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Do you need Devine intervention? Michael Devine Insurance

Independent and professional advice. That’s what clients receive when they discuss their insurance needs with Michael Devine.



“It’s forming strong personal relationships with clients so they know they can trust us and the insurance solutions we develop for them. A real empathy for each client and their individual circumstances is key to creating the right portfolio for them. It’s not a one-size fits all situation.”

“I’ve been in the industry for more than three decades. That longevity coupled with being a qualified QFE Advisor with a diploma in financial services are vital to understanding clients’ needs and finding the best selection of insurance products to secure their family, their home and their lifestyle against any misfortune.”

“We offer advice on all personal and business insurance and can provide clients with a package that fits their current concerns. Personal insurance ranges from life insurance, health insurance and income assurance to trauma assurance and mortgage repayment assurance. Business insurance might be partnership assurance, key person assurance or disability income protection.”

They can call me on (03) 341 0000 or 027 437 9119.


Local business stories on show

Stories of hospitality, social enterprise, horticulture, healthcare, tech and art are amongst those shared as part of a campaign which highlighting business growth in Waitaha Canterbury recently.



Westpac and the Canterbury Employers’ Chamber of Commerce’s Canterbury Business Champions campaign is a digital evolution of the organisation’s annual Westpac Champion Business Awards.

People were encouraged to give a shout out to a local business, team or individual or share their own story throughout October and early November.

Canterbury Employers’ Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Leeann Watson says the initiative aimed to create a place to share the “best kept secrets” of the region and reinforce the role that business plays in our wider community.

“Throughout the last few months, we have talked to thousands of businesses and have heard some amazing stories of innovation, nimbleness, determination, collaboration and kindness, so we wanted to provide a platform to share those stories and celebrate our business champions who contribute to the strong quality of life the people in Ōtautahi Christchurch and Waitaha Canterbury enjoy,” says Leeann.

One business nominated was 27 Seconds wines (pictured). The Chapman family donate 100% of the profits of their Canterbury-grown wine to end child slavery.

The business is named after the UNICEF statistic that estimates that 1.2 million children are sold into slavery every year. When you break that down it works out to be one every 27 seconds.

“While in a normal year, we could showcase some of those businesses at our annual awards ceremony, this year we decided to take the celebration online, given the uncertainty of running events during Covid-19, and focus on collectively championing all businesses – as there has never been a better time to share positive stories about our business community than right now.”

Westpac was the lead sponsor for the campaign, and South Island Area Manager Commercial, Mark Forward, said the initiative provides an opportunity to recognise the resilience, determination and creativity of Canterbury businesses.

All individuals who shared a story went in the draw to win $18,000 worth of prizes.


The business of discovery: The Vintro Room

The excitement of the chase and discovering unique and collectable pieces is what drives Maddie Hatton who opened her shop, The Vintro Room, just two weeks before the country went into lockdown.



“The timing wasn’t great,” says Maddie. “And I admit I had my doubts about whether we could make this work, but we had a lot of support from neighbouring retailers and are starting to build a regular base of customers and thanks to them, it has gradually built up.”

It has been many years since Merivale had an antique shop, art gallery or a shop full of unique and vintage collectables so The Vintro Room, which combines all three, is a welcome addition.

Maddie has always been a hunter and collector of art and antiques, and puts the blame firmly on her parents for her inability to pass up going to auctions or sorting through estates in search of the perfect piece.

“They are collectors too, and my brother has his own business in Perth as a designer and manufacturer of art in steel, so The Vintro Room was probably an inevitable and very happy outcome for me.”

Based at 186 Papanui Road, beside the Nurse Maude Hospice Shop, The Vintro Room is open from 10am to 2pm Tuesday to Saturday with new stock arriving every day.

“We deliberately keep the prices very reasonable and rely on a fairly quick turnover so there’s always something new to see. We also have people coming in and asking if we buy, which we do if it fits.”

Success in this field takes a good eye and a whole lot of research, and Maddie says a large part of the attraction of this business is the constant learning.

“There will always be pieces you’ve not seen before or haven’t got much information to go on,” she says. “So good research is important. You also need to be aware that art, antiques and collectables go in and out of fashion cycles like anything else, so what’s highly desirable one year can fail to achieve a good price the next.”

Maddie is also mother to a very active two-year-old and busy six-year-old – so running a business can be quite a juggling act.

“Having the support of family and friends is what has made this possible,” says Maddie. “Even my husband has stopped raising an eyebrow when I come back with yet another car-load of stock. Although I suspect this is only because he knows it will be going straight out again.”

While every business can have its moments and life is certainly being lived at a breakneck pace at the moment, Maddie can’t imagine doing anything else.

This will no doubt come as very welcome news to her customers.


Getting down to business: NAI Harcourts

For many, 2020 has proven to be a gamechanger, with lockdown providing the opportunity for a lifestyle reassessment.


“We’re finding a lot of people are looking for employment alternatives,” NAI Harcourts Grenadier Business Sales Manager Athol McCully says.

