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Westpac business awards back

The Westpac Tairawhiti Business Excellence Awards will return in 2021.

The awards have been held four times in this region, the last time in 2018, and were not able to be staged this year due to Covid-19.

Westpac commercial and agriculture area manager Joshua Dear said there were remarkable stories of innovation and resilience from Kiwi businesses this year.

“It has been a challenging year, but we've been so proud to see the hard work and creativity from so many Kiwi companies.”

Dear said Westpac believed the business awards provided an invaluable opportunity to reflect on success.

“The 2021 Westpac Tairawhiti Business Awards are an opportunity for businesses to take stock, share their experiences and achievements, recognise their teams and to celebrate together.”

The Westpac Tairawhiti Business Excellence Awards is a joint regional initiative. Both Westpac and Trust Tairawhiti recognise that the 2021 contest will provide a platform for local businesses to celebrate their resilience through an incredibly tough year, and for the business community to recognise and applaud success.

Trust Tairawhiti chief executive Gavin Murphy said they were proud to partner with Westpac again on the Business Excellence Awards.

“Under our regional wellbeing framework, He Tohu Ora — the economy, or ohanga, is one of our six muka, or outcome statements, which help guide our investments and operational focus. Under the economy muka, we work with business owners to ensure the Tairawhiti economy is diverse, resilient and regenerative.

“These awards celebrate the businesses that are creating this sort of positive impact in our communities and are helping to shape a region of shared pride, shared prosperity and shared opportunity.”

There has been a name change for the 2021 awards to include Tairawhiti, reflecting a hope that businesses across the region will apply.

For 2021 the Westpac Tairawhiti Business Excellence Awards will have seven business excellence categories, which are:

Retail, Trade and Online Business

Tourism and Hospitality

Manufacturing and Technology

Community, Not-for-Profit and Volunteer

Food, Forestry and Farm

Maori-Owned Business

Each business that enters will also be eligible for the sector excellence categories which include: Emerging Business; Employer of the Year; Health & Wellbeing; Resilience.

Three finalists from the business excellence categories will go up for the Westpac Tairawhiti Business of the Year Award.

Entries opened on December 1, with entry forms available online at trusttairawhiti.nz

Entries close on March 31, ahead of a comprehensive judging process and a gala awards event on June 18, at the Showgrounds Event Centre.