Business Support

Empowering small business growth through expert support and resources.

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Boost your small business with
NORTEC's expert support

NORTEC’s Business Support service has been helping small business entrepreneurs for over 20 years. Receive one-on-one business advisory sessions, attend a range of events, and access resources that provide practical insights and skills development to get your business to the next level. Our advisors provide independent and confidential advice, guidance, and information to support small business operators in New South Wales.

Our Team

Gary Wheatstone

Coordinator & Advisor

Derek Tink


Liz Keane


Supporting Rebel Curls in Overcoming a Natural Disaster

Rebel Curls, a beloved local hairdressing salon in Lismore, had built a reputation for their expertise in catering to the unique needs of curly hair. Their passionate team of stylists had cultivated a loyal customer base who relied on their knowledge and skill to embrace and enhance their natural curls. However, the business faced unprecedented challenges that threatened its existence and forced it to reassess its operations.

Attend an event

As webinars are funded by the NSW government, participants must be residing in or conducting business in NSW. In addition, to receive the recording link and any relevant resources after the webinar, participants must be registered on the NSW Business Connect database. 

Stay up to date with our upcoming events

Business Connect is a dedicated and personalised New South Wales Government program that provides trusted advice to help you start, run, adapt, or grow your small business.

Business Connect has helped more than 44,000 businesses across a number of providers since the program first began in 2017.

Frequently Asked Questions

We offer a range of business support services to help entrepreneurs and business owners succeed. Our services include but are not limited to:

  • Business coaching and mentoring
  • Business planning and strategy development
  • Marketing and branding support
  • Financial management and planning
  • Legal and regulatory compliance
  • Access to funding and investment opportunities
  • Market research and analysis
  • Training and development programs for you and your team

We work with businesses across various industries and stages of development, from start-ups to established enterprises, to help them achieve their goals and grow sustainably.

NORTEC’s business support services are available to you at every stage of your business journey, whether you are intending to start a business, at the start-up stage, in full swing of running your business or wanting to exit your business. We work with businesses across various industries, such as technology, healthcare, retail, hospitality, and more.

To be eligible for services, you must be registered with NSW Business Connect. Customers may typically access up to 8 hours of free support per year (this includes events such as Webinars), capped to a total of 36 hours over the life of the program.

Our business support advisors have a diverse range of expertise and experience in various industries and business functions. They have extensive knowledge and practical experience in areas such as business planning, financial management, marketing, sales, operations, human resources, and legal compliance. Our advisors also have experience working with different types of businesses, from start-ups to established enterprises. Our advisors regularly undergo training and professional development to ensure that their knowledge and skills are up to date and relevant to the current business landscape.

NORTEC offers both one-time and ongoing business support services depending on the specific needs of your business. Our advisors can work with you on a project basis or provide ongoing support to help you achieve your long-term business goals. We understand that every business is unique and has different needs, so we work with you to determine the best approach to meet your needs and support your success.

Our business support advisors have worked with a wide range of industries in the past, including but not limited to:

  • Retail
  • Hospitality and tourism
  • Healthcare and wellness
  • Creative industries (e.g. media, advertising, marketing)
  • Finance and banking
  • Information technology and software development
  • Manufacturing and distribution
  • Professional services (e.g. legal, accounting, consulting)
  • Education and training
  • Non-profit and social enterprises

We are dedicated to providing support and expertise to any industry that seeks our services.

Customers may typically access up to 8 hours of free support per year (this includes events such as Webinars), capped to a total of 36 hours over the life of the program.

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Gary Wheatstone

Coordinator & Advisor

Servicing Lismore & Alstonville

Gary Wheatstone is a seasoned Business Advisor and Program Coordinator with experience in large corporations, family-run businesses, and as an owner of small businesses. He began his career in Sydney working in various industries, including retail, payroll, marine, construction, architectural design, and electrical.

After purchasing a business in a regional area, Gary gained expertise in financing, procurement, customer service, marketing, managing cashflow, and staffing, among other skills. He is passionate about supporting small businesses in regional areas and draws from his 23+ years of experience as a small business owner. Gary holds a Diploma of Management, Bachelor of Social Science, and Cert IV in Training and Assessment.

Derek Tink


Servicing New England including Tenterfield, Glen Innes, Guyra, Inverell, Gwydir, Tamworth, Armidale & Narrabri

Derek Tink is a dedicated Business Advisor specialising in regional development. He has a wealth of experience in diverse industries, including agribusiness, tourism, retail, and health. Derek is passionate about supporting regional and rural business opportunities and is actively involved in community groups and charitable activities throughout the region. With a Bachelor of Business and Master of Commerce, Derek offers expert advice on business development, marketing, digital strategy, and organisational management.

