Auckland Young Professionals (AYP) networking group is changing tack in an effort to attract the city’s upcoming leaders and decision makers.

President Edward McKnight says the group will become a leading platform for New Zealand young professionals to share their views on national matters.

“It’s important to encourage fresh thinking among the next generation of leaders.

“We’ve typically focused on networking and professional development events, but we’re starting to engage young people on issues relevant to helping Auckland and young professionals develop.”

Edward says Auckland’s high property prices and the increasing number of graduates leaving the region are some of the issues the group will soon face.

“Our city is changing rapidly and it’s experiencing some growth pains as a result. We want to ensure its future residents remain front of mind.”

Today the group announced a major rebrand that they’re expecting will attract a wider range of young business people within the region.

“We have found that many think the group is just aimed at accountants, lawyers and engineers.

“The goal of the rebranding is to appeal to more of those professionals in other aspects of business as well as young entrepreneurs.

“We want to develop a variety of young people who are confident in today’s evolving workplaces and are willing to try new business ventures to grow themselves and our economy,” says Edward.

The group interacts with more than 9,000 people in their 20s and 30s – a number that’s doubling each year – and is led by a committee of 10 young professionals who volunteer their time.

The rebrand will see AYP roll out a new logo and website as well as signage and events, starting from today.

An event to launch the group’s new approach will be held this Friday at Auckland’s Tom Tom Bar & Eatery at 5.30pm and is expected to attract more than 200 people.

“It’s a great opportunity to celebrate Auckland Young Professionals’ success so far and mark our new direction going forward – anybody is welcome to attend!”