A NEW business advisory service has been made available to farmers and small business owners across the MIA.
The Business Connect Program has been introduced to Griffith by the State Government to help overcome difficulties associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.
Outbreak funding has been provided for a twelve month period as part of the program, and Martin O'Donnell has been appointed as Griffith's local consultant.
"I'm an accountant by trade, which I just say is a skill now because I'm not a practicing accountant," Mr O'Donnell said.
"It's a skill, but it's a very good skill to have."
Mr O'Donnell brings an abundance of experience to the position, previously operating as company secretary financial controller at Rural Cooperatives.
The Griffith local and his family also owned restaurants for a number of decades, and ran an organic citrus farm for 20 years.
His CV boasts experience in agribusiness, horticultural farming, packing, marketing, manufacturing, retail, hospitality and the not-for-profit sector.
"I've had a lot of different hands-on experience and also some executive experience," Mr O'Donnell said.
"Good skills, good experience, and I'm from Griffith so I know a lot of the people here.
"Being from here you know the history, what's going on up-and-down the main street in terms of businesses, and also the farming side which is very important here."
The Murray Hume BEC network which coordinates the program for the Riverina has specialist in retail, social media, digital marketing, brand awareness and business development, with these staff members readily available to assist whenever necessary.
"There's really a full range we can help with that these businesses might not have the skills to do themselves," Mr O'Donnell explained.
"It's a very diverse group of people that we can help."
Business owners entering the program will be provided with 30 hours of free consultancy, which includes sessions on budgeting and cash flow projections, social media marketing, strategic business plans, risk management, interim profile reporting and succession planning.
If you would like more information you can visit the Business Connect website, register your business and search for Mr O'Donnell as your local consultant.
Alternatively, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0428 270 405.