|[December 21, 2012]
New Zealand "Seed" Technology Firms Driving Big Innovation; Geeks on a Plane Investor Tour Participants See for Themselves
NEW YORK --(Business Wire)--
Rising in importance as a technology start-up cluster, New Zealand
on a Plane," an investment and technology tour for investors,
startup founders, and corporate executives to learn about burgeoning
technology markets worldwide. Organized by leading startup accelerator
and seed fund "500 Startups," representatives from Mohr Davidow
Ventures, XG Ventures, General Electric, SoftTech VC, XG Ventures
(managed by ex-Google (News - Alert) executives), TechCrunch, and other venture capital
and corporate organizations participated, amplifying recent Silicon
Valley interest in New Zealand's entrepreneurial business climate.
The focus of the "Geeks" tour was on the rapidly-growing Kiwi cluster of
seed technology companies-niche firms advancing new ideas that solve big
corporate and consumer problems.
In particular, New Zealand companies are becoming known for solutions
for the cloud computing industry, developing user-friendly technology
that has attracted clients including Nike, Boeing (News - Alert) and Chrysler. New
Zealand technology companies have made their mark internationally by
focusing on solving problems in specific areas. A few examples include:
Network Security & Compliance: Auckland-based Mako
Networks uses a cloud-managed system to help businesses secure
their networks and comply with the stringent Payment
Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI (News - Alert) DSS) for merchants
that process, transmit or store cardholder data.
Enhancing the e-reading experience: Booktrack
creates synchronized soundtracks for e-books that automatically match
music, sound effects and ambient sound to your reading speed to create
an immersive reading experience. The company works in partnership with
the largest publishing houses, best-selling authors, and award-winning
composers and musicians. Click
here to learn more.
Promotional mobile apps and games: Taking advantage of the
mobile applications development cluster in New Zealand, Kiwi companies Carnival
Labs, a mobile marketing company, and PikPok,
a digital publishing company, just launched a new
game for OREO cookies. Both companies have worked for the world's
most prominent brands.
"U.S. companies are taking notice of the Kiwi tech cluster-to invest in,
buy from and partner with companies born from our entrepreneurial
ecosystem," explains Marta Mager, Regional Director - North America for
New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, the country's business development
agency. "This deepening engagement is creating innovative products that
benefit both our economies."
Business-friendly government policies nurture a fertile environment for
innovation in New Zealand. New Zealand companies benefit from a 0
percent capital gains tax and a strong financial system that maintains a
position of regional economic leadership throughout the global financial
According to The World Bank and International Finance Corporation's Doing
Business 2013 report, released in October, New Zealand ranks as the
easiest place to start a business out of 185 countries. Forbes also
ranked New Zealand as the "Best
Country for Business" in its annual ranking this year. Against the
backdrop of a supportive government sector, start-ups are aided by a
national network of internationally recognized technology incubators.
For example, Auckland-based, The
ICEHOUSE, was announced the co-winner of the Best Internationally
Connecting Incubator at the most recent Annual Incubation Conference &
About New Zealand Trade and Enterprise
NZTE is New Zealand's international business development agency. Our
role is to help New Zealand businesses build strategic alliances and
develop commercial relationships internationally.
Through a global network of 45 offices, we connect New Zealand
businesses with the world, sharing opportunities, knowledge, experience
About Geeks On A Plane - New Zealand
Organized by Silicon Valley venture capital firm 500
Startups, Geeks on a Plane (#GOAP)
is an invite-only tour for startups, investors, and executives to learn
about burgeoning technology markets worldwide. The "geeks" travel by
planes, trains, and automobiles to the most exciting international
startup scenes with the sole mission of uniting geeks and exploring
cross-border opportunities. The result: a lifelong bond with fellow
travelers, a wealth of new friends and business contacts in exploding
technology markets, and a stronger appreciation for the cultural and
economic ties that bind us globally.
500 Startups was invited by NZTE to bring Geeks on a Plane to New
Zealand from December 8-15, with tour stops in Auckland, Wellington,
Christchurch, and Queenstown. The goal of GOAP is to explore New
Zealand's early-stage technology ecosystem, learn about startups, share
knowledge and experiences, and make lifelong connections. The "geeks"
include entrepreneurs and executives from companies like LivingSocial (News - Alert),
GE, TechCrunch, Cheezburger, SoftTech VC, Mohr Davidow Ventures, 500
Startups, and many others. For more information, visit geeksonaplane.com.
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