Audacious challenge expands

Ryoko de Burgh-Hirabe plays the drums during the launch of this year's Audacious business...
Ryoko de Burgh-Hirabe plays the drums during the launch of this year's Audacious business challenge. Photo by Peter McIntosh.

A Maori business category has been added to this year's Audacious business challenge.

To mark the addition, a kapa haka group from King's and Queen's High Schools performed at the challenge's launch at the Hunter Centre on Thursday night, attended by about 200 people.

The year-long student start-up challenge is jointly supported by the University of Otago, Otago Polytechnic and the Dunedin City Council.

The new category was for Maori students and any student with a Maori-focused idea, Audacious co-ordinator Kate Turnbull said.

Mentors would be allocated to the top teams at the end of round one and she hoped members of the Maori business community would get involved.

The other categories were Doing Good, which was about social entrepreneurship; Acting Now, an idea that could be brought to market quickly; Thinking Big, a big idea that could take some time to come to fruition; and Getting Creative, ideas with a competitive advantage through superior design.

An on-campus start-up ''space'' was also planned for this year, where anyone interested in start-ups, not just students, could gather.

Ms Turnbull, who would be based there, said it was hoped to be up and running by the time business ideas were submitted in early May.

First-round awards would be held later that month. The second round would involve students submitting a business plan and then pitching their concept in a Dragons' Den scenario. The final awards would be held in September.

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