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Small business ombudsman throws support at Labor’s Start-up Year pitch

Emma Ryan
14 May 2021 1 minute readShare
Labor leader Anthony Albanese

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman, Bruce Billson, has publicly backed a key initiative aimed at start-ups outlined in Labor Leader Anthony Albanese’s budget reply speech.

On Thursday, 13 May, Labor Leader Anthony Albanese made his budget reply speech off the back of the measures introduced by Treasurer Josh Frydenberg on Tuesday, 11 May

As well as committing that a Labor government would create a $10 billion Housing Australia Future Fund, Mr Albanese said it would establish the “Start-up Year” program.

“Ever since the Liberals drove Holden out of the country, they’ve run up the white flag on manufacturing and skills and apprentices. I’m not going to see us surrender any more jobs and industries — and the communities that depend on them,” Mr Albanese said.

“My Labor government will establish the ‘Start-up Year’ program to help drive innovation and increase links between universities and entrepreneurs.

“Start-up loans will be offered to students and new graduates with ventures attached to a tertiary institution or designated private accelerator. This will assist in the identification of opportunities for commercialisation of university research.”

In response to the Labor Leader’s speech, Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman Bruce Billson said the initiative aimed at start-ups would go a long way in contributing to the country “having a world-class ecosystem for entrepreneurship”.

“Labor Leader Anthony Albanese’s budget response included a pitch for Start-up Year, a program helping up to 2,000 of the nation’s most promising entrepreneurs commercialise their ideas and university research,” Mr Billson said.

“Under the proposal, students would have access to loans of up to $11,300 through the HELP system to cover costs while participating in an accredited accelerator program.”

Mr Billson cited the initiative as an “interesting proposal” and one he looks forward to learning more about in the coming weeks “to ensure small business are a key focus in Labor’s economic plan”.

“The Start-up Year program is a useful and constructive proposal about how we might ensure Australia has a world-leading ecosystem to support entrepreneurship,” Mr Billson reiterated.

“We all share the ambition of Australia being the best place to start, grow and transform a business and what this means for our economic prosperity and livelihoods.”

Small business ombudsman throws support at Labor’s Start-up Year pitch
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Emma Ryan

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