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Supplier Diversity Gathers Momentum In The Greater Wellington Region

Te Matarau a Māui and Amotai joined forces to organise the first ever ‘meet and greet’ event between Māori-owned businesses and large-scale organisations in the greater Wellington region on Friday 11 November.

Held at the Lower Hutt Events Centre over 200 Māori businesses many of whom are registered with Amotai, attended the event to connect with large international businesses and government agencies including LT McGuiness, Callaghan Innovation, NZ Transport Agency, Te Puni Kōkiri, and Ministry of Education and a strong representation from all of the Council’s in the Wellington region including Hutt, Upper Hutt, Porirua, Wellington City Councils and Greater Wellington Regional Council.

Amotai, Aotearoa’s leading supplier diversity intermediary was delighted to connect Māori and Pasifika businesses from the Wellington region to large-scale suppliers with a view to unlocking procurement opportunities.

“There are a lot of incredible Māori-owned businesses but often you don’t know where to find them,” says Amotai’s National Supplier Diversity Programme Manager, Herani Demuth.

“This event was about bringing everyone together in one space to form genuine relationships, learn about what opportunities are on the table and discover how they can work together in the future.”

The Greater Wellington Regional Council’s Māori economic development strategy for the greater Wellington region is managed by Te Matarau a Māui Trust. The Trust can see the potential to grow the capacity of Māori businesses, supported by the government target of 5% of all contracts going to Māori or Pasifika-owned businesses and has prioritised this target in its work programme.

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“In our region there is over $32B in contract opportunities currently on the market that will be spent over the next five to ten years – events like this are a fantastic first step towards enabling Māori business growth,” says Daphne Luke, Chairperson at Te Matarau a Māui.

“We couldn’t have done it without our key partners especially the region’s many iwi and the four Māori business networks across Te Ūpoko O Te Ika who have all come to the party in terms of promoting this event to their memberships and attending the hui today. The networks cover the Kapiti and Horowhenua, Wairarapa, Wellington, the Hutt Valley and Porirua.”

Following a warm welcome, attendees had an opportunity to learn what purchasers are looking for in partnering with Māori, to kōrero with other local Māori businesses already contracting to government and find out how to engage in the tender processes.

“It is our goal to shift that understanding of how large-scale organisations can really use their local spend to strengthen our businesses,” says Herani Demuth.

“That’s what supplier diversity is all about and we’re really excited to see Wellington’s councils and organisations all jumping on board.”

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