Waikato Business News January/February 2021

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Waikato Business News has for a quarter of a century been the voice of the region’s business community, a business community with a very real commitment to innovation and an ethos of co-operation.

JANUARY/FEBRUARY VOLUME 29: ISSUE 1 2021 WWW.WBN.CO.NZ FACEBOOK.COM/WAIKATOBUSINESSNEWS

Labour in

Jamie Strange and Gaurav Sharma,

MPs for Hamilton East and Hamilton West.

charge

By RICHARD WALKER

This electoral term

marks the first time since

2005 that a Labour

Government has held

both Hamilton seats.

What can Waikato

business people

expect? At the start of

a new term and a new

year, Hamilton East

MP Jamie Strange

and Hamilton West’s

Gaurav Sharma

talk to Waikato

Business News.

The train link to Auckland

is top of mind for Hamilton’s

two Labour MPs,

with a crucial report due this

term into the viability of fast

rail. The result of the Ministry

of Transport detailed business

case study is due in 18 months,

and an initial business case

study is also being conducted

into rapid rail from Hamilton

to Tauranga, says Hamilton

East MP Jamie Strange.

Meanwhile, both Strange

and newly elected Hamilton

West MP Gaurav Sharma are

touting the value of the delayed

Te Huia rail service once it is

running.

“Getting that train to Auckland

is one of the biggest

things on our radar. It's a promise

that we’ve made in the past,

and we're hoping to deliver on

it soon,” Sharma says.

Strange says the key is productivity.

“Being able to get

on the train, open the laptop,

work all the way up, work all

the way back, there’s a cafe on

board.”

But the game changer

would be a rapid link, one

which Strange says would

effectively unite the cities’

labour markets.

“For some, it might sound

like a pipe dream, but I

wouldn't necessarily put it in

that category,” Strange says.

He sees potential for a

public-private partnership,

with the government partnering

with iwi and business,

and points to the possibilities

around ACC, Super Fund and

Kiwisaver as investment funds

totalling $120 billion. “A lot of

them invest in overseas infrastructure,

so it's encouraging to

see ongoing discussions with

the managers of those funds

to see what their appetite is for

investment in New Zealand.”

Such a link would be a

multi billion dollar investment,

with tilt trains potentially travelling

the existing gauge track

at 160 km/h, but a train on

wider gauge track able to clock

250 km/hr.

The “gold plated” version

would involve building new

tracks, which for the Auckland

section could utilise the existing

rail corridor.

“I always say the problem

in New Zealand has

always been that short-sightedness,”

Sharma says. “If we

had invested $2 billion in the

1960s, we wouldn't be putting

in $30 million for an upgrade

now. The problem is, every

time the government looks at

it, and it says, ‘Well, it's a $10

billion investment that we don't

want to do now’, it just means

that in 2040, we'll still be having

the same conversation, in

2080, we'll still be having the

same conversation.

Continued on page 10


2 WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

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From the editor

Kia ora.

My favourite story

this month concerns

two unassuming accountants

based in Matamata.

They are definitely not your

stereotypical entrepreneurs,

but the two Julies - Caldwell

and Blackwell - have come

up with a device that can be

transformational for a huge

number of people.

Often it is the eldest daughter

who takes on the lion’s

share of caring for ageing parents.

That can be an exhausting

job, involving daily visits,

often more than one. One of

those eldest daughters, Julie

Caldwell, realised there had to

be a better way for her mother

to stay in touch and stay on top

of her day to day living.

You’d think out there in the

world there would be something

- an easy to use tablet

for older people with cognitive

decline who find iPads and the

likes too difficult. Older people

who could and should still be

living independently, enjoying

interactions with family and

friends.

There isn’t. So the Julies

invented one.

Interviewing them was a

wonderful experience, thanks

to their down to earth approach

and their open-spirited sharing

of the story. No doubt it makes

“There’s a whole bunch of

things happening. It’s that

perfect maelstrom of stimulation.”

a difference that I have my own

experiences of parents getting

older - and, after all, in time

many of us will, whether as the

adult child or as the parent.

Thanks to them, when we

do, the Kitcal could be there

“Why shouldn’t they [older people] have

the same sort of social connections

that we have just because they can’t

work a blasted iPad? I got angry. And

so I came back and I said to Julie,

‘we’re into this!’”

Kitcal founder Julie Caldwell Story, page 8

to help. It’s a stripped-back

tablet that focuses on the key

things to help keep older people

in touch even when they

are experiencing cognitive

decline.

The journey to get there

was a long one. It involved, as

Julie Blackwell told me, asking

lots of questions and putting

their pride on hold.

It was about starting on

page one and just solving

problems as they occurred,

Julie Caldwell said - always

acknowledging there was a

chance they would hit a wall

they couldn’t get past.

Fortunately, that wall never

arrived. I hope you enjoy reading

their remarkable story in

this issue.

Also this month I talked

to an effervescent Englishman

called Rob Vickery, who

WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

is choosing to headquarter

his new venture capital

fund, Hillfarrance, in Hamilton,

with backing from

Waikato investors including

Company-X.

A $40 million tech fund

could go a long way for

Waikato tech startups, as the

region builds its capacity in

the hugely important sector.

The money is important but

so are the connections, and

to that end Hillfarrance is

also building a good community

of Waikato businesses

to help founders fast-track

their products.

It’s all happening in our

region. Welcome back to a

new year.

Ngā mihi nui

Richard Walker

Editor

“ We’re actually working

with some really

incredible people and

all it takes often is

somebody believing in

them.”

Toni-Anne Lee is helping

Waikato unemployed

get back into work.

PUBLISHER

Deidre Morris

Ph: (07) 838 1333

Mob: 027 228 8442

Email: deidre@dpmedia.co.nz

EDITOR

Richard Walker

Ph: (07) 838 1333

Mob: 027 814 2914

Email: richard@dpmedia.co.nz

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Rob Vickery on supporting the Waikato

tech startup scene. Story, page 4

Story, page 6

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4 WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

Rob Vickery wants to build a billion-dollar

business in New Zealand.

Waikato gains $40 million venture fund

By RICHARD WALKER

Waikato tech entrepreneurs have a

significant new fund to pitch to, with

the arrival of venture fund founder

Rob Vickery in the region.

A

“maelstrom of stimulation”

brought Vickery

to the Waikato

when he decided to leave the

fast lane of Los Angeles for

New Zealand.

Vickery set up $40 million

venture capital fund Hillfarrance,

headquartered in

Hamilton, a year ago.

I’m seeing a lot of

founders coming to

present to me who

have just returned

from being overseas

for 10 years, really

bright, unique

individuals who’ve

lived in 10 years in

San Francisco and

now are thinking, I’m

going to come and do

it here instead.

Named after his home village

in Somerset, UK, it is

currently funding four startups

after Vickery returned to

New Zealand in September

from a six-month stint in Los

Angeles.

Waikato partly appealed

because some of his biggest

investors are based in Raglan,

Vickery says, and that

became the destination for

one of the first trips he took.

“I drove through the

region, I thought bloody hell,

this is beautiful,” he says. “It

reminds me a lot of where I

come from - the West Country

of England which at a cursory

glance looks pretty similar.

If you strip out the native

bush, you’re there. There is a

very strong kind of bond that

I have with that.”

He appointed Hamilton’s

Tompkins Wake as his law

firm, and “started to build

this organic connection with

the region”.

With Hamilton-based

Company-X an early investor,

Vickery met Labour Government

MP Jamie Strange to

learn more about the political

landscape, and says he began

to see how important tech

was to people in the region.

From his time in Los

Angeles, with higher learning

institutes including Caltech,

USC and UCLA, he knew

the value of having access to

bright young people “doing

really cool things”, and could

see Waikato University playing

the same role through its

graduates.

Vickery also noted the

corporates operating in the

area, like Fonterra and Tetrapak,

injecting talent into the

region.

“There’s a whole bunch of

things happening,” he says.

“It's that perfect maelstrom

of stimulation.”

And finally, he says, there

are no real venture capital

funds in the region. “Auckland

is dominated by lots of

them. And they're all kind

of squabbling over the same

old stuff. And I figured, well,

why would I be amongst

everybody else?”

Having come from “the

most competitive market in

the world for startups”, Vickery

lauds New Zealand for the

ability to test and trial new

technology more easily than

elsewhere in the world, with

a market of 5 million people

and plenty of open space.

And the pandemic may be

having an impact. “I'm seeing

a lot of founders coming to

present to me who have just

returned from being overseas

for 10 years, really bright,

unique individuals who've

lived in 10 years in San Francisco

and now are thinking,

I’m going to come and do it

here instead.”

Further differences

between the two markets are

reflected in the presentations

he sees from founders. Sometimes,

he says, there’s not

a lot of tangibility in what

a US founder will present.

“There's nothing wrong with

that. That's fine. And in fact,

Americans are wildly investable

because they have the

courage to go out there and

do anything they want, right?

“Kiwi founders often

come to the table with something

that works already. And

that makes my job a lot easier,

a lot more enjoyable.”

The “dream”, he says, is to

build a billion dollar business

in New Zealand that stays in

New Zealand and raises from

New Zealand.

When it comes to points of

difference with other funds in

New Zealand, Vickery says

his is the only fund outside

England, and the second in

the world, to share 20 percent

of profits with founders.

That can happen when a

Hillfarrance portfolio company

“exits” by selling to a

corporate - such exits can

bring a multi-million dollar

return, 20 percent of which

goes to Hillfarrance. At that

point, Hillfarrance will redistribute

20 percent of its take

to the founders it invests in.

It is, Vickery says, about

whānau - about the idea

of families sharing. “That

means that all of our portfolio

companies, the founders of

those startups, are all actually

invested into each other,” he

says. “And that makes collaboration

just so natural and

exciting.”

Vickery is keen to invest

in Māori businesses, which

includes two of the first four

in the Hillfarrance portfolio

- Kwotimation and social

enterprise Konei.

He is also a partner

at Kōkiri, an accelerator

programme at Te Whare

Wānanga o Aotearoa.

“I feel like I can't be a

New Zealand fund if I don't

serve its indigenous people.

That's just common

sense to me.”

He also says Māori are a

community of entrepreneurs

with endless potential who

are often overlooked by existing

sources of capital.

“I challenge anybody to

show me a nation of people

that can tell a compelling and

thoughtful story better than

the Māori nation.”

The three questions

Hillfarrance founder

Rob Vickery asks

entrepreneurs seeking

funding three questions:

Why you, why now and why

Hillfarrance?

“Why you? We invest in

audacious, mission-driven

founders,” Vickery said.

“Typically, they are among

a small handful of people in

the world who are uniquely

positioned to solve the

particular problems they

are tackling.

“Why now? We believe

that timing matters more

Vickery, having earlier

built a venture capital firm in

the US, is bringing a network

of relationships, and investors

not only come from New

Zealand but include entrepreneurs

worldwide.

“Company-X has come in

as one of our investors, which

we're extremely grateful for.

And for me, getting Kiwi

New Zealand investors is the

ultimate sign of market validation,”

he says.

“But beyond that, one

thing I like to do with all our

investors is activate them for

our portfolio. So the coolest

thing about Company-X is

that they can help me and our

portfolio company founders

with building better products,

writing cleaner code, being

more audacious in the product

that they build.”

That will see Kwotimation

using Company-X to

build an augmented reality

tool, bringing the company to

market quicker. Company-X

cofounder Jeremy Hughes

says the Hillfarrance involvement

will help boost their support

for startups. “Getting in

at this early stage with these

than almost any other

factor in early stage technology

investing.

“Hillfarrance heavily

emphasises investing in startups

that can only be built

today, not ones that could

have been built five years ago,

nor ones that should be built

five years from now. Hillfarrance

seeks companies that

can be catalysts to unlock new

market opportunities.

“Why Hillfarrance? We

only invest in start-ups when

we believe that the opportunity

is within our circle of

companies gets us the ability

to set them off on a really

good foundation right from

the start.”

Kiwi founders often

come to the table

with something that

works already. And

that makes my job a

lot easier, a lot more

enjoyable.

He also makes the point

that the fund offers more

than just money, with a

community of Waikato businesses

involved to support

startups, covering everything

from coding to legal

support and marketing.

“I think it's brilliant

that he's brought together

this whole community to

help founders right from

the start.”

competence, and when we

believe that we can contribute

something meaningful

beyond our dollars.

“This is usually frontier

technology that is pushing

the boundaries of currently

accepted thought in

the business to business

(B2B) market.

“Similarly, where we

invest outside of the enterprise

software space, we

intend to only invest in

start-ups where we believe

we can make a meaningful

contribution to the business.”


McCaw Lewis

Lawyers appoint

three new Directors

Waikato law firm McCaw Lewis has

appointed Laura Monahan, Dale Thomas

and Amanda Hockley as Directors of

the firm, rounding out an exciting year of

updates for the Hamilton-based business.

The three new appointments

acknowledge the

leadership ability of

Laura, Dale and Amanda, and

recognise their excellent legal

skills and talent for business

management. They join the

existing Director group of Phil

Harris, Aidan Warren, Daniel

Shore and Renika Siciliano.

