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Ākina Foundation – preparing social enterprises for take off

Launchpad, established in 2014/2015, is Ākina’s programme to get New Zealand’s best social enterprise ideas off the ground in six months.

It is an intensive accelerator that takes inspired business ideas and turns them into tested, investment-ready social enterprises through support, coaching and training from professionals and social enterprise experts from across New Zealand.

The programme offers teams the opportunity to learn the business skills needed to develop and run a successful social enterprise. Participants have access to start-up training, mentoring and leadership coaching and learn how to use business innovation processes to build a sustainable business model, covering Lean Startup, business modelling, strategy, finance, sales and marketing.

The accelerator concept is unique for New Zealand and Ākina recognises that there are high potential social enterprises in New Zealand that could greatly benefit from the guidance and expertise of other successful social entrepreneurs. It brings together experienced professionals from government departments, corporates, charities and community activists and entrepreneurs to share their knowledge and accelerate the ideas of others.

Ākina Foundation is a finalist in the 2015 NZI Sustainable Business Network Awards in the EcoPro Cleaning Co Community Innovation Award.