Thursday, 03 October 2019 07:55

Workshops to raise financial confidence

Written by  Staff Reporters
Jules Benton, DWN chief executive. Jules Benton, DWN chief executive.

Dairy Women's Network (DWN) is partnering with ASB to run NZ-wide workshops aimed at building farmers’ financial confidence.

Their key focus will be fundamentals of rural banking and finance and the wider industry picture.

“Maintaining control of your business and ensuring it is resilient enough to continue to be profitable is paramount,” said DWN chief executive Jules Benton. 

“ASB Rural wants to build greater knowledge, awareness and understanding of financial management, develop stronger budgeting skills and behaviour and connect customers with tools to help make that process easier.”

There will be 17 workshops for DWN members, in locations including Kaipara and Southland. The first session will be in South Waikato on October 2. 

“The dairy sector has had a golden run over the last 20 years or so but we’re seeing more change in the industry than almost ever before,” ASB rural general manager Richard Hegan said. 

“There is much opportunity, but some tough challenges facing the sector. 

“The more we can help build financial confidence in our farmers the better prepared they’ll be to position themselves to make the most of the opportunities available.” 

A 90-minute fundamentals workshop will tell how a bank assesses a dairy business, and what a farmer can do to support a banking relationship. It will cover how some farmers have built greater resilience into their business to withstand dairy downturns.

“We believe the fundamentals workshops are important for those just starting out or who have been running their finances for only a few years,” Benton said.  

“ASB will cover strategies and ideas to give less experienced dairy farmers information and guidance to build greater financial confidence.”

Following that will be ‘bigger picture workshops’ for experienced farmers who already understand how a bank assesses risk. These will explain how farmers can improve resilience in their businesses.

The workshops cover the dairy sector story over the last 20 years and why building resilience in a dairy business is paramount. 

“We need to cover both ends of the experience scale to add real financial value and understanding for members,” Benton said. 

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