Laura Monahan joined

McCaw Lewis in 2012 and

is the co-leader of the firm’s

Commercial practise. Laura

is passionate about the future

of McCaw Lewis and working

with her clients to achieve

their goals. She enjoys working

with her commercial clients

to help them meet their

business goals – essentially to

get it done. Laura also has specialist

knowledge in the area

of Māori commercial matters,

and assists Iwi clients to

establish post-settlement governance

entities, engage with

key stakeholders and make

arrangements to best manage

assets. Outside of the office,

Laura is the chairperson of the

Waikato Family Centre Trust

and a trustee on the Angel

Casts Charitable Trust.

Dale Thomas leads the

Property practise and joined

the McCaw Lewis whānau in

2015. Dale has developed a

broad range of skills working

in Property, Commercial and

Asset Planning on projects

involving iwi property interests,

subdivision and development,

farm succession, syndication

and leasehold issues.

Dale is honoured to be given

the opportunity to step into

business management. “I am

very lucky to be stepping up

alongside Laura and Amanda

and we are excited to make

our own contribution to the

McCaw Lewis story,” he said.

Amanda leads the firm’s

Asset Planning practise and,

having started her legal career

with McCaw Lewis in 2009,

she re-joined the whānau in

2017 after gaining experience

in Australia. Amanda

has experience advising on

banking and finance in the

Laura Monahan, Amanda

Hockley and Dale Thomas.

property development and

corporate areas, and has previously

been part of the firm’s

property and commercial

teams. Amanda is a trustee

of ConneXu, a significant

charitable trust established

to provide disability support

services; and Angel Casts, a

registered charity supporting

parents, family and whānau

through the loss of a child by

creating tangible keepsakes

for bereaved parents. “I am

looking forward to stepping

up with my talented peers and

to helping shape the direction

and leadership of the firm,”

she said.

All three new Directors

enjoy busy family lives with

young tamariki, and know

the value of whānau-focussed

working environment which

also extends to how they work

with clients every day.

“We are thrilled to have

these three join the Director

group. As well as being talented

lawyers and caring leaders,

they have a passion for

seeing McCaw Lewis grow

in new and exciting ways as

a successful Māori Commercial

law firm,” says Executive

Director Renika Siciliano.

Founded in 1919, McCaw

Lewis has grown to become

one of the Waikato’s leading

law firms, specialising in commercial,

Te Tiriti o Waitangi,

property, dispute resolution,

asset planning, environmental/natural

resources, workplace

law and Māori land.

The appointment of three

new Directors rounds out an

exciting year for McCaw

Lewis, with the recent

appointment of Renika

Siciliano as Executive Director

and several senior promotions.

Our Newest Directors

Dale

Thomas

Property

Amanda

Hockley

Asset Planning

Laura

Monahan

Commercial

leaders using their excellent legal skills to achieve

McCaw things Lewis with brand Waikato’s identity best guide businesses.

07 838 2079 | www.mccawlewis.co.nz


6 WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

Waikato woman

appointed

Business support network

Manaaki.io, which was

founded in 2020’s first

lockdown, has appointed

Rachel Adams as general

manager. Coming from

a decade as manager

of Soda Inc, Adams has

worked with more than

700 startups and small

businesses and has helped

develop connections for

more than 2000. She

says she is excited to

roll up her sleeves and

help businesses at scale

through the Manaaki

network. Adams’ first

project will be launching

the Digital Doers Academy

- a Manaaki partnership

with the Ministry of Social

Development, which trains

and mentors job seekers to

build their digital capability

and gain employment or

self-employment. Adams

will split her time between

Raglan and Auckland,

where Manaaki and its

sister company Chooice are

based.

Waikato groups up

for new award

Waikato catchment groups

are being recognised with a

new award in the Waikato

programme of the Ballance

Farm Environment Awards.

Regional committee chair

Matt Holwill says profiling

the Catchment Group

Award recipient is a great

way to showcase what can

be achieved when local

communities work together

and take ownership of

localised catchment issues.

The finalists are Pūniu River

Care, the Lake Kaituna

and Lake Komakorau

Care Group, and King

Country River Care. With

other regional programmes

cancelled, the New Zealand

Farm Environment Trust

worked with the Waikato

BFEA committee to secure

independent funding and

operate and run a Waikato

BFEA programme.

Feed mill sells

The SunRice Group’s

CopRice business will

expand into New Zealand

after signing a purchase

agreement to acquire the

dairy nutrition business of

Ingham’s, which produces

and sells dairy and calf

feed products, particularly

in the key Waikato dairy

region of the North Island.

The acquisition includes

Ingham’s’ feed mill at

Hamilton, and direct-tofarm

and packaged dairy

business in New Zealand

under the Top Cow and

Top Calf brands. CopRice

is a leading provider of

stockfeed and companion

animal products in

eastern Australia, and

the acquisition will see

it expand its operational

footprint into New Zealand

for the first time, building

on its existing export

business into that market.

The cost of the acquisition

is NZ $11.5 million and

completion is expected by

March 31, 2021.

Toni-Anne Lee and Destiny Wetere, who found a job while on the programme.

‘We're working with some

incredible people’

By RICHARD WALKER

Waikato unemployed are being helped

into work through a pilot programme

that draws on the experience of elite

sport in Australia.

The programme,

established by Hamilton

brother and

sister team Scott and Toni-

Anne Lee, has a focus on

health and wellbeing, and

is supported by the Ministry

of Social Development.

The Change Within

is currently working

with its first intake of 20

participants.

It incorporates elements

of The Change

Room, an Australian programme

founded by former

Warriors coach Matt

Elliott and John Daley

which is based on Elliott’s

rugby league background.

Scott says Elliott’s

career included overcoming

an autoimmune disease

through diet, after he

talked to rugby league star

Anthony Minichiello, who had

developed nutrition and exercise

techniques to recover from

spinal injuries. The Change

Room’s focus is on getting

people who have been injured

back to work, using mentors

including elite sportspeople -

Elliott and Minichiello among

them.

Scott and Toni-Anne Lee

are using the same principles,

but have adapted the programme

to work with unemployed

participants.

Toni-Anne, who returned

from a nine year stint in Australia

just before Covid lockdown,

had done some work

with The Change Room.

“They've got a course that

they do to help people to overcome

injury, to get their mindset

right to build themselves

before they try and build their

life,” Scott says.

“And that’s what we’ve

brought to New Zealand, is that

programme using the high performance

athletes, and mentors

to the high performance athletes,

to help those who have

either lost their job or are still

looking for a job.”

Toni-Anne says the

approach has eight foundations

including movement, exercise,

breathing, sleeping and connection.

“It's looking at all of those

aspects,” she says. “If you are

getting the right amount of

sleep, eating the right foods,

moving your body, then technically

everything else should

run in alignment.”

For some, the challenge

might be to get their driver’s

licence, Toni-Anne says. For

others it might be about seeing

their way clear to getting a

job, or having the self-belief to

take on a role that they never

thought was possible.

Scott says it’s about making

1 percent gains every day,

which can be as simple as taking

steps like getting out of bed

earlier in the morning.

The 12 week course starts

with Toni-Anne and Scott

taking participants through

And that’s what

we’ve brought to

New Zealand, is that

programme using the

high performance

athletes, and

mentors to the high

performance athletes,

to help those who

have either lost their

job or, are still looking

for a job.

the Australian side of the programme,

and then coaching

them for six weeks.

The intention is that by the

end of the course participants

will have made changes that

mean they are either in work,

or seeking work, or potentially

that they are going on to higher

education. The Ministry will

judge the programme’s success

according to employment

outcomes. “There is a health

and wellbeing component to it,

which is what the current Government

wants. But the key

measurement is employment,”

Scott says. “Employment outcomes

or higher education.”

Some on the first intake had

already landed job interviews

five weeks in, Toni-Anne says,

while several were looking to

get into higher education.

One of those to gain a job is

Destiny Wetere, who says she

joined the programme because

she wanted to make changes

in her life. “I was looking

for a programme like this

to help me.”

The goal setting element

has been useful, and she says

Toni-Anne has been really

helpful with structuring things.

They have been meeting

weekly at a cafe, which is

likely to continue now she has

a job, and she says Toni-Anne

calls as well to check on how

she is going. “So I've been able

to make those changes daily in

my life.”

Scott and Toni-Anne expect

the relationship with participants

to last a further six

months after the course ends.

“We're actually working

with some really incredible

people,” Toni-Anne says.

“And all it takes often is somebody

believing in them, for

them to go, ‘Oh, actually, I can

do that’. And seeing they are

transferable skills. Rather than

just going, ‘you've worked in

this area so that's all you can

ever do’, saying, ‘What actually

makes your heart sing?

What do you ultimately want

to get into?’ And then trying to

work your way there.”

Hamilton’s new transport hub opens

Hamilton City Council

marked the

completion of the

Rotokauri Transport Hub

with a blessing of the new

facility and unveiling of a

new link road named Kiriwai

Drive. The Rotokauri

Transport Hub will be a

major connection point

for buses, as well as providing

a rail station for the

Waikato to Auckland passenger

rail service Te Huia.

Councillorr Ewan Wilson,

the council’s representative

on the rail governance

working group, said

the hub is a great example

of how a growing city and

region are catering for all modes

of transport.

“It’s a much-needed and

significant facility for the city

of Hamilton. As well as being

a significant bus facility, it

marks a transformational step

in future-proofing Hamilton’s

role in rail between Hamilton

and New Zealand’s largest economic

centre, Auckland.

“The hub is one of our

biggest investments in public

transport infrastructure in the

city in recent years and as we

continue to evolve as a major

metropolitan centre council

has made it a priority to give

people safer and more reliable

transport choices.”

As part of the project, Council

worked closely with mana

whenua to name Kiriwai Drive,

which is named after a tuupuna

(ancestor) who resided in

the area, as well as the design,

colours of the hub and pedestrian

bridge which safely connects

The Base with the new

hub. The $29 million project to

develop the hub includes $18.5

million from central government

through Waka Kotahi NZ

Transport Agency subsidies.

The new hub provides a bus

interchange, a rail platform, a

park and ride facility for rail

passengers and includes mobility

spaces, drop off and pick up

zones and taxi stand.


WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

7

Microsoft Most Valuable

Professional award winner

joins Company-X

An award-winning expert in Microsoft and Unity 3D, 2D,

augmented and virtual reality technologies has joined Hamilton

Agile software specialist Company-X.

Five-time winner of

the Microsoft Most

Valuable Professional,

Developer Technologies

award, Jiadong Chen, joined

Company-X in December.

Chen is one of 3,000 Microsoft

Most Valuable Professional

award winners internationally,

recognised by

Microsoft as one of technology’s

best and brightest five

years in a row.

Nominations for the award

are made by Microsoft executives

and existing winners.

Chen’s awards recognise

his passion for technology,

willingness to help

others, and commitment to

the international technology

community.

Award recipients have

the opportunity to meet

Microsoft executives, network

with peers, and position

themselves as technical

community leaders through

speaking engagements, one

on one customer event participation

and technical content

development.

MVPs also receive

early access to Microsoft

technology.

“It helps other people recognise

your value,” Chen said

of the award. “It’s recognition

from Microsoft.”

Chen is adept in the Microsoft

Azure cloud computing

service for building, testing,

deploying and managing

applications through Microsoft

data centres.

He is also a Microsoft

Certified Azure Developer

Associate and holds a Microsoft

Azure Fundamentals

certificate.

Chen joined Company-X

from Unity, the creator of

the world’s most widely-used

2D, 3D, augmented and virtual

reality development platform,

where he worked as a

field engineer.

“I was based in Beijing

before I moved to New Zealand,”

Chen said. “In this job

we provided support to all of

our customers.”

Chen’s clients included

the world’s largest video

game vendor Tencent, based

in Shenzhen, China.

“I would do project

reviews to weed out problems

they encountered. Sometimes

we needed to customise the

Unity engine to meet their

requirements.

“Originally Unity was a

game engine.

I believe technology

creators can

make the world a

better place, and

Company-X has the

same ethos that

aligns perfectly with

my personal mission

“It is a general purpose

development platform so you

can do whatever you want.

Currently Unity is focussing

on architecture, engineering

and construction.

“The architecture industry

is using Unity to develop

their VR application or AR

application to help them

design buildings. There are

some other industries, such

as the automotive industry,

using Unity to design car

prototypes and render a 3D

model.”

Chen, who graduated from

Dalian Maritime University

in Liaoning, China, with a

Bachelor of Engineering in

Electronic Information Science

and Technology in 2012,

is also the author of the 2016

book Unity 3D which has

sold 15,000 copies in print

and eBook editions.

Chen has presented at

both the Microsoft Ignite and

Unite conferences.

“I want to share knowledge,”

Chen said.

He is also a regular technology

blogger, posting at

http://www.jiadongchen.com/

“On the other hand writing

a blog and writing books can

improve my own capabilities,

so I like to write blogs

to share knowledge with the

community.

“I like to do personal

projects in my own time,”

Chen said.

“Sometimes I may look

for new ideas and I want

to implement the idea, so I

VALUABLE: Microsoft Most Valuable Professional,

technology author and blogger Jiadong Chen speaks

at the Unity Unite Shanghai conference.

will research documents and

knowledge and implement

it myself and write something

to record it and share

the knowledge with the

community.

“I believe technology creators

can make the world a

better place, and Company-X

has the same ethos that aligns

perfectly with my personal

mission, which is why I am

so excited to be a part of the

team,” Chen said.

