Cilla Hegarty Inducted into NZ Hall of Fame for Women Entrepreneurs

Our very own, Cilla Hegarty, Founder of NZ Tax Refunds has been inducted into the NZ Hall of Fame for Women Entrepreneurs in recognition of her contribution in transforming the tax refund industry. An event was held last night in Auckland.

The hall of fame honours those whose success has paved the way, whose brilliance has changed the way things get done and whose generosity has impacted our world for good.

Since 2008 NZ Tax Refunds has processed over 300,000 tax refunds and is regarded as one of the largest tax refund companies with more Kiwi taxpayers on its database than anyone else.


Cilla Hegarty said she was honoured to be recognised.

"I'm really proud to have played a part in helping all those people who over pay their tax get their money back and getting all those millions going back in our economy every year.

I never expected any recognition. I saw an opportunity and just got on and led the way as the first online tax agent. Eight years later there are now over 38 competitors and I have 80 employees across the globe offering services in New Zealand and in the United Kingdom."


The hall of fame recognises examples of female entrepreneurial success so as to normalise success as a possibility for others, offer encouragement to those working on their own, celebrate successful women and demonstrate diversity of success.

This year's nominations needed to have achieved significant success with their business; have had a significant, tangible impact on their industry; show support for female entrepreneurial success and make a difference by applying their resources or profits for the good of others.

Cilla was shortlisted with 10 others and then unanimously selected by a selection panel as one of three to be inducted into the 2016 NZ Hall of Fame for Women Entrepreneurs. The other two inductees were Erica Crawford, Loveblock Wine Group Founder & CEO and Glennie Oborn, Kindercare Learning Centres Founder and Chair.

In 2013 Cilla was awarded a NZ Prime Minister’s Scholarship to study innovation and leadership. This study was undertaken at the prestigious London Business School during 2014.

Other awards and rankings include:

  • NZ Direct Marketing Awards Finalist (2014)
  • Women of Influence Finalist (2014)
  • Best Plain English Website (Private Sector)
  • Writemark Plain English Awards (2014)
  • TVNZ NZ Marketing Award (2013)
  • Ranked 30 in the Deloitte Asia Pacific Technology Fast 500 (2013)
  • Effie Bronze Award (Consumer Services) for the WooHoo ad campaign (2012)
  • Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year New Zealand Services Category Winner (2012)
  • NZ Hi-Tech Awards finalist Emerging Company (2011)
  • Winner HER Businesswoman of the Year (2011)
  • Finalist in both the HER and Next Businesswoman of the year awards (2010)

About the Hall of Fame:

Co.OfWomen (Company of Women) instigated the Hall of Fame in 2012 to formally recognise women who have achieved success at such a consistently high standard it reaches the international benchmark for induction into a Hall of Fame. The women inducted are chosen in an open nomination process launched during Women Entrepreneurs Week in March each year. Chosen by a panel of their peers, these women are selected for their significant achievements in business, their support for other women and for the philanthropic appropriation of their financial gains. www.coofwomen.biz