An aspiring entrepreneur who boosted her business success in Papua New Guinea after completing a short course in business at USC Sunshine Coast is starting 2021 as one of PNG’s 10 most innovative producers of consumer goods.
Tina Manamb’s business Kumul Organics, based in Madang Province, specialises in producing virgin coconut oil, organic soaps, oils, skin and haircare products.
Kumul Organics won Best Skin and Hair Care Product of the Year at the inaugural PNG Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) Awards.
Ten winners were chosen from 31 finalists in the awards held by the Papua New Guinea-Australia Partnership, which supports PNG organisations and events dedicated to SME growth and innovation.
Ms Manamb said she was now working to attract funding to open a factory to create jobs and reduce transportation costs for local farmers who supply her business.
She said a six-week short course in Entrepreneurship and New Venture Creation at USC Sunshine Coast in 2017 had boosted her business success.
“The course really added value to my business skills and knowledge, especially in marketing and innovation of products,” she said.
“The field visits to meet and learn from Australian producers and processers were eye-opening for me, especially as I dreamed of building a mini coconut oil factory.”
She said the expertise she gained from the USC certificate course, taught by Dr Brenda Jamnik, was also invaluable to handle the impacts of COVID-19 this year, such as reduced demand and difficult management decisions.
Senior Lecturer in Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management Dr Retha de Villiers Scheepers said USC was proud to host Australia Award scholarship recipients from Pacific Island islands, with such courses having benefits for both the students and the institution.
She said Ms Manamb was a great example of how persistence, determination and applying entrepreneurial skills could lead to success.
Australian High Commissioner to Papua New Guinea Jon Philp said Ms Manamb’s success highlighted the importance of providing opportunities for education and training.
“The private sector is the engine of economic growth, and PNG and Australia are partners in creating an environment for small businesses to flourish,” he said.
As part of the Australian Government’s Job Ready Graduates package, USC is offering Commonwealth-supported places in a range of short courses designed to help people build skills and knowledge in areas of national priority.
There are also full fee-paying places in professional short courses that can help boost your career in as little as six months.
For more details about USC’s range of short courses, go to www.usc.edu.au/short-courses