Stories & articles of our work & our people
The Samoa Business Network(SBN) Inc kicked off its Network Evening for September, this time in Mangere with over 30 participants in attendance. The evening was hosted by one of the network’s many members, Morry Su’a and her team at Organo Gold in their headquarters on Kirkbride Mangere. Su’a and Co are the first business from the Samoa Business Network who has hosted a network evening.
The Organo Headquarters in Mangere is part of a global franchise, which markets its premium coffee using a direct sales business model using independent distributors worldwide. The special ingredient that sets Organo Gold coffee apart from standard coffee brands is an ancient Chinese medicinal herb called Ganoderma Lucidium.
The team is led by Sina Hunt, who Su’a explains was one of the main reasons she entered the business. Su’a is 28 yrs of age and is the youngest in the team and has now around 200 plus members in her own team which is still expanding, here in New Zealand and overseas.
Su’a is also a very big fan of the company’s products as well as the opportunity to meet and network and to promote their products to a broad range of people.
“Our coffee comes in different variants; Hot Chocolate, Black Coffee, Latte, Mocha and Green Tea and all are infused with 100% Ganoderma Lucidim…. Coffee is after all the second most consumed beverage on the planet after water. It’s the second most traded commodity after oil. People drink coffee all day, every day in almost every country around the world, so it’s a wonderful business to be a part of”.
All of the SBN Network evenings have to this point taken place at the Bank of New Zealand Manukau (a major sponsor of the Network). However, as part of an initiative to generate more exposure for network members, to highlight and promote their facilities and products, the SBN Executive Committee have given the responsibility of hosting to it’s members.
The guest speaker for the evening was Unasa Iuni Saute Sapolu, founder of Sapolu Law. Established in 1989 in Manurewa, South Auckland, Sapolu Law through Iuni has trained over 20 lawyers who have gone on to practice in Samoa, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Tonga and Korea. Some include the Honourable Tongan Minister for Police, Prisons and Fire Services and Minister for Revenue Services, Siosifa Tu'utafaiva; former New Zealand Families Commissioner and lawyer Sandra Alofivae and Honourable Samoan Associate Minister of Finance and Lawyer Tuisa Tasi Patea.
Iuni spoke wonderfully about the way in which she built Sapolu Law from the ground up. Sapolu’s advice was well received, the crowd being mainly business owners themselves. Sapolu spoke of the key qualities one needs to last in this business, and the sheer hard work and sacrifice people have to make in order to succeed. Being persistent and consistent were the key phrases that stood out.
Sapolu has spent 25 years in building the Law Firm, and her family, and her genuine commitment to the people of Samoa has always remained consistent and undeterred.
Interestingly Sapolu also spoke of the gender and racial dimensions of being a Samoan Pacific female, in white New Zealand, providing insight into her particular experiences, in the hopes that it would help encourage and push others to pursue their dreams and to work hard.
The next Network Evening will take place around the end of October. Keep in touch via the Samoa Business Network website or facebook page or send us an email email@example.com for more information
Villages: Vaiala, Fagaloa and Faga.
Qualifications: DipHSc (Otago), LLB (Auckland)
Daughter of Saute Sapolu and Maluoaiga Brown
Iuni attended Leififi Intermediate and then Samoa College. She obtained a Samoan Government Scholarship to attend school in New Zealand, where she completed her 7th form year (year 13) at Marlborough Girls College, Marlborough.
Her scholarship determined her to pursue tertiary education in Home Science as only male students were awarded scholarships for Law. Iuni attended Otago University where she completed her Diploma in Home Science in 1976, qualifying as a New Zealand Registered Dietician.
Iuni returned to Samoa working for the South Pacific Commission as a Dietician at Mootootua Hospital. This allowed her to travel the Pacific including New Caledonia, Kiribati, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands and others.
Iuni moved to New Zealand in 1981. Whilst raising two young children (Eliota and Josefina), she became a full-time student in Law at the University of Auckland. She graduated in 1986 with her LLB and was then admitted to the High Court of New Zealand in 1987. She worked for the late Sanirivi Muliaumaseali'i, who was one of the first Samoans to operate a law firm in New Zealand (on Karangahape Road, Auckland City).
In the same year her daughter Suluama was born, she founded her law firm 'Sapolu Law' in 1989 in Manurewa, South Auckland. She has trained over 20 lawyers who have gone on to practice in Samoa, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Tonga and Korea. Some include the Honourable Tongan Minister for Police, Prisons and Fire Services and Minister for Revenue Services, Siosifa Tu'utafaiva; former New Zealand Families Commissioner and lawyer Sandra Alofivae and Honourable Samoan Associate Minister of Finance and Lawyer Tuisa Tasi Patea. She has also provided pro-bono services through the Citizens Advice Bureau, Manurewa, since 1989. She has worked in a range of areas of law particularly criminal law, family law, immigration law, traffic law, property law and intellectual property law. She was also admitted as a lawyer to the Supreme Court of Samoa in 2006 and admitted as a lawyer to the Supreme Court of Queensland, Australia in 2012.
She has 7 children, (3 of her own, 4 under her guardianship, all aged between 15 to 32 years) and one grandson. Her children have gone on to pursue law, medicine, carpentry and professional-sports.
She is also co-owner of Apaula Heights Lounge Bar and Restaurant in Samoa.
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