Rising Stars: Pacific Entrepreneurs Making Waves in the Business World


In recent years, the Pacific region has emerged as a breeding ground for young and ambitious entrepreneurs who are making waves in the business world. From Fiji to Samoa, and from Papua New Guinea to Tonga, a new generation of rising stars is reshaping the economic landscape of the region. These young entrepreneurs are not only driven by their desire for financial success, but also by their vision to bring positive change to their communities and the wider Pacific region. With their innovative ideas, determination, and resilience, these Pacific entrepreneurs are proving that success knows no boundaries and that they are ready to take the business world by storm.

The Pacific region is home to some of the most dynamic and innovative entrepreneurs in the world. From Australia to New Zealand, and all the way to the small island nations of Fiji and Samoa, a new generation of business leaders is emerging, making waves in the business world. These rising stars are not only transforming their local economies but also making a global impact with their groundbreaking ideas and ventures.

One such entrepreneur is Melanie Perkins, the co-founder and CEO of Canva, an online design platform that has revolutionized the way people create and share visual content. Perkins, who hails from Perth, Australia, started Canva in 2012 with the vision of democratizing design and empowering individuals and businesses to create professional-looking graphics without the need for expensive software or design skills. Today, Canva has over 60 million users worldwide and is valued at over $15 billion, making Perkins one of the youngest female billionaires in the world.

Another rising star in the Pacific business scene is Sam Morgan, the founder of Trade Me, New Zealand’s largest online marketplace. Morgan started Trade Me in 1999 when he was just 23 years old, and within a few years, the platform became a household name in New Zealand, enabling people to buy and sell everything from cars to furniture to services. In 2006, Morgan sold Trade Me to the Australian media conglomerate Fairfax for NZD $700 million, cementing his status as one of New Zealand’s most successful entrepreneurs.

In Fiji, Mahendra Tappoo is making a name for himself in the retail industry. As the CEO of Tappoo Group, a family-owned business with interests in retail, tourism, and real estate, Tappoo has expanded the company’s footprint both locally and internationally. Under his leadership, Tappoo Group has become one of the largest retail chains in Fiji, offering a wide range of products from fashion to electronics. Tappoo is also actively involved in philanthropy, supporting various community initiatives and organizations in Fiji.

The Pacific region is not only producing successful entrepreneurs in traditional sectors but also in emerging industries. Take Katherine McConnell, the founder and CEO of Brighte, an Australian fintech company that provides financing solutions for the growing residential solar and energy efficiency market. McConnell recognized the need for accessible and affordable financing options for homeowners looking to adopt clean energy solutions. Since its inception in 2015, Brighte has facilitated over $500 million in loans, helping thousands of Australian households make the switch to renewable energy.

These rising stars are not only creating successful businesses but also driving positive change in their communities. Many of them are committed to social and environmental sustainability, integrating ethical practices into their operations and giving back to society. They are also inspiring the next generation of entrepreneurs, proving that with passion, innovation, and hard work, anyone can achieve their dreams and make a difference in the world.

The Pacific region is undoubtedly becoming a hotbed of entrepreneurial talent, with its unique blend of diverse cultures, natural beauty, and access to global markets. As these rising stars continue to make waves in the business world, it is clear that the Pacific’s entrepreneurial spirit is here to stay, and the future looks bright for the region’s economy and innovation.