Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


230,000 Home Business Davids take on Goliaths

230,000 Home Business Davids in New Zealand take on their Goliaths every day

There are over 230,000 Davids in New Zealand. And each of them bravely, and often successfully, is continually taking on their own Goliaths.

Few people realise that over two thirds of small businesses in New Zealand are home based. Their small size often means they are vulnerable to market forces, personal circumstances or competitive moves by larger businesses - however, they are also agile, entrepreneurial, courageous, determined and extremely resilient! Without them, our nation would grind quite literally to a halt. National Home Business Week celebrates these unsung heroes of our economy - New Zealand's business "Davids".

For many, working from home is a conscious lifestyle choice; for some it is the only employment option they have. Irrespective of their reasons for starting their own business, those who share their homes with their businesses face a variety of challenges. These include professional and social isolation, lack of credibility, lack of business skills (as opposed to "knowing their trade") and managing the inevitable income roller-coaster.

Home-based businesses cover a huge range of industries, with a strong bias towards service-based operations such as architects, lawyers, accountants, health professionals, web designers, copy writers, authors, artists and trades people - to name just a few. Many also operate in niche markets. Examples include water bed reconditioners, highly specialised engineers, chimney sweeps, specialist consultants, home-made dog biscuit bakers, organic baby food manufacturers and even illuminated dance floor suppliers.

Contrary to popular belief, overall there are slightly more men (53%) who operate home businesses than women (47%), although in reality there tend to be proportionally more men in the older age brackets and a slight skew towards women at the younger end of the demographic scale.

The home business sector contributes significantly to the New Zealand economy. While there are home businesses whose turnover is in the multi-million dollar bracket and about 5% for whom almost all their income is derived from exports, probably the biggest contribution is the fact that every one of these 230,000 plus people is providing employment at least for themselves and sometimes for one, two or more other people.

Home business is also often the spawning ground for bigger business. New Zealand success stories such as Navman, Pumpkin Patch, Les Floralies and Resene - not to mention a fistful of others - have all started from a spare room or garage. What future icons are currently being born in someone's basement or back yard?

Home business also plays an important role in the community. Not only do home businesses tend to serve those within their immediate vicinity, but in an era when both partners are usually engaged in income generating activity, home business operators help to keep a daytime community presence in suburban areas, which in turn helps prevent crime.
National Home Business Week (17 - 23 October 2004) has two main objectives: firstly, to raise the profile of the home business sector and secondly, to celebrate the entrepreneurship of those ordinary - and sometimes extra-ordinary - people who take responsibility for their own future, face risk and uncertainty, and make their very definite mark on the economy and their community.

A Home Business New Zealand initiative, now in its fourth year, the Week also encourages home businesses to overcome unique challenges such as invisibility and isolation by providing opportunities to network and to upskill themselves. More details and a full Calendar of Events is available on Home Business New Zealand's HomebizBuzz web site (

© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


I Sing The Highway Electric: Charge Net NZ To Connect New Zealand

BMW is turning Middle Earth electric after today announcing a substantial contribution to the charging network Charge Net NZ. This landmark partnership will enable Kiwis to drive their electric vehicles (EVs) right across New Zealand through the installation of a fast charging highway stretching from Kaitaia to Invercargill. More>>


Watch This Space: Mahia Rocket Lab Launch Site Officially Opened

Economic Development Minster Steven Joyce today opened New Zealand’s first orbital launch site, Rocket Lab Launch Complex 1, on the Mahia Peninsula on the North Island’s east coast. More>>


Marketing Rocks!
Ig Nobel Award Winners Assess The Personality Of Rocks

A Massey University marketing lecturer has received the 2016 Ig Nobel Prize for economics for a research project that asked university students to describe the “brand personalities” of three rocks. More>>


Nurofen Promotion: Reckitt Benckiser To Plead Guilty To Misleading Ads

Reckitt Benckiser (New Zealand) intends to plead guilty to charges of misleading consumers over the way it promoted a range of Nurofen products, the Commerce Commission says. More>>


Half A Billion Accounts, Including Xtra: Yahoo Confirms Huge Data Breach

The account information may have included names, email addresses, telephone numbers, dates of birth, hashed passwords (the vast majority with bcrypt) and, in some cases, encrypted or unencrypted security questions and answers. More>>


Rural Branches: Westpac To Close 19 Branches, ANZ Looks At 7

Westpac confirms it will close nineteen branches across the country; ANZ closes its Ngaruawahia branch and is consulting on plans to close six more branches; The bank workers union says many of its members are nervous about their futures and asking ... More>>

Interest Rates: RBNZ's Wheeler Keeps OCR At 2%

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler kept the official cash rate at 2 percent and said more easing will be needed to get inflation back within the target band. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news