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Pragmatism rules in New Zealand, and laws trump emotions.


Blue background with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant with four red five-pointed stars edged in white centered in the outer half of the flag; the stars represent the Southern Cross constellation

New Zealanders aren’t afraid to say ‘no’ during negotiations. Their style is closer to the British reserve than their neighbors in Australia. And don’t use the ‘V is for victory’ sign when you succeed, as it’s considered rude.

Location: Southwestern Pacific Ocean

People: New Zealanders

Nickname: Kiwis

Ethnic groups: 71% European, 14% Maori; 11% Asian

Language: English and Maori are the official languages

Population: 4.47 million

Urban population: 86%

Major urban areas: Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch, Hamilton

Franchise strategy: Start in one city and develop several units before moving to another city; don’t underestimate local competition

Capital: Wellington

GDP: $185.8 billion (U.S. dollars)

Median age: 37.6

Obesity: 28%

Literacy: 99%

Life expectancy: 80 years

Type of government: Parliamentary democracy and a Commonwealth realm

Chief of state: Queen Elizabeth II

Head of the government: Prime Minster John Key

Legal system: Common law, based on English model

Time difference: 17 hours ahead of EST

Visa: Not needed for citizens of the U.S. if you are staying less than three-months

Corruption ranking: 2nd least corrupt country out of 175

Crime:  Low, generally very safe

Ease of doing business: No. 2 out of 189 economies

Ease of starting a business: No. 1 out of 189 economies

Internet usage: 83% of population

Natural disasters: Earthquakes and volcanoes

Vacation time: December and January are summer months when many people take vacations

Driving: Left-hand-side of the road

Tipping: Not expected

How dates are written: day, month, year

Meals: afternoon tea is generally served between 3 and 4 p.m.; tea is at the evening meal and supper is a late-night snack.

Titles: Use Mr. or Ms. along with surnames, until told to use first names (usually once relationship is established)

Business attire: formal, i.e. suits for men, pantsuits or dresses for women

Sources: CIA World Factbook, Wikipedia, “Kiss, Bow, or Shake Hands,” Internet, newzealand.com, World Bank, Transparency.org, Franchise Relationships Institute

Currency:New Zealand dollar

Conversion rate at press time: 1 U.S. dollar for 1.34 New Zealand dollars.

Real New Z Franchises

  1. Driving Miss Daisy—limo service
  2. Urban Turban—Bombay-style food (a unit opened in Las Vegas)
  3. PinkFit—an insulation service company (We’re guessing the name is due to insulation looking like compressed pink cotton candy)
  4. Para Rubber—a retail store that sells everything from rubber boots to rubber mats to above-ground pools
  5. Number Works n Words—an afterschool “tuition” provider (we’d say tutoring service)
  6. Need a Nerd—computer services company that claims they’re “looking for Nerd Nurturers” not Nerds
  7. Naked Pool Company—a “spa and pool valet company” (We checked the website and Facebook page and the service providers come full clothed)
  8. Hire-A-Hubby—Handyman service (U.S. counterpart was Rent a Husband)
  9. Crewcut—cleaning and garden maintenance service (nice double entendre)


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