Support for local businesses

Narseys Plastic Industries PTE Limited managing director Vinay Narsey during the Fiji Commerce and Employers Federation (FCEF) CFO's breakfast session at the Grand Pacific Hotel in Suva on Wednesday, March 16, 2022. Picture: JONACANI LALAKOBAU

The Fiji Enterprise Engine (FEE) program has been influential in supporting local entrepreneurs to grow their business and more recently in adapting to the local business challenges and opportunities presented through COVID-19 and the war in the Ukraine, says Fiji Commerce and Employers Federation (FCEF) president Vinay Narsey.

Described as the country’s first private sector led business accelerator program, Mr Narsey said the FEE had become a key member service for MSMEs from FCEF’s Young Entrepreneurs Council and Women in Business Council.

“We also would like to make the FEE resources more readily available to the MSME community in Fiji and this upcoming free e-commerce webinar series is designed to ensure that information on digital and mobile solutions can be better understood and accessed by small business operators in Fiji,” said Mr Narsey.

He shared that the FEE program was hosting a free e-commerce webinar series and market day for local micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to improve their understanding of e-commerce and the different solutions available to small businesses in Fiji.

Through the FEE, Mr Narsey said the FCEF was providing this opportunity based on requests by MSMEs to better understand their e-commerce options and what solution would make the most sense for them.

According to the FCEF MSMEs contribute approximately 18 per cent to national Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and account for 60 per cent of employment and with the increasing cost of doing business, e-commerce solutions are becoming more important for MSMEs as a way to build new commercial channels and strengthen their business resilience.

Local business owner and chair of Fiji’s Young Entrepreneurs Council, Watisoni Nata said he looked forward to checking out the webinar sessions on e-commerce as he knew firsthand how frustrating it could be for local businesses who needed an MSME-friendly solution that worked.

“One that is easy to setup and won’t cost us an arm and a leg. As MSMEs, we simply want to be accessible to the broader Fiji, regional and global markets – we need to get our brand and our products out there, like right now,” Mr. Nata said.

The webinars will be held from tomorrow till Thursday and will be conducted by the FEE Local Business Coach for Branding and Marketing, Ronna Sekiguchi.

To support the e-commerce webinar series, FCEF has partnered with Greenhouse Coworking (in Suva) and MyDesk Fiji (in Nadi) to host the face-to-face E-Commerce Market Day on 29 September.

The market day will bring together e-commerce service providers, MSMEs and FEE’s Local Business Coaches for face-to-face networking and consultation.

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