Author Archives: Event Coordinator BKH

Media Release – Another Record Year for Customer Choice Awards Entries

With entries in the Customer Choice category of the 2018 Electra Kapiti Horowhenua Business Awards now closed, organisers are thrilled by the number of businesses seeking to be named amongst the region’s most customer friendly businesses. 

Launched in 2013, the Customer Choice category of the hugely popular Electra Business Awards attracts the largest number of entrants due to the ease of entry and the fact each business receives a personalised report that provides the (anonymous) feedback from every person who voted for them.

Businesses choose to enter one of two Customer Choice award categories: Retail and Service.  All entrants are also automatically entered into the Age Friendly category.

BKH Sponsorship, Marketing and Event Manager, Carmel Leonard confirms that this year a record of 71 businesses will be vying to be named the 2018 Customer Choice winner, with entrants evenly split across the retail and service categories.

“As is always the case, a lot of very good businesses have entered from across both the Horowhenua
and Kapiti regions, and the majority of them this year are first time entrants,” she says.  “Eight of the entrants have previously entered, while nine of the entrants have also entered the more intensive Excellence and Achievement Awards.”

Ms Leonard says the popularity of the Customer Choice Awards has seen almost every sponsor return for the 2018 edition.  “We’re extremely grateful to the Kāpiti Observer and Horowhenua Mail (Retail Award), Beach FM (Service Award) and Kapiti Retirement Trust (Age Friendly Award) for their continued support, and to Horowhenua Masonic Village who will co-sponsor the Age Friendly Award this year.”

And it’s not just the entrants who are competing for prizes – their customers are being incentivised to vote too.  “Everyone who votes will automatically go in the draw to win one of three excellent prizes,” explains Ms Leonard.

“We’d like to thank Spark Business Hutt-Kapiti (iPhone 8 64GB), Paraparaumu Beach Golf Club (a round for 4 people), and Superminx ($100 voucher) for their generous support of the Customer Choice Awards.  The draw will be made and winners announced on 20 September.”

Public voting for the Customer Choice Awards will open on 13 August and close on 10 September, with customers able to vote in a number of ways, including online (, in-store, and at specially marked voting boxes in Kapiti and Horowhenua district libraries and at the Coastlands Customer Service desk.  Details will also be available on Beach FM.

“Competition is always fierce and every vote counts, so make sure you support the businesses you feel put the customer at the heart of everything they do.”

The Finalists in each category will be confirmed on 20 September, with the Winners announced at the formal Awards Evening in Levin on 12 October.

For a full list of businesses in the 2018 Customer Choice Awards go to:






Business Kapiti Horowhenua Chair, Brendan Duffy

027 443 3516 | [email protected]

Sponsorship, Marketing & Event Manager, Carmel Leonard

021 599 754 | [email protected]

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Press Release – Electra Business Excellence Awards Attract High Quality Entrants

Entries in the 2018 Electra Kapiti Horowhenua Business Excellence Awards have closed with organisers hailing the overall quality and variety of this year’s entrants.

Entries in the Awards, which recognise and celebrate local business excellence, closed on 31 May with 23 entrants vying for the honour of being named the 2018 Business of the Year at the gala dinner in Levin on 12 October.

Chief Assessor for the Awards, Mark Ternent says this year’s group of entrants is the best spread of entrants he’s ever seen. “In terms of the Excellence Awards, the 23 entrants are well spread across the large (6), medium (4), small (3) and owner-operator (10) categories. Six of our entrants have entered the Awards previously which is always a great endorsement of the Awards programme and the value businesses see in it.”

It’s a similar story across the six Achievement Awards with the entrants well spread across the different categories. “It means we’ve got a decent contest for every Award, and it indicates that every Award has a good degree of attraction to businesses.”

And a particularly popular Achievement Award is the “Give Where You Live” Award – a brand new category for 2018 that has attracted six entrants. The Award seeks out businesses who are committed supporters of their local Kapiti and Horowhenua communities, and recognises the contribution they make to societal well-being and community support.

Category sponsor, Nikau Foundation, is the perfect partner for the new Award. As the community foundation (independent philanthropic organisation) for the Greater Wellington Region, the foundation attracts gifts, handover trusts, legacies and community organisation endowments which it invests and uses the income from these investments to distribute to charitable organisations in accordance with the donor’s wishes.

