25 November 2014

Collaborate Canterbury ramping up for the rebuild

Collaborate Canterbury Media Release

Collaborate Canterbury has ramped up their support for local businesses with the The Canterbury Employers’ Chamber of Commerce (CECC), through the support of New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE), recruiting a dedicated Case Manager to drive the Collaborate Canterbury initiative to assist to build scale and meet increasingly tight market constraints.

The existing web portal service will be boosted by this new resource who will help facilitate and case manage businesses interested in collaboration, and connect them with rebuild opportunities.

The web portal was set up to enable businesses from both inside and outside the region, nationally and internationally, to create a business profile and then find potential collaborative matches. However, what has become apparent is the need for this service to be strengthened through facilitation and ongoing case management to assist businesses to take that next step in forming some type of collaborative partnership. “To get the most impact from this important initiative we need to be actively involved in assisting businesses to build their models. While providing advice and support to those working on a smaller scale, we also aim to have a proactive approach, working with our partners to source opportunities, and linking businesses as appropriate” said Leeann Watson, General Manager, CECC.

“Now that we are 25% into the rebuild and $100 million is being spent in Canterbury a week, with a projected $40-$45 billion total spend, the pressure is very much on. Canterbury is strengthening capacity already through our productive economy, our labour market, and the some of the successful collaborations we have seen already in the early stages of the rebuild, and we want to grow this further for the benefit of all New Zealand. We also want to assist businesses to grow their capability through the sharing of expertise, resources and even people through creating strong partnerships that will exist beyond the rebuild of Christchurch and create longer term international opportunities. Now is the right time to extend this programme” said Leeann Watson.

Kate Flower has been appointed in the role of Collaborate Canterbury Manager, and Liz Thompson from Core Consulting Canterbury Ltd, will also be providing Collaborate Canterbury Consultation services as required by businesses.

The key objectives for the team are to:

•explore the opportunities that currently, and will in the future, exist within the rebuild work scope

•build awareness of Collaborate Canterbury locally, nationally and internationally

• create a robust and valuable database of those both seeking and offering opportunities to collaborate

•Introduce and case managing the building of appropriate collaborate arrangements

•Provide the tools, resources and advice to build a sustainable collaborative model.

Collaborate Canterbury was established in 2012 with the aim to assist local businesses build scale through collaborating with businesses from outside the region nationally and internationally. The service is operated by the CECC.

Initially demand from outside the region more than tripled that from local construction and related sectors, however over that past six months, local businesses have steadily increased their appetite for collaboration as a mechanism to build scale.

Registering does not commit businesses to anything, however it does provide a great overview of the companies outside the region that are interested in potential collaboration and the skills, expertise and resources that are on offer.

Businesses from outside the region are coming to Christchurch and the CECC is advocating very strongly for them to collaborate with local businesses who have the connections and the ability to unlock the economic opportunities. Their message to local companies is to maximise the opportunities through creating partnerships to and build scale with the organisations from outside of Christchurch, including offshore, who are entering the market. Many businesses attempting to break into the Christchurch rebuild market who are coming in cold, versus setting up a relationship with a local company, have found it extremely difficult.

The service is free for local Christchurch businesses.

For more information:

Kate Flower

Collaborate Canterbury Manager

DDI: 03 353 0308