Accountant leads way in seizing the chances

Jono Bredin, recipient of the future business leader award at the Westpac Otago Chamber of...
Jono Bredin, recipient of the future business leader award at the Westpac Otago Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Awards. Photo by Jane Dawber.
Jono Bredin represents a new generation of southern leaders, and the tax accountant says he is prepared to stand up and contribute.

The 25-year-old head of tax at Dunedin accountants Keogh McCormack is from Generation Y, and he said there were real business opportunities in the city and wider province.

It was up to people like him to tell their peers - fellow Generation Ys - what those opportunities were, and the most obvious audience was at the University of Otago.

Mr Bredin said with assets such as the university and its production line of technology and research, the city had a steady supply of opportunities for young people.

"It's a matter of trying to get more of them to stay. UpStart [business incubator] and the Centre for Innovation are steps in the right direction," he said.

Add city attractions and infrastructure such as the Forsyth Barr Stadium and the Academy of Sport and Mr Bredin said there was plenty of supporting structure to attract people to live in Otago.

It was vital for the city's future that young people were lured to stay and set up businesses here, and Mr Bredin said people like him had to be involved in that.

"It's up to us to be proactive. We want to be involved going forward," he said.

Two platforms he is using to sell Dunedin and Otago are the Dunedin Young Professionals group and the Otago branch of the NZ Institute of Chartered Accountants, which both work with students in their final year of study.

The winner of the future business leader at the recent Westpac Otago Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Awards, Mr Bredin talks extensively about building meaningful relationships, developing contacts, inclusive leadership and helping people succeed.

He was lured to accounting by the attraction of mixing business and numbers, and then he discovered he enjoyed dealing with taxation issues.

"I discovered the tax side of things. I was attracted by the issues of working with legislation, something I found interesting," he said.

With tax, everyone was different, and while most people did not mind paying their share, they did not want to pay more than they had to.

In the final year of his bachelor of commerce, he focused on tax, gaining knowledge that he was able to put into practice in August this year when he moved to Keogh McCormack as head of tax.

Leadership was something Mr Bredin said he enjoyed and aspired to.

When at Gore High School, he was the pupil representative on the board of trustees and a prefect.

The chance to head the taxation group at Keogh McCormack was a major attraction.

His leadership qualities were also acknowledged in 2008 and 2009 when he was a finalist in the New Zealand Institute of Chartered Accountants outstanding new member leadership award, and earlier this year when he was one of 50 young NZ business leaders to visit Japan at the invitation of the Japanese Government to learn about its economy, politics and culture.

Mr Bredin said that from that visit, future economic and business relationships could be nurtured.

That attitude pretty much summarises his approach to life.

"For me, at this stage of my career, it's about building meaningful relationships, with clients and potential referrals."

He has also adopted a leadership role in netball, where he has umpired 26 test matches as well as transtasman netball championship matches, and officiated at the 2010 Commonwealth Games.

His love of the sport was nurtured at high school, where he played netball but was also obliged to take turns umpiring.

He was identified as having potential and the rest is history.

Mr Bredin said he enjoyed the speed and excitement of netball - but he is a bit biased, given he met his wife, Marise Stuart, through the sport, in which she too is an umpire.

Netball umpiring provided excellent business training, he said, because, like in business, people constantly questioned and tested him until they developed trust.

Mr Bredin is deputy chairman of the Dunedin Netball Centre board and convener of the Otago umpire assessment panel, and this involvement shows another side to him.

"The big thing for me is I want to add value to things. I want to help and make things better."


Bredin file


• Jono Bredin (25).
• Born Gore.
• Attended Gore High School.
2003-04: Accounting trainee Ward Wilson, Invercargill.
2005-06: Completed bachelor of commerce and certificate of sports studies at University of Otago.
2007-10: Accountant PricewaterhouseCoopers, Dunedin.
2008, 2009: Finalist NZ Institute of Chartered Accountants outstanding new member leadership award.
2010: One of 50 young NZ business leaders to visit Japan at invitation of Japanese Government.
August 2010: joined Keogh McCormack as head of tax.
• Married to Marise Stuart, a medical student.
• International netball umpire.
• Winner future business leader at the Westpac Otago Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Awards.


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