About the
entrepreneurship programme

Our Entrepreneurship programme supports emerging New Zealand entrepreneurs to build connections and facilitate business relationships in Asia.

What do we do?

We get entrepreneurs on the ground in the Asia, receiving briefings from experts and meeting people working in their industry sectors, including entrepreneurs we have worked with in the past and brought to New Zealand.

We hope by providing these experiences, the entrepreneurs we support will to return to New Zealand and share what they have learnt with colleagues, mentors and others in their sectors.

How do we do this?

We do this by taking groups of New Zealand entrepreneurs to Asia on industry-specific trips to build their knowledge and confidence and develop connections. 

We also bring leading Southeast Asian entrepreneurs to New Zealand to build their connections and networks here.

We host inspirational events where participants can learn what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur and to thrive in Asia.  

Our vision is an interconnected global network of entrepreneurs sharing, learning and supporting each other in their business success.


Entrepreneurship programme FAQs

How are participants chosen?

New Zealand candidates are chosen by the Foundation in consultation with New Zealand’s offshore diplomatic posts and domestic industry experts. 

Participants must be aged under 40, and interested in building international connections and exploring business opportunities between New Zealand and Southeast Asia. 

What comes out of participating in the programme?

A wide range of companies have participated in this programme, resulting in productive deals, agreements and joint ventures.

Many worthwhile business relationships have been forged, with participants gaining deeper knowledge and understanding of each other’s business cultures and opportunities.

Do you host events?

We run a number of events in New Zealand throughout the year. We don’t run ‘how to do business in Asia’ sessions. Instead, we aim to inspire by having  people share their successes, failures and lessons learnt.

We call these Start-up Secrets for tech-related events and Tasty Business for food and beverage events. Our Asia After Five series also often features our entrepreneurs from both New Zealand and Southeast Asia.

What is the follow up?

We periodically bring ‘YBLIs’ together so they can share where they are on their entrepreneurial journey, especially as it relates to Asia.

Participants in the YBLI programme frequently note that the connections they make with other participants are often some of the most valuable they make while engaged in the programme.

We publish stories celebrating success and maintain an active social media network to keep the connections active. This is most frequently used when people are travelling and looking for contacts and information in a particular region.

What other organisations are involved?

  • The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade 
  • New Zealand Trade and Enterprise 
  • The ASEAN New Zealand Business Council.


For more information about this programme, email [email protected].