ABOUT BAYSIDE BEC
Bayside BEC has been the hub of business networking, training and advice in South Eastern Sydney for over 30 years. In the time since, like all businesses we have seen many changes but our basic purpose remains the same – to help businesses grow and connect.
We are a not-for-profit, community-based organisation, which means we focus on the needs of businesses and the communities they serve. We provide a range of cost-effective services aimed at helping both start-ups and established businesses of all sizes including sound business and marketing advice, education via workshops and webinars and networking events to propel local business growth.
Specifically, we help enterprising individuals and organisations who want to:
Accelerate your business journey.
We exist to help you succeed.
Tried and tested strategies and advice to propel your business growth.
Work with a team you can trust.
Valuable partnerships with a strategic fit.
Business Enterprise Centres in New South Wales started as an initiative of Tom Cappie-Wood, a former director of the NSW Department of Decentralisation and Development and initiator of the Office of Small Business (now part of State and Regional Development).
During his year as president of Sydney Rotary, he made a trip to the United Kingdom where he was inspired by the ‘Business in the Community’ initiative and by the trade unionist Arthur Scargill to establish Business in the Community Ltd in NSW (later renamed Business Enterprise Centres (NSW) Ltd).
After the failure of a 12 month-long miners’ strike in 1985 and subsequent closure of mines with resulting unemployment among miners, the UK initiative was aimed at helping enterprising individuals from affected communities to start and grow their own businesses. As part of the initiative, large businesses in the Yorkshire area were approached to offer their spare capacity and expert staff towards helping those who wished to start a business.
Together with Sydney Rotary, Cappie-Wood approached the NSW State Government to gain the support of a local representative to start a similar program in the state. It was initially difficult to attract sufficient Local Government, Private and Community funding to make these Centres viable but in 1988, Mr John Fahey, Minister for Industrial Relations, Employment, Training and Further Education saw the value of the BEC Network. He initiated the formation of a partnership between the State Government, the BECs and the local community and since that time, the State Government has been providing core funding for BECs together with private community sponsorship.
The Bayside Business Enterprise Centre itself was formally created in 1987 as the Botany Enterprise Development Agency Limited (BEDA). Peter Morgan was recruited and appointed to establish BEDA with encouragement and support from the Botany Municipal Council.
The board of directors were made up of senior managers, often CEOs, from local industries which included the major banks, the Federal Airports Corporation (which ran Sydney Airport at the time), international and interstate airlines, freight operators, maritime services, and specialist food manufacturers.
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