About us

About us

BusinessDesk has been covering the New Zealand political economy and the fortunes of its listed and unlisted businesses since 2008.

We have thousands of individual subscribers and more than 150 corporate and government subscribers. Our influential audience make decisions every day that affect how New Zealand runs.

BusinessDesk’s team of more than 20 journalists and commentators produces much of New Zealand’s best business journalism.

Our aim is to help you make better decisions for work and in your personal finances.

The site is edited by Pattrick Smellie, one of New Zealand’s most highly regarded journalists. We publish trustworthy, well-researched reporting and expert commentary.

As of January 2022, BusinessDesk is owned by NZME (NZM) but retains its independent identity and editorial manifesto.

We have editorial staff in Auckland, Hamilton, Wellington, Christchurch and Queenstown.

Manifesto

Intelligent, trusted news sources are more valuable than ever. At BusinessDesk, we publish essential, trustworthy and timely New Zealand business and economic news and analysis that is accessible to professional and general readers alike. Beyond quality journalism, we are keen to promote good government and good governance, and the sound and ethical decision-making that underpins both. Our experienced and professional team are committed not only to accuracy and fairness, but also to deliver depth and insight that justifies the faith our readers place in us when subscribing to the BusinessDesk news service.

Meet Our Team

Pattrick Smellie

Managing Editor

+64 4 499 8891

+64 21 588 203

pattrick@businessdesk.co.nz

Pattrick was judged New Zealand's best overall columnist and business columnist of the year at the Voyager 2021 Media Awards. He has more than 35 years’ experience reporting and working in New Zealand politics and the commercial sector. A former Press Gallery chairman, he is an award-winning journalist and has worked for titles including The Dominion, The Press, Sunday Star-Times and National Business Review. He was the first NZ correspondent for The Australian and co-founded BusinessDesk in 2008.

Matt Martel

GM, BusinessDesk

+64 27 774 4483

matt@businessdesk.co.nz

Matt spent 10 years in senior positions at Fairfax Media, including as an executive editor in the company’s senior leadership team at The Sydney Morning Herald, The Australian Financial Review and The Age (Melbourne). In 2017, Matt redesigned Stuff’s suite of newspapers, taking them from broadsheet to compact. He joined BusinessDesk in 2019 and is based in Auckland. Connect with him on Linkedin here.

Paul McBeth

Head of News

+64 4 473 0961

+64 27 714 3344

paul@businessdesk.co.nz

Paul leads BusinessDesk's South Island coverage, based in Queenstown. He joined the business in its first year in 2008. In that time, he's covered monetary policy, the collapse of the country’s mezzanine finance sector, restructuring of the telecommunications sector and financial markets law. Through BusinessDesk, he's been published in the Dominion Post, NZ Herald, the Independent Business Weekly and the Listener. You can follow him on Twitter @pbmcbeth or connect with him on LinkedIn here.

Brenda Ward

Deputy Head of News

brenda@businessdesk.co.nz

Brenda has 20 years of experience as a newspaper executive and magazine editor. She is the former editor of Informed Investor (JUNO) magazine and was the team leader of the Australian Financial Review team in Auckland. She helped launch Canvas and Sunday magazines and won awards for relaunching Next and Your Home & Garden. You can connect with Brenda on LinkedIn here and follow her on Twitter here.

Victoria Young

Senior Journalist

+64 9 280 3351

+64 22 456 4045

victoria@businessdesk.co.nz

Victoria’s journalism experience includes more than five years with National Business Review and a two-year stint as a news editor with London-based Legal Business. Victoria holds law and arts degrees from Victoria University of Wellington and joined BusinessDesk in 2019. You can follow her on Twitter @victoriayoung03 or connect with her on LinkedIn here.

Jacques Steenkamp

Homepage Editor

+64 20 4137 7898

jacques@businessdesk.co.nz

Jacques is an award-winning investigative journalist and bestselling author. He is a former news director for the Sunday Star-Times and Stuff, and senior reporter for the SABC and Media24 in South Africa. He is also the 2016 recipient of the Nat Nakasa Award for Media Integrity as a member of the #SABC8. He joined BusinessDesk in 2021. You can follow him on Twitter @JacqueSteenkamp or connect with him on LinkedIn here.

Frances Cook

Investment Editor

frances@businessdesk.co.nz

Frances has a master's degree in media studies from Victoria University of Wellington and a level 5 certificate in financial services specialising in investments. She has worked as a journalist for 12 years, first specialising in crime, before moving into politics, and finally business and finance. She is the author of two books on personal finance and is best known for the personal finance podcast, ‘Cooking the books’.
She is also a regular commentator on business and personal finance matters, including on the AM show, NewstalkZB, the Hits, and Flava. You can follow her on Twitter here or connect with her on LinkedIn here.

Jenny Ruth

Senior Journalist

+64 27 408 8800

jenny@businessdesk.co.nz

Jenny has been a financial journalist for more than 37 years. She has covered everything from listed companies to economics for outlets including the Australian Associated Press, Bloomberg News, Radio NZ and National Business Review. Jenny was the New Zealand Shareholders’ Association business journalist of the year for 2018.

Rebecca Howard

Agriculture Editor

+64 4 282 0460

+64 21 911 440

rebecca@businessdesk.co.nz

Rebecca is a business journalist with more than 25 years’ experience, including more than a decade in Peru covering everything from politics, terrorism, human rights, and the war on drugs. She has worked for the Associated Press, Dow Jones, the Wall Street Journal and Reuters. Her work in NZ has included macroeconomics, listed companies and extensive coverage of the dairy sector. You can follow her on Twitter @FarroHoward or connect with her on LinkedIn here.

