‘We haven’t got the money, so we’ll have to think,’ said Lord Rutherford, one of the most celebrated scientists of all time and our region’s most famous son. And therein lies the story of Nelson Tasman business.

Once an isolated region with land that was neither fertile nor flat, our first entrepreneurs relied on their wits and grit to survive. The outcome today is a clever business economy, with the likes of Pic’s Peanut Butter, Core Transport Technologies, and Sea Dragon transforming from small start-ups to leaders on the world stage. And you could be next.

Starting a new business is both an exciting and nerve-wracking experience, but Nelson Tasman is the right place to do it. With attractive natural surroundings that are a draw-card for adventurous, energetic, and community-minded people, the region has developed a vibrant start-up scene and a strong business ecosystem for entrepreneurs.

It’s important to make sure that your approach to business is clever right from the beginning, and that’s where we come in. Here you’ll find the services, support, financial assistance, and networks you need to ensure that you have the best platform from which to begin your new business journey.

Regional Business Partner Network Assistance

Regional Business Partner Network Assistance

The Regional Business Partner (RBP) Network is designed to make it easier for New Zealand businesses to access early-stage support to innovate and grow. This national network is made up of 14 'Regional Business Partners’ and is supported by New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE) and Callaghan Innovation - the government’s business innovation agency.

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Research and Development Grants

Research and Development Grants

If you’re in the early stages of research and development, the Getting Started grant could give you a kick-start to take your product, process or service solution from development through to commercialisation. Designed to help you navigate through common R&D roadblocks, from troubleshooting through to project planning, prototyping through to Intellectual Property strategies, the grant supports businesses to access the technical expertise necessary to take you in the right direction.

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Capability Voucher Funding

Capability Voucher Funding

Capability Voucher Funding helps business owners to access business training and coaching services by providing them with up to a 50% subsidy towards the registered cost of training/coaching. Such training and coaching services can help you to develop new skills and expertise in-house, and span the areas of business planning, marketing, finance, business systems, staff management, governance, sustainability, lean business, business operations and export development.

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Start-up Mentoring

Start-up Mentoring

The Business Mentors Start-up Programme provides six months of mentoring for people who have a new business idea or are looking for help in starting a new business. The mentors have a wide range of knowledge and experience in the start-up journey and will offer guidance, act as a sounding board, challenge your thinking, help you to validate your idea and support you in developing a business plan for your new venture.

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Incubators and Accelerators

Incubators and Accelerators

Being connected with the best advisor, partner, mentor or technology provider to lead you in the right direction is critical when it comes to starting a new business. As Nelson Tasman’s economic development agency, we can help to identify the expertise you need, connect you with our national and international networks, introduce you to like-minded businesses, provide you with access to shared facilities and leverage the Callaghan partnerships to help you take your idea to commercial reality.

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CO.STARTERS Programme

CO.STARTERS Programme

By bringing individuals together to learn from one another, and equipping them with the best tools and resources, the CO.STARTERS programme aims to build a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem from which we can create and support a thriving start-up community. The flagship offering of CO.STARTERS is a 9-week, cohort-based program that provides entrepreneurs of all kinds with the insights, relationships, and tools needed to turn their ideas into actionable business models.

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Angel Investment

Angel Investment

Taking the plunge and launching your own business can be overwhelming, but finding passionate, enthusiastic investors to assist in raising capital can help to ease some of the pressure whilst you get your new venture off the ground. Nelson Angels are a community of investors looking to grow their regional portfolio, offering guidance and financial support to entrepreneurs and innovators with a desire to turn their dreams into reality.

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