Applications to receive a digital transformation worth $20,000 as part of the Federal Government’s Small Business Digital Champions Project close on February 4.

The nationwide mentoring program aims to transform and grow businesses through improving their digital capability.

It will create relatable, real-time case studies to inspire and inform small business owners across Australia about how to go digital.

A hundred small businesses from diverse sectors across Australia will be chosen to receive a digital transformation worth up to $20,000 including hardware, software and digital skills training required for them to thrive in their particular field.

Fifteen will then be selected to become a ‘Digital Champion’ – to undergo their transformation in the public spotlight, with the mentoring assistance of high-profile Australian entrepreneurs including:

  • Larry Kestelman – founder of Dodo internet, lead investor in technology start-up incubator Oxygen Ventures, chairman of Frankly Digital Marketing agency and owner of the National Basketball League.
  • Dr Sam Prince – founder of hospitality chain Zambrero, founder of aid organisation One Disease and medical group Next Practice.
  • Michelle Bridges – fitness trainer and founder of the online 12WBT Program.

Kestelman said small business in Australia had so much potential to grow and change lives through adopting technology.

“We have nurtured many small businesses including Saisei and ECAL through my own start-up incubator Oxygen Ventures to use digital to grow revenue,” he said.

“Meanwhile leveraging upon the resources and expertise of our digital marketing agency Frankly Marketing to transform the National Basketball League through using online entertainment and e-commerce platforms. I look forward to working with other small businesses to help them replicate this success.”

Prince said as a medical doctor and entrepreneur, he believed mentorship had a powerful role to play in developing, empowering and strategically growing people and business.

“If I am to wear my medical hat, being a doctor has taught me the craft of mentorship through our philosophy of ‘See One, Do One, Teach One’ in which you cannot truly master the medical speciality until you can teach it effectively.”

Small businesses across the country will be able to follow the 12-month digital transformation of the Digital Champions, learning as they learn, and gaining the confidence and understanding they need to make these tools work for them, and their own business.

More information about the project can be found at www.digitalchampions.jobs.gov.au.