WITH HUGE CHANGES UNDERWAY THAT ARE REDEFINING THE LANDSCAPE OF THE SUNSHINE COAST’S CBD, WE CHECK IN WITH PRESIDENT OF MAROOCHYDORE CHAMBER OF COMMERCE, TROY DEIGHTON, TO GET THE LATEST FORECAST ON WHAT BUSINESSES CAN EXPECT.

Undoubtedly, the alluring natural attractions of the Sunshine Coast have been the biggest drawcard for both tourists and sea-changers.

“It’s our enviable lifestyle that keeps people coming back and, from a sustainability point of view, a part of our identity that we never want to lose. It has been the launch pad of our economy and continues to be our benchmark,” Troy Deighton says.

However, with more and more national companies setting up branches, and in many cases their headquarters here, beautiful beaches and serene waterfalls are not enough to create long-term business growth.

A year into his role as president, Troy is as passionate as ever about ensuring a viable future for both small business and large corporations on the Coast, merging his vision with a commitment to creating future opportunities for the next generation.

“I think from a technology point of view, the underwater cable (International Submarine Broadband) would add national opportunities, not just for local businesses but offerings for national companies coming in. What we want to try and do on the Sunshine Coast is have a balance of businesses and the infrastructure to facilitate that,” he says.

From his appointment with the Chamber of Commerce, Troy identified an opportunity to analyse what changes could be implemented to help drive what he sees as the Coast’s fastest growing industry – entrepreneurs. He says, innovation is already booming across the region, but now we need the infrastructure to support it.

“The Sunshine Coast is fast becoming a leader in technology and innovation for start-ups and entrepreneurs. These industries are becoming their own little economy. We need more national business without destroying the businesses that we’ve already got. And we need to grow in a way that also supports our natural environment,” he says.

Troy also believes that the recent and rapid rise of world class sporting and music events has also contributed to an influx of people coming to town, who had previously viewed the Coast simply as a holiday destination and were now considering it as a place to settle down.


my goal is having a future for our kids to grow up in; i think that’s really important in moving the coast forward.”

“In the future, the biggest changes will come from the new health precinct and seeing the bigger Australian developers come to the Sunshine Coast, such as Aurora at South Caloundra and with the new Maroochydore CBD,” he says.

“It’s preparing us for a future we have needed for a long time. The Coast will not survive just on hospitality and the building trade. Having a good balance of national and small business is going to create more jobs, which is a future for our youth that we’ve never had before.

“To move the Coast forward from a business perspective it’s important that our key messaging is around welcoming business. We want newcomers to know that we are serious about business diversity. To achieve this, it’s really important that businesses and residents are able to collaborate and come together to decide on the future of the Sunshine Coast, and the chamber sees itself as a leader in driving this forward.”

In the past 12 months Troy has seen quite a few changes happen within the chamber – changing times means having the right people on the committee and having the right membership offerings for businesses.

“Every business is different. The needs of corporates, as opposed to sole traders, are very different. We need to facilitate value propositions to different business groups, and it’s important for members and stakeholders that we create events that have a wow factor,” he says.

“We believe that this is what businesses have to do for themselves as well. Look at the market, evaluate how it is going. Get a fresh set of eyes onto what you are doing if you are too close to your business.”

TROY’S TIPS – Why you should join the Chamber of Commerce

Connection, Mentoring, Advocacy

The Chamber is about connecting people, mentoring and advocacy. There are many opportunities that come from our events. We provide information and assistance for businesses to grow and this offering is diverse enough to cater to start-ups or corporates.

Give Your Business A Health Check

Working with the chamber will teach you to evaluate what offerings you present to your customers and stakeholders, and if you aren’t offering enough, look at how you can add more value and how you can do things better – it’s like giving your business a health check.

troy-deightonFor more information on the Maroochydore Chamber of Commerce, visit:
www.maroochy.org