Company-X augmented

and virtual reality specialist

Lance Bauerfeind said Chen

was already making a difference

at Company-X

“We are extremely excited

to have Jiadong on the team.

He has already had a positive

impact on the projects that he

has been working on.”

SOLVE YOUR PROBLEM

WITH SOFTWARE!

The Company-X team prides itself with experience in a wide range

of technologies and languages and loves challenging problems.

Software

development

Virtual and

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Strategy and

support

Digital content and

UI/UX design


8 WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

CONVERSATIONS WITH MIKE NEALE

OF NAI HARCOURTS HAMILTON

Looking to make a

Commercial lease

decision in 2021?

Talking to David Hallett from Company-X

just before the Christmas

break, we discussed our reading

habits and what grabs or maintains our

attention when reading articles. David

was very clear in that he likes to get comment

about ‘how to….’

On that basis, I thought it might be an

opportune time to give my view on what

tenants should consider when making

such an important decision. It is inevitable

that the banter around the barbecue over

Christmas and New Year’s will lead to

more people making such decisions early

in 2021 than previously. With industrial

vacancy rates of around only 1 percent

and a distinct shortage of quality commercial

spaces available, those that make

early decisions may be glad they did so.

Having made or still contemplating the

decision to lease a new premises in 2021?

If you are in existing premises, consider

the options here first. Could this tenancy

be modified or made to accommodate

your future requirements? If it can, then

it’s worthwhile talking to your current

landlord to discuss those possibilities.

However, if you have made the decision

to relocate or take up a tenancy, then what

have been the drivers to relocate or what

should you be looking for with a new

commercial premises?

What sort of questions should you be

asking yourself?

• How many staff do I need to accommodate?

Do I need storage?

• How does the space need to be

Mike Neale - Managing Director,

NAI Harcourts Hamilton.

configured? Do I need individual

offices or can I occupy open plan

space, which is often far more efficient

and economic?

• Easy access for customers and clients?

• Branding or signage opportunities?

• Car parking? How many do you really

need (not how many would you ideally

like) and what are options for staff

within a reasonable walking distance?

• Is this the right location for my business?

If it is retail based, what is

the profile and/or are the pedestrian

counts like?

• What quality of space do I need or

want to be in? Better quality space and

local amenities will be an attraction to

both recruit and retain good staff

• Do you have a seismic requirement for

the building? The legislative requirement

is to be above 33 percent NBS

(New Building Standard), with government

and some corporate tenants

needing to be above 67 percent NBS.

• Do you have a rental budget? Make

sure you consider the gross operating

cost, which includes Opex (rates and

building insurance etc)

Inventors Julie Blackwell and Julie Caldwell with the Kitcal.

Innovative tablet

connects seniors

By RICHARD WALKER

An easy-use tablet to help older people connect them to their

families and loved ones has been launched by two entrepreneurs

based in Matamata.

Increasingly, tenants are asking questions

about potential landlords, as it is likely to

be a long-term relationship (hopefully)

for the benefit of both parties. Landlord

reputations in times of uncertainty, as we

have now, are an increasingly important

factor for consideration – Hamilton is

fortunate in that the vast majority of landlords

appear to be good people, looking

for fair outcomes.

How long a lease term are you

considering committing to?

The longer the initial lease term, the

more flexibility and the more goodwill

you will get from a landlord, either in

terms of rent free, capital works or other

contribution.

• If it’s a start-up type business, you may

be considering a shorter initial term of

lease, or if it’s small office space, then

shared or co-working space might be

a good option. You may be paying

a higher rental rate, but you aren’t

locked into a long-term lease commitment

and retain flexibility if you need

to upsize or downsize.

• If it is an existing business, then it is

important to determine and prioritise

the factors that you are seeking in a

premises. It is inevitable that you will

need to make compromises, so be very

clear in determining what is actually

important and what items are just ‘like

to haves’. If you have a good and established

business, then don’t be afraid to

back yourself to provide stability and

make a long-term lease commitment

in the best interests of your business.

I have seen relatively novice retail businesses

or owners make poor business

decisions based purely on their proposed

rental budget, without taking into account

the fact that they could pay a little more

and benefit significantly from increased

pedestrian counts and/or profile. The same

applies to office space, where a little more

rental will often provide a better working

environment and place to build culture –

the cost to recruit, train and retain staff

is significant, so provide an environment

that will enable staff to thrive.

It has become increasingly important

over the last couple of years and significantly

more so since Covid with the

advent of working from home, to provide

an attractive work environment, where

staff want to come to work and will be

more productive. This can be much about

the business culture you have created, but

cannot be fully developed without a desirable

physical environment and providing

access to good amenities in the immediate

surroundings.

So, do not be afraid to make a

decision and be prepared to make compromises,

as procrastination will not be

your friend when it comes to having to

make strong business decisions in this

fast-paced and changing environment

that we live it.

NAI Harcourts Hamilton

Monarch Commercial Ltd MREINZ Licensed

Agent REAA 2008

Cnr Victoria & London Streets, HAMILTON

07 850 5252 | hamilton@naiharcourts.co.nz

www.naiharcourts.co.nz

205175AA

It comes after Matamata

woman Julie Caldwell

discovered there was

nothing on the market suitable

for her mother.

Julie Caldwell had been

supporting her mother,

Lois, who was living independently

but was no longer

able to use an iPad to

stay in touch with family.

Caldwell was calling

in on her mother, in her

mid 80s, twice daily as

simple tasks like taking

medication and keeping

appointments became

increasingly difficult. A

beautiful wall calendar

was of little use if her

mother didn’t know what

day it was. The solution

would be simple, Caldwell

thought, a communication

device like an iPad but

less complicated.

“I said to her, let’s find

a new thing for you to use.

There’ll be something out

there, and we’ll just go

and get it, or go online and

buy it for you, and then

you’ll have all these things

fixed.”

To her surprise, she

found nothing. “I kept

googling this, that and the

other, for things for older

people or people with cognitive

decline, and there

wasn’t anything.”

That began a four-year

journey with friend and

colleague Julie Blackwell

which has seen the

two accountants launch

the nattily named Kitcal

to market, aimed at keeping

older people connected to

friends and family. It helps

seniors live independently,

with ready contact with family,

including through video

or phone calls and messages,

and easy sharing of photos.

Its shared calendar also

means families can keep an

eye on things from a distance.

“It just seemed to be something

that my mum needed,

and therefore other people

needed, and it was worth

doing,” Caldwell says.

They enlisted the help

of an occupational therapist

to design the tablet,

which comes with magnetised

rechargers and wooden

stands. Everything was considered,

from use of colour to

size of font.

The result is a 10-inch

tablet featuring five buttons

aligned across the bottom of

the display, each with a different

purpose. Families can

download the free app to

stay in touch, and can update

the calendar, and provide

prompts and alerts.

The tablet features a range

of emojis rather than a keyboard,

and includes the ability

for video calls - a late

addition when lockdown

saw them pivot from 3G to

4G in order to provide the

video option earlier than they

had anticipated.

Blackwell says they want

to help people live independently

- without their

children, often the eldest

daughter, getting run ragged.

She has seen the benefit of the

tablet herself, having sent one

to her grandmother in Canada

as that country was heading

into another lockdown. Her

family were able to download

the app and send their grandmother

the family photos she

cherished.

I kept googling this,

that and the other,

for things for older

people or people with

cognitive decline,

and there wasn't

anything.

“It just brings them [older

people] into that daily conversation.

It doesn’t have to

be, ‘Look, we’re in Paris, and

this is the Eiffel Tower’; it

can be we, ‘Look what we’ve

just picked from the garden’.”

Caldwell recalls a moment

about two years into development,

when their energy was

flagging.

She went to her mother’s

Christmas lunch at the rest

home she had recently moved

into. Someone across the

table took a photo of them,

and they sent it to Caldwell’s

two daughters, one of whom

lives in America. The daughter

immediately responded,

a conversation started, and


WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

9

The development path

others started sending photos

as well. Caldwell’s mother

remarked that she would

like the photo in her room.

Caldwell realised she would

have to send it to her printer,

go to work to fetch it, and

bring it back.

“And I thought, this is

ridiculous. I can send it to the

US and I can’t even send it to

the room three doors down.

How crazy is that? There’s

got to be something that she

can use to get so that she can

have them in her room. Why

shouldn’t they [older people]

have the same sort of social

connections that we have just

because they can’t work a

blasted iPad?

“I got angry. And so I

came back and I said to Julie,

‘we’re into this!’.”

They both laugh. “If only

we knew what was coming!”

What was coming was

endless discussions with

designers and developers

and multiple groups working

with older people, as well as

surveys in both New Zealand

and Australia, as they focused

relentlessly on functionality.

Getting in touch with

Callaghan Innovation, and

through them with Te Waka,

was a key step in getting the

business moving, Blackwell

says.

They decided they wanted

their own hardware. “If

there’s a problem with a tablet,

it’s our tablet, and we

know what the problem is,”

Caldwell says.

The two women, who have

self-funded the tablet’s development,

import tablets to

their own specifications from

a factory in China, while

staying as local as possible on

other fronts. They are using

a Matamata software developer,

and the stands and cases

are made in Hamilton.

The Kitcal comes ready

to use out of the box, with

a Sim card meaning there is

no need to worry about Wifi

connections, and using an

IoT platform built for them

by Vodafone. The tablet costs

$690, the plan has two prices

according to usage, and

the app is free.

“People who’ve had some

experience [with similar

devices] will obviously pick

it up faster,” says Caldwell.

“And just from talking to

older people who’ve got cognitive

decline or dementia, if

they’ve already been using

it a little bit, then they will

retain enough knowledge to

use it much further down that

pathway than if they hadn’t.”

From talking to older

people who’ve got

cognitive decline or

dementia, if they’ve

already been using it

a little bit, then they

will retain enough

knowledge to use it

much further down

that pathway than if

they hadn’t.

Along the way, they discovered

two tablets in the

US market that they had initially

overlooked, but neither

offered exactly what they

were looking for. Unbeknown

to them, they were

also inventing the very device

that an Auckland researcher,

Wendy Wrapson, had seen

as a solution to the isolation

residents could experience

in rest homes. She had written

to big tech companies

with her suggestion, only to

be batted away. Having her

research was a validation for

the path Caldwell and Blackwell

were on.

Their marketing focuses

on adult children, rather than

the parent, and buyer interest

is coming from around

New Zealand including the

South Island. Caldwell says

they have had inquiries from

families in New Zealand who

want one for parents in the

UK.

Blackwell says they don’t

want the Kitcal to be an electronic

photoframe that people

buy and never use. “We want

it to be useful.

We want it to be exciting.

And we know from the feedback

we’ve had from those

who are using it, it is.”

Sadly, one person who

won’t be using the Kitcal is

the very person who set Caldwell

out on her mission. Her

mother died in June last year,

just weeks before they were

ready to begin testing the

device.

“But there’s lots of others

like her, and she would

have been happy,” says

Caldwell.

What’s in a name?

When it comes

to the device’s

name, Caldwell

had a brainwave while on

a car journey. She had,

she said, spent ages trying

to think up a name for

“the thing” that her mother

kept asking about. Lots of

words came to mind, but

none of them felt right. “And

then it just sort of popped

into my head. And I thought

‘that’ll do’.”

The name, Kitcal, stands

for “keep in touch calendar”.

“I actually pulled over

on the side of the road up in

Patetonga, and I googled it to

see if it was anything already.”

There and then, she

reserved the name with the

Companies Office before continuing

with her journey.

“It really is about keeping

in touch,” Blackwell says.

“And so I think the name

really does encompass what

we want it to do - it’s that

social connection.”

How do you develop

a new product? Ask

lots of questions and

be prepared for the long haul.

“Don’t be afraid to ask

dumb questions,” says Julie

Blackwell. “We don’t know

what we don’t know, we are

not tech experts. And we’ve

had to ask a lot of questions

and just really put our pride

on hold.”

Julie Caldwell:

“I thought of it as like getting

a textbook, and you don’t

open the last page because

you can’t translate that thing

or do that equation. But if

you start on page one, and

get that little bit, then you just

turn the page and get the next

thing. And so we did, we just

ticked off things we found.

We found the cable clamp

[to secure the cable to the

back of the stand for ease of

use]. We found someone to

make the stands. But as soon

as we’ve done that, there’s

another thing. There’s always

another thing.”

Julie Blackwell:

“At the beginning, we tried

to write this critical pathway

list of all the things that

we were going to have to

overcome and think about

that we knew about at the

time - hardware, who we’re

going to use for the software,

how are we going to

advertise this, where are we

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going to source for this list?

And it was too much.”

Julie Caldwell:

“We always said, if we hit a

brick wall, if it’s critical, and

it’s no-go, then that’s fine.

We’ve gone as far as we can,

we’ll stop. But we won’t

look too far out there because

we’ve fixed everything and

we’ve managed everything

and we’ve found everything

so far. We probably can do that

out there too. As long as it’s

not a brick wall that we can’t

blast our way through, then

we’ll just worry about today’s

thing.”

Julie Blackwell:

“We’ve had to stop and do

checks all throughout the journey.

Because we are so into it,

sometimes we need to have a

pause and ask somebody outside

from us: Is this the right

thing? Do we keep going?.”

