Australia’s largest industry-led trade event, the Melbourne Gift Fair opened last 5 August and will run until 9 August at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre.
Over 300 exhibitors will participate in the fair, with small, female-led businesses set to take the spotlight at this year’s event. Among the participants are the following female business owners:
- Emily Osmond of The Modern Marketing Collective will conduct a Business & Breakfast session at the event, supporting small business owners to develop marketing skills. Emily has mentored over 1000 women to create their own businesses based on their skills and expertise.
- Macarena of Bonita Shop works within ‘Made by Many Hands,’ a social enterprise founded to support women migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers. In December 2020, Macarena was diagnosed with an aggressive breast cancer, losing her hair after a challenging year of treatment. She started making turbans to wear on her head, marking the start of Bonita Shop.
- Freyja Tasci of Apiwraps Beeswax Wraps is an ISB 2022 Top 50 Small Business Leader and an industry leader in sustainable swaps and reusable kitchen items. Her beeswax wraps are cited as the most original cling-film replacement.
- Cascie Kambouris of Little Bread Winner produces Australian Made bread saws, speciality breadboards and accessories. She has managed to create a unique, practical product being embraced by many clients, including those living with arthritis, giving them back the freedom to cut bread again.
Recent research by the AIGroup found that 1.388 million people, equivalent to 10.6 per cent of Australia’s workforce, worked as owner-managers of enterprises with no employees in February 2021. The proportion of solo owner-managers identifying as women has seen a steady increase from 31 per cent in 1991 to 37 per cent in 2021.