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BARAYAMAL Australia’s Indigenous Business Accelerator

August 17, 2017 Business News No Comments Email Email

A leading Indigenous Entrepreneur and Griffith MBA student is a finalist for the 2017 Indigenous Digital Excellence (IDX) Awards in Sydney.

Dean Foley has been nominated in the Entrepreneurship category, with winners to be announced at a Gala Event on Friday August 29.  

Mr Foley believes Indigenous entrepreneurs can make a valuable contribution to their communities and the Australian economy, but lack sufficient support to achieve their dreams. This is why he started Barayamal – a business accelerator for aspiring Indigenous entrepreneurs in collaboration with SlingshotFishburners, and other leading organisations.

“Indigenous businesses present a high-growth and employment solution that will help Close the Gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians,” he said.

Indigenous businesses are growing at a faster rate than their non-Indigenous counterparts, with 8000 more in existence now than there were a decade ago.

“However, economic disadvantage and discrimination means Indigenous people are 3-4 times less likely to be self-employed than the national average.”

According to the latest government employment study, the Indigenous unemployment rate is currently 21%, an increase of 4.3 percentage points since 2008, and is 4 times the current non-Indigenous unemployment rate of 5%.

Mr Foley said that now is the perfect time for Government to trust Indigenous entrepreneurs.

“There are a lot of discussions about expanding Andrew Forrest’s welfare cardwhich is wrong because the majority of Indigenous Australians don’t need or support his regime to further control us. Instead of the Government spending millions to expand this program that will disempower people in our “lucky country”, the Government should invest in Indigenous entrepreneurs and economic development projects to promote self-determination and economic sustainability.”

“Genuine Indigenous businesses and community run programs will achieve what the heavily funded government programs have failed to deliver: real results and jobs,” he said.

Deloitte Access Economics estimates that increasing economic participation of Indigenous Australians to parity levels could result in an Australian economy that is up to 1.15 per cent larger in 2031 (a gain of $24 billion in 2012-13 terms).

Associate Professor Chris Fleming, Griffith MBA Director, congratulated Mr Foley on his nomination for the IDX Awards.

“This is very well deserved and I wish him all the best,” he said.

“The Griffith MBA program assists business owners who want to make genuine change and Dean’s business achievements are a great example of this.”

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