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Investor Journeys—Te Kahukura

Investor Journeys

Te Kahukura Boynton (Te Whakatōhea, Ngāti Kahungunu, Ngāi Tūhoe) is the creator of Māori Millionaire—a platform aimed at empowering Māori to become financially independent. 

A woman sitting in front of the beach

Te Kahukura talks about investing for future generations, how she chooses what to invest in, and what she’s learnt as an investor so far.

Tell us about yourself!

I’m 19 and studying law at university. I started Māori Millionaire as a resource to empower Māori to be financially independent. I think everyone should have a chance to understand money and get ahead financially, for themselves and future generations. 

What’s your money story?

Growing up in Napier, I was lucky that my school showed me that Māori can be as educated and successful as anyone—we believed we could be whoever we wanted to be. When my family moved to Tokoroa, it was different. Most people at my school there didn’t have a path ahead of them like I did.

My mum was a school teacher. Sometimes we relied on welfare benefits, grants, and food parcels so I knew money was limited. Everyone I knew worked hard in nine-to-five office or labouring jobs. Money was seen as a way to access food and put a roof over their heads, but no more than that. 

I developed Māori Millionaire to change that mindset. When I was learning about money and investing, all the role models were Pākehā and I couldn’t relate to them. It’s important that indigenous people have indigenous role models. 

Tell us about your investing journey so far.

I was 17 when I started investing with Sharesies. It was easy to sign up, and I started with a small amount. Now I invest regularly and for the long term to benefit from dollar-cost averaging

I spread my money across different investments, including indigenous, sustainable funds. I also put some money into KiwiSaver each week.

I research different investments and check that they align with my values. For example, I don’t invest in companies associated with tobacco and gambling. I also think about the long-term potential of what I’m investing in.

In time, I’m hoping to have a reasonable nest egg. Maybe then I’ll buy a house.

Why do you invest?

Investing gives me peace of mind. I want to leave a legacy for future generations too. There’s a big misconception that investing is for a certain kind of person, but it can be for everyone.

Money gives people choices—to work or not work; to live a life they enjoy; to access health, housing, and education. Many Māori are disadvantaged on many levels. We can only run as fast as our slowest runner. Investing can allow people to get ahead. 

How have you learnt about investing? 

I loved reading from a young age. When I was 8, I read Rich Dad, Poor Dad and learnt that there are ways to make money grow. I also listen to podcasts like Girls That Invest and Hidden Figures. It’s useful to keep an eye on the business and personal finance sections of the newspaper too.

Some people might be scared about investing, but if you’re informed and have a long-term strategy, you can ride out the ups and downs of the share market over time. You don’t need to know everything at the start either. There’s so much free information available about saving and investing. Everyone can invest in themselves by learning. 

What are the most important things you’ve learnt as an investor so far? 

  • Invest small amounts regularly. Slow and steady wins the race. 

  • Consider diversification to manage your risk. When you diversify, your eggs aren’t all in one basket—which can help when specific sectors or markets go down.

  • Think long term. No one becomes a millionaire overnight. Investing isn’t a ‘get rich quick scheme’, and it isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. 

  • Keep learning. Businesses and markets change.

  • Stop trading time for money. Start investing the money you have so that your money can grow without you.

  • ‘Never spend your last dollar’. My grandmother always said that, although it would be your last $100 or $1,000 in today’s terms!

Te Kahukura took part in this interview as part of a brand partnership with Sharesies.

The people shown in our Investor Journeys are Sharesies investors, and their stories are actual experiences they’ve had with us. They’re paid for their time to record their story.

Ok, now for the legal bit

Investing involves risk. You aren’t guaranteed to make money, and you might lose the money you start with. We don’t provide personalised advice or recommendations. Any information we provide is general only and current at the time written. You should consider seeking independent legal, financial, taxation or other advice when considering whether an investment is appropriate for your objectives, financial situation or needs.

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