Entrepreneur Mahesh Muralidhar for National in Auckland Central



The electorate of Central Auckland gets more interesting with Mahesh Muralidhar chosen by the National Party to contest In the General Election 2023 (Photo Supplied)

Venkat Raman
Auckland, March 20, 2023

Mahesh Muralidhar, a young and successful entrepreneur, is the National Party candidate to contest from Auckland Central in the general election to be held on October 14, 2023.

The local members of the Party chose him at their meeting held tonight at the electorate.

A long-time resident- as a student, worker and corporate chief- Mahesh is well conversant with the challenges of the electorate and the needs and aspirations of its voters.

As the Chief Executive of venture capital firm Phase One Ventures, he funds start-ups and supports them in their growth. He has been a mentor and investor to several start-up companies in New Zealand and Australia.

Thanking the members of the National Party, he said that the hard work starts now and that he will meet people in the electorate, preparing for the polls on October 14, 2023.

“I love our city and I am incredibly aspirational for the people who call it home. But it is getting harder for many to afford to call Auckland Central home. Labour is spending $1 billion more per week than the previous government and all there is to show for it are higher costs and worsening outcomes across the board,” he said.

The following statement of Mahesh came to us from the National Party office in Wellington.

Aucklanders hit hard

The median rent in Auckland is almost $5000 higher per year under Labour and those who own their homes are wondering how they are going to find hundreds of dollars more a week to cover rising mortgage repayments caused by rate hikes desperately trying to put a lid on Labour’s runaway inflation. Making sure that Auckland Central attracts and retains our best and brightest is a priority for me and that starts with fixing the cost-of-living crisis.

I am standing as National’s candidate because the National Party values are values that I stand by – limited government, competitive enterprise and caring communities. It is the only Party with a plan to strengthen our economy, reduce the cost of living and make it easier for Kiwis.

It is the only Party with the ability to deliver.

We will stop Labour’s wasteful spending and we will be focused on the issues that matter.

I will do the same if I earn the right to represent Auckland Central as its next local MP.

Rising crime

Another key issue for Auckland Central is rising crime.

In 2022, there were almost 50% more victimisations, which include offences like robbery, theft and assault in the Auckland City Police District than in 2017.

The data bears out why people feel less safe on the streets of Auckland Central and we need to get serious about changing our approach.

National has released plans to do exactly that by backing our Police to disrupt crime and setting clear consequences for offenders. I am committed to working closely with our community leaders to make Auckland Central safer for everyone.

I took the Kiwi rite of passage and spent time working in Sydney and Tokyo but this has always been home.

I am running because I want the opportunity to give back to a city that has given me so much.

I will stand up for the young people struggling to afford the basics, the start-ups and businesses we must support to unlock our productivity, our beautiful Hauraki Gulf islands and for everyone here trying to get ahead if I earn the right to be the MP for Auckland Central in Chris Luxon’s National team.

About Mahesh Muralidhar

Mahesh Muralidhar is the Chief Executive of Phase One Ventures, a New Zealand venture firm which supports and funds start-ups to grow and succeed. He mentors and invests In several start-ups in New Zealand and Australia.

Before returning to New Zealand, Mahesh spent several years working in Sydney, including as Vice-President of People Operations at Airtasker and Head of People Operations at graphic design platform Canva.

Born in Kerala, India, Mahesh moved to New Zealand in the mid-90s to attend high school.

He completed his schooling at Napier Boys’ High School before gaining a Bachelor of Science in Statistics and a Graduate Diploma in Arts from the University of Auckland. He also has an MBA from the University of New South Wales and a Postgraduate Diploma in Public Policy from the University of Auckland.

Mahesh has extensive ties with Auckland Central.

After finishing high school in Napier, Mahesh moved to Auckland Central and lived in the CBD for close to eight years. His first part-time job was as one of the first baristas at Starbucks on Queen Street. As a student at the University of Auckland, Mahesh established the University’s Management Consulting Club.

Mahesh and his wife Praveena Karunaharan married on Waiheke Island and now live in Ponsonby. Praveena was among the speakers at the Twelfth Annual Indian Newslink Lecture held on February 27, 2023 at J W Marriott Auckland, delivering the Concluding Remarks.

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