Tony Brindley


Servicing Clarence Valley, Coffs Harbour, Bellingen to Kempsey, & Port Macquarie-Hastings

Tony is an experienced accountant who has worked for the Australian Tax Office as a GST and New Business Advisor. He has extensive experience in the horticulture, creative publishing, retailing, and e-commerce industries. Tony understands the challenges of running a small business and its impact on family. 

He assists with start-ups, business plans, cash flow management, budgeting, costings, e-commerce, inventory management, bookkeeping, accounting, and business exit plans. As a Certified Practising Accountant with a Bachelor of Financial Administration, Tony is committed to helping clients effectively organise and run their businesses.

Liz Keane


Servicing Ballina, Lismore, Tweed Heads, Byron Bay & Kyogle

iz is a seasoned Business Advisor with a proven track record of delivering exceptional results for small businesses. With an MBA, a Bachelor’s in Business (Marketing), Cert IV in Training & Assessment, and various certifications in customer experience strategy, design thinking & innovation, social media marketing, and strategic marketing, Liz possesses a wealth of knowledge.
Specialising in empowering startups and small businesses to gain a competitive edge through strategic planning, marketing, and digital transformation, Liz excels at simplifying intricate concepts into actionable plans that yield tangible results and foster growth.
Her extensive experience in senior roles at multinational corporations, spanning multiple industries, underlines her expertise. Years of diverse roles across Australia and Asia/Pacific have equipped her with a global perspective and deep cultural awareness, which she expertly employs to offer invaluable insights and strategies to her clients.

Deborah Archbold


Servicing Moree Plains & Narrabri

Deborah is the founder and Managing Director of Deborah Wilson Consulting Services, a research and consulting firm established in 1982. With a wide range of expertise, Deb provides valuable insights and strategic advice in various fields, including major supply chain engagement, economic development, and in-depth research projects covering manufacturing, resources, food and agribusiness, fisheries, rail, and professional services. Her work also involves community and stakeholder research, helping local suppliers enhance their capabilities and target larger supply chains and major projects. 

Deborah is a qualified and certified professional, holding designations as a Certified Management Consultant and a Qualified Professional Researcher. She is also a Director of Indigenous Supply Chain Connections, which connects Indigenous businesses with major supply chains.

Martinus Wagner


Servicing Port Macquarie-Hastings, Kempsey & Walcha

Martinus has nearly three decades of experience in business leadership and entrepreneurship. He is passionate about motivating teams and sparking growth through creative, emotionally intelligent problem-solving. Martinus excels at capitalising on strengths and opportunities, identifying and correcting weaknesses and threats, and formulating innovative competitive strategies. His approach is deliberately aimed at initiating, driving, and stimulating sustainable revenue and net profit growth through operational efficiencies and building high-performing sales teams. Martinus has achieved significant success in his career, including founding and successfully growing TWC Australia for the past 15 years and founding and growing Onabos Commercial Property Company successfully for the past 20 years.

Christina Giorgio


Servicing Byron Bay, Ballina & Tweed Heads

With a Bachelor of Arts in screen and theatre, Honours in media and communications, and a Certificate IV in Business, Christina Giorgio is a seasoned business coach and strategist with a passion for creative and ethical small businesses. She also holds a Certificate IV in Training and Assessment, which allows her to design and deliver engaging workshops, immersions, and retreats that help entrepreneurs in the creative industries achieve their goals.

As the founder and director of Creative Consultancies, Christina helps her clients develop sustainable and thriving businesses by providing long-term integrated solutions that align with their values and aspirations. Her expertise in business development, strategy, and creative and digital presence has helped many ethical small businesses in various industries achieve their full potential.

Jennifer Lloyd


Servicing Port Macquarie-Hastings & Kempsey

Jennifer has amassed more than two decades of experience in the travel and tourism industry, having worked across various sectors including retail, corporate, wholesale, cruise, specialist groups and tourism boards. For the past decade, she has successfully operated her own travel company, which has provided her with a deep understanding of start-up procedures, developing business operation and marketing plans, and leveraging software and applications to build brand awareness. Jennifer is passionate about delivering exceptional customer service while engaging employees to create an amazing customer experience.

As a motivational and empathetic advisor, Jennifer is dedicated to supporting businesses in the travel, tourism, events, arts, and creative industries to flourish and achieve success. She is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Business in Tourism Management while balancing her advising and business roles with being a mother to her five young children. With firsthand experience of the challenges of running a business as a parent, Jennifer is uniquely positioned to provide practical advice and guidance to business owners.