Eastern Bridge works with organisations who want to engage with North East Asia to provide them with a cost efficient alternative to maintaining their own International Relations Department


New Zealand's largest trading partner and second largest economy in the world.


$8.5 billion of investments in New Zealand. 9,742 students study in New Zealand


Sixth largest trading partner, valued over $billion and source of high value tourism.


13.5% of New Zealanders identify as being Asian, 122,964 of them speak Chinese.

Eastern Bridge has a passion for economic and community development. Our clients include Local Councils, Economic Development Agencies, Industry Associations and Education Providers.


The Chinese have invested $1.9 billion (NZD) in NZ during 2015, 14% of all foreign direct investment. There are a number of myths about investment from Asia.


The export education sector was worth $3 billion to our economy in 2016, international students also bring greater diversification into our schools and communities


Asia is New Zealand's most important importing and exporting region terms of current value and potential for future growth. New Zealand products are we respected in Asia.


China is our second largest tourism market, with Japan and Korea also playing an important role. China is also the fastest growing market in terms of numbers and value.


Eastern Bridge provides an all encompassing service suitable for New Zealand organisations which desire to connect with partners from China, Japan and South Korea. The Service includes the following components and i customisable to suite our clients needs:

Activity Description
Communication Translation and interpreting support for a wide variety of tasks between English, Chinese, Japanese and Korean
Strategy Development The development of a strategy which assists in guiding Eastern Bridge and your organisation in your international engagements.
Due-Diligence A light due-diligence service designed to distinguish genuine inquiries from time wasters.
Advice and Briefing Documents Drawing on our years of experience we can provide advice, recommendations and prepare briefing documents relating to your international engagements
Training and Workshops Deliver tailor made training for your organisation or organisation's clients and stakeholders.
Delegation Management Provide advice and assist in the preparation and management of both on-shore and off-shore delegations.
Market Observation Monitor market trends, or a specific industry and provide regular updates
Ethnic Media Management Prepare target language press releases and manage relationships with domestic ethnic media organisations
Additional Benefits:
Cooperation Work collaboratively with other Eastern Bridge clients to promote your region and leverage off 'New Zealand Inc.'
Members Website Access the Eastern Bridge member's area where you can access a wide variety of information relating to International Relations.
Eastern Bridge Activities Be invited to participate and member-rates for Eastern Bridge special activities such as off-shore delegations and marketing promotions.


Eastern Bridge was founded in Auckland by Simon Appleton to support local councils to communicate with incoming Chinese investors. Eastern Bridge's first clients were Hauraki and Opotiki District Councils.


New services were added including Due-Diligence, Ethnic Media Management and Strategic Planning. Began offering services for Economic Development Agencies. EB joined a Prime Ministerial delegation to Seoul for the signing of the FTA with South Korea.


All of EB's activities were merged into one 'International Relations Management service". EB started leading offshore delegations. Korean and Japanese language support was added. First China based role established.


EB relocated to Hawkes Bay and partnered with Local Government New Zealand. EB registered and opened its China office and led 5 delegations to Asia. EB was involved in attracting over $120 million into regional New Zealand.


Thanks to economies of scale Eastern Bridge can provide its clients with a cost efficient alternative to maintaining their own International Relations Department. Our customisable International Relations service starts off at $600+GST per month for eight hours of dedicated support. The eight hour cap is flexible as some months require more support than others. Higher caps can be negotiated if required.

2018 Goal

Eastern Bridge will continue to grow in terms of clients as well as the services we provide. We will build on our 2017 success to increase our presence in China. We will manage the 2018 Mayoral China Delegation in partnership with Local Government New Zealand. Eastern Bridge will work with other organisations in this area to grow awareness of East Asia and encourage New Zealand organisations to increase their cooperation when going into the region.

Who are we?

Eastern Bridge is made up a passionate team based in New Zealand, China and Korea.

Simon Appleton
Founder and General Manager
Amy Tanabe
Office Administrator
Lulu Li
Chinese Market Manager
Lei Tanabe
Japanese Market Manager
Jinyoung Kang
Korean Market Manager
Cecilia He
China Representative
Merv Stark
Chief Adviser
Billy Qin

Simon Appleton 方志杰

Simon is the General Manager and founder of Eastern Bridge Limited. He spent 10 years in East Asia including in South Korea and China. Simon studied a Masters in Chinese Law at Renmin University 中国人民大学 and operated a consultancy businesses. After returning to New Zealand in 2010 Simon worked for the Opotiki District Council and the Eastern Bay of Plenty Economic Development Agency. During that time Simon also sat on the Executive Committee of Export Bay of Plenty. Aside from running Eastern Bridge Simon currently holds the Executive Director role in the Korea New Zealand Business Council and National Secretary role for the New Zealand China Friendship Society


For more information relating to our services please contact Simon Appleton

Simon Appleton

CEO - Eastern Bridge Limited

DD: (09) 2162632 

M: 0223969590

PO Box: 7169 Napier

微信: Simonappleton