Louise Parkin, General Manager of the Nikau Foundation says they are excited to be able to support an Award that recognises local businesses who are giving back to the communities in which they operate. “Nikau Foundation is thrilled to support the launch of the new ‘Give Where You Live’ Achievement Award. As the community foundation for the region, a significant part of our work is enabling generosity to the community from businesses, and the individuals that work in them. The benefits of being involved in corporate social responsibility are great – when done well it not only benefits local causes, but can build staff engagement and retention and help achieve marketing goals. Everybody wins!”

Another new sponsor for 2018 is Makahika Outdoor Pursuit Centre, the 2017 Business of the Year. The company will be sponsoring the “New Thinking” Achievement Award which has five entrants competing for the prize this year.

With entries in the Excellence and Achievement Awards now closed, the attention turns to the hugely popular Customer Choice Awards with registrations opening on 2 July and closing on 31 July. As in previous years there are three categories: Service, Retail, and “Age Friendly”.

This year the “Age Friendly” Award will be co-sponsored, with Horowhenua Masonic Village partnering with foundation sponsor Kapiti Retirement Trust. The Horowhenua Masonic Village is an integral part of the Horowhenua community offering rest home and hospital leave care, caresuites, respite and a community activity programme. Wendy Huston, CEO of the Kapiti Retirement Trust says having both Trusts involved provides a champion in each region for this significant Award. “Having sponsored the Age Friendly Customer Choice Award since its inception in 2015, the Kapiti Retirement Trust is thrilled this year to be partnering with the Horowhenua Masonic Trust to support this Award.”

Sponsorship, Marketing & Event Manager, Carmel Leonard says the Customer Choice Awards offer businesses a much easier process that relies solely on public voting, rather than an in-depth entry form and assessment process. “The cost to enter is $249 + GST and it’ a great way to generate publicity and engage with your customers. In addition, every business is provided with a report containing the results of their customer survey.”

“You can learn more about the Customer Choice Awards and enter online at:”


Business Kapiti Horowhenua Chair, Brendan Duffy
027 443 3516 | [email protected]
Sponsorship, Marketing & Event Manager, Carmel Leonard
021 599 754 | [email protected]

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Media Release – Business Awards Welcomes New Chair

New Chair for Business Awards
Business Kapiti Horowhenua has farewelled it’s Chair, Mark Ternent, after six successful years at the helm of the organisation that organises and runs the Electra Kapiti Horowhenua Business Awards. Mr Ternent has been replaced as Chair by Brendan Duffy.

Mr Ternent announced he was standing down as Chair of Business Kapiti Horowhenua (‘BKH’) at its recent AGM. He will remain on the Board and current Board member Brendan Duffy will step into the role as Chair. Mr Duffy is a previous supreme winner of the Awards with his business Canvasland, and the former Mayor of the Horowhenua District Council.

In Mr Ternent’s time as Chair the Business Awards has undergone a major transformation, with several new Award categories introduced, including the hugely popular Customer Choice Awards, and the running of the Kapiti Horowhenua Business Hall of Fame.

The Board has also worked hard to create more visibility and exposure for the Awards and the businesses that have entered them, including the publication of an eBook that showcases some of the successful businesses to enter the Awards, and an annual ‘Winners and Finalists’ event that brings together many of the region’s best and brightest entrepreneurs to share ideas and celebrate successes.

“I am extremely proud of how popular the Awards have become, and the work we have undertaken as an organisation to not only make the Awards the ‘must attend’ business event of the year, but to also act as both a promotional vehicle and an enabler of business excellence and growth throughout our region,” says Mr Ternent.

“We are also extremely grateful to all the sponsors, at all levels, who have shown incredible loyalty and support for the Awards – their ongoing commitment remains critical to the future success of the programme. I’d especially like to acknowledge Electra, the naming sponsor for the entire history of the Awards, and our two local Councils.”

Fellow Board member Ross Leggett acknowledged Mr Ternent’s passion for the Awards and the enormous amount of hard work he had undertaken on behalf of the Awards, most of it performed on a voluntary basis. “As well as being an outstanding Chair, I would like to acknowledge Mark’s role as Chief Assessor and the expertise he has brought to the table in helping us to create a rigorous and robust assessment and judging process for the Awards. The assessment process we have introduced is based on world class principles and the Board believes it is this process that makes our event New Zealand’s premier regional business awards programme. We are extremely grateful that Mark has agreed to remain on the Board so that we can continue to access his knowledge and experience.”

