Chamber wants to fete business survivors

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Canberra Business Chamber CEO Dr Michael Schaper. Photo: Danielle Nohra

WITH the average life expectancy of a business based in Canberra at only about five years, Canberra Business Chamber chief Michael Schaper wants to fete the city’s oldest business survivors.

“This year marks more than 70 years that the chamber has been operating, and we want to celebrate those individual businesses that have also been here for the long term,” Dr Schaper said. 

“Some of our existing chamber members have particularly long life spans. These include Corkhill Brothers (established 1954), WR Engineering (1967) and Watson Blinds & Awnings (1969). 

“These survivors have made it against the odds. Most businesses only have a relatively short lifespan.“

The oldest businesses will be celebrated at the chamber’s annual gala dinner at the National Museum on November 7, with the theme “Canberra Business: Then, Now and Always”. 

“We’re hoping Canberrans will help us identify who they are. While some names are well known to us, others are not. But they’re all important, and they’re all part of the history of our town,” said Dr Schaper. 

“People can contact us at or ring me at the chamber on 6247 4199. We’d be delighted to hear their stories.” 

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