Jobs boost to city’s economic engine room

4 May 2017

More than 75 per cent of Council’s needs for goods and services are supplied by local businesses - and the City is working to improve that figure.

Chair of Economic Development, Councillor Hermann Vorster, said the aim was to make it 80 per cent.  

“Our city has more than 65,000 small businesses - they are our true economic engine room,’’ he said.

“To give all local businesses a greater advantage, we have refreshed our Open for Business Toolkit. This product is a one-stop shop to assist businesses to access all local, state and national avenues available. It also helps them understand how to secure more Council contracts.

Cr Vorster said the buy local policy meant 77 per cent* of the City’s services and facilities were supplied by local businesses. (*current figure September 2016, up from 52 per cent in December 2012).

“This increase represents around $87 million of additional spend to local businesses for the 2015-16 financial year, and an additional spend to local businesses of approximately $235 million since the start of our buy local initiative,” he said. “Our next target is to get this figure to 80 percent for 2016-17.’’

Council is running workshops to provide businesses with advice on supplying to the City as well as training to get them ‘procurement ready’.

“We are equipping all kinds of businesses with the resources to drive them forward and give them a competitive advantage,’’ Cr Vorster said.

“I encourage new or growing businesses to consider the programs in the toolkit as we work together to achieve our economic potential.’’

GCI Group, a metal component manufacturing company based in Yatala with 80 staff, participated in two programs - Growth Accelerator and Business Online.

GCI Group CEO, Cameron Lawn, said the online program had prompted the next phase of growth. 

“This program opened my eyes to the importance of getting our online presence correct. I had a very basic knowledge of online business but now I have a greater understanding and we’re in the middle of implementing a new strategy, along with launching a new website,” he said.  

Cr Vorster said he was keen to expand the Yatala Enterprise Area to support more jobs in the north of the city. 

To download the toolkit, visit:

For information on supplying Council:


Jobs boost to city’s economic engine room photo