A Wellington businesswoman, whose software company helps farmers manage their cow poo, has won the inaugural Fly Buys Mumtrepreneur of the Year awards.
Bridgit Hawkins launched ReGen Ltd in 2010, with software that turns data on soil moisture, temperature and rainfall into a daily text message recommendation to farmers about what to do with their cattle effluent.
Other 2014 Mumtrepreneur award winners include Auckland businesswomen Shona Grundy and Diane Hurford whose companies Trigger Happy and Brolly Sheets make animation software (Toon Hero) and waterproof bed linen respectively.
Diane Hurford from Brolly Sheets.
Meanwhile, Hawkes Bay-based Ursula Maidens’ childcare agency Rock My Baby won best online or technology business. The company was started in 2011 and now has franchises in Australia, Switzerland, Israel and the UK.
The Mumtrepreneur Awards recognise “the growing number of successful Kiwi women who handle the dual challenges of running a business while raising a family at home”, FlyBuys chief executive Stephen England-Hall said.
The award sparked a bit of controversy late last week, with unlimited.co.nz editor Maria Slade calling it “patronising and sexist” and noting “Fly Buys isn't offering a parallel ‘Dadtrepreneur'’ gong.”
Slade also commented on the number of baby-related companies on the short list.
In Mumtrepreneur’s defence, it appears entering the awards isn’t compulsory, and more than 250 mums did.
Nor is rewarding mumtrepreneurialism a new concept. Britain has been running the equivalent, a Business Mum awards since 2008, and there are any number of Mumtrepreneur clubs, blogs and articles scattered about the internet.
In addition to the supreme award, Hawkins’ also won the Best Agri-business category and will receive 40,000 Fly Buys points – enough to buy her plenty of bottles of bubbly, or a celebratory flight to Hollywood (with the kids, of course).
More than 250 entries were received for five different categories: Best Product or Service, Best Online or Technology Business, Best Creative Business, Best Food and Beverage Business and the Best Agri-Business.