The greater part of next week will see me, in my role as a board member of Enterprise North Canterbury, attending the Economic Development NZ Conference. The theme of the conference is “Growing an Export Economy” and it is a challenging time for this conference given the recent announcements by Fisher&Paykel Appliances that it will shift its NZ laundry appliance factory to Thailand and the possibility of Sleepyhead doing the same.

It is interesting to read about the incentives being offered to F&PA by the Thai government and perhaps time for us in New Zealand to look at these sorts of incentives. Talk fests and governments agencies can help, education is key, but at the end of the day these need to sit side by side with incentives to attract and retain businesses to our country.

In any case I’ll report back from the conference with any positive or novel concepts for dragging our economy out of its current mire.

Ben Kepes

Ben Kepes is a technology evangelist, an investor, a commentator and a business adviser. Ben covers the convergence of technology, mobile, ubiquity and agility, all enabled by the Cloud. His areas of interest extend to enterprise software, software integration, financial/accounting software, platforms and infrastructure as well as articulating technology simply for everyday users.

  • Hi Ben,

    This looks an interesting program. It would be handy to be able to drop in for the odd session but I’m a bit over structured conferences. I’d be keen to hear your take on it if you have time.



  • It would be interesting to get some independent economic analysis on both the Telecom spin-out plan and the net value gained or lost from the laundry factories heading offshore (dishwashers will go next, Dunedin).

    I can understand the business benefits for F&P in outsourcing or relocating their manufacturing offshore, but what does it cost their brand over time? We’re seen a myriad of businesses head offshore over the years and I’m unsure that any cumulative net economic gain has ever been calculated …

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