Mr Duffy says it is a real privilege to be elected to the position of Chair of such a respected and long standing organisation. “Business Kapiti Horowhenua is supported by Electra and both our district councils, and our collective interest is to support business growth and salute success, all factors I’m excited to support. ”

“We are looking forward to delivering another successful 2018 Awards, and to working with a large number of entrants again this year.”
Entries in the Excellence and Achievement categories of the Electra Kapiti Horowhenua Business Awards officially opened on 7 April, while entries in the Customer Choice Awards will open later in the year. Finalists will be celebrated and winners announced at a black tie event, to be held in Levin on 12 October.


About BKH
BKH is a volunteer driven not-for-profit incorporated society. It is responsible for administering, organising and running the annual Electra Kapiti Horowhenua Business Awards event.

Business Kapiti Horowhenua Chair, Brendan Duffy
027 443 3516 | [email protected]

Sponsorship, Marketing & Event Manager, Carmel Leonard
021 599 754 | [email protected]

Awards Timetable 2018

Tues 31 JulyRegistrations CLOSE for Customer Choice Awards
Mon 13 AugVOTING OPENS for Customer Choice Awards
Tue 4 SepKapiti Mayoral Entrants Function (invite only)
Mon 10 SepVOTING CLOSES for Customer Choice Awards
Tue 11 SepHorowhenua Mayoral Entrants Function (invite only)
Thurs 20 SepFinalists for all Awards announced
Thurs 20 SepCustomer Choice PRIZE DRAW Winners announced
Thurs 20 SepAwards Evening Function EARLYBIRD TICKET SALES OPEN
Thurs 4 OctAwards Evening Function EARLYBIRD TICKET SALES CLOSE
Fri 12 OctAWARDS EVENING at Horowhenua Events Centre
Tue 30 OctWinners and Finalists Function (invite only)

| 5 April Entries Open Excellence & Achievement Awards |

Media Release – Business Awards Welcomes New Board Members

Media Release

26 May 2017

Business Awards Welcomes New Board Members

Business Kapiti Horowhenua (‘BKH’), the organisation responsible for organising and running the Electra Kapiti Horowhenua Business Awards, welcomed two new members to the Board at its recent AGM.

Chairman of Business Kapiti Horowhenua Mark Ternent says Brendan Duffy and Chris Barber are welcome additions to the BKH Board.  “We’re really excited to have Brendan and Chris joining the Board.  They are extremely successful business people and proud locals with very high profiles and reputations for leading and promoting business excellence across the Kapiti Horowhenua regions.”

Mr Ternent says it’s deeply satisfying to be able to attract such high quality people to the BKH Board.  “It confirms that we are making significant progress in promoting, developing and recognising local business excellence, and that our business leaders recognise the value of the Awards and want to contribute to its ongoing success.”

While the Board is excited to welcome both Brendan and Chris, Mr Ternent says they are also sad to farewell highly regarded Board members Diane Prow (RedShield Security Limited), Graham Smellie and Ian Fenwick (Agar Fenwick Accountants), who was also the BKH Treasurer for the last five years.

“Having recently purchased a chartered accountancy firm, Ian has decided to step down from the Board in order to concentrate on his business interests,” says Mark Ternent.  “We’re extremely grateful for Ian’s expert advice, hard work and financial stewardship over the last five years.  We’ll definitely miss his financial expertise, business insight and sense of humour.”  Existing Board member Steve Gregan, Deputy Chief Executive of Electra, has been elected Treasurer for the current financial year.

At the same time the position of Secretary has been filled by commercial arrangement with Carmel Leonard through until the end of 2017 with no election required.

“Carmel joined the BKH team at the end of 2016 when our long-standing Awards Organiser, Kirsten Kilmister decided to end her relationship with the Awards,” explains Mr Ternent.  “Kirsten did an outstanding job running the Awards for seven years and the BKH Board are extremely grateful for her efforts over that time.”

New Board Member Profiles

Brendan Duffy, JP, has had 21 years as an elected member of the Horowhenua District Council and 12 of these as Mayor.

