Forum focus on learning skills

By Hannah Norton

The first Business After 5 (BA5) event of 2013 has been hosted by tertiary education providers Te Wananga O Aotearoa, based at Raumanga.

Te Wananga O Aotearoa business programmes manager Linda Marsh said the event focused on the three key programmes - certificate in small business management, certificate in money management and certificate in first steps for business.

"There was lots of interest and very positive comments," she said of the BA5.

The Te Wananga O Aotearoa courses are free and enrolments are being taken now for a March start, she said.

The Northland Chamber of Commerce initiative attracted a crowd of over 80 people, chief executive officer Tony Collins said.

"Te Wananga are one of our members, and of particular focus was their business certificate which many of our members have completed over the years," he said. "Plus it provides us with the opportunity to work closer with Maori organisations and businesses."

He said the chamber had offered the BA5 programme for at least a decade.

"It's part of the networking we offer our member businesses."

Chamber members pay a fee to host an event to show and talk about their business to other members and clients. Events are held bi-monthly.

"It provides an opportunity for people to talk about their own businesses but also hear about others," he said.

The events are conducted in an informal manner and usually have 60 to 100 guests.

"They are really popular - and booked out for the next year," Mr Collins said.

"Lots of Northland businesses are small businesses and they may often feel isolated - these sort of events provide them with a bit of a check."

Clients of hosts were welcome, as well as prospective chamber members.

The next BA5 will be held at relatively new chamber member business Call Plus - a reseller of fibres - on Wednesday February 27.

- Northern Advocate

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