6 October 2020

New campaign celebrates Canterbury business champions 

Westpac and the Canterbury Employers’ Chamber of Commerce have today launched a new campaign aimed at sharing the stories that make Waitaha Canterbury one of the leading regions for business growth.

The campaign is a digital evolution of the organisation’s annual Westpac Champion Business Awards, with people encouraged to give a shout out to a local business, team or individual or share their own story at The campaign runs until 6 November.

Canterbury Employers’ Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Leeann Watson says the initiative was aimed at providing a platform 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. 

“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.

“That’s why Westpac and The Chamber are so excited to bring you our new Canterbury Business Champions campaign. Your business champion could be a supplier that has innovated to make the most of a market opportunity; or your own team that has introduced a new staff wellbeing initiative; or a shout-out to a local business operator who always greets you with a smile.

“From great feats to small tokens, we want to hear what makes Canterbury such an amazing place to live, work and play.”

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

“It has been a challenging year, but we’ve been so proud to see the hard work and adaptability businesses across the region have shown and look forward to hearing the stories that will be shared through this campaign.

“Every business has been affected by COVID-19 in some way, and every business has a story. Here at Westpac our focus has been supporting businesses – we’re working incredibly hard to get Kiwis through this and have already provided loan repayment relief for more than 20,000 personal and home loan customers, and billions of dollars in new and restructured lending to businesses. We’ve also donated an extra $1m to support New Zealand’s rescue helicopters to help address a fundraising shortfall.”

With up to $18,000 of spot prizes up for grabs, all individuals who share a story will go in the draw to win one of three advertising vouchers, worth $5,000 each, from Mediaworks and The Press or one of three $1,000 Air New Zealand Travel Vouchers.

Thanks to: Lead Partner Westpac, Creative Partner Harvey Cameron Group, Radio Partner Mediaworks, Print Partner The Press and Channel Partner ChristchurchNZ; Campaign Partners Christchurch City Council, and Lyttelton Port Company; and Campaign Supporters Kordia PLC, Christchurch Casino, Air New Zealand, and Export New Zealand Canterbury.


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For more information, or to arrange an interview, please contact:

Leeann Watson
Chief Executive
Canterbury Employers’ Chamber of Commerce
027 447 7775
[email protected]