Julie Caldwell:

“Even now people look at it

when it’s finished and they’ll

say, ‘oh, it’d be great if you

could have YouTube on it’.

And, ‘wouldn’t it be great if

you could do this?’ We must

have had those conversations

300 times and all of a sudden

it’s an iPad. And we really kept

saying to ourselves, stop reinventing

an iPad, because there

is already one and it’s perfect.”

Julie Blackwell:

“This is for social communication,

keeping in touch,

we had to keep coming back

to why we’re doing it, and

what it needs to do in order

to achieve that. So it was

a lot of to-ing and froing.

A lot of time was spent

researching, talking to people

- lots of informal conversations

or group conversations with

people, but also online surveys

or paper surveys.”

braemarhospital.co.nz


10 WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

One thought for 2021

= @Opportunity 2021

Welcome to 2021. May we live in slightly less

“interesting” but far more prosperous times this year!

The defining characteristic of a business

recovery is finding where

opportunity exists and making it

happen.

We at the Chamber see that the Waikato

is full of opportunity. It is truly a great

region to be living, working and playing.

There is a lot of great stuff going on that

will accelerate Waikato prosperity during

2021 and over the coming years

Population growth: Over the next

10 years we will see another 20,000 people

live in Hamilton alone. That’s over

2 percent population growth per year.

Cambridge has exploded over the past

several years and looks like continuing,

with residential developments on all sides

and the Hautapu industrial developments

continuing. Morrinsville is starting to

see population growth, with large subdivisions

underway and people starting to

see how advantageous its proximity to

Waikato University and Hamilton is for

commuting.

The massive Peacocke development

is well underway and expected to house

over 9000 people within five years.

Ohinewai: The proposed Sleepyhead

industrial and residential development includes

1100 homes.

Te Awa Lakes: The big, ambitious,

high quality, Perry development at the

North end of Hamilton has got past planning

approval. At 62 hectares it is not

small and the vision for the area is really

quite something.

Te Rapa: Industrial development,

spearheaded by Porters, is continuing

apace with the large Ebbett Group relocation

coming to fruition.

Hamilton. The centre of Hamilton is

undergoing a quiet revitalisation. Stark

Group are giving several older buildings

at Garden Place and Hamilton East

a complete makeover. Foster’s Union

Square complex is progressing quickly,

Tainui Group Holdings have completed

their extra 40 rooms at the Novotel and

work has commenced on their site for

ACC. Their big investment in Ruakura

has its first commercial tenant in PBT

Transport and it is amongst New Zealand’s

largest developments, spanning

industrial, commercial, retail and residential

development areas.

By Don Good, Waikato Chamber

of Commerce executive director

The Waikato Expressway will have

its missing link in place by the end of

2021 with the completion of the eastern

bypass of Hamilton. Safe, secure, and

productive, the Expressway has opened

up opportunity for Waikato businesses

to service Auckland south of the Harbour

bridge quicker than many competitors on

the North Shore. The next step is to continue

the Expressway to Tauranga.

The Waikato has space for growth and

that space is seeing our region become

the logistics hub for New Zealand.

As 2020 came to a close our dairy

industry has enjoyed good weather and

good prospects, with the Global Dairy

Trade index rising and dairy payout forecasts

getting rosier. It wasn’t that many

months ago that bank economists were

very bearish about the prospects for the

dairy industry. As usual, dairy farmers

have just got on with making it happen

and the global demand for high quality

protein has rebounded.

This is percolating through the towns

and cities of the Waikato and it is phenomenal

how it adds real substance to

the wider Waikato economy. In truth the

Waikato is growing rapidly.

The Waikato is definitely the land of

@opportunity2021.

We trust that 2021 is a prosperous new

year for you all.

Business Floor, Wintec House Cnr Nisbet and Anglesea Street, HAMILTON

07 839 5895 | help@waikatochamber.co.nz

www.waikatochamber.co.nz

Labour in charge

By RICHARD WALKER

From page 1

“I think the thing we have

to realise is, like any city, we

are only going to get denser

and grow more. It's not that

Hamilton's population in the

next 50 years is going to get

less. So we need to be looking

forward and thinking, how

can we make it easier for our

populations to connect with

regions that matter to us?

We need to be

looking forward and

thinking, how can

we make it easier for

our populations to

connect with regions

that matter to us.

“Having a business case to

look at [a fast train] is important,

because then we can say

hand on heart that at least

we've looked at it.”

Both Strange and Sharma

say the Government is

investing heavily in upgrading

the rail infrastructure, to

make up for historic lack of

investment.

“Getting more trucks off

the road, and more freight on

rail is a priority of this Government,”

Strange says.

On an expressway to

Tauranga

Strange says as government

MPs, they will lobby for

all forms of transport in the

region, and points out the

Government Policy Statement

on transport has a multimodal

approach.

Strange says an expressway

to Tauranga is important

to continue the region’s economic

growth. “It links into

the work that's happening at

Ruakura. It connects Hamilton

at a high level with Auckland

and Tauranga and that

Golden Triangle.

“Our job as local MPs is to

continue to raise the profile,

and to articulate the economic

benefits of the extension to

Tauranga now, and also the

Southern Links. Both of those

are incredibly important, and

they work together.”

But any decision will be

for NZTA through the Land

Transport Fund, he says, and

it will be up to local authorities

to form regional transport

plans and submit them to the

agency.

Sharma says public transport

is the way of the future.

“But you do need to have

roads to go with that, you do

need to have other modes that

go along with it.”

He sees their role as bringing

stakeholders together,

which is likely to get a boost

with a projected visit to the

city in March from new

Transport Minister Michael

Wood.

On the Sleepyhead

development

Strange is supporting the

planned development of

a Sleepyhead factory and

medium density housing

community in Ohinewai, just

north of Huntly. He points

out the government has fast

tracked the RMA process for

the factory, should it get past

the hurdle of a district planning

commissioners’ hearing,

with a ruling imminent at time

of writing.

“That will create job

opportunities for people living

in and around the Huntly

area.”

He says the parent company,

Comfort Group, is keen

to find pragmatic solutions to

any issues.

He also says he has heard

there are around half a dozen

other Auckland businesses

who are considering doing

something similar and watching

the outcome closely.

Strange says the Hamilton

to Auckland corridor

plan points to Pokeno and

Hamilton as the most obvious

areas for development. However,

he says the Sleepyhead

proposal fits within the plan

in terms of boosting river

communities.

On housing

Sharma describes housing as

probably their biggest area to

address, as Hamilton’s population

grows rapidly. The

Waikato looks set to gain up

to 600 public rental houses

over the next four years, the

bulk of them in Hamilton. In

general, Strange acknowledges

it is a challenge to keep

up with housing demand, and

both going up and going out

are needed, with more intensification

on the outskirts than

in the past.

“There's certainly enough

land. We need to go up as

well as out, and then when

we do go out, there's various

options out there, and they're

all being explored.”

He says a piece of land on

Hamilton’s outskirts rezoned

from rural to residential can

quadruple in value, meaning

there’s enough money to build

the infrastructure and deliver

affordable housing.

“That's the conversation

I had with Minister Megan

Woods just a couple of days

ago. I said, you know, the

land is there, if you work with

councils around rezoning.”

On health

This term, Sharma, a GP and

Fulbright scholar with an

MBA from George Washington

University, is on the

Health Select Committee.

That comes at a time when

the health system faces an

overhaul on the back of the

Heather Simpson report, and

Sharma says a lot of focus


WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

11

will be on primary care, which

is where his background in

general practice will help.

“Because we're very good at

catching people at the bottom

of the cliff. But can we stop

them at the top?”

He stresses the importance

of access to mental

health resources, especially

in primary care. He is hoping

for the development

of a full drug and alcohol

rehabilitation centre in Hamilton.

The announcement of a

drug and alcohol court for the

city could help boost the centre’s

development.

The court includes a wraparound

service and its introduction

could see Waikato

offenders, who currently have

to go to Auckland for three

months of treatment, taking

them away from family and

support, doing the full rehab

in Hamilton instead.

Sharma says his role on

the committee is around outreach,

organising three to four

visits a year to different parts

of New Zealand.”The idea is

to take the Minister, the Associate

Minister, MPs involved

in the health caucus to visit

various cities and my aim is

to visit non-mainstream providers,

not just the DHB.”

Sharma is also enthusiastic

about an Auckland pilot

which has seen psychologists

based at medical centres providing

free appointments, and

hopes to bring the concept to

Waikato.

On city developments

Timing may be on the two

MPs’ side this electoral term.

Strange says the Ruakura

inland port will be operational

before the next election, with

a goal of having a number of

tenants in place and the roading

infrastructure, assisted by

$56 million in government

funding, completed.

He expects to see more big

retail companies setting up

central dark stores to service

online customers, with Ruakura

in prime position to attract

them. “The obvious place for

it is right in the heart of the

Golden Triangle.”

Meanwhile, the 1300-seat

Regional Theatre is set for

completion in election year.

Strange says it will be the top

theatre in Australasia. “Every

time a theatre has been built

in a CBD around the world,

it's transformed the CBD. It's

really given uplift.”

The theatre is set to play

its part in an inner city revitalisation

that also includes

Tristram Precinct, the ACC

building and Union Square.

Also in the mix in the northern

end of the CBD is the

Pacific Hub which, along with

the theatre, received PGF

funding from the Government

last term.

Hamilton is an

attractive proposition

for government

agencies in terms

of the cost of rent,

in terms of things

like resilience, in

terms of proximity to

Auckland.

“It's exciting to see discussions

go on between the

Union Square developers

and government agencies,”

Strange says. “Hamilton is

an attractive proposition for

government agencies in terms

of the cost of rent, in terms of

things like resilience, in terms

of proximity to Auckland.”

On Covid and the economy

This term, Strange is chairing

the Economic Development,

Science and Innovation Select

Committee.

“I really appreciate the

opportunity to do it, it's an

area of particular interest

for me,” he says. “I see the

opportunities for our country

on a global scale, huge

opportunities for exports, to

continue to grow our economy

and to continue to

diversify our economy and

add value to products here

in New Zealand. And from a

Waikato point of view, we've

got a number of companies

who successfully export, and

I think it's important that the

government continue to support

those businesses.”

Strange acknowledges the

difficulties faced by tourism

and hospitality under Covid

but says Waikato’s economy

has proved more resilient in

the face of the pandemic than

many others around New Zealand,

citing the agricultural

sector, tech, manufacturing

and the government sector.

Sharma says he saw positivity

when he caught up

recently with migrant business

owners in Taupō, particularly

in the hospitality and

tourism sectors. He says they

told them their summer had

been as busy as ever, and their

biggest problem was finding

enough staff.

Meanwhile, the PGF is

gone, and in its place is a

regional development fund

which is likely to involve

regions presenting their plans

for economic development

as a region. That follows an

election pledge of $200 million

to support capability

for economic development

agencies around the country,

Strange says.

On having Labour

Government MPs

Strange says he and Sharma

have a long standing friendship

and points out their complementary

skills, with his

education background as a

former teacher and Sharma’s

health background as a GP.

Sharma says he is able

to tap into the experience of

both Strange and Government

Minister Nanaia Mahuta, who

also has her electoral office in

Hamilton.

“It's great for Hamilton to

have three government MPs

representing Hamilton city,”

Strange says.”We're a strong

team, we're going to work

together.”

On the next three years

Sharma notes that Hamilton

is officially one of the two

most beautiful cities in New

Zealand, but says it needs to

be also the most livable city.

That will come down to better

transport, both locally and

to other cities, better housing

and better health care access.

“People living here should

have access to the best of

everything and at a price that

is affordable.”

Strange says when it

comes to the next three years,

population growth is coming

and economic development is

continuing.

“A lot of people are coming

to Hamilton, a lot of businesses

are relocating here

because they like the lifestyle.

It's important that we get ahead

of the curve in terms of areas

like transport, housing, general

livability.

“There is a unique opportunity,

though. As one party

in government - and we

are certainly humbled to

receive that support - there

is an opportunity for us as a

party to bring about some

positive change.”

Commercial Property

Management & Valuations

At Bayleys, we believe relationships are what businesses are built on and how they succeed.

We understand that to maximise the return on your property you need:

Professional property management

Expert valuation advice

A business partner that understands your views and goals

Mike Gascoigne

Branch Manager

P 07 834 6690 M 027 430 8311

mike.gascoigne@bayleys.co.nz

Curtis Bones

Senior Commercial Property Manager

P 07 834 3826 M 027 231 3401

curtis.bones@bayleys.co.nz

James Harvey

Commercial Facilities Manager

P 07 839 0700 M 027 425 4231

james.harvey@bayleys.co.nz

Matt Straka

Registered Valuer

P 07 834 3232 M 021 112 4778

matt.straka@bayleys.co.nz

ALTOGETHER BETTER

Residential / Commercial / Rural / Property Services


12 WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

“ If a man knows not which

port he sails, no wind is

favourable.”

At the start of 2021, you’d be hardpressed

not to take a leaf from the book

of the Roman Stoic Seneca.

The expanded meaning

behind this pithy quote

is simply - Have a vision,

form a plan. With the objectives

you need to accomplish,

stay focused - while things will

change and you’ll stray – stop,

adjust your sails and get back on

course to your destination (how

appropriate for our America’s

Cup crews!).

