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Entries for the 29th annual Bay of Plenty ExportNZ Awards, which celebrate the cream of the Bay’s export crop, have been extended for an extra week until Friday May 17.

With the Christchurch tragedy coinciding with the launch of the awards, the focus of businesses across the country has understandably been elsewhere.

Now entries for the awards, which celebrate the Bay’s innovative, brave and successful exporting ‘Stars’, are being submitted.

Last year’s Best Emerging Business category winner BeeNZ says the awards process not only enabled it to recognise the hard work of staff, but provided business advice and extra exposure and credibility with customers.

“The application process definitely made us take a deeper look into our current policies and strategies, with a more analytical approach,” says company co-owner and operator Julie Hayes.

“Being able to have that one-on-one talk with the judges was definitely valuable. It enabled us to further define our strategies and processes, and how to recognise and target key markets.”

This year’s head judge, Barry Squires – formerly Head of International Business at Westpac NZ and now owner of Golden Acres Orchard in the Bay of Plenty – has even given some top tips on what makes a winning entry.

Being succinct, being yourself and being prepared are essential, but find out what Barry’s other top tips are here.

Supporting the awards once again is principal sponsor Zespri, plus longstanding category sponsors Sharp Tudhope Lawyers, YOU Travel, Page Macrae Engineering and Beca. The theme of the awards night on June 21 is ‘A Night with the Stars’, with award-winning head writer of comedy show 7 Days, Nick Rado, the MC for a night of old-school Hollywood glitz and glamour.

Visit to enter and purchase tickets.

Glenn Baker

Glenn is a professional writer/editor with 50-plus years’ experience across radio, television and magazine publishing.


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