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Connectivity set to spur up to 80,000 new businesses by 2021

07 June 2018

New businesses, jobs and productivity via the nbn™ broadband access network projected to boost Australia’s GDP by up to $10.4 billion

Australia is in the grip of a nation-wide digital transformation with new research revealing the “nbn™ effect” is projected to contribute to the creation of up to 80,000 new businesses by 2021.

Commissioned by NBN Co and conducted by data analytics and economic firm AlphaBeta, the Connecting Australia report is the nation’s first social and economic study into the impact of the nbn™ broadband access network.

The research shows the growth of new businesses in regions connected to the nbn™ access network accelerated at twice the pace of the national average with up to 5400 additional new businesses created in 2017.

Access to fast broadband is transforming Australia’s workforce with up to 9,700 new digital economy jobs created in 2017, attributed to the rollout of the nbn™ access network. This number is set to grow to up to 148,000 additional digital jobs by 2021, which includes software programmers, graphic designers and electronic trade workers.

The completion of the rollout is also expected to help create a nation of flexible workers, with up to 47,300 additional people using the network to work from home in 2021, compared to approximately 3,000 additional workers in 2017.

The combined impact of growth in new businesses and jobs, as well as our changing workforce, is predicted to boost Australia’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by up to $10.4 billion at the completion of the rollout.

NBN Co’s Chief Executive Officer, Bill Morrow said:

“The research shows the impact the nbn™ access network is already having on Australia’s business sector with the nation projected to benefit from its economic return once the rollout is complete in the next three years.

“The nbn™ access network will provide the digital backbone for Australian businesses and has the potential to change the very nature of our towns and regions by opening up new market opportunities and reducing operational costs.

“We’re already seeing promising examples of highly connected regions, such as Mackay in North Queensland, counter industry downturns by creating online start-ups to reach overseas markets, and Gippsland in country Victoria focusing on building a technically skilled workforce to enable future innovation.

“Our dedicated business team will continue its focus on developing wholesale business-grade products and services for the market, as well as work with the industry to improve the experience for customers.”

The Council of Small Business Organisations Australia’s Chief Executive Officer, Peter Strong said:

“We hear a lot of stories out there from our members about businesses doing things they couldn’t do before once they are connected to the nbn™ access network.

“With access to fast broadband, businesses now have the confidence to apply new ideas and leverage digital technologies to expand their businesses with the infrastructure in place to support this growth.”

For more information about the report, visit the Connecting Australia website

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Notes to editors: 

  • The Connecting Australia report was commissioned by NBN Co through independent research agency AlphaBeta in 2017. It combines national census data with an Ipsos survey of 3500 individuals across 1700 postcodes in metropolitan, regional and remote areas, including those connected to the nbn™ access network and those not connected.