Entrepreneurs swap small business stories at free event

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Rachelle Duffy, co-founder of Little Big Markets.
Rachelle Duffy, co-founder of Little Big Markets.

Rachelle Duffy, founder of Tauranga's Little Big Markets, will share the platform with former professional showjumper Marcus Wild and Wendy Thompson, the founder of Socialites, at free business event The Biz at Trinity Wharf tomorrow.

Ms Duffy set up Little Big Markets as an artisan market in 2009 with her husband, Chris. They have since expanded their business nationally and into event management.

At The Biz, she will speak about what the couple have learned while running their own business. "Small businesses tend to battle it out on their own, and not really have anyone they can relate to when it comes to their business models," she said.

"I think it's useful to be able to listen to other people's journeys so they can understand that everyone is pretty much in the same boat when it comes to creating and maintaining a business, and your customers and core values."

Ms Duffy said she and her husband were still learning every day.

"We're in the events game so it's a fickle industry. One day it can be sunny at an event and the next day it can be wet. We have a lot of hills we have to climb that are out of our control. It's been an incredible journey and I'm so excited to share my learnings with fellow locals."

Mr Wild was a showjumper until a near-fatal horse riding accident 13 years ago. He has since become general manager of 90 Seconds, a video production agency developing video strategies for brands including Xero and The New Zealand Racing Board. "It's so important that small businesses stick together and help each other, because it's tough running your own business and you can often feel alone," he said.

Ms Thompson grew her specialist social media agency, Socialites, from a one-woman entity in 2010 to New Zealand's largest such agency, which was listed on the Deloitte2015 Fast 50 (NZ) and Deloitte 2015 Technology Fast 500 Asia Pacific.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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