EVENT RECAP: Coffee and Jam #241

During this session, Richard & Natalia will share about their journey with Loomio with us and Antz Rohan, Director and Accountant at EnSpiral, will elaborate on his awesome entrepreneurial story. 

Speakers: Richard Bartlett & Natalia Lombardo of Loomio

Richard has been supporting non-hierarchical organisations for more than six years, co-founding Loomio (a tech co-op building software for collective decision-making) and Enspiral (a network of self-organising companies) with Natalia. They spent 2017 travelling through 13 countries, meeting with all kinds of groups who are trying to work without hierarchical management structures in co-ops, startups, NGOs, companies, activist networks and government departments.

Richard graduated university with a degree in engineering in 2008, and found that there was almost no jobs in engineering available. This led him to ask the question of himself, “what work is most meaningful to me?” Eventually he c-o-founded Loomio, an app that takes the pain out of meetings and allows for more input, from more people, faster.

Here are their top three tips for running a business of any kind:

  1. Articulate your purpose, know it, and make sure everyone else in your organisation knows it too. Whenever you have a dispute, refer back to your purpose as the governor.

  2. Prioritise relationships and invest time into getting them right.

  3. Just keep trying


Speaker Two: Antz Rohan from Fairground Accounting

Antz is a purpose-driven Chartered Accountant who loves seeing good business mix with social impact, and is hugely passionate about supporting social enterprises and start-ups. He co-founded Fairground Accounting who believe in creating a world where purpose-driven business is one day business-as-usual, and every accountant is a social enterprise accountant. He also co-founded a youth charity in Christchurch, and is sitting as a Trustee on various NFP boards. In the weekends he can be found volunteering for a local Civil Defence rescue team and hosting a weekly radio DJ show.

This is his advice for startups:

  1. First and foremost, choose a business structure that works for you - be it sole trader, company, charitable trust or social enterprise. Think beyond the present and into what will work best for you in the future.

  2. Get an accounting system (such as Xero) in place and engage an accountant.  

  3. Start saving money for taxes and thinking about your tax obligations.

antz rohan


- Callum McNamara is a recent grad with a Bachelor of Sciences (psychology and philosophy) and is looking for team/tech based work. Contact calmed6@gmail.com or 02102455642.

- Reuben Todd is part of Skitch, a live weekend sketch comedy show performed in the arts center. This Saturday (3 March) is Skitch #7. Check out their website or email Reuben to learn more.

Upcoming events

The Launch Club is kicking off soon! This is an incredible chance to dive deeper into your idea and figure out your next steps over six workshops - or you can pick and choose which ones suit you. You don’t want to miss it!

ACA #29 is on the 12th of March! This is a free mega-event for early-stage entrepreneurs known as Activator Caffeine Adventures. You get a 20-minute time slot and the opportunity to seriously discuss your idea with our professional Start-Up Activators and an impressive line-up of experienced New Zealand entrepreneurs.

Future City Activator is coming up on the 16th-18th March. This is a 48-hour Hackathon created so that Christchurch's greatest tech talent and active citizenry can find tech solutions to our city's social and environmental challenges. The best ideas will go through to a formal application for funding from Christchurch City Council's Innovation and Sustainability Fund.

Coffee & Jam is Christchurch's longest running weekly meet up for entrepreneurial-minded people. It’s a great place to see ordinary people doing extraordinary things, be inspired, network, and share in an innovative space. Coffee and Jam is your opportunity to meet new people in the Christchurch entrepreneurial ecosystem and indulge in a little bit of free coffee, jam and bread.

If you have an idea you'd like to pitch get in touch with Gina at gina@ministryofawesome.com