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Northland’s young entrepreneurs keen as mustard

15 April 2004

Northland’s young entrepreneurs keen to get into business

Northland’s young entrepreneurs are demonstrating their flair for business in ever-increasing numbers.

David Templeton, newly-appointed co-ordinator for the Young Enterprise Scheme (YES) in Northland secondary schools, says a record 55 new companies have been registered by participating students from Northland this year, up from 32 in 2003.

“This year, Northland has more entries in YES than any other region of the country,” says Mr Templeton. “In fact, our 55 new companies represent an impressive share of the national total of 500.

“Looking at the other 16 regions that take part, Wellington has 46 entries this year, the northern part of the Auckland metropolitan area has 43 and the Waikato region has 41.”

YES, administered in Northland by Enterprise Northland, is a learning experience in which senior secondary school students form companies, become directors, and develop products and services which they market and sell.

YES teaches skills in budgeting, planning, interpersonal relations, decision-making, reporting, communications, risk management and teamwork. The Lion Foundation is the principal national supporter, with ANZ Bank as major sponsor, and Northland’s regional sponsors include Top Energy and Northpower.

Mr Templeton has taken over as Northland’s YES co-ordinator from Frank Leadley, who continues to manage the Young Entrepreneur Programme (YEP), which follows on from YES.

Mr Templeton says 17 Northland secondary schools now participate in YES – 70 percent of the total. Some schools are involved for the first time this year, while Whangarei Girls High School has come through with 15 entries.

He attributes the ongoing gains in participation to greater awareness of the programmes, and an emerging “enterprise culture” in Northland. “There’s a lot of positivity out there – people are asking ‘what do we need to do to move forward?’, and we are providing them with the tools to achieve that.”

This year’s YES entrants will be running their businesses until September, when the companies are wound up. Their successes will be celebrated at a Northland awards ceremony and one of the businesses will be selected to go on to the national awards in Wellington.


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