NEIS - George's Story transcript

George: I heard about the NEIS program from a couple friends that had started businesses successfully through the program. And they said to get in touch with APM because they had a fantastic experience.

Hey, I'm George, and I'm the founder of Wash Bloc. I started about a year ago and I've been making solid beauty bars that are plastic free and reef friendly. The NEIS program was great because it allowed me to cut down on the work that I was doing at a surf store and focus on my business while maintaining one or two days a week at the store, which gave me the flexibility to spend a heap of time on the business.

Marisa: NEIS stands for New Enterprise Incentive Scheme. It's a 12 month program that provides business advice and mentoring to new business owners. During that time, they may also be eligible for nine months of income support. But prior to that program, there is a two to three month training period where we put them through some rigorous training in terms of all they need to know in running a business and then set them on their way.

George: The mentor Marisa was really helpful and working through a business plan was actually fantastic because it's just something that I wouldn't have done without doing this program. I probably would've just dove straight into it.

Marisa: George had come to me before with other ideas and I could see he had entrepreneurship in his veins. So when he came with this idea, it really aligned with his values and who he was as a person. So I got quite excited and the excitement in his eyes confirmed that this was the idea that was going to fly.

George: Once I got accepted into the program, we got training, which was really helpful. We went through a comprehensive business plan with our mentor and then once that was complete, we started the funding which lasted for nine months. And it was such a big help in starting a fresh new business.

Marisa: Yeah, the NEIS programs is quite comprehensive actually. So we help people to put together a business plan and a financial plan, a detailed financial plan for the first two years, and we show them what they need to consider as a business owner in terms of the legals, the marketing, all that side of the business. And we also help them go through a nationally recognized accredited certificate, three or four in entrepreneurship and new business.

George: I'd 100% recommend the program. Was so helpful. I learned a heap and it's really helped me start a flourishing small business.

Marisa: This program has been running for 36 years so it's really successful and it's successful because it sets people up to succeed.

George: Just do it. It's so helpful. Takes the stress out of starting a business, and the assistance you get is, yeah, amazing.


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