Helping small businesses bounce back

A nationwide campaign to support small businesses is building momentum with more Australian businesses and industry leaders jumping on board as scores of small businesses experience increased patronage in the first week alone.

Launched last week, the #bigforsmall campaign is encouraging big businesses to empower their employees to shop and spend at small businesses as workers begin to return to commercial districts and government funded support is tapered off.

The organisation behind the campaign, Breathe HR, is giving its employees $20 per person per day to spend at small businesses near the company’s offices in Sydney and Melbourne. All employees of its parent company ELMO Software will also receive the cash to spend supporting small businesses near its offices.

ELMO Software CEO and Co-founder Danny Lessem says he is thrilled to see the impact the campaign is already having.

“Whether it’s by encouraging staff to spend time getting a haircut, having a longer team lunch or even providing a cash incentive there are countless ways that big businesses can harness the power of their employees to help others,” he says.

#bigforsmall beneficiaries

Cafes, restaurants and small retailers in Sydney’s CBD are already beneficiaries of the #bigforsmall campaign.

Owner of Sydney CBD cafe Copper Espresso, Attila Tezel says returning patronage was key and that returned foot traffic is crucial to getting businesses back to normal.

“Being in the industry for 20 years this is the worst I’ve ever seen it. The overall impact of Covid has been massive, especially in the CBD. It’s obviously felt a lot more in the CBD due to the fact that we have a lot of office workers working from home now,” he says.

“For us, recovery is all about numbers. Hopefully in time we can start to see some normality coming back into the market. Getting back to normal is about imagination and everyone getting together and putting the ideas forward.”

Campaign gaining momentum

Salary streaming service Nine25, control monitoring provider Sartori Group and the CBD Sydney Chamber of Commerce have joined the #bigforsmall campaign.

CBD Sydney Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Peter May says it’s a great initiative to support small businesses who have faced an extremely challenging year.

“Small businesses in commercial districts have been devastated by months of lockdowns. The #bigforsmall campaign is the catalyst to get the Sydney business community to support one another.”

Nine25 CEO and founder Leigh Dunsford says that the #bigforsmall campaign will be crucial to Melbourne slowly coming back to normal.

“Joining the #bigforsmall campaign is an opportunity for our people to go out there and support those small businesses in Melbourne who are hurting after months of lockdowns.

“As Melbourne slowly reopens, all of us at Nine25 want to be a part of making that process as successful as possible for our city’s small businesses,” he says

For Satori Group CEO Gavin Steinberg, joining the #bigforsmall campaign was a win-win situation of supporting others while boosting morale among employees.

“Small businesses have been disproportionately impacted by the Covid-19 lockdowns as overnight many of them had their revenue completely shut off.

“As businesses and venues reopen, we are thrilled to be able to join the #bigforsmall campaign and empower our people to go out and help others who have done it so tough for so long. This is a terrific opportunity to build a sense of community among businesses operating in the same commercial districts.”

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