Business Is Boring

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Matt Weavers is making e-bikes more affordable

Business is Boring is a weekly podcast series presented by The Spinoff in association with Callaghan Innovation. Host Simon Pound speaks with innovators and commentators focused on the future of New Zealand.

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Jennifer Rutherford of the Hi-Tech Trust on diversifying the tech industry

When you think about awards ceremonies for traditionally male dominated industries like tech and business, diversity is not the first thing that jumps to mind. These awards have long been the nights to celebrate the people that made it under the old rules, and so have  showcase a lot of successful old blokes. But one prominent event, the NZ Hi-Tech awards, has made it its mission to fast forward the process of change by making diversity the focus of its awards for this year. It’s pushed forward a conversation many industries need to have, and got conversations and initiatives started all around the country, working with the excellent Ally Skills team to help companies learn practical steps to take, and in a step perfect for the tech industry, they even provide a toolkit. The chair of the Hi-tech trust, Jennifer Rutherford, is emblematic of and driving this change. With a career in corporate management and industry governance she took over as chair this year. 

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Bird on a Wire takes free range chicken and healthy salads to the people

Business is Boring is a weekly podcast series presented by The Spinoff in association with Callaghan Innovation. Host Simon Pound speaks with innovators and commentators focused on the future of New Zealand, with the interview available as both audio and a transcribed excerpt. This week Simon talks to Sophie Gilmour about Bird on a Wire, a chicken shop grown from an old Ponsonby takeaways.

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How one seed potato grew into a business for Jade Temepara

Business is Boring is a weekly podcast series presented by The Spinoff in association with Vodafone Xone. Host Simon Pound speaks with innovators and commentators focused on the future of New Zealand, with the interview available as both audio and a transcribed excerpt. This week Simon talks to Jade Temepara about growing a family business from a seed potato. 

In the wake of the Christchurch earthquake a local gardener was given a task by her koro. Her grandfather asked her to help keep a potato variety going that had been grown by the family for more than 100 years. The deep connection to growing kai, and the the way it provides and protects kicked off a renewed interest in for Jade Temepara in the power of gardens to anchor and support families.

In addition to being a acclaimed gardener who placed at Ellerslie flower show, Jade had been working with families doing it tough and thought she could bring the worlds together. She launched Hand over a Hundy, a concept where a family is given 100 bucks for supplies, seeds and seedlings and a mentor to help them grow seasonal veggies, and the idea being that they then make enough surplus that they can sell that to create another 100 of seed funding and introduce this to another family.

They’ve changed lives up and down the country, and the very shape of Christchurch after the earthquakes where gardening became radical urban reclamation. Today Jade is co-founder of Kākano Cafe and cooking school and garden with a Māori kaupapa and team that is spreading the messages of good health and nutrition and connection with the earth through the community.

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How crowdfunding website Press Patron is helping to create quality journalism

In the wake of the holy what the hell disruptive force of President Trump outlets like the Washington Post and New York Times have turned around years of subscriber decline as readers vote with their wallets about the importance of news and what is fake and what isn’t. 

On The Spinoff that has been through Press Patron, so you might be familiar with the model. The founder and CEO of that company, Alex Clark, saw this trend form years out, with a master’s thesis turning into a real world product, now in NZ Australia and the US and helping X outlets harness their following and supplement ads, paywalls or whatever else is needed. 

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Miriana Lowrie is making trade credit a simple, paperless process

They say where there's mystery there's margin and one thing that is deep in the depths of mystery is trade credit. What's trade credit? It's the second biggest source of loans in the world after banks. It's like when a business wants to buy something from a supplier and pay them 30 days later. And so much of business operates on these trade terms, but so often not on the actual terms. People are late, people need to be trustworthy, people need to guarantee they will pay.

