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Award Entries Surge with Maori Business Men

For Immediate Release


Awards Entries Surge with Inclusion of Maori Business Men

This year’s Maori Business Awards has turned up a bumper crop of entries. Over two hundred businesses have entered the 2005 awards, which will be presented this coming weekend. That’s up from 160 in 2003, a rise the organisers believe is due to Maori business men being eligible for the first time.

The awards, set up by the Maori Women’s Development Incorporation (MWDI) in 1995 to recognise and celebrate the achievements of Maori women in business, were formerly known as the Maori Women’s Business Awards.

“MWDI aimed to provide even more chances for deserving Maori businesses to be recognised, so this is a pleasing response,” says founder and executive director Dame Georgina Kirby. “Previously Maori business men had few opportunities to gain recognition for the contribution they make to New Zealand’s economy.”

At the inaugural ceremony, which takes place at Kimiora, Turangawaewae Marae, Ngaruawahia on Saturday June 25, 14 awards will be given out. The six major prizes are:

Te Kaipakihi Tino Taumata Tohu (Overall Excellence in Business)
Te Mana Wahine Tohu (Best Maori Women in Business)
Te Mana Tane Tohu (Best Maori Men in Business)
Te Kaipakihi Ahorangi Tohu (Best Professional Business)
Nga Whaea o te Motu Tohu (Best Small Business)
Te Ahu Mahi Tohu (Best Business Employment Creation)

In addition eight Nga Perehitini Tohu (Best Regional Business) awards will be conferred: Taitokerau (Northland); Tamaki Makaurau (Auckland); Tainui (Waikato/Western Bay of Plenty including Coromandel); Waiariki (Eastern Bay of Plenty and Volcanic Plateau); Ikaroa (Manawatu, Wellington and Hawkes Bay); Tairawhiti (East Coast); Aotea (King Country and Taranaki); and Te Waipounamu (South Island).

Prize money (up to $5,000), an interest free loan (up to $20,000) and a beautiful pounamu statuette will go to each of the winners.

The Awards have attracted entrants from primary, secondary and professional industries ranging from catering and construction to transportation, finer arts, consulting and information technology. The breadth of entries, mainly from small businesses, gives a good indication of the important role that Maori businesses play in regional development and the growth of the total New Zealand economy.

Businesses are being judged on their sales and profit results expressed in actual percentage terms for the 12 months prior to the Awards, management policies and processes, marketing growth and acceptance, quality of contribution to the Maori community and economy of Aotearoa, number of new part- or full-time positions created, and key reasons for business growth.

The independent judging panel has been taken from representatives of each of the 2005 sponsors include the Bank of New Zealand, Te Puni Kokiri, Tamatekapua Law, Te Ohu Kai Moana, Department of Labour and the Accident Compensation Corporation .

Maori Business and Professional Association (MBPA)
At this year’s Awards ceremony MWDI will announce the establishment of the
Maori Business and Professional Association, giving Maori business people a professional forum to network, seek and give support and market each other’s businesses.

About Maori Women’s Development Inc (MWDI)
Formed in 1987, MWDI is a unique, indigenous financial institution that is managed and operated by Maori women for Maori people. Controlled by seven trustees, who are the former and current national presidents of Maori Women’s Welfare League Inc, MWDI provides small business loans and mentoring to Maori women Maori men and their whanau to enter into business.
MWDI has also run free mentoring clinics for Maori operating businesses in the arts, fashion and music industries at marae throughout Aotearoa covering governance, management, marketing and accounting business practices.
MWDI has an excellent track record and has a database of over 4,000 Maori businesses who in turn employ over 11,000 people. MWDI lends qualifying applicants up to $20,000 at a 9 percent interest rate. Visit MWDI online at www.mwdi.co.nz.
Awards Entries Surge with Inclusion of Maori Business Men

ENDS

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