Canberra Business Chamber was Open for Business at the annual gala dinner

Canberra Business Chamber 12 November 2019
Canberra Business Chamber's oldest businesses announced

Canberra Business Chamber announced Canberra’s oldest businesses at their annual gala dinner on the 7 November 2019. Photo: Region Media.

Business isn’t always about what you know. Often, it’s who you know. Networking is essential to business success in the 21st century, and there is no bigger networking event in Canberra than the Canberra Business Chamber Annual Gala Dinner.

The theme of the Chamber’s 2019 dinner, held last week at the National Museum of Australia, was Open For Business – Then, Now and Always.

More than 360 guests heard the results of the Chamber’s recent search to identify the city’s oldest surviving businesses. Cusacks (founded 1918) and the Burns Club (1924) came out as the venerable veterans of commerce, along with The Canberra Times (1926), YWCA (1929), Frawley’s and Redpath (1922 and 1927) and Radio 2CA (1931).

The Chamber itself celebrates its 87th birthday this year, having first begun its advocacy for Canberra businesses in 1932.

Peter FitzSimons

Peter FitzSimons addressed the guests with an entertaining speech about Australiana. Photo: Canberra Business Chamber.

Noted historian and former Wallabies rugby player Peter FitzSimons regaled the dinner with stories drawn from past decades of Australiana, including the remarkable story of former PM Ben Chifley, whose phone number was so often mistaken for a local butcher’s. Unwitting customers would often ring an order through, only for the PM to take the call and then call the shop on the customer’s behalf with their order.

Archie Tsirimikos

CBC Chairman Archie Tsirimikos mingling with the guests after his speech. Photo: Region Media.

For more information on our Annual Gala Dinner, and to join future networking events with the Canberra Business Chamber, visit

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