“They may have gone through lockdown and reassessed, they’ve lost their job and they’re looking to get into a business of their own and there are vendors who have decided it might be time for them to move on, particularly if they’re nearing retirement.”

With the largest team of NAI Harcourts business brokers in New Zealand, Harcourts Grenadier can guide you through the buying and selling process, ensuring everything is simple and straightforward.

“We have a huge amount of experience within our team and sell a wide range of businesses,” Athol says.

“We’ve also got a lot of qualified purchasers looking for businesses right now.”

Athol has the hands-on experience of 25-years of business ownership and operation and more than 15-years as a business broker.

“We have such a strong team of 10 here, with a huge amount of experience – three of our business brokers each have over 15 years’ experience in business sales. We cover business sales from cafés to motels to agricultural businesses and everything in between.

“If you’re considering buying or selling a business, get in touch with myself or our team and we can take you through the process. It’s a well-worn path, but it’s a process we go through to get a successful outcome for buyer and seller.”


Thinc-ing big

Artificial Intelligence, aerospace technology and acid recycling are some of the local Canterbury business startups benefitting from a recent partnership between the University of Canterbury and economic development agency, ChristchurchNZ.



ThincLab is a startup incubator at UC’s Centre of Entrepreneurship (UCE) and part of Callaghan Innovation’s Founder Incubator, focusing on propelling locally grown business ideas with global ambition in the aerospace, future transport, food, fibre and agritech, healthtech and high tech services sectors.

A recent memorandum of understanding was signed with the Christchurch City Council’s economic development agency, ChristchurchNZ to help grow these ambitious local ideas by connecting them to the business community, and commercialising research.

ThincLab provides startups with space to work and with mentors and investors in Australia, Singapore and Europe. It also provides programmes and webinars and in time, students and ThincLab members may get experience working in international markets.

Three student startups developing under ThincLab Canterbury are already benefitting from the partnership.

Vxt, a mobile app which uses AI to manage and automate voice messages; Zincovery, which recycles spent acid and recovers pure zinc, and Kea Aerospace which is building the largest unmanned solar powered aircraft in the southern hemisphere to take high resolution, large area aerial images for precision agriculture, environmental monitoring and disaster management.

UCE director and ThincLab Canterbury Programme Director Dr Rachel Wright says Canterbury is in a unique position to reposition itself “as an innovative and agile city ready and able to respond to changes in our business environment”.


Best business resources

These last few months have been tough for everyone. But it’s arguably our local small to medium enterprises that have felt the strain of quarantine the most. Thankfully, there are some resources available for support and we’ve collated a list of places you can go for help, advice or support.


CANTERBURY EMPLOYERS’ CHAMBER OF COMMERCE: Collates all of the official information on COVID-19 as it relates to business operation and puts it all in one place. Their team of experts also offer great business advice during these unusual times.

OTHER BUSINESSES: Sometimes the best people to turn to are the those that are in the same boat as you. Reach out to other companies in your trade and see how they’re coping and what you can all do to support one another.

SOS CAFÉ: This not-for-profit initiative was set up to support local businesses, specifically cafés, restaurants, bars and eateries, through the purchasing of vouchers. These can be redeemed later, when it’s safe to do so.

MINISTRY OF AWESOME: This is the starting point for entrepreneurs, startups, and innovators in Christchurch, which means they’ve got the support, guidance, capability training and networks entrepreneurs need to succeed.

COVID COLAB 20: A public Facebook page that was set up to support the community and the business industry, it is all about collaboration and bouncing off each other creatively.

CHRISTCHURCH SMALL BUSINESS ENTERPRISE CENTRE (CSBEC): CSBEC offers a range of services to start-up and existing micro and small business owners. These include business facilitation and consultancy, marketing advice and reports, management planning and budgeting, finance advice and training courses.


The go-to for real estate advice: Mike Pero Fendalton

Mike Pero Fendalton is your local go-to for real estate questions. “It’s great when people come in with their queries. We love that they know they won’t be ‘pounced on’ and that there is no expectation they are here to list,” Co-Owner Jacqui McBride says.



Established in Fendalton Village for four years, the five agents at Mike Pero Fendalton offer a combined 50 plus years of experience.

“We’re happy to chat about everything from buying an investment property to the layout of a home,” Jacqui says.

“It’s about building relationships within our community, so we hope people never feel awkward popping in.”

They are commonly asked for advice on the top three things someone should do before bringing their home to the market. Jacqui says it is simple… “declutter, clean, clean, clean, and check that your garden and front entrance are looking good. Staging a property also impresses prospective buyers and the team is happy to help make that happen.”

Co-owner and Jacqui’s partner, Kelvin Howell, has been in real estate for 20 years, having managed several offices along the way.

“Our point of difference is that we are friendlier and we are smaller. We will give you a detailed response, plenty of our time, and a personal touch. Mike Pero is known for a lower sales commission, but we certainly don’t offer a lower level of service – it is quite the opposite,” Kelvin says.

