We have posted several articles about different entrepreneurs and shared how they got their start and what drove them to success. We have looked at some of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs and even learned about millennial entrepreneurs and how they are changing the way the world does business. The next couple of article will share stories of entrepreneurs who are either from New Zealand or have started businesses here that have flourished. In this article, we will introduce Sian Simpson, who runs Kiwi Landing Pad, “a work, gathering, and mentoring space for New Zealand companies,” according to an article in The Spinoff.
The Early Years
An article for North Harbour Club shares information about Sian Simpson’s early life and career. She attended Pinehurst School and grew up on the North Shore. Growing up, it was Sian’s dream to have a career in Latin and Ballroom dancing, however, she dislocated both of her knees at the young age of 16 and was unable to dance anymore. Sian says that she has been a “doer” for as long as she can remember and this did not stop her from being herself. By the time she was 22 years old, she had tried out many different career choices, including roading, beauty and hair, construction, telecommunications, infrastructure and hospitality, and marketing and video promotion.
After all of that, Sian settled on being a digital marketing intern for a while. During that time, she learned as much as she could about online web video, digital marketing, social media and search engine optimization. She went for her Bachelor of Business, majoring in Marketing and Entrepreneurship at Massey University in 2012. In 2014, she set off on her second trip around the world and continued her education through distance learning. It was during this trip that Sian was offered a job at Kiwi Landing Pad in San Francisco and became the business bridge between New Zealand and the U.S.
What is Kiwi Landing Pad?
A quick look at its website will tell you that Kiwi Landing Pad is a community that is led and ran by entrepreneurs to serve entrepreneurs. Having been through the process themselves, these entrepreneurs work with some of the top founders and startup teams in order to support their desire for worldwide growth. Companies which are showing both ambition and progress are supported through the Minimum Viable Product stage up until the Initial Public Offering. Kiwi Landing Pad deals mostly with digital, software, and technology companies or businesses that focus on these areas. They did not work with service industries.
What Is She Doing Now?
We have learned about Sian’s early years and a bit about Kiwi Landing Pad, but what is it that she does, exactly? In her own words to Idealog, Sian shares, “It’s basically my job to connect dots. I run the Kiwi Landing Pad globally, as the community director and sole employee reporting to our co-founder and chairman. I range across all business functions. It’s my job to help take New Zealand technology to the world and make it easier for Kiwi tech companies to grow and expand as a community globally. I also work as a producer and director building video brands for some global clients. I also consult on marketing, innovation, social, startups and community.” Sounds like she is the person to know if you want to get your New Zealand-based business out into the world.
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