

Bengalla has long been a strong advocate for community development.  “We take our social responsibility very seriously at Bengalla,” states Bengalla CEO Cam Halfpenny.  “We understand that a healthy and vibrant community is underpinned by a strong and sustainable economic base”.  Mr Halfpenny is confident that offering transparency around their needs, matched with a clear and practical pathway for local businesses to further develop their capability will help to create stronger and more resilient businesses, and ultimately a stronger local community.

As part of the Government’s Entrepreneurs’ Programme, the Bengalla project comprises a number of stages that includes a third party analysis of Bengalla’s procurement needs and requirements; a one-on-one ‘deep dive’ analysis of participating businesses to review capability against Bengalla’s needs; and on-going support for those businesses, including funding of up to $20,000 on a dollar for dollar basis to access specific knowledge and expertise to action improvement recommendations.

Mr Holzwart indicated that the combination of insights into customer needs, the independent and individual review of businesses, matched with on-going support and the potential of funding assistance to implement actions, was a powerful combination designed to get outcomes – outcomes for local businesses, for their customer, and for the broader community.  Acknowledging that this approach might not suit all businesses, Mr Holzwart outlined plans to include a series of workshops in the project design to provide broader benefit to the business community.

If you’re interested in being involved in a similar project, contact Austmine’s Business Facilitator, Anthony Holzwart, on anthony.holzwart@austmine.com.au or 0408 630 441. 

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