(6pm 26 June 2012, Customs House)
Thank you Valerie Khoo, MC, and welcome, everyone. I would like firstly to acknowledge the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, the traditional custodians of our land, and to pay my respects to their Elders. I also acknowledge the people of 200 nationalities who live in our city.
Welcome to our final Let's Talk Business seminar for 2012. We launched the series in 2008 as a way to support our small and medium-sized businesses. And of course, we recognise your contribution through our annual Sydney Business Awards, so it's timely to remind you that nominations for this year's awards open on Friday. So get your entries in!
Your companies make a vital contribution to the life of the City, not only to its economic life but to its unique character and ethos. Our Sustainable Sydney 2030 strategy specifically recognises the importance of the 20,000-plus small and medium businesses to the City's economy and vibrancy.
Small businesses employ a quarter of the City's workforce and medium-sized businesses account for a third.
Like the rest of us, you are operating in a world of rapidly changing technologies, and so our 2012 program has put special emphasis on those changing technologies - looking at the challenges they present, but also the fresh opportunities they provide.
More and more people are shopping on-line for both big and small purchases, and mobile phones, computers, iPads and smart TV are giving them more pathways to on-line retail.
Tonight's speakers have all found creative ways of exploiting the on-line environment and will have much to tell you.
I would like to thank our moderator, Valerie Khoo, who has done such a fantastic job at all these seminars, and also, of course, our sponsors:
- our Major Sponsor Google Business Apps
- our Sponsors Regus [rejuss] and SmartCompany, and
- our Program Producer, The Events Agency.
Warm thanks to all of you and I wish all of you an informative and successful evening.