Keep Our Venues Alive (KOVA) launched on 18 March 2020 after it became apparent to the NTIA that following the Government’s physical distancing measures, many businesses in the hospitality sector were on the verge of collapse and mass staff redundancies were becoming increasingly common. 

KOVA seeks to:

  1. mitigate the human impact on the hospitality sector (including venues and their supply chains) across:
    1. all employees whether full, part-time or casual, whether resident or foreign; and;
    2. self employed business owners; 
  2. help businesses in the sector trade to the best of their ability for so long as physical distancing measures prevail; and
  3. otherwise protect the sector so that it can ramp up quickly after the crisis and as part of Australia’s economic recovery


To achieve these aims, KOVA:

  1. works with government to advocate for the sector and better inform policy decisions;
  2. provides industry-specific analysis and commentary on any crisis related Government support packages, measures, rules or restrictions that may help or hinder businesses, consolidating  information into one accessible point of distribution; and
  3. harnesses the power of our collaborative industry into a force for good, cultivating new relationships between stakeholders and facilitating opportunities for  innovation and creative approaches that will improve sector output and resilience in the medium to long term.

While KOVA is open to sector wide participation the NTIA recognises that many of KOVA’s actively engaged stakeholders are either (i) small to medium hospitality businesses, or (ii) large operating groups whose primary focus is food and beverage, and suppliers to these businesses.


The NTIA has sought commentary from leading industry partners and the following are available for comment: 

  • Kenny Graham, Founder and Owner of Mary’s Hospitality Group
  • Pasan Wijesana, Owner of Earl’s Juke Joint, Newtown
  • Paul Waterson, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Australian Venue Co.

Download the media release here.

Image Credit: Time Out Australia

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