A new edition of a New Zealand technology sector investment guide will showcase the breadth and variety of technology companies in New Zealand.
The guide, which revealed a surge in offshore investment over the last year, was launched by economic development minister Simon Bridges and science and innovation minister Paul Goldsmith today.
The tech sector is New Zealand’s third largest export sector, contributing $16 billion to GDP and it is growing fast, said Bridges, and presents opportunities for New Zealand and international investors.
The ministers cited high-profile successes such as retail point of sale app developer Vend, cloud accounting company Xero, Fisher and Paykel Healthcare and cinema management software developer Vista Group as leading the charge for Kiwi tech.
A growing number of early stage companies, such as virtual reality companies Soul Machines and 8i, are also attracting international attention, they said.
Offshore earnings make up 73% of revenues for New Zealand's top 200 tech firms and 40 of these are generating annual revenues of more than $50 million.
And that is attracting serious money. The report said investment in young technology companies surged more from $51 million in the year to March 2016 to $173 million by March 2017.
The report quotes investor Simon Feiglin, of The Riverside Company and an investor in animal health technology company Simcro saying: “The thing we really like is that as a small and remote country, New Zealand companies almost from conception think globally, and are structured to achieve that objective.”
The Government is working to develop New Zealand as a hub for high-value, research and development intensive businesses, Goldsmith said.
“The recent 29% increase in businesses investment in research and development reported by Statistics New Zealand is largely driven by technology businesses, and shows that our efforts are delivering results," he said.
“To support this growth we’re developing pathways for young New Zealanders to enter the tech sector. This includes the TechHub in Schools, and FutureInTech initiatives which aim to engage young people and get them interested in a career in tech."