Strategic Partner for New Zealand Social Enterprise Market Development


On the 8 September 2017, the Department of Internal Affairs (the Department) released a call for Registrations of Interest (ROI) on the Government Electronic Tenders Service (GETS). The Department sought ROI’s from suitably qualified and experienced suppliers that could develop and deliver a Social Enterprise Market Development Programme.

The chosen supplier will become the intermediary body, or Strategic Partner, to work with other organisations on a programme aiming for:

  • better data on social enterprises; 
  • increased numbers of social enterprise start-ups, including those targeting economically disadvantaged areas and populations; 
  • more social enterprises scaling-up productivity and expanding operations; 
  • more social enterprises increasing their incomes and attracting investment; and 
  • increased social and environmental impact from social enterprises. 

The budget for the programme is $5.55 million and will span four years.

The procurement and eventual contract is being administered by the Department which provides cross-sector policy advice on social enterprise to the Minister for the Community and Voluntary Sector.

Successful Respondent

On 15 November 2017, Minister for the Community and Voluntary Sector, Hon Peeni Henare announced that an open Government procurement process with an inter-agency evaluation panel of representatives from the Department, Ministry for Business, Innovation and Employment, and the Social Investment Agency had reviewed all proposals received in the ROI.

The announcement advised that the Department has partnered with Ākina Foundation (Ākina) to develop a programme focused on expanding the country’s social enterprise market. Ākina is required to co-design a programme of activities and then manage that programme to grow social enterprise. The focus is includes the following areas:

  • providing tailored business development services; 
  • growing access to investment; and 
  • fostering social enterprise networks. 

This programme will target the capability and financial needs of individual social enterprises, as well as supporting networks between social enterprises, with strong links to public, private and philanthropic investors, and overseas experts.

A small portion of the overall funds are being used to co-design the programme, before the full amount will be made available over the course of four years for programme delivery.

For more information please contact