Innovation, Education, Connection, and Inspiration

Providing supportive structure, facilitation, and delivery to innovate, develop, and inspire through a connected network of providers.

space and bookings

Meeting rooms, training and conference spaces and event centre. Find out more about our available spaces and facilities.


Our community offers a host of training opportunities for business and individuals. Check out what workshops are coming up soon.


We have a range of exciting events planned. Check our busy calendar now, and subscribe so you don’t miss out!

Who is The Backhouse?

We are Whanganui and Region’s home of innovation and centre for excellence. We support local and regional enterprises build capability, competitiveness, and growth through supportive programmes.

We inspire innovation and support the tech and general sectors to agile through incubation programmes and mentorship. We enable ‘possibility making’ through collaborative space availability that attracts, inspires, and energises. We enable socialisation that destigmatises and enables action.

We support those wanting to explore business opportunities, deliver business growth projects, and enhance the adoption of innovative thinking. We build business and organisational capability through immersive learning experiences in innovation methodologies such as co-design and design thinking.

We identify, create, and deliver supportive programmes that lead to tech enablement, innovative thinking around capability establishment, and pave dynamic applied pathways to further education through tertiary organisations. We support providers to inspire and enable rangatahi through engagement, opportunity, and capability development.

Founders Network MeEt-Up

Are you active in Whanganui’s entrepreneurial community, or an established start-up founder?
Have you developed a business and are looking for a group of like-minded people to connect with?
If yes, then come along to The Backhouse’s ‘Watering Hole’ and join us for some refreshments.

Hosted bi-monthly by The Backhouse and includes an invited guest speaker.

Start-Up Information Session

Our free Business Start-Up Information Sessions provide a perfect point to begin your business journey, whether you are looking to turn an idea into a successful business or are wanting to grow your start-up or new business.

Hosted bi-monthly by The Backhouse, these 60-minute sessions are designed to provide you with information, resources, next steps and practical tools to help you develop your business idea.
The sessions will cover:

  1. Welcome and introductions
    2. Why start a business
    2. Start-up profiles
    3. Start-up business stages
    4. Start-up business support
    5. Next steps
    6. General discussion

The Backhouse Innovation Incubator

The Backhouse Innovation Incubator helps start-ups to accelerate growth, acquire entrepreneurial competences as quickly as possible, acquire seed funding, and provide a greater overall chance of surviving – all that through a highly structured and competitive mentoring programme over the course of 5-months.

Entry will run through a competitive screening and elimination process that includes a dragon’s den type pitch. The programme will focus on product and concept development, business structure and resilience, and customer solutions. Successful applicants will receive business benefits across various services such as:
• Business support: mentoring and coaching from industry experts. The opportunity to attend seminars, workshops, and pitch practise sessions;
• Co-working: access to office space and time to develop their start-up/business;
• Possible seed funding and investment to support early development;
• Networking: meet other early-stage start-ups/businesses and exchange ideas. In addition, access to innovators, founders of successful companies, and others; and
• Pitch day: the opportunity to pitch their start-up to potential investors where they can attract seed investors, angel investors, and/or venture capitalists.

Teams will work in agile-sprints that follow the well-defined stage gate process with one stage per segment. You can think of the sprint types as the Lego blocks we use to craft a repeatable and high success rate process. We tailor the process to the specific needs of specific team.

The Backhouse Network

Our Supporters

Backhouse Logo

Contact Us


28 Taupo Quay, Whanganui 4500