Software Start-up and Indigenous Suppliers Team Up for Unique Business
16 May 2017 at 4:20 pm
A new online business connecting Indigenous suppliers with corporate and government buyers launched on Tuesday.
Indigenous Business Marketplace, a joint initiative by Australian leader in Indigenous supplier diversity, Supply Nation and multi-award winning software start-up, VendorPanel is the first of its kind.
VendorPanel founder and CEO James Leathem said the online portal was an exciting initiative demonstrating the powerful role technology can play in helping to drive positive social outcomes.
“Not only does it simplify processes and provide better reporting for government and corporate buyers, but, most importantly, it gives Indigenous suppliers better access to real business opportunities, which is good news for all parties,” Leathem said.
Indigenous Business Marketplace will use VendorPanel’s award winning SaSS application.
Supply Nation CEO Laura Berry said the online portal marked a leap forward in supplier diversity and Indigenous procurement.
“[Indigenous Business Marketplace will] simplify the process of finding verified Indigenous suppliers, getting competitive quotes, and reporting on engagement. It also delivers significant benefits in governance, probity, and competitive value,” Berry said.
Berry said the new technology would open doors to Indigenous entrepreneurs and early-stage business owners.
“It will give them access to the high volume of smaller projects, below tender threshold, that exist within Supply Nation’s government and corporate members. These smaller projects are often better suited to early-stage businesses as they grow,” she said.
“Obviously the big tender opportunities are great for the larger, more established Indigenous businesses. Lots of small projects are the lifeblood of early-stage companies and the SME economy, and that’s exactly what we want to support to help build a sustainable and vibrant Indigenous businesses sector.”
Berry said the initiative furthers the success of the federal government’s Indigenous Procurement Policy and opens opportunities for Indigenous businesses.
“Indigenous businesses are around 100 times more likely to employ an Indigenous person than other businesses,” Berry said.
“This speaks to the very real flow-on effects Indigenous suppliers have on their communities and the lifeblood of the Australian economy.”