Setting up a new business is relatively easy in New Zealand – but taking a couple of hours to make sure you’ve crossed the t’s and dotted the i’s will save you hassle down the track. Here’s a guide to the various resources available to help you set up your new business properly and understand your obligations as a business owner. There are also some fantastic resources you can use to help your business succeed.

Business advice and support – Business.govt has information and tools designed specifically for small and medium sized businesses and the people who support them. For everything from free advice on government grants for small businesses, to information on mentoring services for business owners

Companies Register – Companies Office

The Companies Office is the official register for all companies in New Zealand. You can search for companies, company directors or shareholders. And if you’re starting a new company, this is where you need to register it.

Business tax – Inland Revenue

One thing you can’t avoid, especially as a business owner, is tax. The Inland Revenue (IRD) has lots of tools for businesses, with advice on how to manage your business tax and what to do if you employ staff.

Exporting and importing – New Zealand Trade & Enterprise, New Zealand Customs Service

New Zealand Trade & Enterprise can guide you on exporting and importing, and for more detailed information on what your responsibilities are for importing goods for business or commercial use, New Zealand Customs should be able to help you.

Consumer Laws – Consumer Affairs

To see what your rights and responsibilities are as a business owner towards your consumers, and for advice on how to deal with customer complaints.

Market competition – The Commerce Commission

If you are a business owner, you need to be aware of your rights and responsibilities under the Commerce Act and the Fair Trading Act.

Patents, Trademarks and Copyright – Intellectual Property Office

Intellectual property can be your business’ most valuable asset. To ensure that your ideas and your business are adequately protected, and to find out more about patents, trademarks, copyright and design.

Business growth – Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE)

MBIE offer a range of legal, statistical and economical information resources that aim to support business growth. From information about the New Zealand Venture Investment Fund, to support with becoming an international business.

Statistics New Zealand

Statistic New Zealand offers useful statistical information which can be used to analyse the marketplace. For example, their Industry Profiler can give you stats on small businesses by industry and region, and compare numbers of new businesses, worker turnover, survival rates, and average earnings for staff, and their Market Mapper can help you locate your target market.

Anti-Spam – Department of Internal Affairs

The introduction of the Unsolicited Electronic Messages Act (2007) was designed to crack down on spam messaging. The Department of Internal Affairs website outlines what you need to know about legal electronic messaging and how to avoid spamming.

Other Government services

A useful summary of government agencies and how they can help you and your business.

Important information

The material is for information purposes only. You should seek professional advice relevant to your individual circumstances. While ANZ has taken care to ensure that this information is from reliable sources, it cannot warrant its accuracy, completeness or suitability for your intended use. To the extent permitted by law, ANZ does not accept any responsibility or liability arising from your use of this information. We recommend seeking financial advice about your situation and goals before getting a financial product. To talk to one of our team at ANZ, please call 0800 269 249, or for more information about ANZ’s financial advice service or to view our financial advice provider disclosure statement see