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Brooke Arnott hopes to take the concept nationwide. Photo: Attila Csaszar

Lounge offers business connections

The Small Business Lounge on Mount Hawthorn’s Oxford Street is just the first step for founder Brooke Arnott, who plans to take the advisory concept nation wide.

The lounge was created as a one-stop shop for smaller enterprises needing guidance to get the internal workings of their businesses in order, mixing an advisory focus with a casual, cafe vibe.

The concept draws from the growing trend towards startup hubs and small business centres, although the lounge has a different approach in that it does not provide specific workspaces for businesses to use.

Instead, small businesses can buy an annual membership that gives access to workshops, advisory and networking events provided by the lounge.

Ms Arnott said she had worked for nine years in her own bookkeeping business and found many clients were seeking advice for services such as marketing.

“We want to reach out to a lot of owners that feel like they’re on their own, so they can be connected through our workshop, events and networking,” she said.

“There’s a lot of business (owners) that sometimes don’t understand how to run their business.

“They’re good at what they do but don’t have business education.

“We try and offer them support.”

Ms Arnott told Business News the lounge also offered web design and social media advice.

Clients include Southern River-based Ete Swimwear, digital marketer Elite Property Campaigns, and landscape designer Inex Pro.

Ms Arnott said she had big plans for the business, with her eventual goal to open a lounge in every state.

“We’d like to go national as a concept, we’ve got some big plans to help businesses all over Australia,” she said.

As a first step, the lounge was working with Bankwest to grow a network in Sydney.

To facilitate that relationship at home, Bankwest announced in April its small business banking customers would receive a $500 discount to new members of the Small Business Lounge, a 30 per cent discount.

Ms Arnott said she hoped that discounted membership offer would lead more small businesses to sign on.

There are 31 small business centres and startup hubs in WA, according to BNiQ Search Engine.

Comments

Perth
Great idea. Nothing changes without great ideas. I am sure you will do well, Brooke.

Perth
It has a relaxed vibe and emphasis on relationships, unlike many other business centres. It truly makes every business that steps through the door feel at home.

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