Five of Aotearoa’s rising woman-led businesses have been named the successful 2021 SheEO Ventures earning huge support to amplifying business growth through SheEO’s vast network internationally, with those chosen receiving the support of interest-free loans for five years, business mentoring and pro-bono legal and PR support.
The successful Ventures for 2021 are:
Atutahi – Reni Gargiulo’s Nelson-based producer of a range of unique indigenous New Zealand native leaf beverages with known functional benefits.
BDÉT – (pictured above) Billie Jo Hohepa-Ropiha’s Auckland-based business is on a mission to eliminate one trillion wet wipes globally, through a wet wipe alternative, that turns toilet tissue into a cleansing, flushable wipe.
Farm Plans – Emma Buchanan’s Hawke’s Bay-based Farm Plans has expertly designed software to reduce the effort for farmers to collect and share data, creating low-cost, high-quality reports and better environmental outcomes.
Kete Kai – Lisa Booth’s Waikato-based Kete Kai is more than a meal-kit company. Their real drive is ending hunger in Aotearoa by 2030, through digital development and community partnerships.
Supie – (pictured below) Sarah Balle’s South Auckland-based online, membership-based supermarket aims to create a better and fairer grocery alternative for New Zealand. Supie supports a range of SheEO Ventures and Activator’s businesses from Goodbye, The Hello Cup, Tot’s Pantry, Food Nation, LilyBeeWrap, Ultrella, Yum., Little ‘Lato and V on Wheels.
The SheEO Aotearoa network was launched in 2017 by renowned business leader Theresa Gattung and has gone from strength to strength. Successful SheEO Ventures report an average 84% business growth since joining the community, with exports to 51 countries.
Annually, woman and non-binary entrepreneurs apply to become a Venture, made possible from the unique funding model, the result of an equally unique community, and one that is founded on relationships and acts of radical generosity as opposed to transactions. While Ventures receive the financial support, all Activators in the community benefit through networking, professional development opportunities and business advice.
“We are in the middle of a pandemic and our women and non-binary entrepreneurs continue to show up, support new ideas, lend a helping hand and shine brightly in the SheEO network,” Gattung says. “Each year I say I’m thrilled with the level of ‘radical generosity’ our 800 Kiwi activators show towards venture applicants. But in 2021, with the global pandemic surging in Aotearoa, I am in awe.
“A whopping $11.9 million in revenue in the 2020 calendar year was made by our Ventures with an 84% revenue growth in these Ventures since their association with SheEO. These women and non-binary-led businesses are eliminating the glass ceiling and taking the world by storm, by offering unique businesses, products and services while working on the world’s ‘to do’ list.
“Becoming a successful venture applicant is more than simply benefiting from immediate support like interest-free loans and business mentoring. We welcome all Ventures and Activators into a growing community of business leaders and innovators who all deeply care. Many long-term business relationships are being cultivated through the strength of our SheEO network here and around the world – boosting us all.”
Founder of SheEO Vicki Saunders says, “It’s fascinating to witness the different trends each year. This year, 80% of the New Zealand successful Ventures are in or related to the food industry/sector. Covid is making us consider our consumption of food, where our food actually comes from and supporting locally, the waste we create through food, and the impact of this on the environment – more than ever. This year, 40% of the successful Ventures are indigenous-led.”
SheEO Aotearoa has raised $1.25 million since its launch through over 1,100 Activators, of which 800 are from people activating for the first time. Over the years a number of businesses have also lent their support to the cause offering pro bono expertise, including Russell McVeagh, Westpac, Pead PR and NSPR Limited.
How it Works:
The SheEO model has hundreds of women (called Activators) contributing capital into a collective fund as an act of radical generosity, with the money loaned out at no interest to Women and non-binary-led businesses (called Ventures) working on the world’s ‘to do’ list and paid back over a five-year period. Selected Ventures also get access to women’s networks, buying power and expertise to grow their business.
Previous successful SheEO ventures:
Guardian Angel Security
The Better Packaging Co.
The Hello Cup
Goodbye SANDFLY/Goodbye OUCH
Kiri Nathan Ltd