City of Melbourne Annual Report 2015-16

Goal 3: A prosperous city

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Goal 3: A prosperous city

Melbourne will have a global focus with first-rate infrastructure and services, a highly skilled workforce and affordable business accommodation. It will share knowledge, mentor emerging businesses, collaborate and attract global investment and visitors.


  • 2 projected outcomes

  • 2 progress indicators

  • 7 priorities identified

  • 15 actions for 2015–16

  • Delivered by 7 service areas, 5 strategies/plans

Our approach

The City of Melbourne supports entrepreneurs and enterprises, small and large, to thrive and prosper in the local and global economy, in turn helping to create a high standard of living for all Melburnians. The changing face of local businesses, coupled with changes abroad in the global marketplace, new digital technology and consumer behaviour, require us to become agile in supporting the city’s continued prosperity.

Building a ‘prosperous city’ is about supporting a sustainable and resilient municipal economy, as well as fostering a globally connected municipal economy by strengthening partnerships locally, nationally and globally.

Issues and challenges

As part of our work to support the development of and access to Melbourne waterfronts, we worked on two projects: developing a recreational fishing plan for Docklands waterways and developing a berthing strategy for Docklands waterways. Due to key stakeholders delaying their response to the recreational fishing plan, we have deferred finalising it until December 2016 so we can include their feedback. The deadline for the Docklands berthing strategy has also been extended until late 2016, so we can integrate with Parks Victoria’s planning and allocation of commercial berthing arrangements. We are also continuing to implement the outcomes of the Errol and Victoria streets retail, streetscape and activation study. We’ve funded the North West Melbourne Precinct Association for marketing and promotion activities and other activities will progress in 2016–17.

Future directions

A major initiative in the coming year is to develop an action plan to support the Melbourne start-up and entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Future Melbourne snapshot

How the city measures up as a ‘prosperous city’ based on: Business growth: total number of businesses in the municipality.

There are now less than 19,000 businesses in the municipality reflecting a small downward trend from 2015.

Total businesses in the municipality:

June 2014: 18,221

June 2015: 19,061

June 2016: 18,932

Goal 3 service areas: Business, International connections, City promotion and tourism, Building, development and planning, Events, Local laws compliance, Urban policy and design

Major Initiatives

  • Begin implementing the 2015–19 tourism action plan

Implementation of our Tourism Action Plan commenced and highlights include a seven per cent increase in visitation to Cooks’ Cottage and six per cent increase in visitation to the Melbourne Visitor Centre. The international student volunteer program expanded to include placements at the Fitzroy Gardens Visitor Centre. We recorded a 95 per cent customer satisfaction rating of either ‘good’ or ‘excellent’ at the Melbourne Visitor Centre and Fitzroy Gardens Visitor Centre.

  • Develop and run City of Melbourne business missions to key markets in China and Japan

During February and March 2016, the City of Melbourne led 28 delegates from 15 companies from the life sciences, clean technology and urban design sectors to Osaka, Tianjin and Beijing. More than 150 individual targeted meetings were arranged to create trade connections for the businesses and to contribute to building a resilient municipal economy that is globally connected. As part of the mission, a Melbourne architecture firm signed a memorandum of understanding which will significantly facilitate its bidding for commissions in China.

  • Use the building prosperity together framework to identify two activities to strengthen cross-council economic development activities

The two activities selected to strengthen cross-Council economic activities were the business mission to Japan and China in February and March 2016, and the Tourism Action Plan. The mission consisted of 15 companies with 28 representatives. Over 150 individual business meetings, networking sessions and seminars were delivered as part of the mission. Our Tourism Action Plan was developed using the Building Prosperity and the Visitor Information Journey frameworks and in consultation with major industry stakeholders.


  • Fashion in the city

The city came alive with all things fashion for the Melbourne Spring Fashion Week. The week-long event involved more than 50,000 patrons, over 1000 City of Melbourne stakeholders, six precincts and five sold out designer and emerging shows.

  • Sharing big ideas over breakfast

180 retailers, hospitality and small businesses; hotel managers; precinct associations and industry stakeholders attended an inspirational business breakfast in February. Keynote speakers from renowned global trend forecasters, The Future Laboratory and local entrepreneur, innovator and creative success Dave Roper, co-founder of Crumpler ignited big picture thinking and generated big ideas on creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship for Future Melbourne. The event was held as part of Future Melbourne and was an initiative of the Melbourne Retail and Hospitality Strategy.

  • Melbourne music week

Melbourne Music Week returned for its sixth iteration this year. The jam-packed program featured 115 events and 240 artists across forty locations, attracting around 41,000 patrons. Melbourne Music Week is dedicated to supporting and promoting our world-renowned music industry.

  • First consumer-generated marketing campaign #melbmoment launched

We launched our first consumer-generated social media campaign to capture quintessential Melbourne experiences. The campaign, through the use of #melbmoment, converts Melbourne fans into city advocates and inspires consumers with authentic city experiences. There have been more than 14,000 uses of #melbmoment on Instagram.

  • Business networking dinner

Designed to bring together local academics, associations, universities and luminaries of the knowledge sector, the inaugural business networking dinner saw more than 60 guests enjoying a thought-provoking evening. Guests discussed how they could help promote Melbourne as a leader in knowledge, innovation and business know-how through international business events.

  • Making democracy work better for you

Citizen empowerment and the democratic process across Australia and the Middle East were the focus of a vigorous conversation lead by Future Melbourne Ambassador, Maria Katsonis. A live cross to Lebanon-based humanitarian campaigner Samah Hadid opened up a global conversation with an audience of more than 250 people.

How we’re performing against our indicators of progress

The City of Melbourne aims for several outcomes over the four years of its Council Plan 2013–17. We measure progress by the indicators below.