Well, one person who looked into this abyss of paperwork is Miriana Lowrie. After a career in banking and looking at strategy and ways to improve business for outfits like ASB, she saw an improvement that could be made here and launched 1Centre. The app has gone through incubation, setting a record funding round for an product at the Flux accelerator, was part of Vodafone xone and is helping solve the hard problems, with customer usage doubling month on month.

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Dr Sam Hazeldine: “You’ve got to be hungry”.

We’re very excited to introduce todays guest, someone extra inspiring, even by the pretty amazing standards of the people we talk to week in week out on this show. Someone, I kid you not, that Tony Robbins looks to for motivation and inspiration.

He’s an author, entrepreneur, doctor, extreme skiing champ, former drunken backflipper and current dedicated father and inspirational business leader. He even got the modern version of the Hippocratic oath changed(!).

Let’s rewind to the end of uni study, when a drunken stunt of a backflip led to Dr Sam Hazeldine, then in his last year of medical school with a promising extreme skiing career on the cards, waking up from a coma with a poor outlook for future success at both. What could have been the worst day of his life he made one of his best, resolving to focus on what matters, then going on to out-performing the best hopes for his head injury: within a year he was a grad doctor and skiing national champion.

Entrepreneur Dr Sam Hazeldine is the founder and managing director of three companies that shook up medical orthodoxy by keeping the welfare of doctors at their heart: MedRecruit, MedWorld and MedCapital. They have been wildly successful. He’s been on the Fast 50 list multiple times, been the fastest growing services company in the country. He was the Ernst & Young – Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 and was the 2014 recipient of the Sir Peter Blake Leadership Award.

He’s written best selling books, like Unfair Fight, to help small New Zealand businesses compete in what he calls an uneven playing field. He co-founded the holistic talent management company, WeAreTenzing.

He wants to help everyone live exceptional lives, from you listening right through to the scores of orphans his foundation has helped rescue from life as child soldiers in South Sudan. Dr Sam Hazeldine joined us on a hot and muggy Friday afternoon recently for this chat.

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Talking commentary with Spalk co-founder Ben Reynolds

Business is Boring is a weekly podcast series presented by The Spinoff in association with Vodafone Xone. Host Simon Pound speaks with innovators and commentators focused on the future of New Zealand, with the interview available as both audio and a transcribed excerpt. This week Simon talks to Ben Reynolds about how his company Spalk is making sports commentary more accessible. 

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Flossie’s female lead: Jenene Crossan is solving two problems in one app

As business thinker Cindy Gallop says, there is a lot of money to be made by taking women seriously. But the reason there is that opportunity is that traditionally, particularly in tech and business, women and women’s interests have not been. One person that’s been creating more space and fighting this battle over the last 20 years is local entrepreneur Jenene Crossan.

In 2018 it’s easy to take for granted the social web, paid independent female voices, and that Teen Vogue is political. But in 1999. it wasn’t this way. This was the year Jenene founded NZ Girl. It was also just after Google was founded. Jenene was already 4 years into building websites and living online, and saw where things were going with media.

NZ Girl went on to be the biggest social magazine in the country and in 2015 was named best blog. It was also a business in the time before there was a clear business model for online media. This led Jenene to found companies to solve advertising online, to found Bloggers Club - one of the first companies around to monetise influencers - and more recently, Flossie.

Flossie solves two problems at once. It helps women find curated and recommended salon services and book them efficiently and effortlessly, and put helps salons drive repeat and new custom, especially in quiet times. It was an industry ripe for such a service, that has grown into Australia and the UK, with big things on the horizon.

To talk the ups and downs, the life of an entrepreneur and the journey, Jenene joined the podcast.

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An underground kitchen with a sky-high target

A flippant comment around a kitchen table in 2013 brought about a business that has gone from making one Thai Green Curry to now having a delivery or pick-up service for ready made meals, 2 cafes, a commercial kitchen, regular media appearances, 2 cookbooks, thousands of meals sold a week and a staff of 25. Jess' Underground Kitchen is now very much in the overground. To talk about the journey, Jess Daniell joined the podcast.

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