Bruce Billson joins BDC Partners as chair and director

By Sarah Stowe | 17 Aug 2020 View comments

Bruce Billson, former Cabinet Minister, chair of the Franchise Council of Australia and small business champion, has joined BDC Partners as an equity partner.

Billson [pictured above left] takes up the role of chair and director – growth and development.

Speaking to Inside Franchise Business Executive, Billson said “I like being helpful to others, so personally it’s fulfilling. This is at the pointy end of many of the challenges enterprising men and women face.”

BDC Partners recently unveiled its end-to-end services model which unites property and leasing, legal and franchising capabilities.

“This one-stop-shop is very responsive to the challenges to business owners right now and an enabler for opportunities emerging,” said Billson.

“Something as tumultuous as Covid-19 wreaks havoc on communities, there are new problems to solve, new modes to engage customers and new opportunities for business.

“A lot of successful business owners are looking to end their careers and wondering how do they get value? We’ve already had good progress with businesses whose brightest days are behind them but there is the essence of a great business going forward…it needs a bit of modernisation, the omnichannel issue might be unresolved, occupancy costs and tenancy are really punishing. We can help with that,” he said.

Billson stressed his main focus is on building growth, bringing a commercial lens to the project, leaving any regulatory issues to the FCA.

His political career “brings a background to the table” he admitted. “But the FCA is leading the charge in interfacing with the government. Where I can be useful is bringing a commercial lens, communications and policy navigation.”

Billson is a current member of the ACCC’s Small Business and Franchise Advisory Committee and was formerly the executive chairman/independent director of the FCA from 2016-2018.

He is also a non-executive independent director at Judo Bank, independent chair of the Australian Property Institute (API), administrator for the City of Whittlesea, founder/principal of his consultancy firm Agile Advisory, Deakin University’s director – small business & enterprise and honorary chair of the Deakin/IPA SME Research Centre advisory board. 

In his previous role as Cabinet Minister, Billson spearheaded the Government’s SME agenda and the creation of the 2015 Federal Budget’s Jobs and Small Business package.

  • Another addition to the BDC Partners team, Ben Hatten, former RFG executive joined late July. Read more here.