Empowering Māori Business Through Partnership: Poutama and PledgeMe

    The PledgeMe team is happy to announce we are officially partnering with Poutama Trust!

    What is Poutama Trust?

    Poutama Trust is an independent charitable trust established in 1988 to provide business development services to Māori. They are currently supporting over 3,000 Māori businesses through their services.

    Poutama’s projects involve connecting Māori businesses to form collectives. These include Tuku (the world’s first collective of Māori winemakers), KĀHUI Collective (a group of Māori fashion designers) and MIHI (a collective of around 20 businesses, both Māori and non-Māori, working in the medicinal cannabis and hemp space).

    MIHI members (Source: Poutama Trust)

    By consolidating micro businesses into small-to-medium sized enterprises, Poutama facilitates the pooling of resources and knowledge. As a result, the micro businesses have a greater chance at success. The organisation also actively works with Māori businesses to help them build a business plan for sustainable growth and supports a select number of the businesses through investment.

    Why are PledgeMe and Poutama Partnering?

    PledgeMe and Poutama have realised that we both have the same goal. We both want to help fund Māori businesses. 

    At PledgeMe, we’ve set an impact goal for ourselves to have 15% of our equity crowdfunding campaigns led by Māori, Pasifika or Torres Strait founders. With the goal of supporting indigenous business, PledgeMe partnered with Māori Women’s Development in 2018 to create Tā Koha, a way for Māori businesses to raise funds from their crowd. Through the Tā Koha program, three Māori businesses successfully activated their crowd for funding, including Ngahere Communities

    While Māori organisations have crowdfunded successfully on our platform since then, such as Waitakaruru Honey Limited and (more recently) IndigiShare, we’ve been exploring ways to make more impact.

    Our partnership with Poutama Trust means more Māori businesses will have the opportunity to activate their crowds for funding. The Poutama team will help Māori businesses in need of funding know more about crowdfunding  as an option. The PledgeMe team are working with Poutama to train Māori Delivery Facilitators, who will be contracted by PledgeMe to work with Māori businesses coming through the PledgeMe CFU equity crowdfunding programme.

    If we have a Māori campaigner that could use business development services, we can refer them to the Poutama team. Our partnership means Māori businesses and founders can be supported for both business development and raising investment.

    It’s a win-win-win!

    KĀHUI Collective members (Source: Poutama Trust)

    How will the partnership help Māori businesses?

    The main purpose of this partnership is to help Māori businesses secure investment to grow. 

    However, there are many additional benefits which could come along with it, from forming a business development plan with Poutama to identifying the members of their crowd and leveraging those relationships. We’re really excited to embark on this journey with Poutama and help more Māori fund the things they care about!

    Would you like to learn more about the partnership, or are you a Māori founder or business looking for business development services or wanting to learn how to activate your crowd for funding? Feel free to get in touch!

    PledgeMe: contact@pledgeme.co.nz

    Poutama Trust: poutama@poutama.co.nz

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *