NBN Co tips boom time for new WA businesses

NBN workers installing fibre-to-the-curb (FTTC) technology.
NBN workers installing fibre-to-the-curb (FTTC) technology.

NBN Co today released a report spruiking its vision for Australian business, predicting nearly 10,000 new businesses will be created in Perth over the next three years.

Titled Connecting Australia, the report said 1290 digital economy jobs were created in WA in 2017.

The report coined the phrase “nbn effect”, which is “projected to contribute to the creation of” 8,560 new businesses in WA by 2021″.

NBN believes 80,000 new businesses will be created nationwide by 2021.

It also estimates 47,300 people will be working from home by 2021, compared to 3000 in 2017.

Managing Director of Perth based IT firm My Info Tech, Aaron Fisher, said his use of cloud-based applications was dependent on NBN.

“NBN has definitely helped improved things dramatically,” he said.

“We started on ADSL, before NBN. NBN is now critical for us.”

The media release for the report points to job growth in Albany, Bunbury and Busselton without offering supporting data.

Albany Chamber of Commerce and Industry Executive Officer Michael Clark said local businesses were hesitant of the new network and were wary of the difficulties in switching over.

“Businesses are scared of the change over,” he said.

“They are worried they could potentially go without a network.”

“We here at the Albany CCI want to be innovators in switching to the new network.

“You just have to make sure you do it properly and have a back up system in case of any difficulties.”

Associate Professor at ECU School of Science, Security Research Institute Mike Johnstone had some reservations about a faster network.

But he said the internet is a great place for business.

“The downside is there a lot of threat actors who might want to disrupt businesses for their own benefits. In the past, that required specialist knowledge – not anymore,” he said.

“A faster network does help those types of attacks.”

But Professor Johnstone said Australia had always been at the forefront of new technologies.

“Being a small nation, that gives us a competitive advantage. We are the first to move.”

The report was commissioned by NBN Co and conducted by research agency AlphaBeta.

AlphaBeta used data from the 2016 Census, as well as a third party national survey.

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