This week the Foundation will be hosting the group – coming from Beijing, Chengdu, Hong Kong, and Taiwan – in a whirlwind tour of New Zealand’s agribusiness hotspots.
The group are an exciting and diverse group of people, including agritech and biotech start-up founders and leaders from multi-billion-dollar companies in North Asia.
“This is an exciting first step in the expansion of the Foundation’s entrepreneurship programme. We’ve been successfully connecting Southeast Asia and New Zealand for more than seven years now, but opening it up to North Asia means a whole new world of opportunities,” says Director Entrepreneurship and Leadership Adam McConnochie.
The aim of the programme is to give the entrepreneurs an opportunity to learn more about the New Zealand business environment, with a focus on agriculture, and explore opportunities to increase trade between New Zealand and North Asia.
The group will be visiting iconic New Zealand agricultural brands such as Tip Top, Zespri and Comvita and newer players such as Spring Sheep Milk.
“This is a great chance for a two-way conversation about where the opportunities, challenges and innovation are in our respective regions. Learning from each other is a great foundation for connection too,” says McConnochie.
The entrepreneurs will be at the country’s largest agricultural event, Fieldays, on 14 June, and will also have a day-long session with some of New Zealand’s agribusiness up-and-comers in Raglan on June 15.
The Asia New Zealand Foundation entrepreneurship programme supports emerging New Zealand entrepreneurs to build connections and facilitate business relationships in Asia and supports entrepreneurs from Asia to build connections in New Zealand. The Southeast Asia entrepreneurship programme has been made possible with the support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade through the ASEAN Young Business Leaders Initiative (YBLI).
About the visiting entrepreneurs
Stella is the Senior Investment Manager of Grass Green Group (GGG). GGG is in the fast-moving consumer goods sector, specifically dairy and milk powder products, condiments, healthcare and food supplements, and pet food and products. Parent company New Hope Dairy has 85 companies in the group and is valued at NZD$3.5 billion. Stella has studied and worked in China, Sweden, Hong Kong, US and South Korea and holds two management Master’s degrees, one from Peking University (China) and the other from Seoul National University (Korea).
Raymond is the co-founder and CEO of Farmacy HK, an agri-tech start-up based in Hong Kong’s Cyberport business park. Farmacy enables smart city farming through new generation hydroponic, aeroponic technology, and botanic research. Farmacy leads the “farming decentralisation” movement and promotes the seed-to-table experience, with the goal of making a sustainable green lifestyle possible in urbanised areas worldwide.
Xania is a wine consultant and the founder of Xantana Wine, offering customised wine solutions to wineries, wine trades and corporates. She is a certified Wine and Spirits Educational Trust educator (UK) and diploma holder, a wine judge and a wine writer. She has travelled to Italy and France to acquire her wine making skills.
She also founded JOBDOH, an award-winning smart-hiring platform connecting employers with temporary workers.
Yu-De is Founder and CEO of Tsaitung Agriculture, which connects farmers and their customers. He started Tsaitung as a platform to help restaurants buy vegetables and fruits directly from farmers and managed the supply chain using data and internet technology to improve efficiency. In the past 18 months he has bootstrapped the team from one man to 35 people and grew the business by double-digits month-on-month. Yu-De holds dual Master’s in Environmental Science and Applied Economics from the University of Michigan and has a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering Science from National Taiwan University. He is a proud dad of two girls and works hard to ensure modern agriculture serve the next generation well.
Jui-Mei is the CEO of Lacewing Biotech, which provides a agricultural diagnosis service to farmers and trades farm-friendly insect species which are reared to solve specific problems by using their natural biological characteristics. She is working to become a part of the movement away from the use of chemical pesticides. Jui-Mei graduated from Otago University in 2015. She has been one of the few businesses to receive funding from the Chinese government for Small Business Innovation Research.
Lili is the General Manager of Sichuan Zhong An Testing, a safety testing facility for food and agriculture products. She is also the General Manager of JinManTang Agricultural Development, which has 500 acres of peaches, grapes, mushrooms and other produce. Lili graduated from Sichuan Agricultural University with a Master’s in agriculture, and a doctorate in molecular biology. Lili has won the China Youth Entrepreneurship Award, as well as being named a National Science and Technology Leader. She is also the vice president of Sichuan Women’s Green Planting Development Promotion Association - leading more than 400 women farmers in the Sichuan Province.
Nan founded Mia.com in 2011 with the ambition of providing the best goods to China’s parents and children. In 2014, her e-commerce site was launched with sales of tens of millions in the first month. In 2015 Mia gained investment from Sequoia Capital, Baidu, ZhenFund, K2VC and H Capital. She has also created retail lines both online and offline in 2017, with more than 50 Mia shops in 20 provinces. Mia.com is currently valued at over $1.1 billion NZD. She has also worked with New Zealand factories to develop her own brand of baby and child products.
For more information, please contact Director Communications and Media Rebecca Inoue-Palmer on 04 471 2320.