Cameron Bagrie

Columnist

Cameron has been an economist for 20 years. For over 11 years he was the Chief Economist at ANZ. He has also worked as an economist at the National Bank, Treasury and Statistics New Zealand.

A mainlander at heart, Cameron’s approach to economics is non-ideological and pragmatic.

Dan Brunskill

Journalist

+64 21 0251 9137

dan@businessdesk.co.nz

Dan is a journalism graduate from Auckland University of Technology who joined BusinessDesk in 2020. Formerly a photographer, he took up journalism as the news editor of Debate Magazine before going on to work at the New Zealand Herald. You can follow him on Twitter @dan_brunskill or connect with him on LinkedIn here.

David Chaplin

Columnist

David Chaplin founded Investment News NZ (IN NZ) in 2015 after almost 20 years covering the financial services business in Australia.

Daniel Dunkley

Media and Marketing Reporter

022 5288 689

Daniel Dunkley is a British-born business journalist with more than a decade's experience writing for titles including The Sunday Times, Financial News, The Wall Street Journal, and Stuff. He covers media and marketing. 

Andy Fyers

Data Journalist

andy@businessdesk.co.nz

Andy was a senior data journalist at Stuff before joining BusinessDesk in 2020. While at Stuff, he played a lead role in several award-winning data journalism projects. He specialises in data-driven reporting and analysis and will enhance our story-telling by visualising the numbers that are the lifeblood of all good business and economic reporting. You can connect with him on LinkedIn here.

Peter Griffin

Tech Columnist

+64 21 859 365

peter@petergriffin.co.nz

Peter has been keeping a close eye on the tech sector and the digital revolution for the last 20 years. After a stint in London dissecting the tech wreck for a number of computer-industry publications, he joined the New Zealand Herald eventually running the paper's tech section before leaving to found the Science Media Centre in Wellington. He has been a tech commentator for the New Zealand Listener, Newstalk ZB and RNZ. His passion is exploring the impact technology and innovation have on business, society and the environment. Follow him on Twitter @petergnz

Greg Hurrell

Journalist

Greg Hurrell left a journalism career to work around the Middle East for 23 years and returned to New Zealand fulltime in 2020. He earlier studied science at Victoria University of Wellington.
 
 

Murray Jones

Journalist

murray@businessdesk.co.nz

Murray Jones is an investigative journalist. His work has been published by the BBC, The Guardian and Al-Jazeera and his research has been reported on in more than 60 countries. He is a finalist in the Gaby Rado New Journalist category at the Amnesty Media Awards 2022. He moved from the UK to Auckland in 2021. Follow him on Twitter here or connect with him on Linkedin here

Riley Kennedy

Journalist

Riley's journalism experience includes more than a year as a business specialist at the Otago Daily Times. He has a diploma in journalism from Wintec. 

Oliver Lewis

Senior Journalist

Oliver Lewis has an interest in health, infrastructure, housing and employment issues. Formerly with Stuff/The Press, Oliver has since contributed to a range of publications, including the Guardian and North & South. 

Ian Llewellyn

Senior Journalist

027 324 7101

ian@businessdesk.co.nz

Ian is a journalist with more than 30 years' experience working in NZ and the UK. This has included radio, newspapers, and agencies with time also as a ministerial advisor and press secretary. Experience in the Press Gallery includes reporting for the Independent Business Weekly and more than 10 years with the New Zealand Press Association.

Trevor McKewen

Business of Sports Columnist

Trevor has an extensive and varied sporting career including stints in journalism and sports administration. On the latter, he has been the CEO of the Warriors NRL franchise and held senior executive positions at New Zealand Rugby and Super League. Trevor has also been head of sport for Fairfax Media (now Stuff) and NZME as well as performing consultancy works for MediaWorks and Sky TV. If you're keen to connect, you can find him on LinkedIn here.

Brent Melville

Senior Journalist

+64 27 579 9118

brent@businessdesk.co.nz

Brent is a senior reporter in the Auckland newsroom. He previously worked for the Otago Daily Times, after a return to business journalism in 2018. Brent had an extensive career in corporate communications and strategic consulting, including for a range of public listed companies. You can follow him on Twitter @BrentMelville or connect with him on LinkedIn here.

Ben Moore

Technology editor

ben@businessdesk.co.nz

Ben stumbled into tech reporting after a short-lived career as a Drama teacher. After a year covering the IT channel, he returned to university and earned a master’s in Communication Studies. He worked for CRN Australia, which gave him valuable insight into the Australian tech industry, and a renewed appreciation for Aotearoa New Zealand. In early 2022, he spearheaded the launch of CRN into NZ. If you’re keen to connect, you can find him on LinkedIn or Twitter.

Ella Somers

Journalist

Ella Somers is a journalism graduate who has joined BusinessDesk's cadet programme.

Jem Traylen

Journalist

jem@businessdesk.co.nz

Jem has a masters in economics from the University of Canterbury and has previously worked in tertiary education and government policymaking. She was awarded Massey University’s prize for the top journalism student in 2021 and is a finalist in the 2022 Voyager Media Awards student journalist category. You can follow her on Twitter @jemtraylen or connect with her on LinkedIn here.