Wednesday, 21 August 2019 10:58

Connexus pilots ‘Pay-it-Forward’ free digital phone service Featured

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The South Australian town of Gawler will be the first regional community to receive free digital phone services under a ‘Pay it Forward’ scheme to be conducted by Melbourne-based ISP, Connexus.

The project to be implemented by Connexus – part of the listed Australian telecommunications provider MNF Group - has the dual aims of providing local businesses with “future-proof, jargon-free telecommunication services while creating a significant boost to the local economy”.

Connexus says its funding of its “world-first initiative” will provide free digital phone services to local SMBs for 12 months.

And in exchange, local businesses are being asked to ‘pay it forward’ and spend with other businesses in their local community.

Connexus says by encouraging businesses to spend the money – money that would have gone towards their phone bills - with other local businesses, it is hoped that the Pay it Forward program will help supercharge the local economy.

Those taking part in the scheme can use the #payitfwd hashtag on social media to highlight their participation.

“Community and small businesses are the lifeblood of Australia. Our intention is to help boost these businesses and we are thrilled to be piloting this world-first initiative in Gawler,” Connexus’ general manager Lee Atkinson says.

“At Connexus, we are focused on empowering a new generation of SMBs and to do that we need to bust open and crush myths around how onboarding new technologies is difficult. Increased productivity and time savings are there for the taking, but we recognise that some businesses just need a little help in getting there.”

Connexus will monitor the local economic impact of the program over the year and will track social return on issues such as productivity, employment, engagement and community wellbeing.

During this period, Gawler’s local businesses will also be supported with TEDX-style educational events and community activations to further accelerate their growth.

Atkinson believes the regional investment program will help create significant value to Gawler and is actively seeking additional towns across Australia to participate in this ground-breaking regional investment program.

The Pay it Forward pilot in Gawler kicks off this month and Connexus says it already has a large number of businesses signed up to participate.

 

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Peter Dinham is a co-founder of iTWire and a 35-year veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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