Blog:

BDO Kerikeri and Young Enterprise: Creating new business leaders

23 January 2020

Angela Edwards , Audit, Assurance & Advisory Partner |

As one of the leading accountancy firms in New Zealand, BDO Kerikeri takes financial and business education seriously. We believe in mentoring the next generation for success via the Young Enterprise Scheme (YES Programme). This enables prospective entrepreneurs of all backgrounds to learn what it’s like to set up a business. This can vary from designing a product to funding the development to marketing and selling the product, and creating reports.

 

Why is financial/business literacy important?

Being proficient with finances and business savvy will help any economy grow. Unfortunately, many countries have a financial literacy crisis, as most adults can’t correctly answer basic financial questions. One of the main causes of this is a lack of financial education during secondary schooling.

If our society can’t manage their finances, debts will climb, there will be higher burdens on social programs, and economies will struggle. While small in size New Zealand has a whopping half a million small businesses (MBIE)! These small businesses are responsible for over half of the jobs created therefore, it is important to support these businesses and encourage future entrepreneurship and start-ups.

 

Young Enterprise Scheme

BDO Kerikeri supports the YES programme through judging the candidates’ business pitches, as part of the dragon team and by providing guidance to these fledgling entrepreneurs. The dragon team is a panel of established entrepreneurs who judge the small businesses based on their product’s demand, financial feasibility, economies of scale, and other factors. However, we’ve found that our most significant contribution is the time we provide to candidates. Our tutelage has enabled many candidates to create successful businesses.

Peepi Packs, developed by Santana Hobson, provides comprehensive packs for new mums and their babies. Each of these packs has a unique Māori ‘flavour’. Santana’s background as a single mum from Kaikohe, a small rural community in the north of New Zealand, shines through with the innovation and uniqueness of the idea for Peepi Packs. The business achieved a multitude of milestones over the year and culminated in a winning pitch to a panel of judges. Santana’s Peepi Peps won the Lion Foundation Young Enterprise Scheme's Top Energy YES Northland Company of the Year title.

South Canterbury’s Roncalli College students created a reusable, compostable tote bag that was made from sustainable materials; jute and cotton. They created this product as they wanted to keep New Zealand beautiful. The students’ innovative decorative bags gained a place in the Young Enterprise Scheme finals in 2019.

 

BDO Kerikeri’s goal is to help various clients with their tax, financial, and accountancy challenges. However, we take pride in thinking of the bigger picture by preparing the next generation of business owners so they can add value to our economy. You might consider accountancy to be a business focused on numbers, but the relationships behind those numbers are just as, if not more important. Our involvement in the YES programme upholds the Maori proverb, “He aha te mea nui o te ao? He tangata, he tangata, he tangata” or “what is the most important thing in the world - The people, the people, the people”.


Looking to improve your financial literacy or get involved with the YES programme? Please contact the BDO Kerikeri team for more information.