So where is your port of

choice, where are you and your

business heading in 2021?

With global business confidence

growing and encouraging

signs that public health efforts

will lead to the resumption of

freedom of travel to some degree

the danger is that businesses

could be tempted to simply wait

and see what pans out before

taking action. One key learning

taken from 2021 was how

quickly business activity picked

up post the lockdown. Business

commentators have noted those

who retained their skilled staff

were among the best placed,

and earliest, to lead and benefit

from this rebound. Attracting,

developing and retaining skilled

staff to take your business to its

“port of choice” will be one of

the important focuses for 2021

and, because of the size of our

working population and the

ongoing border closure, our

Level 2

586 Victoria Street

Hamilton 3204

current skilled migrant workers

look set to play a crucial role in

many New Zealand businesses.

Immigration policies can be

complex and changes, especially

over the past year due to COVID

and our border closures, have

been frequent and challenging

to keep abreast of. This will continue

to be the norm in 2021!

What we do know is that

later this year Immigration

New Zealand will introduce

wide-sweeping changes which

will impact on all employers

employing migrant workers.

In short, six different work visa

categories will be merged into

one work visa category and ALL

EMPLOYERS who employ

migrant workers on employer-assisted

(not open) work

visas must become accredited

by Immigration New Zealand

before they can support any new

work visa applicants. There will

be three levels of accreditation.

These changes will also require

employers to take on wider and

greater responsibilities for their

migrant workers, including for

their visa requirements.

In anticipation of these

changes, and to support employers

to be immigration compliant

and best placed to achieve INZ

accreditation, we encourage all

businesses employing migrants

Level 3

50 Manners Street

Wellington 6011

07 834 9222

enquiries@pathwaysnz.com

pathwaysnz.com

William Durning

to undertake an immigration

audit so any issues can be identified

and addressed in advance.

Such an audit can also identify

and detail the visa plan for the

ongoing immediate and long

term retention of key migrant

staff. Many migrant employees

are focussed on obtaining long

term residence, and employers

who can support these employees

along the pathway to residence

are well placed to retain

such employees for the long

term. Such an audit should also

form part of the due diligence

process for any business merger

or acquisition as migrant workers

are very likely to require

changes to their visas in order to

remain working. The Pathways

Immigration Audit is a comprehensive

and professional audit

which will suitably address the

above matters - and is a good

starting point to begin your navigation

of the year ahead and to

be well placed to reach your destination

port. If we can be of help

in pointing your business in the

right direction then – let’s talk!

How Apple’s latest

move will hurt your

business

With the release of iOS 14 for iPhones, Apple is cranking up its

war on personalised advertising. The result is likely to hurt your

business, along with millions of businesses around the world.

Apple’s recently released

iOS 14 requires that any

app that wants to track

users’ activity when clicking on

links, gets explicit permission

to do so.

A popup appears asking

for permission to track activity

across other sites and then

gives the options of “Ask app

not to track” or “Allow”.

The changes are being

made to increase the privacy

of iPhone users, but there are

downsides for users, publishers

and businesses.

Downsides for users

I'll admit, it's a bit mind-boggling

to think about how much

Facebook and Google knows

about us. Nearly everything we

do online is tracked. The key

reason these companies track

this data is to provide personalised

advertising to us.

The ads I see when scrolling

through Facebook or Instagram

will be different from the

ads you see. They are based

on my interests and things I've

responded to in the past.

This is the biggest downside

users will experience if

they opt-out of tracking. Personalised

advertising means the

ads in your news feed feel useful

- they are generally about

things that you're likely to be

interested in.

Personally, I enjoy having

advertising that is personalised

to the things I’m interested in.

I have found numerous books,

software, articles and products

while browsing Facebook

and Instagram that I wouldn’t

have found without personalised

advertising. Opting out

of tracking would stop me from

discovering a lot of these.

But there's another aspect

of personalised advertising that

is just as important - that is, to

know when to STOP showing

ads to people.

You may have noticed when

viewing a product online, if you

don't purchase it, you're likely

to start seeing adverts for that

product. That's called "remarketing".

If you then purchase

that product, those ads should

stop being shown to you.

For users who opt out of

tracking, the advertiser won't

have any tracking data to show

that you have purchased the

item. So that product will keep

being shown to you again and

again.

I personally prefer to have

ads that are personalised to

things I'm interested in, so

am happy to tap "Allow" for

THE DIGITAL WORLD

> BY JOSH MOORE

Josh Moore leads the team at Duoplus - a Hamilton-based

digital marketing agency that helps businesses grow through

highly measurable online marketing. www.duoplus.nz

Facebook to track my activity.

Downsides for publishers

App and website publishers

who rely on advertising to

monetise their business are

likely to have their income

severely impacted by these

changes. With ads being less

personalised, users are far less

likely to click on them.

Experiments have shown

that publishers experienced

more than 50 percent drop in

revenue when personalisation

was removed from campaigns.

Downsides for businesses

The huge downside for businesses

is that online advertising

is likely to become more expensive

to get the same results, due

to ads being less targeted.

With the new

restrictions in iOS,

businesses are going

to end up with a

lot more wasted ad

spend.

Not all targeting will disappear.

Users who opt out will

still be shown ads based on their

activity inside of Facebook. But

the ability of Facebook to find

the users most likely to respond

to your ad will be impacted.

For example, if you were a

start-up business launching a

photography-related product,

Facebook and Instagram ads

are a great way to get in front

of people interested in photography.

But with a limited ads budget

for launching your product,

do you want to show your ads

to everyone that is interested in

photography, or would you prefer

to show you ads to people

who are interested in photography

AND have a history of purchasing

photography products?

Which would give you the best

chance of success? Definitely

the latter.

Likewise, if you had a campaign

promoting a free ebook

do you want to show your ad

to people who click on lots

of ads but never download

the offer? Or would you prefer

to show it to people who

have a history of clicking and

then downloading?

That’s what Facebook

tracking enables. It means

businesses around the world

can reach people who are

most likely to be interested

AND take action.

The way tracking currently

works is that Facebook

tracks what happens after

users click on an ad. Do they

download the ebook or purchase

a product? Using this

data Facebook can match ads

with the users most likely to

be interested.

Then once users have purchased,

we can stop showing

the ads to them - or better yet,

show them an ad for another

product they might like.

Or, for longer sales cycles,

show them content for the

next step in the sales journey

with you.

But with the new restrictions

in iOS, businesses

are going to end up with a

lot more wasted ad spend.

Whether your business sells

products online or generates

customer enquiries, if you use

Facebook ads, you're likely to

see a significant reduction in

the performance of your ad

campaigns.

This means if you used to

get a certain amount of sales

or leads by showing your

ads to 10,000 people, you're

likely to need to show those

ads to 25,000 people to get

the same result.

It is also going to make

it much harder to know the

performance of the ad campaigns.

At the moment there

is clear measurement of

the numbers of leads or the

amount of sales revenue that

comes from each ad and campaign.

With iOS blocking a lot

of this data, businesses are

going to have to estimate a lot

more about the actual return

on investment their campaign

has produced.

Facebook's response to

Apple's changes with iOS is

still a fast developing subject.

The full consequences

and impact of these changes

are not yet clear, but you can

guarantee that the team at

Facebook are working very

hard to keep their platform

as one of the most powerful

forms of advertising available,

helping connect businesses

with potential customers.

In the meantime, if you

like seeing ads you’re interested

in, when you see the

popup just click “Allow”.


LIFT OUT

PropertY &

development

A WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS SUPPLEMENT / WBN.CO.NZ

JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2021

517 ANGLESEA ST. HAMILTON

0800 289 287 or 07 595 0020

INFO@BTW.NZ / WWW.BTW.NZ


WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

FROM THE GROUND UP

bayleys.co.nz/commercial

BTW guides you

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SUCCESS REALTY LIMITED, BAYLEYS, LICENSED REAA 2008

Now is not the time to sit on money in

a bank account.

With demand for housing

stock and desire

for well-considered

urban development, investing

in property and land development

opportunities is a ‘real’

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a smart approach.

Land development is a balancing

act as you dance the

line between risk and reward.

A smart approach is knowing

from the outset if a high

water-table will present you

with stormwater disposal challenges,

or being aware of land

contamination and the possible

remediation strategies before

work begins. When you start

with due diligence, thorough

geotech investigations and

environmental analysis, you

can plan land development

with better certainty, informed

decision making and reduce

the risk of costly disruptions

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As a local multidisciplinary

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so having BTW’s Surveying,

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working closely with your

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project experience, established

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Our Environmental Services

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required environmental compliance

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environmental monitoring

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ecological assessments and

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it, development cannot

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FROM THE GROUND UP

WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

Managing the move to

new rental legislation?

With the new Residential Tenancies Amendment Act and the

Healthy Homes standards on the table, the focus is on landlords

who manage their own properties to polish up their compliance

and make the transition clean, warm and dry for everyone

involved.

Property investment

comes hand-in-hand

with regular legislation

changes.

It wasn’t too long ago that

insulation was the hot topic,

so with ceiling and underfloor

insulation compulsory in

all rentals since 2019, that’s

one Healthy Homes standard

you’ll have already met.

Other upgrades to heating,

ventilation and drainage

require a quick turnaround

and carry a cost of time and

energy to be paid before

July. But each new standard

will turn your property

into a great investment for

years to come.

There’s also the benefit

that rentals ticking the ‘warm,

dry and clean’ boxes generate

quality tenancy applications.

Additionally, the Residential

Tenancies Amendment

Act arrives on the industry’s

doorstep in February with

140 new amendments.

The new reforms will

change the game of property

management, from payments

to tenancy agreements, types

and terminations.

So, whether you’re tight

on time to upgrade your

rental, unsure about your next

steps or haven’t yet wrapped

your head around the regulations,

it’s time to talk to your

resident experts.

The Property Management

team at Lodge have had

training in, and are up-tospeed

with all of the new

rental laws.

They can guide you

through your obligations

under the new regulations.

Better yet, they can take

on your obligations so you

can free your time from compliance

concerns and confidently

spend your energy

on new investments for

your portfolio.

From managing renovations

to meet the Healthy

Homes standards to securing

the right tenant for your

property and protecting

your investment, it all starts

from a single conversation

with Lodge.

- Supplied copy

Jason Waugh, General Manager

Lodge Rentals

Know how to match the

right tenants with the

right house? We do.

Call Nic

021 536 435


WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

FROM THE GROUND UP

Getting ahead of building

breakdowns in 2021

Kia ora tatou

Ko Te Ahumairangi Te

Maunga

Ko Rotoma Te Roto

No Wellington Ahau

Ko Fenwicke Toku Whanau

Ko Georgina Toku Ingoa

We are a tech platform

called Frankie

(tellfrankie.com).

My name is Georgina

Fenwicke, and I founded the

company with the help of a

group of switched-on software

engineers and property

managers.

Many reading this will be

in the property space here in

the Waikato.

You might construct,

finance, lease, maintain,

invest or operate a

building or more.

We founded this company

to prevent building

breakdowns because it’s

financially and environmentally

sensible.

A building breakdown

can be a few things - it’s that

rusted section of roof leaking

in your distribution centre,

a roller door that has just

given up the goat at 5pm, a

yard that’s cracked through

or a failed Building Warrant

of Fitness.

We don’t like to think

about these things, but

they’re a reality for anyone in

the property space.

Everyone has their story.

• A museum had a multi-million

dollar plumbing

issue when the pools surrounding

it started to leak

into the building itself.

• A regional airport had

to replace a few roofs

because there were no

regular gutter inspections.

• A large distribution site

couldn’t get its product

out for delivery because

its roller doors jammed at

the same time.

Our response is often quite

emotional when these

types of issues crop up

and it usually involves the

word bugger.

As your finance team

will tell you, it’s also pretty

expensive.

Why do these issues surprise

us?

The thing is, property

managers are busy. They’re

co-ordinating contractors,

reports from tenants or

your colleagues about other

broken things, thinking

about development opportunities,

collecting rent or

paying it and filling out

compliance forms.

That’s where we’d like

to help. We built Frankie to

prevent these disasters by

first giving them the time

back to think about the risks.

Good capital asset plans

and preventing these things

from happening only comes

when they have the time and

TOOLS to think ahead.

Is there a building issue

that keeps you up at night?

Get in touch - let’s face it

head on together.

2020 was enough crazy

for this decade, let’s take

back control where we can.

• Georgie is CEO of tellfrankie.com,

Industrious

Property Software.

She’s passionate about

technology improving

the lives of Property and

Operations teams.

- Supplied copy

Masterminds behind Frankie

QUALITY STRUCTURE PERFORMANCE

CONSTRUCT RESIDENTIAL


Thank you Waikato

It’s a proud moment for any company to stand up and

say ‘we have been serving our business community

for more than 25 years’.

That is the case with Waikato Business News.

In that time our editors have featured many strong

and exclusive stories covering the exciting business

within the region, and we have built up a loyal group

of advertising supporters.

we cast our eye back over a quarter-century of

business in the Waikato, and we profile many of the

business leaders well known in the community, who

make our region a shining light in the country.

