New Zealand Startups: 25 of the Kiwi Brands Pioneering Global Innovation

These visionary Kiwi innovators are not just changing the game but redefining it.

Many innovative New Zealand startups are pioneering groundbreaking impacts on the global stage. This article explores 25 visionary Kiwi startups, each carving their own path in various industries worldwide, reshaping our world with innovative solutions. From cost-effective satellite launches that revolutionise space travel to cloud-based innovations that transform small business accounting, these visionary Kiwi innovators are not just changing the game but redefining it, showcasing a blend of ingenuity and ambition that transcends borders and setting new standards in innovation.

1. Rocket Lab

Specialising in small satellite launches, Rocket Lab has made space more accessible. Its Electron rocket and Photon spacecraft platform offer rapid and cost-effective satellite deployment, which is crucial for space research and commercial activities. The company’s pioneering work in reusable rocket technology is also significant for sustainable space exploration.

2. Xero

Xero revolutionised small business accounting by shifting it to the cloud. Their software simplifies financial management for businesses globally, making accounting accessible and user-friendly. Its impact is seen in its over 2 million subscribers worldwide, transforming how small businesses manage their finances.

3. LanzaTech

This biotech company’s process of converting industrial waste gases into biofuels and chemicals is groundbreaking. It addresses critical environmental issues like waste management and carbon emissions, offering sustainable alternatives to traditional fuels.

  • Founded: 2005
  • Founders: Sean Simpson and Richard Forster

4. Pushpay

Pushpay provides a digital donation platform primarily for churches and non-profits. It’s notable for simplifying and encouraging digital giving, facilitating seamless transactions that aid organisations in fundraising and engagement.

  • Founded: 2011
  • Founders: Chris Heaslip and Eliot Crowther

5. Vend (now Lightspeed)

Vend revolutionised retail operations as a pioneer in cloud-based point-of-sale and retail management software. It enables small to medium-sized retailers to manage inventory, sales, and customers efficiently, competing with larger enterprises. Lightspeed acquired Vend in March 2021.

  • Founded: 2010
  • Founder: Vaughan Rowsell

6. Soul Machines

This company’s creation of lifelike digital humans using artificial intelligence is groundbreaking. Their customer service, entertainment, and education applications represent a significant stride in human-machine interactions.

  • Founded: 2016
  • Founders: Greg Cross and Mark Sagar

7. GreenButton

GreenButton offered cloud computing services that facilitated access to a lot of computational power before Microsoft bought them in 2014. Their technology was vital for industries requiring high-performance computing, like digital content creation and scientific research.

  • Founded: 2006
  • Founder: Scott Houston

8. PowerbyProxi

Specialising in wireless power solutions, PowerbyProxi was a leader in wireless charging technology before its acquisition by Apple in 2017. Their technology influences the evolution of wireless charging applications for consumer electronics.

  • Founded: 2007
  • Founders: Fady Mishriki and Greg Cross

9. 8i

This company stands out for its technology that captures and reproduces lifelike 3D human figures for virtual and augmented reality. Their advancements in holographic content are significant for the future of immersive media.

  • Founded: 2014
  • Founders: Linc Gasking and Joshua Feast

10. Auror

Auror’s crime intelligence software aids retailers, and law enforcement in preventing and solving retail crime. Their data-driven approach changes how communities address crime, making them noteworthy in the security sector.

  • Founded: 2013
  • Founders: Phil Thomson, Tom Batterbury, and Brenton O’Brien

11. Timely

Specialising in appointment booking and scheduling, Timely supports service-based businesses globally. Its software improves efficiency and customer experience, making it a crucial tool for businesses in various industries.

  • Founded: 2011
  • Founders: Andrew Schofield, Ryan Baker and William Berger

12. StretchSense

They produce wearable sensors and soft robotics, impacting industries like VR/AR, healthcare, and sports. Their technology offers precise motion capture and feedback, essential for next-generation wearables.

  • Founded: 2012
  • Founders: Ben O’Brien, Todd Gisby, and Iain Anderson

13. Tracksuit

Tracksuit offers real-time insights into brand perception, empowering businesses with crucial data on their market performance. With a user-friendly interface and immediate data analysis, Tracksuit transforms how companies understand and respond to market dynamics. In today’s evolving business landscape, Tracksuit is an invaluable asset for brands looking to stay competitive and responsive to consumer trends.

  • Founded: 2020
  • Founders: Sam Minnée and Abi Fawcett

14. CricHQ

This digital platform transforms cricket administration and fan engagement. It provides scoring, administration, and analytics tools, making it a valuable resource for cricket communities globally.

  • Founded: 2010
  • Founders: Simon Baker, Brendon McCullum, and Stephen Fleming

15. SwipedOn

SwipedOn offers a sleek visitor management system for businesses. Its user-friendly interface and functionality streamline the visitor check-in process, enhancing security and professionalism in corporate environments.

16. Figured

Figured is an innovative online farm financial management software. It helps farmers and their advisors manage financial records and planning, which is crucial in the agricultural sector’s financial management.

  • Founded: 2013
  • Founders: Paul Reid and David Marshall

17. Mint Innovation

This biotech company focuses on recovering valuable metals from electronic waste. Their environmentally friendly approach to e-waste management is significant for sustainability and urban mining.

  • Founded: 2016
  • Founders: Will Barker and Ollie Crush

18. Sharesies

Sharesies democratises investing by making it accessible and easy for anyone, regardless of the amount they have to invest. This approach is transforming personal investment, making it inclusive and widespread.

19. AskNicely

This customer feedback software helps businesses improve their customer experience through real-time feedback. Its emphasis on customer satisfaction and engagement is essential for businesses looking to grow and retain their customer base.

  • Founded: 2014
  • Founders: Aaron Ward and John Ballinger

20. Kami

Kami transforms any existing document into an interactive learning experience. It’s widely used in education, enhancing student engagement and collaboration.

  • Founded: 2012
  • Founders: Hengjie Wang, Alliv Samson, and Jordan Thoms

21. Partly

Partly’s PartsPal platform revolutionises the automotive industry by simplifying the process of finding and selling compatible auto parts online. This innovative tool streamlines the identification and transaction of auto parts, resulting in enhanced efficiency and accuracy in a traditionally challenging industry.

22. Seequent

Specialising in software for geosciences, Seequent’s solutions are vital for understanding subsurface geology and managing geological risks. Their impact is significant in the mining, civil engineering, and environmental science industries.

  • Founded: 2004
  • Founder: Shaun Maloney

23. Avertana

They develop processes to extract essential raw materials from industrial waste, offering a sustainable alternative to traditional mining methods. This approach is crucial for environmental sustainability and resource conservation.

  • Founded: 2012
  • Founders: Sean Molloy and James Obern

24. Hnry

Hnry provides an online service that automates tax and financial administration for freelancers. This solution addresses the unique challenges faced by freelancers, simplifying their financial management.

  • Founded: 2017
  • Founders: James Fuller, Claire Fuller, and Richard Freestone

25. Orion Health

A global provider of healthcare information technology, Orion Health’s software solutions are used to manage patient data and improve healthcare delivery. Their work is instrumental in advancing health informatics and patient care.

  • Founded: 1993
  • Founder: Ian McCrae

These New Zealand startups embody the Kiwi’s innovative spirit and address global challenges in various sectors. Their founders’ market insights and achievements demonstrate how innovative ideas can lead to impactful global solutions, driving technological progress, sustainability, healthcare, finance, and more.

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