One business for every nine New Zealanders as business number grows to new high

New Zealand Business Demography Statistics: At February 2014  –  Media Release

There was an all-time high of nearly half a million businesses in New Zealand in February 2014, with the highest rate of growth being in construction, Statistics New Zealand said today.

Overall, there were 487,900 businesses in New Zealand. This was up 2.5 percent on 2013, and surpassed the previous peak of 480,900 reached in 2009, according to the annual business demography statistics.

With 487,900 businesses and an estimated population of 4,509,900, this equates to one business for every nine people in New Zealand.

The number of high-growth enterprises in New Zealand exceeded 1,000 for the first time since 2008, with 15 percent of the current high-growth enterprises being in the construction industry.

“What that means is we’ve got over 1,000 enterprises that had employment growth averaging at least 20 percent a year over the last three years, and had at least 10 paid employees at February 2011,” platform operations manager Kathy Connolly said.

“High growth in the construction industry is not surprising when put in the context of increased building activity, particularly in Canterbury and Auckland, as shown in the March quarter GDP results.”

The number of business locations increased across 14 of the 16 regions, with only Gisborne and the West Coast showing slight decreases from 2013. The number of paid employees also increased – by 2.7 percent to almost two million, with all regions except the West Coast increasing.

Just under 1,000 businesses were identified as Māori enterprises. Over two-thirds of these were involved in agriculture, forestry, and fishing, either through direct operation or property rental and leasing.

“We currently have a very narrow definition of Māori enterprises that relates to the collective ownership of land and other assets by a recognised Māori authority,” Ms Connolly said.

“Over half  the employees associated with these enterprises were in the agriculture, fishing, education, health care, and social assistance industries, highlighting the close relationship Māori authorities have with resources connected to the people, land, and sea.” 


For media enquiries contact: Stuart Pitts, Auckland 09 920 9100, [email protected]
Authorised by Liz MacPherson, Government Statistician, 30 October 2014


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