Whanganui could be a leading region when it comes to social enterprise.
That's the message Paul Fletcher hopes to get across during the Thrive Expo.
Fletcher, who was born in Scotland but now lives in Gonville, is the national sales manager of Common Good Coffee, which started 18 months ago and is a profit-for-purpose business that sells coffee and redistributes money to poor communities.
They supply coffee to offices like Horsley Christie Lawyers in Whanganui as well as larger businesses like Meridian Energy.
Fletcher hoped to provide insight into the work behind running a business not solely for profit while showing it is doable and to provide encouragement and guidance for people looking into starting their own.
Thrive Expo is being held from June 17-30 and is being put on by Thrive Whanganui, an organisation with the goal of growing social enterprises in Whanganui.
Fletcher said Whanganui was full of creative people and there were a lot of people in the region who are looking into different ways to run a business.
"I think that people tend to think outside the box, they're probably a little more connected to not always being about profit, and more about how things can be connected to social good.
"I think it's becoming more common which is a good thing for people who want to push into that socially good space with their businesses," Fletcher said.
Common Good Coffee was an example, he said.
Fletcher said that with every kilogram of coffee sold,it donated $5 to their partners in India.
Fletcher said that the money raised has gone to neighbourhoods where severe poverty and human trafficking are rife.
"As of this week, we've raised over $100,000 to the stuff we're involved in over there and we're starting to see more stuff flourish which is pretty cool."
Fletcher also hoped people learned about the process of running a social enterprise from his talk at the expo.
"Just because you have a socially good business, it doesn't mean people are going to buy the product, the product or the business service, whatever you've got, has to be top end at the same time," he said.
Co-ordinator for the Expo, and partnerships lead for Thrive Whanganui, Elise Goodge said she wanted to bring awareness to social enterprise and highlight Whanganui as a regional leader in social enterprise.
"Actually there are many businesses within the regions which are occupying as values or purpose-led businesses that maybe don't identify as a social enterprise," she said.
The expo is being held online and will be comprised of 45-minute to one-hour long podcasts.
People who register for the expo will have one week to listen to the podcasts, and in the week after there will be one week of one hour Q&As with the presenters of the podcasts.
The expo will feature a wide breadth of speakers from Auckland to Christchurch, with some local speakers from Whanganui.
Fletcher will also talk about how enterprises tell their stories better while remaining business savvy and he said he is excited for people to hear what he has to say.
People can register for Thrive Expo 2022 at thrivenow.org.nz