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Dunedin City Council – Kaunihera-a-rohe o Otepoti
Economic development.

Māori business support

Māori business overall contributes about $30m per year to Dunedin’s economy. With the Māori and Polynesian population expected to rise to 25% of New Zealand’s workforce by 2025, relevant business opportunities will become increasingly important to New Zealand’s economy.

The main South Island iwi, Ngāi Tahu, currently operates the largest business in the South Island (Ngāi Tahu Holdings) which has a current  value of approximately $600 million.

Māori business-related projects

Projects led and/or supported by the Economic Development Unit include:

  • Te Kupeka Umaka Māori Ki Araiteuru (KUMA) – Southern Māori Business Network – is supported through EDU funding and the DCC holds an executive position on the KUMA’s board
  • KUMA SWOT team - members of KUMA help fellow members with their businesses. Members can request a SWOT team to assist them in removing barriers or taking advantage of opportunities
  • Māori Cultural Tourism Research – a scoping study for Māori-related  tourism opportunities, looking specifically at (a) demand for products and (b) a desire to supply. The study revealed a ‘yes’ answer to both aspects and has led to increasing interest in turning this demand into viable tourism experiences
  • Establishing the economic contribution of  Māori business to Dunedin – which was estimated at $30m per annum at the time of the study (2007)
  • Ka Pao - a secure social networking and news website for emerging and established Māori entrepreneurs to communicate with each other.

How can we help your Māori business?

We can help with:

  • Business planning
  • Advocacy with other Council departments
  • Support to find and retain skilled staff.

To find out more about Maori business support, email

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