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Ita Buttrose and Libbi Gorr to head Star-Studded Celebrity Debate in Adelaide


As the highlight of this year’s Adelaide Business calendar, this gala event will settle, once and for all, the question of what makes an entrepreneur an entrepreneur!

The 2006 Celebrity Debate, “What does it take to be an entrepreneur - Streets Smarts or Books Smarts” is being staged in Adelaide on June 30th at the Festival Centre in front of an audience expected to top 450. The brainchild of dynamic husband and wife duo, Sam and Lia Cocks (founders and directors of Adelaide-based Urbantech Finance), the evening will provide an entertaining and informative insight into the makings of an entrepreneur!

Ita Buttrose, business woman and twice voted Australia’s Most Admired Woman, and Libbi Gore, described as a person high on spirit, smarts and a silly approach to the things in life that affect us all, will be joined on stage by media personality Dylan Lewis and locally-based comedian and SAFM Breakfast co-host, Lehmo! Rounding out the teams will be business guru’s David Floyd, Business Coach and Chairman of the South Australian Small Business Awards and Brian Lucas, Financial Planner and President of the Entrepreneurs Organisation.

Mr Cocks said, “The concept was simple. Create a fun and entertaining night that would excite and inspire people to become more entrepreneurial. We knew that if we combined business, celebrities and humour we would hit the right nerve”. However, the serious side to the question is something that has occupied the minds of this entrepreneurial couple for a number of years.

“In the current climate of high petrol prices, rising interest rates and ballooning consumer debt, we all have to learn to become self reliant financially”, Lia Cocks said. “To rely just on job security and superannuation is simply financial suicide or, at best, a plan for poverty!” she added. The message from founders of Urbantech Finance is clear: if you want to survive in today’s economic environment then you have to think like an entrepreneur. This doesn’t mean quitting your job and starting a business but rather taking more responsibility for your financial wellbeing.

“But, if you want to, you can have the best of both worlds. With advances in technology there has never been a better time to retain the ‘security’ of a job while working on creating true freedom through correct investments, or starting a home-based or online business” Sam Cocks said. Mr Cocks added “It’s crazy to see young people who are already too afraid to have a go. What they don’t realise is that they don’t really own anything anyway, it’s all financed and so they really don’t have a lot to lose. Their risk is in fact very small while the potential for creating real freedom through entrepreneurial activities is huge”.

So what exactly is the best foundation for success? After talking with Sam & Lia it seems we need to get smart or we’ll get ‘broke’. But exactly what type of smarts do you need and how do you make that transition from employee to entrepreneur? Is it Street Smarts, where you simply roll up your sleeves and jump in, or is it Book Smarts, where you study a business or management course at University?

Well, the jury’s still out on that one. You’ll have to wait until June 30th when six well-known people will entertain, inspire and challenge the audience to make a choice! If you want to see-out the financial year in style you’d better hurry, limited tickets for the 2006 Celebrity Debate are still available.

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