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Bendigo’s business sector set to boom

26 September 2017

Connectivity and population growth projected to grow local economy 

New research by leading KPMG Demographer, Bernard Salt reveals Bendigo is set to become an entrepreneurial hotspot as a result of greater connectivity and projected population growth driven by the “e-change” movement.

Commissioned by nbn, the Bendigo Lifestylepreneur Report reveals while the town has faced a significant shift in its employment structure since transitioning away from the manufacturing industry, it has experienced a steady 2.3 per cent uplift in local micro businesses (1-4 employees) in the last two years as the town moves towards a service economy.

The research reveals local business owners are embracing digital technologies to expand in to new markets. It highlights key pockets such as Strathfieldsaye (up 32 per cent), Bendigo South (up 28 per cent) and Maiden Gully (up 20 per cent) leading the start-up charge.

While manufacturing, construction and agriculture businesses were once central to the Bendigo economy, emerging industries such as professional services (up 48 per cent), accommodation and food (up 44 per cent) and financial services (up 21 per cent) have shown the greatest uplift since 2015.

KPMG Special Advisor and Demographer, Bernard Salt said:

“Our research shows there is an entrepreneurial resilience and businesses agility in the Bendigo region.

“Population growth in Bendigo is set to surge over the next decade from a metropolitan overspill effect as well as Australians looking for a lifestyle shift to a tree-change location.

“Bendigo is quickly emerging as a popular destination for the lifestylepreneur movement due to its close proximity to Melbourne, lower operating costs and connectivity via the nbn™ broadband access network.

“We’ll start to see a shift towards service based industries such as accounting, healthcare and hospitality which will increasingly rely on technology such as the nbn™ access network.

“Increased connectivity means local businesses are able to utilise online tools such as cloud-based collaboration tools and video conferring and to grow their business outside of the Central Business District.

nbn™ Local Media Advisor for Victoria, Kasey Ellison said:

“Job growth, innovation and opportunity are no longer restricted to businesses within the major cities as fast broadband provides small and medium businesses similar access to their big city counterparts.

“As the rollout of the nbn™ broadband access network ramps up in Bendigo we are seeing local businesses maximise their productivity and improve their work-life balance by embracing new technology.”

Local ‘lifestylepreneur’ Julie Mission – owner of Make it APPen

Julie Mission, owner of Make it APPen said:

“I’ve been a nurse for over 20 years but decided to combine this passion with my love of technology and start my own healthcare app development business right here in Bendigo.

“The nbn™ access network is essential to my business as I use high bandwidth applications and programs to design the software and rely on video conferencing tools to communicate with clients across the country.”

The rollout of the nbn ™ access network is now three-quarters built in Bendigo with more than 41,000 homes and businesses able to connect to services over the new network through their preferred phone or internet provider.

Construction work to build the network for an additional 13,000 homes and businesses across California Gully, Eaglehawk and Marong is also scheduled to commence this year.

Visit the nbn website to learn more about what you need to know before connecting your business to the nbn™ broadband access network as well as how to get the best experience out of your internet connection.  

Questions to ask before connecting your business to the nbn™ network:

  • What business products are offered?
  • Which service providers are available to me?
  • How much data do I need?
  • Will my existing services be affected?
  • Will my devices be compatible?


Notes to editors

About nbn:

  • nbn is building a new and upgraded, fast wholesale broadband network to enable communities across Australia to access fast broadband from their retail service provider. Our goal is to connect eight million homes and businesses by 2020.
  • The rollout of the nbn™ access network sets the scene for the biggest transformation to Australia’s telecommunications industry involving retail service provider network upgrades and the establishment of a network of networks to bring fast broadband to all Australians. 
  • Connecting to the nbn™ access network is not automatic and is a process which may take some time and preparation. nbn is working with the service providers and industry to help them better understand who is responsible for which portions of their internet experience and what steps they can take in order to receive the best possible service.
  • The speeds experienced on services over the nbn™ access network are determined by a range of factors such as the technology used to deliver the network as well as some factors outside our control like equipment quality, software, broadband plans, signal reception and how your service provider designs their network.
  • Fast broadband like that delivered via the nbn™ access network can provide a range of benefits for Australians such as opportunities to work from home, access to online education tools and options for on-demand entertainment. 

Media enquiries

Talia Spink

Phone: 0488 902 436


nbn Media Hotline

Phone: 02 9927 4200