Thursday, August 24, 2023


Mackay and Whitsunday Life

Bowen Big Mango

Half Cut For Small Business

Just over a week ago the iconic Big Mango in Bowen mysteriously disappeared, only to reappear on Thursday morning cut in half with a giant seed protruding from the middle of the 10-metre structure.

While many locals stood back in wonder, Bowen Tourism and Business were ‘in the know’, their Manager Leanne Abernethy announcing that it was part of a stunt coordinated by Australia’s small business platform, Xero, to highlight the plight of small business owners who lose money through unpaid invoices.

Small business owners face 50 per cent of their invoices being paid late.

The startling statistic originated from a 2022 study commissioned by Xero, in conjunction with Accenture, and found that on average, late payments cost small businesses $1.1 billion per year.

By replacing the Big Mango with a replica that had been cut in half, organisers hoped to increase awareness of the challenges small businesses face.

Whitsunday Regional Council Mayor Julie Hall said she was proud that the iconic Bowen Big Mango was being used to help highlight such an important issue.

“The Bowen Big Mango temporarily looked like a job half done to draw a focus to the real issues that small businesses face when their invoices are paid late,” she said.

“Small businesses are the backbone of communities in regional Australia, and we hope this stunt brings about a much-needed change in attitude towards paying invoices on time.”

While on the ground, Whitsunday Regional Council took the opportunity to install new legs and an internal refurbishment to make the Big Mango more durable.

The real Big Mango has now been returned to the site and work will continue at the location for the next few weeks.

Manager of Bowen Tourism and Business, Leanne Abernethy said this big thing of ours would be ripe again in time for its 21st birthday in May and the makeover would ensure it would be an icon of Bowen’s landscape for many years to come.

She also added that Bowen Tourism and Business had been paid by media agency, HelloSocial, on behalf of Xero, to take part in the campaign.

The inflatable half-mango, valued at $30k, has also been gifted to Bowen Tourism and Business for use at future events.

The 10-metre Big Mango was lifted by crane and taken away last week. Photo supplied

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