University of Sydney: New partnerships drive collaboration with Indigenous businesses

The University of Sydney has launched new partnerships with not-for-profit organisations, the NSW Indigenous Chamber of Commerce and Supply Nation, to drive collaboration with Indigenous-owned businesses.

The NSW Indigenous Chamber of Commerce is the peak body for Aboriginal business in NSW. This is the first time the organisation has partnered with a university. The collaboration will see the NSWICC working with the University to strengthen links to Aboriginal-owned businesses in NSW, identifying and facilitating opportunities, building skills, developing capacity and removing barriers.

Supply Nation creates opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander businesses by connecting them with procurement teams from Australian organisations. Supply Nation administers Indigenous Business Direct, Australia’s largest directory of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander businesses. Through the new partnership, the University will be able to access this database to procure goods and services from Indigenous-owned businesses.

Professor Lisa Jackson Pulver AM, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Indigenous Strategy and Services), said the new partnerships would increase the University’s ability to connect with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities locally and regionally in authentic and mutually beneficial ways.

“The University of Sydney is determined to create more opportunities for engagement with communities,” she said.

“As we work to strengthen and expand these relationships, we are proud to collaborate with the NSW Indigenous Chamber of Commerce and Supply Nation, two leading organisations that empower Indigenous-owned businesses.”


Richard Allen, the University’s Chief Procurement Officer, said the partnerships provided a meaningful opportunity to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, their businesses, employment and economic participation.

“We can value the economic, social and cultural contribution of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples through the goods and services we purchase, creating deep relationships with Indigenous-owned businesses. This is an important and practical way for us to make a difference in our communities.”

Alongside the new partnerships, the University is launching an initiative to empower staff to source goods and services from ethical, sustainable and Indigenous suppliers when buying on behalf of the organisation. The University’s internal procurement system, UniBuy, will offer a new category of suppliers driven by ethical, social or environmental concerns and suppliers supporting people who have traditionally been financially excluded.

Under this initiative, the University is already collaborating with suppliers including:

Muru Office Supplies A majority Indigenous-owned stationery business that contributes a percentage of all profits to education, employment, health and wellbeing initiatives to support Indigenous communities.
The Floral Decorator An Indigenous-owned florist in Sydney’s inner west.
Kua Coffee A social enterprise coffee company specialising in ethical sourcing, waste minimisation and carbon-negative operations. All profits help coffee farmers in East Africa achieve climate resilience.
These collaborations are an important step towards achieving the targets in the University’s Indigenous Strategy, One Sydney, Many People. Under the strategy, the University has committed to increasing its spending with Indigenous-owned businesses and developing an Indigenous Procurement Strategy.

About the NSW Indigenous Chamber of Commerce
The NSW Indigenous Chamber of Commerce is the peak body for Aboriginal business in NSW, advocating for the needs of Aboriginal entrepreneurs, business owners and enterprising communities. Its vision is for a state that embraces its Aboriginal history and cultures, and values Aboriginal entrepreneurship, innovation and enterprise as pillars of a strong economy.

About Supply Nation
Supply Nation works with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander businesses and procurement teams from government and corporate Australia to help shape today’s emerging and rapidly evolving Indigenous business sector. Supply Nation administers Australia’s largest directory of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander businesses, Indigenous Business Direct.

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