Australian Newsagency Blog

A blog on issues affecting Australia's newsagents, media and small business generally.

South Australian government fails to support small business

Mark Fletcher
October 30th, 2012 · 7 Comments

The South Australian government has signed a contract with two multi-national stationery suppliers, ignoring an opportunity to support small businesses like newsagents. The ABC has the story.

I don;t know why I am surprised that a politician fails to support small business. This is how it’s been in Australia for decades with successive state and federal governments. They have been quick to say how important small business is and slow to back their words with action.

Labour, Liberal and National Party politicians have consistently failed small businesses, like newsagents, in Australia. Yet we vote for them.  More fool us.  If we were serious about wanting governments to support small business, as our core issue, then we would lead a campaign across our counters at the next federal and state elections. We won’t, however, because we will prefer to complain than to actually do something about chaning the situation.

Shame on you South Australian government, shame. This is a socially irresponsible decision.

Okay, so what should government do? If they support Australia as they often say they will, they should be required to support Australian businesses ahead of others and small businesses ahead of others. These requirements should be mandated in a way that is fair for taxpayers.

My sense is that small businesses are more likely to invest in local communities. The knock-on economic benefit of governments proactively supporting small business would / cold be considerable.

The politicians, however, will only support small business if it is in their interests to at the ballot box.


Category: Ethics · Newsagency challenges · Newsagency management · Social responsibility

7 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Luke // Oct 30, 2012 at 8:42 AM

    No political party cares about small business as we vote as individuals, but that has never changed and never will. At no time will small business matter to any Govt so we just have to get on and cop the abuse, unions and the big end of town carry the clout to get action because they can convince their sheep to vote a certain way if they do not get what the want


  • 2 wally // Oct 30, 2012 at 8:49 AM

    There is no other party. Libs and labour are the same and the greens arent viable. another party is required but they get chopped down by the media as soon as one looks like becoming a strength.


  • 3 Mark Fletcher // Oct 30, 2012 at 8:59 AM

    If we want something done about small business we must find a way.


  • 4 Peter // Oct 30, 2012 at 10:16 AM

    Come next election we have our shop windows. As I have stated earlier maybe you should offer all candidates in your electorate an A3 or A2 space in your front window here they can say what they are going to do to keep a viable and growing small businesses in the main streets and shopping precincts of their villages and suburbs.

    To be effective and fair you would have to treat all candidates in the same manner.


  • 5 Amanda // Oct 30, 2012 at 3:56 PM

    I have to agree with most of what Mark has said.

    Unfortunately, after years supporting schools, sporting groups and community groups in the past 12months we have said enough is enough.

    We cannot support groups and schools who do not support us.

    Last year we rang a school to see if we could supply them with their school lists. We had been supporting the school for years with donations and sponsorship, in the hope they would consider us for any future “business opportunities”. The school didn’t even consider our offer, instead stating they were happy to continue their relationship with an interstate supplier. But they were very grateful for our sponsorship and hope we can continue to generously support the school in the future!


  • 6 Mark Fletcher // Oct 30, 2012 at 4:06 PM

    Amanda your point is important. Every newsagent asked to support local schools needs to push this message back – there are consequences for decisions like this and decisions at the school level to support others.


  • 7 June // Oct 31, 2012 at 8:37 AM

    Our SA suppliers of stationery (Ancol) have a huge subsidiary for BTS (it actually excludes most newsagents except for regional but that is another story).
    The announcement of an interstate tender being successful for BTS could mean the demise of our stationery supplier here in SA.
    Obviously the government has absolutely
    no idea of the impact of these decisions on
    small businesses. Shame on them.
    It was all over the radio yesterday and the
    impact in our state will be profound.


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