He has chaired the Provincial Sector of Local Government NZ for 6 years and Zone 3 chair for 9 years.  He held the position of Vice President of LGNZ for 3 years.  His governance experience is well respected within elected members across New Zealand.

Brendan is a Director on the Board of MITO, he was appointed by the Minister as Deputy Chair of Mid Central District Health Board and has recently received a second Ministerial appointment as a temporary Commissioner on the Local Government Commission for a 12 month term.

Brendan, along with his wife Sheryl, have recently retired from running a successful business in Levin for the last 30 years.  Canvasland Holdings Limited is a manufacturing business employing 22 staff providing products across New Zealand and internationally.

Chris Barber is the National Sales and Business Development Manager at Securely.  He lives in Raumati with his wife and daughter and has a long history of business development on the coast in leadership roles such as General Manager at Te Horo Foods, Managing Director at the Kapiti Company, and CEO of the economic development and marketing agency – Nature Coast Enterprise.

Chris has always been a staunch supporter of the Awards and the value it delivers to every business that enters them.  “I’m most passionate about the way the Awards process itself enables businesses to take an inward look at themselves and identify small changes that can have a big impact on their success,” he explains.



Business Kapiti Horowhenua Chair, Mark Ternent

029 904 600 | [email protected]

Sponsorship, Marketing & Event Manager, Carmel Leonard

021 599 754 | [email protected]

Media Release – Business Awards Provide Real Commercial Value


27 March 2017

Business Awards Provide Real Commercial Value

Entries for the 2017 Electra Kapiti Horowhenua Business Awards will open on 7 April, with two information evenings scheduled to be run in Levin and Paraparaumu on the 4th and 6th of April respectively.

The Awards, which recognise and celebrate local business excellence, are entering their 23rd year and continue to generate a large amount of interest and support across the region.

Business Kapiti Horowhenua Inc. Chairman, Mark Ternent says the feedback from those businesses that have previously entered the Awards is that there is a genuine value in doing so.  “Many of the entrants tell us the process of entering the Awards forces a business to ask some really tough questions, and that they were forced to look at what they were doing with the blinkers off.”

“Not only that, at the end of the process each Finalist receives a formal report from the assessors that identifies where improvements could be made to their business and where other opportunities may lie.  This professional advice alone has been calculated to be worth around $3,500.  Then there are the additional benefits from entering the Awards such as extra profile and opportunities to increase staff morale, and to mix with other successful business people.

“That’s why we say that all of the 30 businesses that are named as Finalists are winners.  For such a small investment in time, the value each business receives is well worth it.”

The Awards are accessible for all local businesses, big or small, established or emerging.  There are categories recognising every level of business, as well as specialist categories focusing on excellence in key areas such as innovation, sustainability, employer of choice, health and safety, and aged friendly businesses.

Mr Ternent says that any business that’s thinking about entering should come along to one of the two information evenings planned for the first week in April.  “They’re free to attend and you’ll get to hear from businesses who have previously entered.  There will be lots of opportunities to ask questions and to mingle with other local business people in a relaxed environment.”

The Horowhenua information evening is being held in Levin at Te Takere from 5.30-7.30pm on Tuesday the 4th of April.

The Kapiti information evening will be held in the BNZ store at Coastlands, Paraparaumu on Thursday the 6th of April, 5.30-7.00pm.  This will be followed by the BKH AGM.

Anyone interested in attending can register at:

Entries for the Business Awards open on the 7th of April.



Business Kapiti Horowhenua Chair, Mark Ternent

029 904 600 | [email protected]

Sponsorship, Marketing & Event Manager, Carmel Leonard

021 599 754 | [email protected]

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Customer Choice Voter Prize Winners

Thank you to everyone who voted in the Customer Choice Awards, the following lucky people have won a prize for doing so:

Spark Business Hutt-Kapiti $1199 rrp Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge 64GB Oliver Tong

Superminx $300 voucher Jenny Rive

Pak’n Save Kapiti $100 voucher –  Daniel Jones

Focal Point Cinema Levin Movie Pass –  Sandi Beatie, Anthea Whitley, Barry Madgwick, Jane Stevenson, Suzanne Panter, Peggy Mole


Customer Choice 2016 Voting Closed

Public voting takes place 18 July – 11 August 2016, so has NOW CLOSED