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Māori Business Women Awards honour achievements

18 April 2018

Māori Business Women Awards honour achievements after a 10 year hiatus

After a 10 year hiatus Māori Womens Development Inc (MWDI) were proud to reignite the Māori Business Women Awards, a well attended event by leaders and entrepreneurs held at the Museum of Te Papa Tongarewa on April 14.

Maori Development Minister Hon Nanaia Mahuta says the awards were well represented, “In our economy we have a short supply of manaakitanga. That spirit of reciprocity is important. It’s no longer the case that we measure success by numbers. We need to ensure that when we cast our net, our wealth is shared.”

MWDI Chief Executive Officer, Teresa Tepania-Ashton says “it is an absolute honor to have been able to be part of a significant celebration of our Wāhine Māori in Business, the pride in the nominees and recognition from their whānau and our Māori Business community has been magnificent”

The 2018 awards were re-introduced to build upon the successes of Māori women in entrepreneurship. The sponsors were - He Kai Kei Aku Ringa - Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment & Te Puni Kōkiri, Poutama Trust, Te Rūnanganui ō Ngāti Porou, Waikato Tainui, Te Tumu Paeroa, Te Pūtahitanga ō Te Waipounamu, Milford Investments, Rainey Collins, & ATEED (Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development).

With 80 nominated businesses from across Aotearoa the awards covered various outstanding achievers from the following regions, who each received a certificate of recognition for their contribution to the Māori and wider New-Zealand economy:


•Koha Kai Ltd - Janice Lee

•Koru Institute Training Education – Monique Gemmell

Winner - Tū Māia Partners - Janyne Morrison, Cazna Luke, Sacha McMeeking


•Custom Plush NZ Limited – Sharee Wilkinson

•Whare Hauora – Hiria Te Rangi

Winner - Beauty Antix – Amber Forrest-Solomon


•Staceys Cakes – Stacey Williams

Winner - Pakohe Papers – Marilyn Vreede


•Kurawaka Retreat Centre – Raina Ferris

•Tolaga Bay Inn – Lily Stender

Winner - CK & Co Spa – Caroline Kingi


•Nichola Te Kiri

•SeeCom Limited – Adele Hauwai

Winner - Waiora Design – Shelly Davies


•Wharekai Ltd – Davina Thompson

•Raw Pawz – Nita Maaka

Winner - Tane Mahuta NZ – Wini Geddes


•Occhiali Optometrist – Renata Watene - COMMENDTION

•Lets Get Legal – Swanie Nelson

Winner - TIME Unlimited Ltd – Ceillhe Te Whare


•Navilluso Medical Ltd – Tracy O’Sullivan COMMENDATION

•Taiamai Tours Heritage Journeys Ltd – Judy Mihaka

Winner - Tai Tokerau Honey Ltd – Lohnet Murray

BUSINESS COLLABORATION - recognising business between iwi, other businesses, cross sector or cross agency collaborations that achieves collective impact to grow Māori enterprise

•Occhiali Optometrist – Renata Watene COMMENDATION

•Te Tihi o Ruahine Whanau Ora Alliance – Kararaina Oldridge

Winner - Koru Institute Training Education – Dr Monique Gemmell

PEOPLE & CAPABILITY - Demonstrate leadership, talent development to improve capability

•Beauty Antix Limited – Amber Forrest-Solomon

•Mokowhiti – Cazna Luke

Winner - Koha Kai Ltd - Janice Lee

EMERGING BUSINESS - new business with significant growth

•CK & Co Spa Ltd – Caroline Kingi

•Thrift’d Streetwear Ltd – Ra Mead

Winner - Wharekai Limited – Davina Thompson

EMPLOYMENT & GROWTH - Fostering growth and employment within the business including supporting rangatahi development

•Tane Mahuta NZ Limited – Wini Geddes

•The Tuck Shop Ltd – Hope Tupara

Winner - Tai Tokerau Honey Ltd – Lohnet Murray

INNOVATION - Project initiatives that are challenging and changing the norm

•Waiora Design Ltd – Shelly Davies

•SeeCom Limited – Adele Hauwai

Winner - Navilluso Medical Ltd – Tracy O’Sullivan

SOCIAL ENTERPRISE - celebrating Māori success in social enterprise, social impact and transformation

•Tolaga Bay Inn – Lily Stender

•Tu Maia Ltd – Janyne Morrison, Cazna Luke, Sacha McMeeking

Winner - Wharekai Limited – Davina Thompson

TA KAIPAKIHI TINO TAUMATA - Supreme Business Winner

•Wharekai Limited – Davina Thompson

•Koha Kai Ltd - Janice Lee

•Koru Institute Training Education – Monique Gemmell

•Navilluso Medical Ltd – Tracy O’Sullivan

Winner - Tai Tokerau Honey – Lohnet Murray

MWDI wishes to acknowledge all the nominees, wahine toa, supporters and sponsors who helped make the event a resounding success.


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