If you would like a copy, get in touch on 07 838 1333 or

email info@dpmedia.co.nz

In our special edition “Our story Your story - 25 years”


WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

FROM THE GROUND UP

505 Grey Street

Office

space for

Lease

High profile city fringe

modern office building

on Bridge St corner site

over 3 levels

Ground floor Office:

278m2 at $55.6k rent pa + opex

1st floor Office:

290m2 at $58k rent pa + opex

Basement Carparking:

9 parks + 3 on site at $35 pw

Ring your local agent or

owner on 0274742326


Professional &

Considerate

Rodney Stirling

FROM THE GROUND UP

WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

Kerry is a dedicated real estate professional who has been

involved in the Hamilton residential property arena since 1993.

He was also active in the marketing of the exclusive

Rodney

beach

Stirling

and

canal front properties at Pauanui on

Rodney Stirling

the Coromandel Peninsula.

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1) Look with your head and your

heart, logic alone or pure emotion is

not enough.

2) Do your research, follow the 5 P’s

principle. “Prior Preparation Prevents

Poor Performance”

3) Be flexible with your “must have”

list, know your priorities and what you

will compromise on.

4) Ask Kerry how to get maximum

exposure to the market so you don’t

miss any opportunities.

5) Don’t hold back your feelings,

don’t be afraid to express your interest

in a property to Kerry, you need to

know as much as possible.

6) Think of the future when

buying; resale, renovation or

rental potential should your

circumstances change.

Lugtons have been and still are

industry leaders in the marketing of

both residential and lifestyle property

in the Hamilton regions since 1955.

Hence, with Lugtons heritage in

the development of this City and

together with the commitment of

Kerry, are extremely proud of their

role in the important buying and

selling decisions of their valued

clients.

Certified Contractor

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Considerate

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Kerry Hopper

DDI: (07) 838 5870

Mobile: (021) 984 173

www.KerryHopper.nz

TM

Kerry Hopper – Lugtons Real Estate

HTC

Superfloor

TM

Our team

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EXPERT EXPERT Rodney CONCRETE CONCRETE GRINDING, GRINDING, Stirling

POLISHING

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Rodney Stirling

Stirling

Rodney

Rodney Stirling

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www.thepolishedconcretecompany.co.nz

www.thepolishedconcretecompany.co.nz

EXCELLENCE IN EXECUTION

200433AA 200433AA


WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

FROM THE GROUND UP

The Smart Home Revolution

The start of the computer revolution was back in the 1950’s where

big and bulky mainframe computers took up a whole room and

had to be programmed with a punch card. They were used to

automate Accounts and Payrolls.

Then by the 1980’s to

2000 the second revolution

started when we

began to have desktop computers

in the office, and then came

the home PC.

The third revolution was

the mobile one which reduced

them in size to be able to fit in

our pockets, so we could take

them anywhere and use them

on the go.

Now the next shift has

started and in our homes, smart

assistants like Google Home

or Amazon Echo are steadily

colonising our personal spaces,

along with home automation

for smart lighting and security

systems. There were over 640

million of these units sold last

year and the market will be

doing twice that by 2023.

By that time we can expect

something like a 50% growth

in sales of wearable devices

like smart clothing and fitness

trackers- a huge market that

Apple is looking to – where it

will be approaching 300 million

units a year.

As for the workplace AI is

starting to take hold where it

is transforming factories and

production lines. Sometimes

referred to as the fourth revolution

or industry 4, this sector is

forecast to double to over 150

billion by 2023 and over a trillion

dollars by the early 2030’s.

Tech companies will increasingly

seek to improve our lives

with this explosion of smart

devices that will be crunching

the sensor data from all this hardware,

as well as all the activities

that we do on our smart phones.

There are also plenty of startups

staking out their territory

in this new frontier.

When it comes to your home

it is important to know what

you want and when you “don’t

know what you don’t know”

the best thing is to talk to a

company that is experienced

in security systems before you

build and not settle for a one

size fits all approach that some

builders and electricians install

as a part of a package.

Your Security System is a

personal thing and needs to be

researched correctly to make

sure you know what you want

and how you are going to use

it - because it’s no good having

one installed if it’s too hard to

use, that would just be a waste

of money. Smartway Security

and Technology have been

installing CCTV for over 19

years and Monitored Security

Alarms for longer than that.

Why don’t you give them a

call and let them help you to

understand how you can protect

what is important to you.

Remember “Experience the

Difference because the Difference

is Experience.

Call and speak to the

team at Smartway today on

0800 93 63 63

- Supplied copy

Smart Homes are here!

How connected are you? No matter what you think you want to automate now,

there is always more that you will find you want to add on later,

so at least plan now with the ability to add more when it becomes available

Smartway Security & Technologies are

able to help you design and install your

security and surveillance requirements in

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Call the Team at Smartway today

and see how we can help YOU?

Hop into our Demo Truck and see the cameras in action

0800 93 6363

Sales@smartway.co.nz


WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

13

Montana wins Gold

Contracts signed

for centre

Montana Group’s Waikato catering brand Montana Food &

Events has been awarded a Qualmark Gold endorsement in their

2020 assessment.

It is a rare distinction for a

large-scale catering operation

in the tourism industry’s

leading quality indicator.

Qualmark is New Zealand

tourism’s official quality assurance

organisation, providing a

trusted guide to quality travel

experiences.

Owned by Tourism New

Zealand and backed by leading

industry organisations, it

provides a star grading system

for accommodation providers

and a quality endorsement

programme for other tourism

businesses, as an official mark

of quality.

Montana director Dallas

Fisher said it might seem a

little bit of an unusual industry

endorsement for a catering

company to seek but it makes

perfect sense.

“For a group of our size and

range of operation, it is tricky

to find an internationally recognised

quality assurance system,

with the breadth of assessment

to make it objectively

high quality,” he said. “It’s

hard to move past the tourism

industry and the demanding

criteria that they have in place

for Qualmark.”

Not only is the group one

of the very few catering organisations

that subjects itself to

the rigours of the international

assessment but to achieve Gold

is an exceptional result.

“Qualmark has broadened

the scope of its evaluation

criteria to recognise those

businesses that are focused on

protecting what makes New

Zealand unique and special,”

Qualmark general manager

Gregg Anderson said.

“Your award can be proudly

displayed as evidence that

Montana is committed to protecting

our beautiful natural

environment, enhancing connections

with our local communities,

whilst also delivering

a quality, safe experience

for all.”

Montana’s performance

was measured over four key

criteria, economic, environment

and culture, social/people,

and health and safety.

Overall Montana was assessed

as representing best practice in

73 per cent of these, with the

remaining 27 per cent rated as

excellent. In three of the four

sections, the Group was rated

as operating at sector best practice

level.

In confirming the award,

Qualmark noted the huge

improvement since the last

Dallas Fisher

assessment, and the close

working relationship between

Montana and H3, Hamilton

City Council’s unit managing

key venues within the city

– FMG Stadium Waikato,

Claudelands Events Centre

and Seddon Park. Montana

provides the catering and

event services at those venues.

The improvements in

sustainable practices, waste

minimisation and energy

efficiency were noteworthy.

Fisher said how pleasing

the result was for the

Montana Group, praising

the commitment by staff to

implement improvements

from previous assessments.

“It is special to us to be

living our values statement

and making a difference to

our customers, colleagues

and the environment.”

The new South Waikato

Trades Training Centre is

making strong progress

with the funding contracts

being signed to complete

the $14m project.

Professional services firms

have been appointed to

undertake the next phases

of design, engineering and

cost management for the

Centre. The project is being

led by the South Waikato

Investment Fund Trust

(SWIFT) in close liaison

with Toi Ohomai Institute

of Technology who will

be the training provider.

The Centre was awarded

a Government grant of

$10.84 million in August last

year and is being co-funded

with a $1 million grant from

Trust Waikato and SWIFT

covering the balance of

the costs. The next steps

include engagement with

local iwi Raukawa and the

Pacific Islands community.

The aspiration and one

of the key measures of

success is to encourage

and assist young Māori and

Pacifica into the trades and

further learning.

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14 WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

Emergency care

via video

A small team of Waikatobased

emergency doctors

have banded together

to create a new video

consultation service, named

Emergency Consult, which

enables New Zealanders

to access instant medical

care regardless of where

they are or what time it is. It

is the brainchild of doctors

Martyn Harvey and Giles

Chanwai, who launched the

service with Jenni Falconer

to provide patient-focused

urgent care that is rapid

and accessible. Users gain

access to experienced

NZ-based emergency

medicine specialists and

patients remain enrolled

with their regular practice.

A consultation costs $89 for

adults or $49 for children

14 years and under.

Boost for Te Awa

Construction is starting

on Waipā’s Hamilton to

Cambridge section of Te

Awa River Ride, following a

successful tender at the end

of last year. The $5.92 million

construction contract was

awarded by Waipā District

Council Civil Construction

Services, based in

Cambridge. The project has

received two major funding

contributions of $2.95m from

Waka Kotahi NZ Transport

Agency and a $2.84m

investment managed by

the Provincial Development

Unit. Waipā Council is

also contributing $1.14m

of loan-funded resource

into the community asset.

Completion is earmarked

for early November. The

Waipā section includes

3km of 3m-wide concrete

path, 1.4km of boardwalks,

two bridges, drainage,

culverts, landscaping

and fencing which will

be placed alongside the

Waikato River. The full

Hamilton to Cambridge

section will be built by four

different organisations,

Waka Kotahi, Waipā District

Council, Waikato District

Council and Hamilton City

Council, as it traverses three

district boundaries. Once

completed, the full Te Awa

River Ride cycleway will

span 60km from

Ngāruawāhia, through

Hamilton and Cambridge,

finishing up at Horahora.

Advantages of cloud accounting

- impossible to ignore

The Covid-19 induced lockdowns

experienced throughout 2020 amplified

the need for many organisations to

become more agile than ever before.

It became clear that

enabling staff to work

from home effectively

would be imperative if organisations

were to continue

functioning at anything close

to full operational capacity

throughout the lockdown

period.

This need saw the already

rapid adoption of cloud

accounting systems and the

remote accessibility benefits

they provide accelerate

markedly. Some commentators

suggested the forced

adoption of cloud technologies

that occurred through

those months brought forward

technology transformations

that would otherwise

have taken 4-5 years.

As we entered into the

various levels of lockdown

clear divides emerged

between those businesses

who were cloud enabled and

using the technologies as second

nature, versus those who

were caught short still using

desktop accounting systems

held on what became inaccessible

local office-based servers.

We saw organisations

who were already future-prepared

able to take advantage

of the benefits which cloud

accounting provides and

make smooth transitions to

home-based working. On

the contra those caught high

and dry scrambled for solutions

such as remote desktop

access in order to make it

through.

These remote accessibility

benefits provided by

cloud technologies were a

game changer during lockdowns;

however, the full

benefits provided by cloud

accounting systems are far

further reaching as detailed

below:

Automation

Think for a moment about

a standard payables process

of old. Finance staff would

spend hours if not days each

month collating invoices,

attempting to match those

invoices to corresponding POs,

getting invoices signed for

approval, entering them manually

into their accounting system

then keying them in again

via online banking in order

to make payment. This entire

process is now automated

start to finish by cloud-based

accounting systems. Invoices

can be ‘fetched’ directly from

suppliers, digitised and entered

to the accounting system without

a single touch by finance

staff. Those invoices are then

matched against the original

PO digitally and all month

end payables are included in

a batch payment which is then

automatically uploaded to your

online banking ready for payment.

Additionally, the creation

of purchase orders which

once required handwritten

dockets to be signed by senior

management are now created

online and filtered via matrices

to the mobile devices of managers

for one touch approval.

Previous manual processes

associated with GST returns

are gone too. Cloud-based

accounting software will calculate

your GST automatically

for the desired period and file

directly online with the IRD,

removing the need for any

manual calculations or doubling

up of data entry when

filing with the IRD.

Similar automation benefits

are found in bank feeds:

no longer is it necessary to

manually import and reconcile

bank transactions line by line

into your accounting system.

Cloud-based systems import

bank transactions directly from

your banking provider daily.

Once in your accounting system,

if desired, these can be

automatically coded based on

machine learning of your previous

transactions.

Cost

Older desktop-based systems

traditionally come with significant

upfront costs alongside

additional ongoing expenses

for support services and

updates. Leading providers

in the cloud-based accounting

space such as Xero and

MYOB instead work on simple

monthly subscription models

where there are no long-term

contracts and you cancel at

any stage. The various subscriptions

also provide different

packages of features at

different price points allowing

organisations to easily scale

between these packages as

required.

Software updates

Cloud accounting removes

the need for downloading

annual updates to your desktop

accounting package. With

cloud accounting systems

all updates occur automatically

in the background when

implemented by your provider,

meaning your system is always

on the cutting edge of new

technology and there is no risk

of your accounting package’s

functionality becoming obsolete.

Safety and security

For those organisations who

are hesitant about transitioning

to cloud-based accounting systems

we often find a similar set

of misconceptions around what

the ‘cloud’ is and the safety

and security of their data. Having

financial data stored in the

cloud simply means it’s stored

on remote servers in multiple

locations which are backed

up many times each day. This

leads to a vastly safer and more

secure system than if that data

was stored locally on a single

server which is often the case

with desktop accounting systems.

Add-ons

Much like the app store on

your Apple or Android phone,

TAXATION AND THE LAW

> BY TRACEY CLARK

Tracey Clark is a PwC director based in the Waikato office.

