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Sheep on Queen Street not helpful to business reputation

Media release
Auckland Councillor Cameron Brewer
Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Sheep on Queen Street not helpful to business reputation

The proposal to run 1,000 sheep down Queen Street on 17 October could undo some great work Auckland is doing for the Rugby World Cup to promote itself as a credible and smart place to do business,” says Auckland Councillor Cameron Brewer, who chairs the Council’s Business Advisory Panel and is deputy chair of the Economic Forum.

“I’m not against Waipukurau hosting a ‘Running of the Lambs’ street party on 17 September as part of Rugby World Cup’s Real New Zealand Festival. That’s a great branding exercise for the Central Hawkes Bay town and a lot of fun. However for Auckland, such an event runs against the image the business community, Council, and the Government is trying to create.”

Mr Brewer says images of 1,000 sheep being herded down the main street by shepherds and bikini-clad models on quad bikes, with Ken and Ken from the Topp Twins giving a screaming commentary in the final week of the tournament won’t do New Zealand’s largest commercial centre any favours.

“As someone who grew up on a sheep farm, I appreciate that sheep are synonymous with New Zealand. However let’s not forget that we’re also spending a lot of public money during the Rugby World Cup promoting Auckland as a serious business destination for potential investors.

“The likes of the Cloud on Queen’s Wharf is all about showcasing New Zealand business opportunities. What’s more we now have thousands of Auckland and international businesses registered to the Rugby World Cup Business Club, with over 50 Business Club events planned in Auckland during the tournament.

“Rugby aside, the Rugby World Cup is a big branding exercise and an unprecedented business expo. Let’s showcase plenty of Kiwiana, but let’s not make our biggest city look like a country hick town. Such images will go around the world and will do nothing to inspire potential investors. We need to think smarter than that,” says Cameron Brewer.


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