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Leading export companies in the running for major awards


20 September 2018

New Zealand’s leading export companies in the running for major business awards.

Thirty-one of New Zealand’s leading export companies have made it through to the finals of the 2018 New Zealand International Business Awards.

They come from around New Zealand and represent an array of sectors, demonstrating the nation’s business diversity and innovation.

They will find out if they have will take home one of New Zealand’s most prestigious business awards at a black-tie dinner in Auckland on Thursday, 8 November.

And for the first time at these awards, recognition will be given to Inspiring Women Leaders. Seven outstanding businesswomen have been nominated for this award.
The New Zealand International Business Awards are run by New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE) and supported by Strategic Partner, ANZ New Zealand Limited. They celebrate the success of New Zealand businesses on the world stage and recognise excellence and innovative practice.
Over the past 50-plus years, many of New Zealand’s most iconic companies have been celebrated at the awards.
The finalists highlight the scope of Kiwi ingenuity. As well as examples in sectors where New Zealand already has a well-earned reputation – such as food and beverage, and tourism – the 2018 finalists show that such ground-breaking innovation knows no boundaries, with everything from keeping pets fed with top-notch nutrition to smartphone game developers, beauty, specialised manufacturing, and robotics.

The convenor of judges, David Downs, said: “This year saw a large number of entries for the awards. What came through strongly is the diversity of amazing companies we have that are achieving business success.

“The regions of New Zealand were well represented, and we saw entries from virtually every sector. The high number of finalists in each category is a direct consequence of the fierce competition for the top awards – great to see Aotearoa competing strongly across so many industries, in global markets.”

Mr Downs explained the introduction of the Inspiring Women Leaders category: “This year we celebrate the impact of women in leadership positions in international businesses, the first time we have specifically had such an award.

“It’s clear from the calibre and variety of nominations that women play key roles in many businesses and that the expertise, skills and experience female business leaders bring adds significantly to the success of the business, and allows companies to better represent their customers and markets.

“We were delighted to have such a strong set of nominations and want to thank the nominees, and the people who recognised them for this award, for being open about their success,” Mr Downs said.

The finalists for seven categories are listed below. Profiles of the companies can be found at

At the awards, additional winners will also be announced for: He kai kei aku ringa for Māori Excellence in Export; Inspiring Team Leadership; and the Supreme Award (chosen from the winners of all categories).

The finalists announced today are:

Inspiring Women Leaders:
Sarah Kennedy: Calocurb Ltd (Lifestream) (Auckland)
Aliesha Staples: Staples Productions Ltd (Auckland)
Nicola Wetere: Canary Enterprises Ltd (Hamilton)
Jemma McCowan: NZ King Salmon (Nelson)
Andrea Wilkins: Spring Sheep Dairy NZ Limited Partnership (Auckland)
Amanda Santos: Tekron International Limited (Lower Hutt)
Alyssa Wade: Wade Group (Hamilton)

ANZ Best Emerging Business:
Auckland BioSciences (Auckland/Waikato)
BeeNZ Ltd (Bay of Plenty)
Haka Educational Tours (Auckland/Waikato)
Invert Robotics (Christchurch)
Method Recycling (Wellington)
Spring Sheep Dairy NZ Limited Partnership (Wellington)
Woodcut Tools (Hawke’s Bay)
Zeffer Cider (Wellington)

ANZ Best Medium Business:
K9 Pet Food (Natural Pet Food Group) (Christchurch)
Link Engine Management Ltd (Christchurch)
More4Apps (Auckland/Waikato)
Pik Pok (Wellington)
Ross Roof Group (Auckland/Waikato)
Seequent (Shine Group) (Canterbury)
Ziwi Ltd (Bay of Plenty)

ANZ Best Large Business:
Cedenco Foods New Zealand Ltd (Hawke’s Bay)
Douglas Pharmaceuticals (Auckland)
Gallagher Group (Waikato)
Gentrack Group (Auckland/Waikato)
Invenco Group Ltd (Auckland)
Skyline Luge International (Queenstown)

Excellence in Innovation:
Antipodes Beauty (Wellington)
Endace (Auckland/Waikato)
Genera Ltd (Bay of Plenty)
K9 Natural Pet Food Group (Christchurch)
NZ King Salmon (Nelson)
Sealegs International (Auckland)
Serko (Wellington)
Spring Sheep Dairy NZ Limited Partnership (Auckland)

Excellence in Design:
Fisher & Paykel Healthcare (Auckland)
Methven Limited (Auckland)
Pic's Peanut Butter (Nelson)

Inspiring Preference for New Zealand:
Infratec (Wellington)
NZ King Salmon (Nelson)
Spring Sheep Dairy NZ Limited Partnership (Auckland)

For the first time, businesses who won an Export New Zealand regional business award in an export category this year were automatically shortlisted for the New Zealand International Business Awards judging process.
All companies who made it through to the shortlist had to present their “pitch” to a panel of judges, demonstrating their skills in meeting the many challenges that face New Zealand companies trading with the world.
Businesses who have taken part in these awards say it has proved highly beneficial, enabling them to benchmark their business against other top performers; gain valuable feedback to help build their capability and take their business to the next level; boost staff morale and help them attract top talent.

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