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Social Enterprise Accelerator Showcases Impact-Ready Ventures

Social Enterprise Accelerator Showcases Impact-Ready Ventures

Launchpad is Ākina Foundation’s programme aimed at getting New Zealand’s best social enterprise ideas off the ground. Launchpad Pitch Day will showcase the 11 participating social enterprise teams at an event to be held at Shed 6 in Wellington on March 31.

Launchpad has been co-sponsored by Contact Energy and the Department of Internal Affairs. Ākina has focused six months of intensive support and coaching on 11 inspiring social enterprise ideas – which are now on their way to becoming thriving, self-sustaining ventures. Consultant mentors from organisations such as KPMG, Vodafone, SAP and Deloitte – led by Contact Energy – have added rigor to their impact-focused pursuits.

“When you meet these teams you can see that these are exceptional people with the passion and ability to make a real difference in their communities. We now look forward to connecting the teams with people, organisations and investors that can help bring those plans to life,” says David Clearwater, Launchpad Director at the Ākina Foundation.

Launchpad’s Pitch Day event will bring together a network of 200+ potential investors, funders, customers and supporters from the private, public and philanthropic sectors to engage in opportunities around social enterprise. Attendees will include government ministers, social changemakers, CEOs, community leaders and more.

Venture teams will present the change they intend to make in the world, their business plans for delivering that change and pitch for support to take their social enterprise to the next level. There will also be an opportunity for interested prospective funders, investors, partners and supporters to meet the teams for one-to-one discussions on how they might get involved. Launchpad Pitch Day presents an opportunity to be part of shaping the onwards journey of social enterprise ventures to help New Zealand thrive.

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“We’re seeing a groundswell of social entrepreneurship across the country and we’re excited to be part of a movement that is determined to solve wicked problems with the tools of business.” says Ākina Foundation’s Chief Executive, Alex Hannant.

Contact Energy’s General Manager of Corporate Affairs, Nicholas Robinson adds, “We believe social enterprise has the potential to transform our communities, to contribute to the wellbeing of our people and ultimately, to change the way we do businesses and deliver positive, lasting social outcomes in New Zealand. We are looking forward to hearing the teams pitch their ideas and to seeing them lead the way in launching social enterprise to New Zealand.”

Find out more about the 11 Launchpad teams at


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