THE City of Melbourne is encouraging Melbourne companies, entrepreneurs, business owners and start-ups to take part in the 2018 Lord Mayor’s Business Mission to China and Japan.
Expressions of interest are now open to the biennial Business Mission which showcases the best Melbourne has to offer in the fields of innovation, health and life sciences, urban sustainability and general aviation.
Lord Mayor Robert Doyle AC will lead the mission to Osaka, Japan and Tianjin, Beijing, Wuxi and Suzhou, China from March 21-30 next year and said it was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
“This Business Mission will expose Melbourne companies to potential global investors and business partners by providing a foot in the door to the Asian market,” the Lord Mayor said.
“It’s not only about showcasing and building relationships with China and Japan, but more importantly about getting contracts signed and trade happening with Melbourne based companies.
“In recent years, the relationships and opportunities forged by Business Missions have delivered millions of dollars in trade and investment for Melbourne across a range of fields including biotech, urban design and planning, and education.”
Leffler Simes Architects Director Stephen Evans said his company is now doing business with one of the world’s biggest furniture stores in China after taking part in the Lord Mayor’s Business Mission in 2016.
“The Lord Mayor’s Business Mission helped us expand on our business relationships with IKEA here in Australia. We are currently designing two new stores for IKEA as part of their expansion into China,” Stephen said. “That’s allowed us to hire additional staff here in Melbourne and establish a new office in Shanghai.
“The City of Melbourne’s Business Mission team helped us by setting up meetings with numerous Chinese building developers and design institutes and as a result we’ve now signed two Memorandums of Understanding (MoU) to enable us to co-operate and explore working together.
“Overall, it was a very positive and productive experience for us.”
Businesses, like Leffler Simes, that took part in the 2016 Lord Mayor’s Business Mission were involved in more than 300 tailored business meetings and eight MoUs were signed as a result of the mission.
Applications for the 2018 Lord Mayor’s Business Mission close at 4pm Thursday, 30 November 2017.
When applying to take part, businesses will need to explain what they’d like to achieve by traveling to Japan or China with the City of Melbourne, what their competitive advantage is and include a short profile on their business.