Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


100 Highlander SUVs To Help Small Businesses Recover

After a nationwide call for applications, 100 small businesses from Invercargill to Kaitāia have been chosen from a total of 4000 entries to receive the free lease of a Toyota Highlander for 12 months.

The Small Business Driver initiative was conceived by Toyota New Zealand and partnered by MediaWorks, to help small businesses keep moving after the sudden economic shock of COVID-19. Applications from businesses who had received Government wage support and employed fewer than 20 people were received in June and assessed by an independent panel of judges.

Toyota New Zealand Executive, Andrew Davis, said the response to the offer of 100 Highlanders was well beyond Toyota’s expectations and highlighted the need for all New Zealanders, businesses and consumers, to support small businesses.

“Many small businesses are doing it tough following the lockdowns and border restrictions. We heard amazing stories from business owners up and down the country who were doing all they could to keep their businesses going and keep their people in jobs,” Andrew said.

While there were many accounts of hardship, Toyota also received many examples of innovation as businesses adapted to the changing needs of their customers. One example was First Table in Queenstown, an online booking service for restaurants, which moved swiftly to set up an online takeaway directory for restaurants that were also switching from dine in to delivered take outs.

In choosing the 100 businesses the selection panel wanted to include a diverse range of industries and a wide geographic spread of businesses, so recipients ranged from fashion designers and wool buyers, tour guides and restaurants, electricians and builders, physical therapists and podiatrists, shopkeepers and beekeepers. The list goes on.

“We were heartened by the stories we received,” says Andrew. “From the garden centre in Christchurch that had to give away most of its plants in the days before the Level 4 lockdown, to the zipline operator on Waiheke Island who was just about to open a new business in Kaikōura that would have employed 30 people.”

Andrew says it was a humbling experience to read the entries and an honour for the team to call the 100 businesses which had been chosen to receive a Toyota Highlander for a year as well as a share of a $1 million radio advertising fund provided by MediaWorks.

He thanked his Toyota colleagues and MediaWorks for throwing their support into the programme and the selection panel for giving up their time to read hundreds of entries.

The panel was Kirk Hope, CEO of Business New Zealand; business owner and Toyota Ambassador, Marc Ellis; Tim Lockhart, Head of Direct Sales at MediaWorks; and Isobel Kerr-Newell of Saatchi & Saatchi.

© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Banking: Westpac NZ Lowers Merchant Fees For Small Businesses

Westpac NZ is rolling out a new merchant fee pricing structure that will lead to cost savings for more than 10,000 small and medium Kiwi businesses, and could make contactless transactions more widely available for customers. On 1 September, most ... More>>

REINZ: Million Dollar Plus Property Sales Increase 11.7% Nationally

The number of properties sold around the country for one million dollars or more during the first half (H1) of 2020 increased by 11.7% compared to H1 2019, with 5,426 million-dollar plus properties sold (up from 4,858 in H1 2019) according to the Real ... More>>

Waste: Government To Regulate Plastic Packaging, Tyres, E-Waste

The Government is stepping up action to deal with environmentally harmful products – including plastic packaging, tyres and e-waste – before they become waste. As part of the wider plan to reduce the amount of rubbish ending up in landfills, ... More>>


Bankers Association: Banking Becomes First Living Wage Accredited Industry

Banking has become New Zealand’s first fully living wage accredited industry, leading to nearly 1800 employees and contractors moving onto the living wage and gaining greater economic independence for them and their families. As of today, all ... More>>


Economy: Funding For 85% Of NZ Not-For-Profit Entities Impacted By COVID-19

Results of a recent Institute of Directors poll show that 85% of board members on not-for-profit organisations say COVID-19 has moderately or significantly affected their funding. The ‘pulse check’ conducted in the first two weeks of July looked ... More>>

Volcano Detection: Eruption Alert System Would Have Given 16 Hours’ Warning At Whakaari

An alert system that could have given 16 hours’ warning of last year’s eruption at Whakaari/White Island is ready for deployment, University of Auckland scientists say, with warning systems for Ruapehu and Tongariro the next priority. ... More>>

Property: Queenstown Rents Experience Biggest Drop In Seven Years

Rental prices in the Queenstown-Lakes district saw the biggest annual percentage drop in seven years after falling 28 per cent on June last year, according to the latest Trade Me Rental Price Index. Trade Me Property spokesperson Aaron Clancy said ... More>>

Seismology: The Quiet Earth

As many daily activities came to a halt during lockdown, the Earth itself became quiet, probably quieter than it has been since humans developed the technology to listen in. Seismologists have analysed datasets from more than 300 international ... More>>

RNZ: James Shaw Says Kiwibank, Not Ministers Should Decide On Investors

Climate Change Minister James Shaw says Kiwibank's decision to stop doing business with companies dealing in fossil fuels is the right one. More>>


FMA: Kiwis Confident Financial Markets Will Recover From COVID-19, Plan To Increase Investments

Despite the majority (60%) of investors experiencing losses as a result of COVID-19, the outlook on investing remains positive, according to a Financial Markets Authority (FMA) survey. Most Kiwis (71%) were optimistic that the pandemic will pass eventually ... More>>

FIRST Union: Warehouse Using Covid For Cover As Extensive Restructure Makes Everyone Worse Off

(FIRST Union comments on The Warehouse consultation and proposed restructure) 'Unfortunately the Warehouse have done the disappointing thing and used Covid-19 to justify a bunch of operational business decisions that will leave hundreds of workers without jobs ... More>>


Stats NZ: Mixed Performance By Regions Leaves National Emissions Picture Unchanged

Approximately two-thirds of New Zealand’s regions recorded decreases in their total greenhouse gas emissions, while one-third of regions saw increases between 2007 and 2018, Stats NZ said today. “While some regions reduced their emissions, ... More>>

RNZ: Economic Activity And Business Confidence Bouncing Back

Two surveys from ANZ show business confidence and economic activity have rebounded, but uncertainty about the future remains extreme. More>>