First 3 finalists for $50,000 Growth Grant announced

Ryan Boyd
First 3 finalists for $50,000 Growth Grant announced

With hundreds of SMEs entering the Westpac Business Growth Grants, the judges had a difficult job whittling down the entries to a top 10 who receive one day’s worth of free business consultancy.

Even tougher was getting this down to 6 that will attend the NurtureChange Business Retreat in Fiji on 11-15 November as well as present to a panel of judges for the chance to win a $40,000 Westpac Business Growth Grant and $10,000 worth of advertising

Here are the first 3 who need to be getting their passports ready. The second batch of finalists can be found here.


Hireace/Clouth Investments Limited


100% Kiwi owned and operated, Hireace was established by Clouth Investments Limited in 1996 and today have 9 locations nationwide.

Always looking at how they can continue to grow, they have become leaders of innovation in the field of commercial vehicle and trailer rental. They were the first company in New Zealand to offer self-serve kiosks for the rental of trailers.

But it’s not just technology Hireace invests in, with a serious dedication to getting great staff and developing improved training practices so that they can provide flexible, friendly, and efficient service.


Chia Ltd


A funny little seed that packs a punch far above its own weight is the magic behind the success of Chia, a drinks company that leads the healthy functional beverage scene.

What started out as an endurance drink for athletes 3 years ago has evolved to cater for anyone who could do with a nutrient boost.

For such a young company its success has been fast – employing 3 people from its Nelson base, and being stocked in more than 400 locations.

Chia intends to continue driving growth in export markets and wants to replicate its New Zealand success globally.  



Everfresh trucks

Started in November 2000, Everfresh Ltd is a Hastings based family owned transport business grown around the local harvest season, carting produce grown from the sunny Hawke’s Bay to the world.

They have big plans to not only help grow the company, but also upskill the community.

Seeing a major driver shortage and an average age of 50-60 in a male dominated industry, their plan is to target lower socio-economic areas of Hawke’s Bay to get school leavers on track to a great career in the transport industry.


Rounding out the top 10

As mentioned earlier, finalising the top 6 meant some truly great entries missed the cut. However, all SMEs that made the top 10 will receive up to one day’s worth of free business consultancy across a variety of chosen topics.

Along with the top 6, these companies are:


More finalists coming soon

The last 3 finalists will be profiled here on Friday, and all 6 will get the chance to make their case for the ultimate Growth Grant package to a panel of judges on Thursday, 27 August at Westpac’s Auckland office.

Following the judges’ deliberation, the winner will be announced that evening, receiving

Furthermore, all 6 finalists will also be invited to NurtureChange, a business retreat in Fiji featuring impressive line-up of speaks including Sir Graham Henry. 

SEE ALSO: Final 3 SMEs named to compete for $50,000 Growth Grant

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