TCCI recovers from budgetary black hole

TASMANIAN Chamber of Commerce and Industry chief executive Michael Bailey says the organisation is on track to break even this financial year, two years after an $800,000 budgetary black hole was revealed.

But he admits the chamber's next challenge will be to attract smaller businesses that left the chamber years ago, or those who have been rattled by its financial problems.

The member-based organisation was forced into a 12-month restructuring process after losses of more than $800,000 were reported in 2012, and $544,000 last year.

The chamber has shrunk to 12 staff, with five based in the North and North-West, after five redundancies were made last year and eight redundancies the year before.

Mr Bailey said the five more recent redundancies cut the organisation's wages bill by $500,000.

He said the organisation was now operating like a business, rather than like a bureaucracy.

Mr Bailey, at last year's annual meeting, said there could be a $70,000 profit returned to the organisation this year, although believed that tracking now indicated it would probably just break even.

He said the chamber would now focus on rebuilding membership after a good deal of internal progress.

"We want to make sure that we are relevant to businesses with products and services," Mr Bailey said.

The chamber will soon conduct a membership feedback research project to assess against a similar project completed 18 months ago.

The chamber has about 1000 members, which is far fewer than the 3500-strong membership it enjoyed at its peak.

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