News Item

Bonjour Michael and Jonathan

News 22 Jan 2019

(L - R: Jonathan Cilli and Michael Travers)

PCF's relationship with its French-speaking Pacific counterparts continues to grow through its two newest interns from Tahiti and the French New Zealand Chamber of Commerce.


Returning from the Christmas and New Years' break, PCF welcomed its very first intern from the Tahiti Business School, Michael Travers. Michael (prounouned 'mee-ka') is a second-year student a Bachelor of Business majoring in Marketing.

The aspiring marketing guru lives in Moorea with his parents, Remy and Karine and little sister Canelle. When asked what he would like to achieve for the new year, Michael says he is set on ticking off the small things that would make a huge difference for him.

"I would like to pass all my papers for my second year of studies and also get my driver's license" he says,

"It might not mean much to some, but for me achieving these things first will encourage me to go on and set even more bigger goals."

Michael will carry out his internship with PCF until March, he is currently assisting Programme Development Manager Linda Kaua with research on the upcoming Māori Pacific Business Forum as well as helping the French New Zealand Chamber of Commerce (FNZCCI).

Michael says working on the forum has further developed his interest in the Pacific region as he still feels unfamiliar of its diverse cultures and issues despite living in a Pacific country.

"I was born in Paris, France however my parents wanted to start a new life elsewhere, so we ended up migrating to Tahiti later on," Michael explains

"The work that I'm doing in my internship right now allows me to discover new things about the Pacific."


Joining Michael is Jonathan Cilli who is the Business Development Coordinator at the French New Zealand Chamber of Commerce (FNZCCI). Jonathan also has his sights on a career in marketing, studying towards a masters in Marketing at the KEDGE Business School in France.

Born in Martigues but raised in Fos-Sur-Mer near Marseille, Jonathan learned to live and do things independently at a young age which is common trait among his family

"My sister is an interior designer and is currently in Cairns, Australia, my father lives in Toulouse which is south-west of France where he works as a container park manager and my mother remains in Fos-Sur-Mer working for a professional basketball club as the secretary."

"I left the family home at 14 to join a program for high-level athletes in Antibes." Jonathan adds.

"The opportunity came to me when I played basketball and I saw that the programme allowed me to combine sports with studies. It was difficult at first because at that age it was tough for me to be so far apart from my parents, however it proved beneficial because I had to learn how to organise myself and it made me mature."

Jonathan's experience of living away from home encouraged him to travel abroad. Not long after he finished his program, he took up his first overseas experience in New Zealand.

"My first time coming to New Zealand was four years ago where I worked for Ray White as a trainee. What struck me about the country was the mentality of the people and the 'kiwi' way of life," he says

"Moreover, I had the chance to visit and admire the different landscapes of the North and South Island which sealed my love for the country."

"So when I saw that there was an internship position at FNZCCI last year, I did not hesitate and immediately applied!"

Seeing as this is Jonathan's second time in New Zealand, he is determined to make his mark at FNZCCI

"My job here at FNZCCI is to develop business opportunities for our 100+ members and many more potential ones alongside the FNZCCI team. I also look after our digital marketing, membership development, events managment, budgeting, board reporting and business administration."

The avid traveller also plans on making a trip to the Pacific which is proving to be a challenge as he is spoilt for choice considering which island he wants to visit

"I've yet to visit the Pacific but I know that the region is rich in culture with very warm and friendly people. At the moment, Fiji and Tonga are on my 'places to visit' bucket list."

FNZCCI upcoming events:
  • Pentaque Day, February 22
  • 'Welcome Back' event in collaboration with the French Embassy and the Alliance Francaise, date TBC

The FNZCCI will still host its monthly 'Tuesday drinks' networking sessions, venue and time to be confirmed. For more information please email