Email: tracey.e.clark@nz.pwc.com

many of the larger players in

the cloud accounting space

have their own app stores.

Xero in particular have over

800 add-on applications available,

meaning you can easily

customise and scale your base

accounting system to tailor it

for specific needs your organisation

may have such as

POS systems, tracking manufacturing,

complex visual

reporting, invoice automation

or even short-term financing.

Historically, desktop-based

accounting packages would

require significant upgrades

in functionality and cost just

to get the one or two of these

additional features an organisation

required. With add-on

applications, however, you can

pick and choose to create the

bespoke app stack your organisation

needs.

The transition process to

a cloud-based accounting

system is generally far simpler

than most organisations

expect, with finance staff

taking no more than a month or

two to completely embed and

become comfortable with their

new systems before they start

singing the praises of cloud

accounting.

The compelling benefits

of cloud-based accounting

already leave many historic

desktop-based systems wanting

and the gap in functionality

will only continue to increase

as providers of those desktop

systems begin to cut support

and upgrades while cloud technology

only accelerates.

Cloud-based accounting

is no longer a ‘new fad’ or an

area of uncertainty; it’s here,

it’s established and Covid-19

lockdowns showed us that

organisations not embracing

it are beginning to fall behind

their competitors.

The comments in this article

of a general nature and should

not be relied on for specific

cases. Taxpayers should seek

specific advice.


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16 WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

Covid helps new jewellery business shine

Anna Seelye, Hamilton-based creative

designer and owner of Frances Adrian

Jewellery Design, founded her business

thanks to Covid-19.

The jewellery expert

realised, in the wake of

Covid-19, there was a

need to offer a jewellery design

experience beyond the traditional

“bricks-and-mortar”

store model.

My passion for all

things gems and

jewellery runs

deep, with my

business focusing

on providing a totally

personalised one-onone

experience, from

initial contact to final

product.

“This business is something

I’ve had in the back of

my mind for a long time and

my experience in the industry

in both New Zealand and London

has taught me a lot about

what people are looking for

when having a special piece of

jewellery made.

“Following the birth of my

son and the Covid-19 situation

last year, my circumstances

changed, as they did for so

many others. I made the decision

then that this was something

that I wanted to do and

I did it.”

In June 2020, Seelye built

a website, set up a few social

media platforms, and the word

about Frances Adrian Jewellery

Design began to spread.

When choosing the name

for her new start-up, Seelye

kept it sentimental, much like

a lot of her now customers did.

“The names Frances and

Adrian are both family names

and are very special to me,”

she said.

Seelye has over 16 years’

industry experience working

as a jewellery designer

and valuer, she is also a UK

qualified gemmologist and

diamond grader.

“My passion for all things

gems and jewellery runs deep,

with my business focusing on

providing a totally personalised

one-on-one experience,

from initial contact to final

product.”

Her services include

bespoke commissions, engagement

and wedding jewellery,

remodels, jewellery restoration,

and valuation services.

All her pieces are New Zealand

made by a team of highly

Anna Seelye has over 16 years’ industry experience working as a jewellery designer and valuer.

experienced craftspeople.

“I have witnessed first-hand

the frustrations felt by many

struggling to find what they are

looking for in ready-to-wear

ranges found in traditional

jewellery stores.

“My aim is to remove that

initial barrier and put people

at the centre of the experience

right from the outset,” she said.

One of the things that’s

important to Seelye, when

it came to her business, was

being assessable beyond a

store.

“People have busy lives and

busy schedules, so being able

to work in when is best for

them makes the process nice

and smooth.

“The way we work has

changed since the outbreak of

Covid-19. We are now used to

conducting business via email

and Zoom or Skype calls and

that’s often my first contact

with people. It’s a model that

works well for both my clients

and I.”

Seelye said she loved

remaking jewellery for people

who had something they once

loved and wanted to keep, but

found it was in need of a new

look. “I recently had a lady

come to me with her existing

ring and an idea to give it a

more traditional, timeless look.

So, we went over some designs

to give it a refresh and we had

it remade. I love that process

and the emotional impact it

has too, it’s nice for people to

use what they already have,

it keeps its sentimental value

and gives them something they

love.”

To find out more about

Seelye and what she offers you

can visit her website: https://

www.francesadrian.co.nz/

DESIGNERS | VALUERS | GEMMOLOGISTS

DESIGNERS OF INDIVIDUALLY INSPIRED BESPOKE JEWELLERY

VALUERS OF YOUR PRECIOUS COLLECTIONS

Custom Jewellery Design | Engagement & Wedding Rings |

Remakes & Remodels | Jewellery Restoration | Jewellery Valuations

Does

your

branding

need a

Spruce up?

We’ve got you!

Enquire about our

design services today

info@dpmedia.co.nz

www.francesadrian.co.nz

022 460 9430 | anna@francesadrian.co.nz

Publishers of Waikato Business News,

Waikato AgriBusiness News and Showcase Magazine

Covering Hamilton & the greater Waikato | By appointment


He says this includes a

The “pillars” of internationalisation,

innovation

Continued on page 4

Fussy or forgiving

Which camp do your customers sit in?

The one with the highest of expectations or

the one where they cut you some slack?

Of course, all business

owners should be

aiming for a quality

of product or excellence in

service that meets the expectations

of even the pickiest of

customers.

But fulfilling sometimes

lofty ideals can demand

greater investment in time and

costs, so the price you charge

or the profit you make can get

higher and lower respectively.

Goodness me – the more

I think about this, the more I

wonder why any of us go into

business in the first place!

A recent road-trip to

Wellington highlighted this

issue to me. We stayed in

two different hotels over our

long weekend. One was part

of a large global chain and

the other a small family-run

establishment, with the per

night price for both pretty

much the same.

The chain hotel was a little

tired and dated, needed a lick

of paint in places and its facilities

were basic.

Irrespective of its location,

architecture and interior

design, the experience made

me feel a bit ‘meh’ – I had

expected more.

A slightly scruffy receptionist

was trying to be welcoming

as her equally scruffy

colleague returned from his

break and stood behind her

finishing his banana. Maybe

it was that poor first impression,

but I found myself feeling

uncharacteristically fussy,

almost willing myself to find

faults.

So, after that experience,

I started to worry when we

pulled up to our second

port of call the next evening,

greeted by a horribly

designed, outdated sign and

dozens of mismatched plant

pots. Maybe I’ve worked with

graphic designers for too long

but poor signage instantly

says to me “we don’t care”.

This hotel was older and,

architecturally, not as flash

as our previous digs, but the

friendly face on reception and

the extra touches of care and

attention meant that I was

happy to forgive a bit of dated

décor.

Maybe it was the cute

family cat that swung it but

something in those first few

minutes made me switch from

fussy to forgiving and enjoy

my stay.

I expect the chain hotel

has training and guidelines

for its staff on how they want

its brand to be reflected, aiming

to avoid the sense of disappointment

that I had. And

I suspect the family hotel’s

approach is less documented

but that showing you care and

going the extra mile is just the

way they do things.

Was it unfair of me to

expect that at the chain?

When does going the extra

mile become the norm?

In competitive environments

we all have to think

creatively to find something

to give us the edge. We all

want to find that bit of fairy

dust magic that keeps our customers

happy.

Hair salon one offers you

a cup of tea. Salon number

two gives you a biscuit too.

Doesn’t mean you’ll get a better

haircut, does it.

But, if you went to technically

the best hairdresser

in town but they simply sat

you in the chair, had a quick

chat, did the cut and sent you

on your way, would you go

back?

Understanding your customers

and getting to know

what they will be most fussy

about is an important part of

defining your brand story.

Being clear about what matters

to them, and what fits

with the overall philosophies

of your business, will help

you prioritise both your offer

and how you market it.

Bargain brands are called

‘no frills’ for this very reason,

I suspect. By showing us a

basic product or service, they

are keeping our expectations

in check. But come at us with

a high-end brand approach

and big promises, we’ll

expect you to live up to them.

Responsiveness is something

I’ve recently become

much clearer on myself. I’m

so used to an environment

where the expectation was

of pretty much an immediate

response. But I’ve finally

come to realise that it’s

communication about when

the response will be that’s

important. Instead of leaping

to offer the promise of “I’ll

come back to you by the end

TELLING YOUR STORY

> BY VICKI JONES

Vicki Jones is director of Dugmore Jones, Hamilton-based brand

management consultancy. Email vicki@dugmorejones.co.nz

of the week”, I’m now training

myself, at long last, to

have a proper conversation

about timing.

In my world, I’m fortunate

that most clients aren’t

concerned about how high I

can jump for them, they just

want me to be able to jump

when it matters. Whether it is

responsiveness, communication,

quality of product or service,

price or even values and

beliefs, the key is to understand

the sore points for your

particular audience. Getting

that right could not only turn

them from fussy to forgiving,

but to be advocates for your

brand forever.

Waikato

AgriBusiness News

Book your

spot in

our next

issue

Fieldays

a focus for

international

trade

Delegations from nearly 20 countries are

coming to June’s National Agricultural

Fieldays as the Southern Hemisphere’s

largest agricultural event underlines its

reputation as an essential tool in the

country’s trade relationships.

T

By GEOFF TAYLOR

he 49th Fieldays at

Mystery Creek is gearing

up to be another

massive event following on

from last year when despite

very tough economic conditions

for dairying, Fieldays

attracted its second highest

attendance ever.

Many of the 1100 exhibitors

have begun the often significant

job of erecting sites and

New Zealand National Fieldays

Society chief executive Peter

Nation says staff have inducted

more than 7000 tradespeople

to work on the 114 hectare

property. Meanwhile volunteer

numbers have been expanded

this year to nearly 300 for the

June 14 event.

Fieldays’ theme this year

is “Leading Change” and one

AgriBusiness News

Waikato

M A Y 2 0 1 7 W W W . W B N . C O . N Z F A C E B O O K . C O M / W A I K AT O B U S I N E S S N E W S

vital element of that is leveraging

off Fieldays’ international

United Kingdom delegation

which has extra significance

in the post-Brexit era, while

the many other delegations

include teams from Mexican

and Vietnam.

“Meanwhile China is bringing

out two or three large trade

missions and the Koreans are

putting two entries into the

Innovation Centre.”

“Trade missions are looking

at either distribution in or distribution

out so the platform of

Fieldays enables willing buyers

and sellers to come together

and form trade relationships.

That is why we have the

International Business Centre.”

The theme “Leading

Change” relates to Fieldays’

two underling goals which are

growing agriculture through

innovation, internationalisation

and education and bringing

town and country closer

together.

representation, says Peter.

“We have nearly 20 countries

coming to exhibit or

visit.”

and education are represented

at the event through the

Call the team

on 07 838 1333 or email

info@wbn.co.nz

Peter Nation.


PR AND COMMUNICATIONS

> BY HEATHER CLAYCOMB

Heather Claycomb is director of HMC Communications, a

Hamilton-based, award-winning public relations agencys.

Let’s get personal

If you want to make one high-impact change this year in the

way you present your organisation, I want to challenge you to

‘get personal.’

While I haven’t done

comprehensive

formal research,

I’ve certainly noticed a general

shift in the type of social

media posts, media stories and

general conversations that are

currently exciting and engaging

people. And that shift is all

about personal, real, emotive

stories.

During times of stress and

upheaval, like we’ve been

through this past year, people

often seek out stories, visual

and auditory content that comforts,

inspires and whisks them

away from the constant negativity

happening around them.

Bringing a bit of

extra personability – and

personality - to your communications

will help increase your

organisation’s reach, create

positive word-of-mouth, gain

fans and generally get those

who matter most talking about

and enjoying their interactions

with you.

So, how can you do this?

Here are five simple ways:

Put your team to work

People want to interact with

other people not a stale, formal

corporate brand. So, why

not put your staff to work? Of

course, you’ll need to do a

bit of training on presentation

style, key messages and general

dos and don’ts but don’t

let the logistics of this hold you

back.

Get your staff to front

videos for social media that

explain a new project or launch

a new product . . . or maybe

use their voices to give life

to a stale, old message. For

instance, how about getting

staff to front safety videos as

part of your health and safety

programme?

You could also broaden the

number of team members who

can speak to media in their

areas of expertise.

What a great way to

demonstrate the depth of your

organisation when there is

more than one leader fronting

stories and issues.

Nix the stock photos

Now, there are certainly times

when stock photos, particularly

for social media posts,

are your only option.

But as much as you possibly

can, use real people in

your photos.

Do a photo shoot with your

staff several times a year,

getting them interacting with

customers and each other in

natural situations. You’ll be

surprised how much use you’ll

get out of one photo shoot.

Another idea is to enlist

customers, partners, suppliers

and others your organisation

regularly interacts with for a

photo shoot.

Having real people in your

visual assets creates a genuine

authenticity that will resonate

with your audience.

Let’s hear your voice

Writing a story from a personal

perspective and using

some team or customer photography

alongside it is great,

but what’s even better is hearing

voices. This might sound

really simplistic but it’s true:

hearing a voice in a video or

audio file can stop people

in their tracks. The content

of what you are saying, of

course, is incredibly important

- you can’t say any old

thing.

But my point is, don’t

always rely on the written

word.

