Topics: Business, Rereātea - Midday News

World’s first indigenous crowdfunding platform

By Jessica Tyson

Māori Women's Development Inc and PledgeMe have joined forces to launch the world’s first indigenous crowdfunding platform, Tā Koha.

Tā Koha is the first crowdfunding platform designed specifically to support Māori entrepreneurs, businesses and social ventures to utilise the power of their crowd, whānau or supporters to fund their kaupapa.

The launch tonight will showcase eleven exciting ventures, including Moka, a business that creates eco fibre eyelashes made from possum fur, Kiwi Kai which makes steam puddings and Rauawaawa Kaumatua Charitable Trust which works to develop an elder-friendly facility for kuia and kaumatua.

MWDI CEO Teresa Tepania-Ashton says Tā Koha is a gateway for tāngata whenua to learn about the fundamentals of crowdfunding.

“This is a wonderful opportunity for our people to learn how to maximise this platform for the benefit of their own whānau and community."

PledgeMe CEO Anna Guenther says Tā Koha is about supporting Māori entrepreneurs to use the power of their crowd to fund the things they care about within their community.  

“Our PledgeMe team realised that although we had supported over 1,200 campaigns and raised over $27 million dollars, there were not enough Māori actively or equitably participating in this form of community wealth generation."

An online marae training portal has been developed and includes modules with video, quizzes and practical tasks to assist all ventures to construct a successful campaign.

Tā Koha is be supported by the government under the He Kai Kei Aku Ringa fund.

The Ventures

  • Seecom - empowering multiple communities through sign language
  • Stay Native - a unique indigenous Air BNB experience
  • Moka - Eco-fibre lashes made from possum fur
  • Flo Clothing - a buy a clothing piece, give one experience for young children and teenagers in need
  • Stay Connected - a powered network for women to access opportunities in life and enterprise
  • Rauawaawa Kaumatua Charitable Trust - developing an elder friendly facility for Kuia and Kaumatua
  • Tolaga Bay Inn - an eco-tourism and enterprise hub on the East Coast
  • Ngahere Communities - Manukau's first Coworking, Events and Maker Space
  • Kirehu Creative - a VR/AR company specialising in connecting individuals to their tribal homelands using technology
  • Kiwi Kai - Beautiful steam puddings - crafted just as your Nanny would make them
  • Whenua Warrior - supporting more families to grow their own food - starting with one garden at a time.