BDO Releases Māori Business Survey Report

Friday 29 November 2019, 3:46PM
By Beckie Wright

BDO New Zealand has released results from their 2019 Māori Business Survey Report, which surveyed over 100 Māori businesses of different sizes and from different industries throughout New Zealand. The survey was designed to determine what priorities, opportunities, and challenges exist within the Māori economy.

The findings showed that 55% of the respondents indicated a strong cultural, social and environmental purpose. 22% of the respondents desired to be profitable, making it a secondary purpose.

When it comes to success, it is evident that improving the lives of their family (whanau) comes first, with 80% of respondents saying they have a strategic plan in place, signaling that Māori businesses are planning ahead. The core focus for the next five years is growing wealth and prosperity of people, while prioritising sustainability and doubling efforts to protect the environment.

According to Kylee Potae, BDO New Zealand’s Head of Māori Business, the goal of Māori businesses is to lift performance and grow capital assets. She concluded: “This means conserving capital against inflation while providing sustainable growth. What is unique to Māori business is the fact that these objectives extend to protecting and preserving the environment and people.”

The survey also summarised the key challenges of Māori businesses, which are recruitment of people with necessary skills, and lack of support from the government. However, the survey reports that there is a positive response to these challenges, including cultural pride and language retention. 

Meng Foon, New Zealand’s newly appointed Race Relations Commissioner, commented: “It is timely for this research piece conducted by BDO, Māori economic prosperity is increasing in knots and many Māori businesses are accelerating.” He continued, saying that “Māori are large players in NZ’s economy, the wheels are in motion for big influences in all sectors of the national economy.”

To download the survey report, visit the BDO website at