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Social Enterprise Startup Weekend, 16-18 August 2013 (6pm kickoff)
Te Ara Hihiko (The College of Creative Arts building)
Block 12, Massey University, Wellington

Startup Weekend is where positive, motivated people get together to form new businesses in a 54-hour marathon of inspiration, perspiration, collaboration, and fun! We attract experts, organisers, entrepreneurs, developers and designers of all skill levels in a friendly, welcoming, yet challenging environment.

Startup Weekend Wellington August 2013 will have a special focus on Social Enterprise.  We welcome anyone with an interest in social entrepreneurship to come along, learn how to turn your passion into a social enterprise, connect with like-minded people, and help build the next wave of socially-minded businesses.

What do we mean by social enterprise?  Glad you asked …

Social enterprises are organisations that:

  1. Have a purpose weighted to social or environmental impacts;

  2. Rely on some degree of trade to achieve that purpose.

The range of organisations that consider themselves ‘social enterprises’ is just as broad as the people who work in them.

Whether you’re an expert, organiser or volunteer, the common thread is a desire to make a difference, and the energy to make it happen. We’ll have inspirational people from all over Wellington including the business world, the public sector, NGOs, community groups, educational institutions – and we’d like you to join us!

We’re looking for positive people who have a passion for creating social or environmental outcomes, an interest in learning and building networks, and people who get excited about getting stuff done.

This Startup Weekend is about forming teams to build social enterprises over 54 hours. If you’ve got an idea for a social enterprise, this is the perfect place to bring it and pitch it to the rest of the participants. Otherwise, this is your chance to meet someone with an idea that you would love to work on.

We’ll begin this Startup Weekend on Friday at 6PM. We’ll spend some time for the participants to get to know one another, everyone to get to know the mentors and facilitators, and hear about how Startup Weekend works. Then people pitch their ideas to the crowd. Ten to fifteen concepts will attract viable teams around them. By late Friday night, teams will have sketched out their concepts in some detail and everyone will have roles assigned and an inkling of how they’re going to achieve their goals over the weekend.

Saturday morning is all about validation – teams will be contacting potential customers and stakeholders and finding out if there’s really a need for what they’re building. If not, they’ll need to pivot based on the information gleaned by “getting out of the building” and talking to people.

Meanwhile, developers and designers will be furiously building products, and teams will be attracting partners, advisers, and customers. Preparation of final 5-minute presentation will start on Sunday morning, because teams will need to pitch it by dinner time. After that, prizes will be awarded to the best teams.

Where you go from there is up to you. Many exciting businesses have come out of Startup Weekends and we’re sure there’ll be some amazing social enterprises emerging from this one.

Whether you are a social entrepreneur looking for a team to turn your idea into reality, or someone looking for something exciting to work on, or simply want to learn more about the world of start-ups and social enterprise – Startup Weekend is a fantastic way to test your own abilities and connect with great people along the way.

Tickets are selling fast! – register now to secure your place.



Aug 16
  • Optional pre-meet drinks at Southern Cross, Abel Smith St
  • Registrations open
  • Welcome & Speakers
  • Dinner & Networking
  • Pitches Start
  • Team Formation
  • Fill in Lean Canvas and define MVP
  • Prepare questions for validation on Saturday morning
  • Doors close, go home and get some rest!


Aug 17
  • Doors open
  • Coffee, croissants, and 1-minute pitches
  • Validation - hit the streets!
  • Lunch and 1-minute pitches
  • Integrate feedback from your validation. Pivot?
  • Dinner and 1-minute pitches
  • Start integrating all of the bits. Last chance to pivot!
  • Start working on your final 5-minute presentation in parallel
  • Doors close. Continue on elsewhere, or go home and get some rest.


Aug 18
  • Doors open
  • Coffee, bagels, and 1-minute pitches
  • Finish up your product, get users onboard, and put together your final 5-minute presentation
  • Lunch
  • Pitch coaches arrive
  • Gut check. Last chance to polish presentations!
  • Dinner break
  • Judging & awards
  • Go home!
Platinum Sponsors
Gold Sponsors

Alan Froggatt

Founder of Genratec   |   LinkedIn

Alan founded Genratec, an Integral Leadership Development and Generative Coaching company. Genratec has developed its own proprietary methodology, a platform chosen by over 2500 individuals, leaders, celebrities, entrepreneurs, business owners & others in over 7 countries to develop their capacity for professional performance. He has founded/co-founded several other business, including generating over a $1.2M profit for investors within the first year of business.

Kate Frykberg

Executive Director of the Todd Foundation   |   LinkedIn

Kate is currently Executive Director of the Todd Foundation, chair of Philanthropy NZ, chair of the Thinktank Charitable Trust and a board member of Conscious Consumers. Her previous appointments include the board of Quotable Value Limited, NZ Institute of Management and the Prime Minister's Science and Innovation Advisory Council.

Paul Spence

Co-founder at iwantmyname   |   LinkedIn

Paul is the co-founder and COO of iwantmyname, one of the most innovative web domain name registrars in the world. He is also a director at Ideegeo Research Ltd, a consultancy firm specialising in supporting technical startups. He has been a long time supporter of Startup Weekend having now been involved in 8 events.

MJ Kaplan

2013 Ian Axford Fellow   |   LinkedIn

Mary Jo (MJ) Kaplan is President of Kaplan Consulting in Providence, Rhode Island, a Partner at Social Venture Partners Rhode Island and an Adjunct Professor at Brown University. During MJ’s seven month Ian Axford Fellowship exchange to New Zealand she has been based at the Ministry of Social Development in Wellington and worked in collaboration with ASB Community Trust, researching social enterprise with a focus on the youth pipeline and start-up enterprises.