Projected outcome

A sustainable and resilient municipal economy

Business sentiment about the City of Melbourne’s contribution to the resilience of the municipality’s economy, per year.

Businesses’ average satisfaction score for our contribution to the local economy

2013–14: 62.6/100

2014–15: 64.1/100

2015–16: 64.0/100

Our progress

This year saw a very similar level of satisfaction to what was recorded in 2014–15. Business attraction initiatives were administered through the following channels: Tourism, marketing and promotion, visitor information services, business support activities and programs and public events. These initiatives were designed to engage individuals to visit and spend within the City of Melbourne.
Tourism Volunteers

In addition to our paid workforce, we also have a volunteer workforce within our Business and Tourism Melbourne Branch of more than 420 individuals. Collectively known around the world as the ‘red coats’, our tourism volunteers work across seven programs:

  • City Ambassador Program

  • Cooks’ Cottage

  • Cruise ship Program

  • Fitzroy Gardens Visitor Centre

  • Melbourne Greeter Service

  • Melbourne Visitor Booth

  • Melbourne Visitor Centre.

The work of our ‘red coats’ in encouraging visitors to see more, do more, stay longer and spend more in the city is highly valued by our businesses, arts and cultural institutions and attractions. Extensive training and ongoing support is provided to all volunteers to enhance their general knowledge of all things happening in our city.

Projected outcome

A globally connected municipal economy

The proportional change in trade connections made through business matching and information sessions with in-bound business delegations, per year.

Change in trade connections made per year

2012–13 to 2013–14: 4.6% increase

2013–14 to 2014–15: 53.6% decrease

2014–15 to 2015–16: 262% increase

Our progress

The number of trade connections made (defined as introductions between local and overseas businesses and governments) was 581 this year compared with 221 in 2014-15. This 262 per cent increase was in part due to the success of the 2016 mission to Osaka and Japan, which delivered more than 300 trade connections.

Priorities and actions

A total of 13 actions and activities were completed under Goal 3, a prosperous city. Two actions were not completed in 2015–16 and will continue to be delivered in the 2016–17 financial year.

Our 4-year priorities are…

Our 2015–16 focus was…

Over the next year we will…

Support innovative and emerging sectors

  • (Major Initiative) Use the Building Prosperity Together framework to identify two activities to strengthen cross-Council economic development activities

Status: Completed

  • Continue to work with the Melbourne Retail and Hospitality Advisory Board and Melbourne Convention Bureau to identify key business events and exhibitions

Status: Completed

  • (Major Initiative) Develop an action plan to support the Melbourne start-up and entrepreneurial ecosystem for Council

  • Undertake a stakeholder event to examine the implications of the ‘sharing economy’ for Melbourne, as input into action 4.2.2 smart city approach

Support businesses through marketing, events and tourism activities including a special program for Docklands

  • Work with others to attract events and people to Docklands, including extending to Docklands other city events when appropriate and beneficial to their overall event concept

Status: Completed

  • Through collaboration and commercial partnerships implement the Retail Connection Strategy for Melbourne Spring Fashion Week and the Hub concept for Melbourne Music Week

Status: Completed

  • (Major Initiative) Begin implementing the 2015-19 Tourism Action Plan

Status: Completed

  • Investigate encouraging younger people to participate in our tourism volunteer programs at key times

Status: Completed

  • Implement the business strategy to activate Docklands through a collaborative model consolidating funding, marketing, tourism activities and events

Build on city-to-city connections and identify opportunities in BPC member cities within the ASEAN region for the municipality’s businesses

  • (Major Initiative) Develop and run City of Melbourne business missions to key markets in China and Japan

Status: Completed

  • Implement the Melbourne – Doing Business Globally framework, including evaluating further the opportunities related to Singapore, Kuala Lumpur and Bandung

Status: Completed

  • Work supporting this priority is included in our regular business for the year

Improve retail and hospitality experience in laneways and shopping strips through good design, cultural and artistic activities and infrastructure

  • Identify and upgrade selected central city laneways as part of the Love Your Laneway Program

Status: Completed

  • Implement the outcomes of the Errol and Victoria streets retail, streetscape and activation study

Status: Completed

  • Work supporting this priority is included in our regular business for the year

Make information about the municipality available to businesses and investors


  • Work supporting this priority is included in our regular business for the year

Support the development of a vibrant social enterprise sector

Status: Completed

  • Implement year one of the City of Melbourne Social Enterprise Strategy

Support the development of and access to a Melbourne waterfront, and support the local port status of Victoria harbour

  • Develop a recreational fishing plan for Docklands waterways

Status: Ongoing

  • Develop a berthing strategy for Docklands waterways

Status: Ongoing

  • Work with the State Government to rationalise governance arrangements for the city’s waterways

Status: Completed
  • Work with Places Victoria to prepare an Implementation Plan to deliver the Harbour Esplanade Master Plan

Status: Completed

  • Work supporting this priority is included in our regular business for the year

: SiteCollectionDocuments
SiteCollectionDocuments -> Year one progress report
SiteCollectionDocuments -> City of Melbourne Annual Report 2012–13
SiteCollectionDocuments -> Year one key achievements Melbourne Music Symposium 2015
SiteCollectionDocuments -> Annual Report 2014–15
SiteCollectionDocuments -> We are pleased to present to you the City of Melbourne’s annual report for 2012–13
SiteCollectionDocuments -> World War One memorials in the City of Melbourne by Dr Michael Cathcart
SiteCollectionDocuments -> Learning Objective Activities Areas of Learning
SiteCollectionDocuments -> Queen mary 2 Fact Sheet
SiteCollectionDocuments -> Discussion Paper on Ecosystem Services for the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Final Report
SiteCollectionDocuments -> Transport/movement re theme: leaders

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