Having a showcase of cool Wellington businesses in the Beehive is a nicely ironic way to demonstrate the capital is about more than politics.
Quite who Wellington City Council Business Innovation Growth (BIG) launch yesterday is meant to appeal to is less clear. (Check out a prospectus of the businesses present here).
While the fascinating mix of more than 70 companies, from a wealth of computer/internet/software companies (let’s just call them the digital creative sector) to Tuatahi Racing Axes and Saws, Industrial Research to Calvert Plastics showed off their wares and brains, you’d have to suspect they wouldn’t have done much business.
Hopefully they realised that before they took what would’ve been a whole day off to stand in front of a general political bureaucracy and people like sticK.
In theory the event was to show how important business is to Wellington and how business-friendly Wellington is.
As WCC councilor and Economy Portfolio leader Jo Coughlan says, “we don’t think enough people know Wellington’s business story.” “We have an entrepreneurial, high performing business sector.”
Though mayor Celia Wade-Brown made a point of welcoming the Lower Hutt and Upper Hutt mayors, and many of the companies present came from outside the WCC boundaries, there didn’t feel to be enough emphasis on the wider region – i.e. pulling in the Wairarapa and Kapiti districts as well.
A minor point in the scheme of things perhaps, but Wellington is more, has to be seen and act as more than just the capital/harbour area.
But, anything that shows the success and hardwork required to turn ideas into income is fine by sticK.
We need to increasingly talk up the innovation game. Some initiatives won’t succeed, we’ll just call it experience.
But some of the companies featured at the Beehive will grow – maybe BIG will have been their big beginning.