Silver Sponsors

Lara Charles

Executive Director at Planet Goodness   |   LinkedIn

Lara has a big heart for all things ‘good’ coupled with 12 years business and marketing experience. Her experience ranges from corporate organisations such as Fairfax, to community organisations such as UNEP’s Clean Up the World. She is one of the founders of eDay, New Zealand’s e-waste recycling event. Lara loves cuddles with her little girl and baby boy, travel, tramping, her Saturday morning yoga class and just hanging with her husband, family and close friends.

Sam Ng

Founder of Optimal Usability, currently Grit Learning educational charity   |   LinkedIn

Sam Ng was the co-founder of Optimal Usability (NZ design consultancy), Optimal Experience (Australian design consultancy) and Optimal Workshop (global software tools provider). Having gained experience in these high growth businesses, Sam is now pursuing his passion for combining business with poverty alleviation and social justice issues.

Martina Battisti

Senior Lecturer, Small Business Management and Entrepreneurship, Massey University   |   LinkedIn

Martina is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Management at Massey University and Deputy Director and Senior Researcher in the New Zealand Centre for SME Research. Her research is centred on small business and entrepreneurship. She is particularly interested in the factors that contribute to business growth and the role of policy and support programmes. Martina has also undertaken commissioned research and consultancy for a number of government agencies in New Zealand.

Stefan Korn

CEO at Creative HQ, Director at WebFund Ltd   |   LinkedIn

Stefan is keenly involved in Startup Weekend New Zealand, bringing a Ph.D in Artificial Intelligence to the table, not to forget extensive experience in building transactional web-based businesses. Stefan founded Wellington tech investment fund WebFund to help leverage his own experience to help take web-based Kiwi startups to the world and was recently appointed CEO of Creative HQ. He is one of the founding team behind, and teaches at a local community college. He also admits to producing his own music and videos.

Rowan Yeoman

Tech Entrepreneur, Investor, Consultant   |   LinkedIn

Rowan is interested in technology and innovation that is going to impact the world positively. He has a passion for working with and creating high performing teams of inspired and committed individuals. His background includes experience with practice methodologies that allow groups of individuals to consistently deliver great results on things that matter.

Linc Gasking

Serial tech entrepreneur   |   LinkedIn

Linc is a serial startup entrepreneur passionate about trying to solve
big problems with collaboration. Linc has started dozens of companies
during the past twenty years in Australia, New Zealand and the United
States. This includes, acquired by DreamWorks,
Imagine Entertainment and Vulcan Ventures in 2000.

Some of the startups and organizations Linc is currently involved in:,,, and

Melissa Clark-Reynolds

Founder of Seven Dragons &   |   LinkedIn

Melissa Clark-Reynolds, of Wellington, is a serial entrepreneur and business leader. In 2009, Melissa founded MiniMonos, the virtual world for boys aged 8 -12, designed around the values of sustainability and generosity.
Melissa has been a judge for the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awards and she is a member of advisory boards of several technology companies.

Rochelle Furneaux

Director, Enspiral Legal   |   LinkedIn

Rochelle Furneaux is a lawyer with 16 years experience as a litigator and mediator. Her passion and area of specialty is in Intellectual Property, particularly as it relates to technology and the interwebz. Rochelle has worked with and advised the Open Source community on various projects. She is perpetually curious, and has been known to crochet the odd iPhone and iPad cover.

Geoff Brash

Co-founder SLI Systems, Deputy Chair of Canterbury Software Cluster   |   LinkedIn

Software startup co-founder with expertise in software development, business management, marketing and finance. Geoff is best known as co-founder of SLI Systems, a leading SaaS based site search company. Geoff has a mix of technical and business skills and has held a variety of roles including Engineering Manager, VP of Marketing, and CFO. Geoff is deputy chair of Canterbury Software, Inc., a volunteer supporter of the Ministry of Awesome, and adviser to a number of software companies. Geoff has an MBA from Massey University.

Philippa Dawe

Creative Director at Alexander Rose   |   LinkedIn

With 20 years design, branding and marketing experience in NZ, Australia, USA and the UK, Philippa has been a visual design leader for high profile brands such as Herman Miller, Pimm’s, Renault, Marks and Spencer, BNZ, Te Papa, NZ Olympics and more. With one eye on business strategy and the other on precision execution, she can transport your brand from an annual report, to an integrated press and online campaign, to a retail space and back again.

Silvia Zuur

Co-Founder at Chalkle   |   LinkedIn

Silvia is a lifelong learner/educator and an renowned organiser of educational events. She has taught in West Africa and USA in addition to designing & organising conference/workshops in Europe and USA on innovative education methods. Her work includes Watts Possible (program in LA to rehabilitate gang youth) and Backpackers (program in Switzerland to develop alternative education for youth), as well as mentoring the start of the Youth Initiative Program in Sweden ( Now back in Wellington she works full time as the CEO, Co-Founder of chalkle°.

Chelsea Robinson

Co-Chair, Generation Zero   |   LinkedIn

Chelsea is the Co-Chair of Generation Zero, as well as a key force for good within the Enspiral community. She has been a New Zealand Youth Delegate to the United Nations Climate Negotiations and a Convenor of the Delegation in 2010. Inspired by the power of collective hope transformed into collective action, Chelsea remains involved in numerous organisations including ReGeneration, Generation Waking Up and Intersect.

Michael Elwood-Smith

High Growth Business Leader and Startup Coach   |   LinkedIn

An experienced strategist and entrepreneur with an electronics engineering degree. Michael’s career in ICT in NZ, UK and Switzerland, and work at Creative HQ with many successful entrepreneurs provides a rich background to help people working in startups and high-growth companies. Michael is a practitioner of ‘lean startup’ and ‘business model canvas’

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