Co-owner of Henry’s Ginger Beer Marc Watson-Paul gave Ifor Ffowcs-Williams a tour of the brewery during his visit to the North-West. Picture: The Advocate/Cordell Williams

Based on the success of an earlier visit, the Cradle Coast Authority is again bringing collaborative business model expert, Ifor Ffowcs-Williams to the region, to help local businesses increase their competitiveness.

Collaboration is a key ingredient of innovation says Regional Economic Development Manager, Daryl Connelly, of the Cradle Coast Authority.

“In a region like ours, where we have many small businesses, working together is even more important than in other areas as it can help businesses achieve much needed economies of scope and scale.

“Most business people acknowledge this, but they don’t have the time to make it happen,” Mr Connelly said.

“That’s a valuable role that CCA can play, and Ifor’s cluster development model provides a proven framework for helping industry in that way.”

Ifor is one of the most influential cluster practitioners in the world, with hands-on experience extending to more than 50 countries.

He has worked as an advisor to the World Bank, EU, OECD, UNDP, international aid agencies and national and regional economic development agencies across six continents. At home in New Zealand, Ifor has served as a Director of the Nelson Regional Economic Development Agency.

Ian Locke, of the Tasmanian Fruit and Vegetable Export Facilitation Group, said he is looking forward to the week of activities.

“I congratulate the Cradle Coast Authority for showing leadership in this space,” Mr Locke said.

Rather than bringing another guru to the region, this week-long series of events (starting Monday, September 24) has been carefully designed to build the capacity of the Cradle Coast and have a lasting impact.

“One of our jobs is to make this region an even better place to do business,” Mr Connelly said.

“To achieve that, we have to ask businesses what it is we can do to help them do their job more easily”.

The program includes several targeted sessions, many of which are aimed at supporting existing groups and networks:


  • 5-day masterclass, which will see people from across a range of industries trained in Ifor’s 12-step process
  • Intensive workshops with fermentation businesses, Tasmanian Minerals and Energy Council, fruit and vegetable exporters and the Cradle Coast Tasting Trail
  • A leadership evening in conjunction with Tasmanian Leaders
  • An education roundtable
  • A presentation and whisky tasting at Hellyers Road Distillery