Is that for free?

We often forget to look outside our business for support, or are concerned about the cost or value of engaging external specialists. You might be pleasantly surprised at the number of freely available, or partially funded resources and grants available to Northland business owners, or those looking to set up a business. Here’s a few worth checking out:

·         Northland Inc Regional Business Partner Network: Capability Voucher Funding helps business owners access business training and coaching services, by providing them with up to a 50% subsidy towards the registered service cost.

·         Callaghan Innovation Research and Development: This organisation is an important national innovation partner with a key aim of making New Zealanders’ fresh ideas a reality. They have a comprehensive set of tools, resources and programmes, with expert teams to assist research, development and innovation. Callaghan Innovation works alongside Northland Inc and provides R&D grants, and supports technology and product development.

·         Founder Incubators: These organisations help start-ups with technology and market validation, business planning and development, capability building, investment preparation and access to networks, governance and establishment of advisory boards and shared working spaces. Here’s a few worth looking at: The Factory, Creative HQ, Ecentre, Soda Inc., The Icehouse and XStart.

·         Poutama Charitable Trust: Poutama is an independent charitable trust that provides business development services to Māori. Poutama strives to create an environment for successful business ventures and economic growth for Māori. Income generated from its investments enables Poutama to engage in activities and provide services that support and facilitate Māori business development.

·         Te Puni Kokiri (Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment): This organisation helps Māori business owners and entrepreneurs that are just starting out in business. To be eligible, the majority ownership of your business must identify as Māori. You must also have a business plan and have attended Inland Revenue’s Introduction to Business workshop. You’ll be paired with an account manager who will work with you to identify your needs. Account managers are located throughout New Zealand.

·         Work and Income Self-Employment Start Up Payment: This is available to beneficiaries looking to become self-employed and is aimed at covering the cost of things like equipment, stock and one-off set up costs.

Don’t be afraid to reach out to access the support you need. Setting up and running a business comes with challenges and organisations like ours and those listed above are there specifically to help you overcome those challenges.


 “Don’t limit yourself to the skies when there is a whole galaxy out there.”

Bianca Frazier