Straight from the horse’s mouth: News from our enterprises, *interview style*

It’s hard to believe that the three business owners we onboarded in 2023 are roughly two thirds into their year-long journey with All Good Ventures already. One year really does fly by about as fast as a viral product launch (to us at least!).

In our last venture update, Michelle from Ripple Movement, “the Sam’s” (we fondly call them) from HEZA Initiative, and John and Julian from Jabulani Rural Health Foundation (JRHF) had just been paired with a business mentor tasked with guiding them through the next 10 months of business.

Now it’s time to hear from them again. How has their mentoring experience really gone so far? What key milestones have they conquered? And what obstacles and triumphs have marked their business journey? Let’s find out…

“You’ve been with your All Good Ventures business mentor a few months now. What have you found most rewarding about working with them?”

  • Michelle, Ripple Movement: “Having someone completely outside of my bubble to use as a sounding board and keep my emotions, fears and ideas in check.”

  • Julian, JRHF: “Getting guidance on becoming more profit-driven and setting up our social enterprise for success. The support with setting up financial reports and statements has been particularly game changing. Now we can assess the business's status and leverage financial data to shape our strategy and decisions. We've also enjoyed learning how to accurately measure and effectively utilise key performance indicators to monitor business performance."

  • Sam, HEZA Initiative: “Our mentor’s overall support has been great. He has helped us carefully examine how our business will work in practice, and make changes so it’s sustainable into the future.

“You’ve continued to work HARD on your business since we spoke last. What significant business milestones have you achieved in the past three months?”

  • Julian, JRHF: We’ve started implementing a new POS system to upgrade our café operations. Our gross sales have also surged by over 50% compared to last year. Plus, we've consistently achieved break-even or near-break-even performance for the past few months.

  • Michelle, Ripple Movement: “Most importantly, we’ve provided 144 kids with a Gear Box containing all the essential clothing they need for the year.

    To date, we have processed 1219kg of clothing (over 1 tonne) in total. That’s 10,029 individual items, of which 6,589 have been re-used, 3,166 recycled, 34 repaired, and 240 repurposed. In total that’s a prevention of 534kgs of CO2 emissions entering the atmosphere.

    We also have our business Gear Drive running in three separate Downer Group offices in Auckland. Downer Group have donated almost 1,000 items through this initiative.”

  • Sam, HEZA Initiative: “Our biggest milestone has been finalising our business strategy. We've decided to focus on building the egg distribution side of our business first. This is the part of the business that will generate cashflow. As this grows, we will start the poultry supply part of the business, better known as the chicken farm.

    Specific to the egg distribution side of the business, we've created a booklet to educate potential customers about the health benefits of consuming eggs. To test this, we recently attended an exhibition, selling eggs and using the booklet alongside sales."  

“We know there’s ALWAYS something to do when starting a business. What are the key things you’re working on right now in your enterprise?”

  • Michelle, Ripple Movement: “Building awareness amongst families and businesses about what Ripple does. I’m also delving into product development related to our recycled textiles, to create an additional revenue stream as well as establish a circular business model.”

  • Julian, JRHF: “Continuing to get our new POS system up and running smoothly. We're also working on locking down our health and safety certification. Achieving break even for each of the individual business units in our Livelihoods Centre is also top of mind.”

  • Sam, HEZA Initiative: “Testing our egg distribution model. We're attending exhibitions and conducting market research to understand customer interest and demand. Once we've gathered data and feedback, we plan to establish an egg kiosk as the next step in our distribution strategy."

“Time for highs and lows. What’s one thing you’re enjoying about working in your enterprise right now? And what’s the thing you finding most challenging?

  • Michelle, Ripple Movement: “I love being able to execute on my ideas and develop the next phase for Ripple. Spreading the word about Ripple is challenging, as-is finding a physical space to expand into."

  • Sam, HEZA Initiative: “We're enjoying the journey of building a sustainable business that empowers our community. We're excited about adding innovative ideas, like egg powder production and waste recycling, into our egg hub. Our main challenge is securing early resources like donations, grants, and partnerships to strengthen our enterprise and ensure its success.”

  • Julian, JRHF: “I’m enjoying learning about consumer trends and discovering what drives fluctuations in sales. I like using these insights to enhance our sales strategies. I also enjoy keeping our coffee shop offerings ‘dynamic’ with special promotions or by introducing new products. Most challenging is balancing the need to run the business efficiently and effectively, while also maintaining good relationships and the social aspect of the enterprise. It’s a juggle!”

“Is there any practical way that our followers can support your business right now? How?”

  • Michelle, Ripple Movement: “Individuals can purchase clothing collection bags, and businesses can sponsor a work Gear Drive (visit our website for how). Also, anyone can follow us on Facebook or LinkedIn and share content - or simply tell your friends and family! Lastly, if anyone has ideas for a space in Auckland to work from as Ripple continues to grow, please email me, I’d love to talk.”

  • Sam, HEZA Initiative: "We’re looking for specific expertise in a few areas First, conducting market surveys; second, formulating an effective fundraising strategy; and third, identifying potential donors. If you can help in any of these areas, whether through expertise or connections, please email us."

  • Julian, JRHF: “By simply spreading awareness of the work that Jabulani Rural Health Foundation does. Visit our website to learn more. And share our posts on Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram."


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