Marketing at Mike Pero is innovative. “We led the charge in modern home marketing, always following the principle of ‘do it once and do it right’.

Others have followed but we still have the edge with our presence in the country’s living rooms through our television marketing,” Jacqui says.

“We understand how much of your wealth your home represents to you and we believe that value should be reflected in the extent of our marketing.”

The last six months have been busy. “Our open homes are extremely well attended. Since Covid presented itself, it is business as usual but with a change in the way we conduct our open homes and business in general. Keeping our clients’ health and safety foremost in our minds.”


COVID’s impact on business

More than 63 percent of respondents to a recent survey of Canterbury businesses are reporting significant financial impacts from COVID-19. More than 21 percent are citing moderate impact, with more than 7 percent citing minor impact.


The data was gathered as part of a survey distributed to local businesses last month, during Alert Level 3, by The Canterbury Employers’ Chamber of Commerce and ChristchurchNZ.

Looking forward three months, 60 percent of businesses still felt that the cashflow impact will be profound.

Staff numbers too will be affected, with around 30 percent of businesses believing their staffing numbers would have a significant negative impact of more than 25 percent.

Exporters remain more optimistic, with 46 percent responding that there will be no effect on their sales, while 30 percent think the negative effect will be more than 25 percent.

The survey shows that smaller businesses have been more impacted by loss of customers and increased costs, while larger ones have been impacted by supply chain.

Canterbury Employers’ Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Leeann Watson says the results of this survey demonstrate the changing impact during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“All business segments have been affected by cashflow issues.

We have engaged with over 2000 businesses over the last two months through our COVID-19 helpline and over email and 6,000 businesses in on our webinars, and the survey results reinforce what we are seeing – namely the very real need for continued targeted financial support and the need for HR as we continue to see increased needs around support with restructuring, redundancy and resizing for businesses.”


central city equity investment opportunity: MAAT Group

Maat Consulting Ltd is offering an equity investment opportunity in a new company, Victoria Property Investment Ltd, which has been formed to purchase the property at 99-123 Victoria Street, Christchurch.


This investment has 7,226.2 m² of net lettable area, spanning four levels of fully tenanted office space at 123 Victoria Street, plus a ground floor designed for the hospitality industry.

It also includes a land holding adjacent to 123 Victoria Street which is used for additional carparking.

Number 123 Victoria Street is the address of the offices of Nexia Christchurch Ltd, Alliance Group Ltd, Pacific Radiology Group Ltd, and NZ Merino Company Ltd who together occupy approximately 93% of the total available space.

This property is proudly presented as part of the rebuild of Christchurch as it continues to develop as a modern and well-designed city.

Features of this investment to note are:
• The building was completed
in 2017
• The weighted average lease term is 8.15 years
• There are 106 carparks available
• The property is located on the west side of Victoria Street and just north of Salisbury Street, nestled among the outlying area of the main business district. It offers easy access to the central business district of Christchurch with the Victoria Clock Tower and the Christchurch Casino less than a flat five-minute walk away
• It is intended to be registered as a PIE investment, limiting the top tax rate to 28 percent
• The projected cash return for the next two years and nine- month period is 7.25% *p.a, before tax, payable monthly.
This property is proudly presented as part of the rebuild of Christchurch as it continues to develop as a modern and well-designed city. It will be managed by Maat Consulting Ltd, an experienced commercial property manager.

Maat Consulting Limited is now into its 10th year of offering investments in commercial property to a broad range of the New Zealand public.

Based in Albany, the company now manages a portfolio of 14 properties throughout New Zealand.

These properties have a range of national and international tenants.

Maat Group continues to select quality properties which have quality tenants, in order to maximise returns for investors.

A copy of the Product Disclosure Statement and Supplementary Document (post COVID19) are available and may be obtained from Maat Consulting Limited by contacting:

Managing Director
Neil Tuffin: 021 481 441 or

Or Investor Relations Manager
Jodi Tuffin: 021 084 42523 or

Or the Maat Office on 09 414 6078.

Our offices are located at B4, 17 Corinthian Drive, Albany, Auckland.

*projected pre-tax return, per annum, payable monthly. The offer is made in accordance with the Financial Markets Conduct Act 2013.


Sumner Gem

Nestled in the heart of Sumner and somewhat now an institution, The Ivy gift and homewares store has moved into its sixth year of business. While favourite brands and labels remain, fresh products are constantly being sourced with an ongoing emphasis on sustainability and ethical production.

Owner Karen Aitken, who has a background in food and nutrition, has recently added a side-branch to her business – The Ivy Kitchen.

Karen’s love of good food has led to the establishment of this catering branch of The Ivy, which includes the creation of delicious morsels for all occasions, locally and within Christchurch.

Thanks to the ongoing support of locals and regular customers from all over Christchurch, ‘The Ivy’ continues to grow and looks forward to exciting new product lines and twists in the future.

Find The Ivy at 55 Nayland Street, Sumner, open Monday to Friday 10am to 5pm and weekends from 11am to 4pm. Phone 03 326 6481 or find them on Facebook and Instagram.