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In 2021, the Geelong Small Business Festival was held over two and a half weeks, from Wednesday 18 August to Friday 3 September. The festival included 40 events across a broad range of topics with more than 700 people attending.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the majority of the festival was held online, with a small number of events being held in person and with a reduced capacity. Despite this shift, the Geelong Small Business Festival continued to connect, inspire and grow local businesses, and offered support when businesses needed it most. The program included business essentials post-COVID-19, marketing, sales and online promotion, starting and growing a business, expanding networks, career development, leading and managing people, and health and wellbeing.

The festival achieved great attendance numbers and the Economic Development team received excellent feedback on the event. More than 88% of attendees agreed or strongly agreed that the event provided them with information that they plan to use in their business, 91% agreed or strongly agreed that the event helped them gain additional skills and knowledge, and 92% agreed or strongly agreed that the event was relevant to their needs.

Comments from 2021 event attendees:

  • ‘Particularly relevant in today’s world. The information prompted ideas that I can put into effect immediately.’
  • ‘I wasn’t expecting to obtain so much free information that is actually relevant and that I can’t just find by googling things.’
  • ‘Fabulous presentation, really helpful and accessible especially at the moment. Clear guidance and steps for improving my online presence.’
  • ‘Thank you so much for sharing this information and giving an insight into how you can help businesses!’


GSBF2021 was proudly supported by the City of Greater Geelong.