Published on August 1st, 2017 | by Two Sparrows


Press release 1 August 2017

The Networking Group (“TNG”) and Soapbox, both leading business networking providers, today announced the merger of the two organisations creating a more entrenched presence in the New Zealand business community. The merger is effective from 1 September, and the companies will combine business operations with plans to roll out nationwide groups in the coming year. The joining of the two organisations will give business owners greater accessibility to each other leading to connectivity that will not only revive but also build on the tradition of word-of-mouth referrals.

“Kiwi business owners are ambitious,” says TNG General Manager, Mark Trafford. “There is a specific hunger for growth and customer connection that cannot be satiated simply by marketing and advertisements. We see networking as an indispensable tool that connects vision with opportunities. Very soon, business owners from all around the country will have the opportunity to build relationships and generate leads more effectively through our networks.”

“Technology and social media have dominated the commercial scene for so long we often forget that underneath the iPads, the glossy ads, and the tweets, businesses are still about people and relationships,” says Soapbox Director, Sarah Williams. “We operate in an environment where people are constantly shifting through sanitised marketing languages looking for a source of trust and sincere recommendations. This merger is our way to re-humanise businesses by systematically promoting and harnessing the power of networking.”

A structured approach to building relationships

Networking celebrates potentials and discovers the unknown. It is about challenging established business norms and asking yourself what else is out there? It is one of the most misunderstood skills in the business toolkit. “We see a lot of business owners despondent over the ho-hum results they get from sharing a cup of coffee with an acquaintance. What they do not understand is that networking is a lot more than that,” says Mr Trafford. “It is a particular skill that you develop over time with training and practice.” Both TNG and Soapbox has a strong history of providing opportunities and up-skilling business owners in this area. “We believe that a disciplined and structured approach to discovering and building meaningful relationships is the only way for businesses to thrive in this market,” says Mr Trafford. “This merger envisages the future of our business community to be about the people and the trusting relationships we create with each other,” says Ms Williams.

Better support and opportunities for business owners

This merger creates one of the largest business network opportunities in New Zealand which leads to greater potential and better opportunities for members across the country. “We are building on our respective connectivity in a way that creates exciting opportunities for our members,” says Ms Williams.

TNG and Soapbox will continue to build on their solid foundations and robust support systems to help their members become more confident networkers. “I am excited by the prospect of continuing to provide the best support for every single member and do more to help businesses connect, improve and grow. We will work with members at all stages of business growth and offer them unparalleled expertise and advice,” says Mr Trafford.

About TNG

Borne out of the belief that small businesses do not need big advertising dollars to succeed, TNG focuses on connecting trades, services and professional business owners together to help each other grow. The TNG platform offers a structured and disciplined approach to networking as well as a comfortable environment to bring out each member’s personality and business strength.

About Soapbox

For over six years, Soapbox has been providing a relaxed and supportive environment for like-minded business owners and employees of forward-thinking companies to connect and help each other grow. Through its weekly breakfast and fortnightly groups, Soapbox has so far, created countless opportunities for businesses and contributed thousands of dollars in business growth for its members.

For all enquiries contact: Melanie Budden, Sales Manager E: or M: 021 2093210

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