Research Project to support migrant start-ups

Venkat Raman

A research project to support new migrant businesses and connect them with other stakeholders and support organisations in New Zealand has just been launched in Auckland, with the vision of expanding its scope and purpose nationwide.

‘Cultural Connections,’ an Auckland-based Multicultural Research and Consulting firm, has initiated the Research Project called, ‘Migrant Entrepreneurs in New Zealand,’ and is working with a number of organisations to effect a meaningful engagement with emerging entrepreneurs and help them grow.

Leader and Supporters

Auckland Regional Migrant Services (ARMS) is leading the Project in partnership with the Auckland Council and Immigration New Zealand. Cultural Connections will bring value to the Research Project with its wide networking capability and the expertise and experience of its Founder-Director Eric Chuah.

“The Purpose of this Research is to understand better how migrants start their businesses, the challenges that they face and the support that they need. The results of this research will be published on the websites of ARMS and Cultural Connections in August 2018,” he said.

Mr Chuah said that respondents to the Study will provide information about their businesses and whether they are willing to use their experience to help other businesses that are at the start-up stage or in need.

Participants’ Eligibility

Participants in the Study should be 18 years and above, born outside New Zealand and be running their own businesses in New Zealand.

The Survey would take about ten minutes and the respondents will be automatically entered to win one of the following: (a) One Fitbit Alta valued $229 (b) Two Business Clinic Appointments with a Business Advisor at the Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED), (c) Three Business Growth Strategy Sessions with ‘Momentum’ and (d) Two $50 Prezzy Cards

“All participants will also be invited to attend webinars or Business Workshops organised by BNZ. We value privacy and hence we will not share the personal details of participants. Data collected will be analysed at an aggregate level and will not be used for other purposes,” Mr Chuah said.

About Cultural Connections

Launched in February 2017, Cultural Connections, a social enterprise specialising in researching on issues relating to migrants, is inviting migrants to enlist on its research panels and enable them to progress in their professions and entrepreneurial efforts.

The initiative is New Zealand’s first social enterprise.

Mr Chuah said that about 25% of the population of New Zealand were born overseas and that there are numerous community groups (some well-known, some, not so) supporting migrants, and an increasing number of companies are treating migrants as a discreet customer segment.

“Companies have tapped into the fact that the migrant customer segment can be up to 10 times more profitable than mainstream customer segments. However, there is very little data available to understand how migrants are settling into Kiwi life, let alone how they make purchase decisions,” he said.

“At the same time, I come across new community groups all the time doing amazing things, supporting new migrants arriving in New Zealand,” he added.

Mr Chah said that these groups need more financial support as they gear up to support the anticipated record high migration levels.

“I believe that there is an opportunity to fulfil the needs of migrants and the community groups that support them; and there are many companies that are keen to do business with the migrant customer segment. Cultural Connections was established to fulfil such a need,” he said.

www.culturalconnections.co.nz/entrepreneurs

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Phone Caption:

  1. New migrants understand the challenges they face, but we need to know to help

(Picture from Cultural Connections Website)

  1. Eric Chuah (Picture Supplied)
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