Feature story: The 2017 Festival of Fast Growth

See the full 2017 Deloitte Fast 50 index here.

Another year, another hugely successful Festival of Fast Growth at Villa Maria. It was a privilege for us to recognise and celebrate our country’s fastest growing businesses and mix with some of the best and brightest entrepreneurs in New Zealand.

The 2017 Fast 50 journey

Our journey to find the Deloitte Fast 50 index and Master of Growth award winners started in May when we put a call for entries out. Once again we were highly impressed at the calibre of entries and the variety of industries they came from. 

It was then on to our regional Rising Star judging in August where we had an expert panel judge these business on their potential and success so far.

We then moved onto celebrate our regional winners in all categories with events around the country in September. These regional events are a real highlight for us as they show the value in supporting those growing companies in the regions and highlight the contribution they’re having.

The Festival of Fast Growth 

The weather really turned it on for the big day out at Villa Maria on November 9. It was great to see familiar faces such as Pic from Pic’s Peanut Butter and his dog Fido, and welcome new ones like our rugby royalty guest speakers – Nehe Milne-Skudder and James Parsons.

We began the day with our wonderful MC, Nadine Higgins, who welcomed the crowd in a hall filled with some stunning graphics. She shared the stage with Deloitte Private’s Bill Hale and between them they announced the inaugural Master of Growth index. The Master of Growth award celebrates those businesses that have had sustained growth over a period of five or more years. 

Our winner was household name, Xero, and runner up was ProtempoSee the full list here

The sessions

The rest of the day saw guests treated to sessions around governance, growth, hiring staff, exit strategies and funding.

We had Dame Trelise Cooper share a few words of wisdom in one session, explaining why you need to be inspired to inspire others and the challenges of entering the US market where people make demands of you to conform.

In the governance session, Susan Peterson from Organic Initiative gave some strong advice around the role of a board and how you need to look for board members who have the skills you lack.

“No business will ever maximise its potential when it is only resourced with the skills and capabilities of one individual,” she added. Read more on this interesting session here

Our Fast 50 index

In the evening, we welcomed the very entertaining, Ben Hurley to the stage to MC the Fast 50 index countdown along with Nadine. He kept the crowd on their toes with some rather clever jokes around how we’re inching closer to Australia using a technique called the ‘tectonic manoeuvre’, given that earthquakes are pushing us 30cm closer to them every year.

We then counted down the top 50 fastest growing businesses in the country and celebrated with them on stage, along with our Rising Star success stories. See the Deloitte Fast 50 index results here

Our top three companies this year were ZB Homes: Bay of Plenty with a huge 1583% growth, Moola.co.nz with 1013% growth and Crimson Education with 1005% growth. Read more on winner, ZB Homes, in our Fast 50 e-zine.

Thank you!

Thank you to all those businesses who entered the 2017 Deloitte Fast 50 and for coming on this exciting journey with is. Again, we'd like to congratulate all who walked away with awards - you’re truly making your mark on the New Zealand business scene and boosting our economy in the process. 

We look forward to seeing many of you again next year and until then, keep growing!


16 November, 2017 by Emily McLean,

Emily McLean

Emily McLean

Emily McLean works in the Deloitte marketing team and closely with Deloitte Private. She loves telling the stories of those individuals and businesses leaving their mark in New Zealand's SME space while delivering news and insights to help business owners grow their companies. 

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