On July 2nd ABV was thrilled to attend the official opening of the Apeketon Business Hub on Lihir, PNG, following the major announcement in May that the Hub was being developed in collaboration with Newcrest Mining. “A unique business centre that will offer tailored, relevant business development pathways and provide services aimed at building sustainable businesses and growing capacity and skills for Lihirians.”
With the first business owners and YES program participants having used the Hub over the past 2 months, it was a proud moment to share in the excitement with the Lihirian community at the official launch, complete with a traditional Lihir welcome ceremony and attendance from local chiefs, performers and community members.
Speaking at the launch, Executive General Manager Lihir and Cadia Craig Jetson welcomed ABV on board, with thanks for bringing a program that has the heart to make a sustainable difference in the lives of the people now and into the future in Lihir.
“ABV brings something different to our future journey. We care about our communities, about our generations to come and certainly about the children who follow on the next generation. We have the opportunity and it’s programs like this that can actually make a difference.” Jetson said.
ABV’s Chief Executive Officer Liz Mackinlay said through this great partnership with Newcrest, ABV will be able upskill and mentor Lihirians on their business journey. “It is an honour to be able to say, finally, a unique solution is being delivered to the people of Lihir, that is about the long term economic future. ABV are humbled by the opportunity to be able to be part of the team working to deliver that solution.”
The Apeketon Business Hub will offer to Lihirians a range of business development services including:
- Business training and mentoring programs for those wanting to start a new business, or those wishing to improve their existing business.
- Family money management training
- Having a ‘health check’ done for your business, to assess what you might need to reach your goals
- One-one-one mentoring and provision of business advice including registering your business, financial accounting and marketing.
Representing the Lihirian business community, MRL’s Chief Executive Officer Lawerence Rausim welcomed ABV and stated that MRL will be working closely with ABV. Rausim urged the community to make full use of this opportunity to start, develop and strengthen their business ventures, so there is something sustainable post –mining.
The launch coincided with the successful completion of ABV’s signature small business mentoring program Your Enterprise Scheme (YES) which commenced in June.