Using enterprise development stories to understand and encourage Maori entrepreneurship.
In 1734 Richard Cantillon introduced the term ‘entrepreneur’ (Cuevas, 1994) as a label for a trader who undertook risk by buying at a certain price and selling at an uncertain price. This definition has evolved in ways that often resulted in indigenous people not viewing themselves as either being entrepreneurs or having the potential to become entrepreneurs. Inspired by the stories of Maui, Keelan and Woods (2006) introduced the term Mauipreneur in order to create a culturally located model of entrepreneurship and re-affirm the existence and potential for Maori entrepreneurship. This paper uses data from a study of Maori enterprise development narratives in order to explore the relevance of this concept to the experience of contemporary Maori entrepreneurs in the tourism sector. It examines how these narratives position Maori entrepreneurs in relation to contemporary concepts of entrepreneur and Keelan and Woods’ (2006) model. It aims to understanding whether either captures the sense the Maori subjects made of their enterprise development and, in so doing, it is hoped it will provide insights that can inform aspiring Maori entrepreneurs and contribute to discussions about the value of culturally differentiated models of entrepreneurship.