lady startup

PSA: Buy From The Bush are running their own Shark Tank-style event for rural lady startups. Here's how to get involved.

Buy From The Bush
Thanks to our brand partner, Buy From The Bush

Calling all rural business owners, online shoppers and anyone who loves getting behind a lady startup. Heck, do I have a PSA for you.      

They’re the girls from the bush and they’re back… with an amazing competition!    

(Why yes, that is a reference to Lee Kernaghan’s banger Boys From the Bush, and if you don’t know it, Spotify it.)

(And yes you can take the girl out of the country, but you can't take the country out of the girl.)

As you can tell I'm pretty excited to tell you about this one.

Buy From The Bush (BFTB) is launching a new national competition called Buy From The Bush Big Break in partnership with PayPal.

We can all agree it's been a very tough couple of years for small businesses in our rural communities.

Droughts, bushfires and a pandemic. As a result, many have had to put their dreams on hold, but Buy From The Bush Big Break is providing an incredible opportunity to give you that booster you might need in taking the first step.

Think of it as a BFTB’s take on Shark Tank. From one lady startup to another, BFTB is giving rural Australians (this includes the blokes too!) who have a great business idea, or an idea to scale up their existing businesses, the opportunity to win their part in $60K – to really help get the wheels in motion.

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But before I get into the nitty gritty details of how to get involved and entry conditions (what a tease, I know) a little bit about BFTB if you’re not familiar with them.

What is BFTB and how did it all begin?

Buy From The Bush is an online marketplace for Australian bush businesses to sell their products. 

BFTB itself all started with a lady startup, Grace Brennan, a farmer from Warren, NSW. In 2019, when the worst droughts in living memory hit parts of QLD and NSW, Grace started an Instagram showcasing the amazing work of rural businesses. 

Just like their surrounding environment, cash flow was also drying up in many rural communities. BFTB encouraged rural businesses to use the hashtag #buyfromthebush on their social posts and Grace started curating a social media feed filled with some of her favourite products.

Well, didn't that explode.

Word got out and Australia ran with it. Seven weeks later BFTB’s Instagram had 130,00 followers and beautiful products from the Aussie bush were winging their way around the nation and the world. By December 2019, "buy from the bush" was the second highest search term used nationally.

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What a feel good story, right? 

It only got better from there: this lady startup has continued to pack a punch. Within its first four months it generated $5 million in revenue, 20 per cent of businesses on the site had to employ new staff to keep up with demand and 40 per cent of businesses started shipping interstate for the first time. But perhaps most importantly, 98 per cent of business owners said BFTB had improved their quality of life. 

For many rural business owners, BFTB has meant the difference between keeping the bills paid, the lights on, water in the tank and food on the table.

The online marketplace, launched in October 2020 with support from PayPal, has grown into a bustling creative space, bursting with products for every occasion. Jewellery, fashion, games, toys, food, local produce, gardening accessories – it really showcases it all. 

If you're in the mood to discover beautiful, unique, and often handmade products that support rural small businesses (and even get a head start on your Christmas shopping, now it's in less than 100 days), you can check out BFTB’s marketplace here

So what's this competition all about? 

The Buy From The Bush Big Break competition says what it does on the tin. It’s designed to give bush businesses their ‘big break’ and help to launch, scale or kick-start a business – a cause we really get behind here at Mamamia

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BFTB is calling on founders, entrepreneurs, or anyone who has a business idea and just needs a little confidence boost, to stand up and pitch their idea to the universe. And ladies, if there's a bloke you know out there with a fab idea, get them to pitch too – this one's for every Aussie in the bush with a cracking idea. 

To get involved all you have to do is; 

  1. Be living in rural or regional Australia with a great business idea.

  1. Record a 2-3 minute pitch video and post a Reel on Insta promoting your idea in a fun and engaging way. 

  2. Enter the competition and share your pitch video and Reel with the stellar Grace Brennan (founder of BFTB), Jane Cay (founder of Birdsnest), Liandra Gaykamangu (founder of Liandra Swim), and Marco Steinhauer (Finance Director at PayPal Australia).

The winner will receive $30,000 and the runner-up will receive $15,000. Not too shabby at all.

Plus! The Australian public will also have their say and be able to vote for a People’s Choice prize, via BFTB’s website. Whoever wins this category will also receive $15,000. 

This competition really sells itself. 

Sounds good, but how exactly can I enter?

Entrants just need to be over 18, and based in a rural location within Australia. You can enter by uploading a pitch video outlining your business offering, product idea or plan to scale your existing business. Participants must also share a creative Instagram Reel selling their idea in a fun and engaging way, on their Instagram channel. 

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Entries will be judged on how effectively the pitch tells the story of their idea, the uniqueness of the idea, its commercial appeal and market potential, and whether the idea will have a positive impact on the business’ local community. 

If you or anyone you know might be interested in this competition and want to know more visit the website to find out more.

If you’re second guessing whether you should enter… you’ve got to be in it to win it. What does a lady startup have to lose? I mean, look at BFTB’s Founder Grace’s story. 

If you don't live in a rural community (and you’re still reading this) you can also get involved by voting for the People's Choice Award: I know I certainly will be. 

PSA over. 

Buy From The Bush Big Break is a new national competition to showcase talented makers, creators, artists and retailers across rural Australia. Make sure you enter here.

Check out the competition's T&Cs here.

Feature Image: Instagram/@buyfromthebush/Hello Hattie/Josephine's Dehydrated Fruits.

Buy From The Bush
Buy From The Bush is a marketplace for Australian bush business. Think of it as your gateway to rural and regional Australia. We bring together the butchers, the bakers and the candlestick makers in small rural communities across Australia. We make it easy for small businesses to sell their products and for consumers to shop with purpose. We believe some of the very best makers, creators, retailers and artists live in the bush. And we want to introduce them to you in one, shoppable platform.