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IISEIE and Southern Cross University to Offer Support for ICT Businesses

Gold Coast, Australia, January 27, 2010 --( Help is at hand for local information communication technology (ICT) enterprises, with a two-day workshop aimed at helping them better manage their business set to be just the beginning of a range of activities intended to boost the local Gold Coast and Tweed economies through the growth of software companies.

The workshop, which is being held at Southern Cross University’s Gold Coast campus on February 3 and 4, is open to local, small ICT businesses and is the result of a new Gold Coast-based Innovation Academy which is part of the Microsoft software business development program, Biz Spark.

As well as being a network partner in Biz Spark, Southern Cross University is also a partner in a new not-for-profit organisation, the International Institute for Software, Economic Innovation and Entrepreneurship (IISEIE) aimed at driving software industry development.

Head of the School of Commerce and Management, Associate Professor Stephen Kelly, said the Biz Spark Innovation Academy workshops were a natural progression from research carried out last year by Southern Cross University.

“The University recently undertook research for the Gold Coast City Council into the management skills of software companies on the Gold Coast and found that although startup software companies have enormous technical know-how on building applications and services, many lack business management skills,” said Professor Kelly.

“Through the upcoming Innovation Academy workshops we will be able to provide specific training for these small businesses in areas such as human resources, marketing, business planning and financial management."

The Innovation Academy’s workshops are specifically aimed at small ICT companies less than three years old with a turnover of less than $1 million, with all local Gold Coast and Tweed based businesses fitting the criteria encouraged to attend.

The new collaboration between Southern Cross University, and the International Institute for Software, Economics Innovation and Entrepreneurship, is due to be launched next week in conjunction with the workshops and will be led by new Chief Executive Officer Malcolm Fraser. The IISEIE plans to encourage development on a broader level, aiming to grow local economies through the development of the ICT industry.

Professor Kelly said he expected the IISEIE to have a positive impact on the overall economic development of the local region.

“For regions such as the Gold Coast which aim to attract international business, it is becoming increasingly important to have a strong ICT industry, and it has been demonstrated that the existence of a strong ICT sector increases economic growth,” said Professor Kelly.

“The establishment of the IISEIE relationship with SCU will enable us to offer ongoing training to these small businesses and carry out further research to identify opportunities for growth.”

Contact Information
Malcolm Fraser
+64 21 663 617

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