Figure out innovative ways

to bring those words off the

paper and to life through your

people, your customers and

others.

Get out and about

Getting personal requires

being in-person. If your

organisation’s communications

approach has primarily

involved channels such as

social media, publications,

media stories, e-newsletters

and the like then why not consider

channels that get you

out from behind the desk and

talking with those who matter

to your business?

Find ways to add a new

event or two to your communications

approach this year.

Or simply participate in an

event that’s already happening,

for example a conference,

farmer field day or industry

networking event.

If you are a national organisation,

consider a ‘roadshow’

type event that gets you in

front of customers or key

stakeholders in smaller groups

where you can have great discussions

and build relationships.

Pressing the flesh will

reap enormous benefits.

Forget the polish

I’ve seen many organisations

become paralysed by

the worry of having to be too

perfect. While there are certainly

benefits to producing a

beautiful corporate video, for

instance, much of the time an

iPhone selfie edited on some

free video software can resonate

even more with your

audience.

Of course, you need professional

standards, but my

point is don’t analyse the creative

to death. Authentic personability

means there will be

a few rough edges, but we are

all used to that and will give a

bit of leeway.

Reviewing the structure of your business

in the new year

THE BUSINESS EDGE

> BY BRENDA WILLIAMSON

Brenda Williamson runs business advisory service

Brenda Williamson and Associates www.bwa.net.nz

The structure of a business

is key; everything

radiates out from

there. As businesses grow

over time, it’s common for

the structure to become out

of date and lack relevance to

changing needs.

As you return from your

summer holidays, it is a good

opportunity to set your goals

for the year, set your operational

and capital budgets and

take the time to review the

structure.

Ask yourself “is your

business structure still fit for

purpose?”.

As your business grows

and your team expands, you

may decide to introduce extra

levels into the organisational

structure.

The more autonomous

your team is, the flatter the

structure can be.

Try and keep the structure

clean and uncluttered,

wherever possible.

Try to avoid situations

where staff are reporting to

two people; this can lead to

conflict, confusion and a lack

of accountability.

If you don’t already have

an organisational chart, it is

simply a diagram showing

each position, the name of

the team member currently

holding the position and the

reporting lines throughout the

business.

Keep your organisational

chart up to date - it might

seem insignificant to you

as a business owner, but it’s

important that everyone has

a sense of belonging to the

team and an understanding

of where they fit into the

business, including who they

report to and the staff they are

responsible for.

There is a tendency for

small businesses in New Zealand

to build a role around a

person. Let’s just say a particular

person has a unique

skill set and it is in your

interests to utilise that person

to your advantage.

You create a role that

is specific to that person.

Examples would be:

• An engineer who has studied

law

• A builder who has previously

worked as a welder/

fabricator

• An IT expert who has

run their own recruitment

business

• An HR expert who had

years of experience working

in banks

• A warehouse employee

who also has experience

in designing electronic

inventory systems

• A chef who just happens

to have a marketing degree

Their unique skill set and

experience will provide you

with benefits but also creates

a level of risk within your

business.

You need to acknowledge

that when that person

leaves you may end up with

an unusual type of position to

recruit to.

There is no easy way

around this, especially for a

small business where a jackof-all-trades

approach is very

handy.

Also, Kiwis, more than

anyone, are happy to work

‘outside the box’.

By reviewing the structure

and roles within your business,

at least on an annual

basis, this allows you to

identify risk around these

types of roles.

You may flag them and

decide to split or modify

when the opportunity rises,

creating roles that are more

generic and easier to recruit

to. Try to develop a strategy

around what you’ll do when

a “unique” team member

leaves. You may be able to:

• Recruit to the key portion

of the role

• Move part of the role onto

another team member

• Contract out part of

the role (which may

be smaller or specialised

– for instance, IT or

marketing).

If you do change the structure

of your business post-holiday,

be sure to communicate

this to your team. Of course,

you will know what you are

doing but let the team know

what your intentions are!


WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

19

Fifty years at Tompkins Wake

It was 1970 and Tompkins Wake was

looking to recruit school leavers.

Sixteen-year-old Jenny

Gilmore had been thinking

about training to be a

teacher but the cost of moving

away from Hamilton to study

was difficult. So a nervous

Jenny turned up at Tompkins

Wake for an interview, in her

Hamilton Girls’ High uniform

and her school bag in hand.

“I knew that if I got a

job, then I could earn money

straight away. I thought working

in a legal office would pay

reasonably and the rest I guess

you could say is history,” says

Gilmore.

In November last year,

Gilmore celebrated 50 years

of continuous service with the

firm.

“I never thought I’d be here

this long,” she laughs. “But

I’ve had so many opportunities

along the way. And that’s the

key I think – take those opportunities

and run with them,

even if you feel like you might

be a bit out of your comfort

zone.”

Tompkins Wake has always

prided itself on providing

opportunities for staff to progress

and learn, which is something

Gilmore embraced from

the beginning.

She started in the accounts

department and went on to

become a legal secretary.

“When a staff member

moved to Auckland a legal

executive role was available. I

remember I was given the role

for showing aptitude and doing

things right. It was, and still is,

Call the professionals

If you thought hiring a

professional was expensive,

try hiring an amateur

first. So many people

end up calling in a professional

after an amateur has

failed to do the job.

In Information Technology

(IT) that can be an

extremely expensive lesson.

This is why IT Professionals

NZ offers Chartered

IT Professional NZ

(CITPNZ) accreditation,

the international gold standard

accreditation for senior

IT professionals helping

Kiwi IT professionals show

that they can achieve great

results in IT.

“Chartered IT Professional

NZ and Certified

Technologist certifications

are only awarded to those

who have proven they have

the experience, education

and - just as importantly -

ethics to be able to give solid

advice and get real results in

digital tech,” said IT Professionals

New Zealand chief

executive Paul Matthews.

a fantastic role.”

As part of her promotion,

Gilmore studied part-time

for three years at what was

then Waikato Polytechnic to

qualify as a legal executive in

the late 1970s. She later completed

a Waikato University

Diploma for Legal Executives

in early 2000.

“I was working full-time,

but throughout the time I studied

I had the full support of the

team at Tompkins Wake.”

When Gilmore started,

legal executives only worked

in conveyancing so that’s

where she has specialised.

Today, legal executives work

in other areas such as estates,

trusts and litigation. But it’s

working with property clients

that makes Jenny light up.

“I love dealing with first

home buyers… the excitement

and nervousness in them. It’s

lovely being able to guide

them, advise them on little

things they need to know

along the way.

“It is rewarding acting for

all clients and particularly

when I am now acting for a

fourth generation in the one

family.”

She remembers assisting

first home buyers in Huntly.

“We set up a little office

there when Coal Corporation

was selling off their miners’

homes. I remember working

with the people buying them

and today I am still acting

for some of those first home

buyers and their children.

TECH TALK

> BY DAVID HALLETT

David Hallett is a co-founder and director of Hamilton software

specialist Company-X.

“One of the core advantages

of hiring someone with

Chartered IT Professional

NZ status is that they're the

real deal. They've been independently

assessed by the

professional body of the digital

tech industry.

“The CITPNZ assessment

isn't just about whether you

know something in theory or

can pass a test. It's an assessment

of whether you can get

things done. It looks at outcomes

achieved, skills and

knowledge,” Matthews said.

“The CITPNZ assessment

is completed by both an expert

assessor and a proven subject

expert in the area of tech the

applicant is working in. It's no

good just being able to talk a

good game. You have to know

your stuff to get through.

“Those with CITPNZ are

proven professionals. They

know their stuff and are

accountable for what they

do. They have the entire profession

backing them up and

commit to staying current and

abiding by a Code of Ethics.”

It’s really special.”

As well as enjoying working

with long-term clients, she

has also relished the opportunity

to sit on the NZ Institute

of Legal Executives National

Council with the aim of fur-

Jenny Gilmore says she has had

many opportunities along the way.

Those with CITPNZ

are proven,

professionals. They

know their stuff and

are accountable for

what they do.

Big tech companies like

Amazon, Google and Microsoft

also offer a range of

accreditations, awards and

certificates, to ensure those

delivering their products and

services are doing so to the

highest standard.

Software developers can

become an Amazon Web Services

Hero, a Google Cloud

Certified Fellow, and a Microsoft

Most Valued Professional.

The Microsoft Most Valuable

Professional Award, for

example, recognises exceptional

community leadership

in technology experts.

These experts are on the

“bleeding edge” with deep

knowledge of Microsoft products

and services and passionately

share their knowledge

with the international

technology community.

thering the roles and recognition

of Legal Executives.

Gilmore was an independent

member of the council for 12

years, and for four and a half of

those, she was president.

Her advice to new graduates

or young people starting

a new job is simple: “Learn

as much as you can, accept

the responsibility you are

given, and seek support and

advice from colleagues as

much as possible.”

Company-X is always on

the lookout for people with

such credentials, as we only

want to employ the brightest

and the best in all technology

stacks.

Company-X is adept in all

technology stacks, including

Microsoft, earning us Microsoft

Gold Partner status.

Waikato confident

Confidence in the Waikato

region posted a healthy lift

over the December quarter.

The 14-point lift also took

the region into positive

territory, with a net 6 percent

of households now feeling

optimistic about the future.

“A number of factors may

have contributed to the lift.

The region’s agricultural

sectors have continued their

solid performance, highlighted

by Fonterra’s lift in its milk price

forecast in early December.

The region’s retailers and

accommodation providers

will have also benefitted

from returning Aucklanders

after that region’s lockdown

restrictions were eased,”

said Westpac Senior Agri

Economist Nathan Penny.

“Finally, the housing market

has surged and we anticipate

that this will continue to boost

the region’s economic fortunes

in the new year.” The survey

was conducted over the

period December 1-12.

Hamilton running hot

Asking prices for Hamilton real

estate have doubled in the past

decade, making it one of the

top three performing districts

in New Zealand. Data from

the last decade shows that

average asking prices have

increased in almost every New

Zealand district between 2011

and 2020. Leading the way is

Bay of Plenty mill-town district

Kawerau, where the average

asking price has increased 132

percent. Hamilton’s rose 102

percent, just behind Central

Hawke’s Bay with 108 percent.

The data from realestate.

co.nz shows Hamilton City’s

average asking price rose from

$378,470 in 2011 to $763,446

in 2020. Also showing strong

growth were South Waikato

and Otorohanga, where

average asking prices have

increased by 87 percent and

84 percent respectively

since 2011.

Events fund

approved

The four regions of the

Thermal Explorer Highway

collective including Waikato,

Rotorua, Taupō and Ruapehu

has been approved $3.75

million for regional events by

Tourism Minister Stuart Nash.

The local Regional Tourism

Organisations (RTOs) from

Waikato, Rotorua, Taupō and

Ruapehu, alongside their

council partners, have worked

together on developing a

collaborative regional events

investment plan for the next

two to three years to drive

additional domestic visits.

It was the first investment

from the $50 million Regional

Events Fund to stimulate

domestic tourism and travel

between regions through

holding events. Hamilton

& Waikato Tourism Chief

Executive Jason Dawson says

that hosting events are crucial

to lead the economic and

social recovery of the Waikato

region. “Tourism New Zealand

research indicates that up to

one-third of domestic travel

is primarily driven by people

looking to participate in events.

We see the collaboration

between Waikato, Rotorua,

Taupō and Ruapehu will lead

to a strong and compelling

event proposition for our four

regions.”


20 WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

CHILD FOCUS

75 years of top-quality

preschool education

If you’re looking for top quality preschool education in the

Waikato, keep an eye out for the kiwi with the backpack and the

green hat – it’s a sign you’ve found one of the services of Waikato

Kindergarten Association.

At Kip McGrath, our focus is to help your

child reach their full potential

We make learning relevant and engaging which boosts

self-confidence and success in class. Students can be taught in centre

or online face to face at home. Give your child a boost today.

CENTRE • PHONE NUMBER

Hamilton East - 29 Address Hukanui Road, Fairfield,

Hamilton kipmcgrath.co.nz/centre

3214 | 07 853 5013

Hamilton West - 89 Rimu Street, Maeroa,

Hamilton 3200 | 07 848 2262

205173AB

Chalking up an impressive

milestone in 2021

— 75 years of providing

early childhood education

in the Waikato — the

Association offers kindergartens,

centres and homebased

education services to best

Transition to school

is an important

part of the early

education journey,

and our Cool 4

School programme

for four-year-olds

aims to give children

the assurance that

they will be a happy

and successful

learner when they

start school.

suit the needs of growing

Kiwis and their families.

With services available

in Hamilton, Cambridge,

Raglan, Ngāruawāhia and Te

Kōwhai, there really is one

near you, and having been

part of the community since

1946, we’ve worked hard to

provide safe and stimulating

environments, and attract

passionate, qualified staff.

From the large outdoor

spaces, often incorporating

water play, bike tracks

and plenty of real grass, to

the well-resourced indoor

rooms, the strapline ‘Where

Children Learn’ isn’t an idle

boast, but something strongly

adhered to, with learning

based on Te Whāriki, the

New Zealand Early Childhood

Curriculum.

Transition to school is an

important part of the early

education journey, and

our Cool 4 School programme

for four-year-olds

aims to give children the

assurance that they will

be a happy and successful

learner when they start

school.

Many of our services

have close connections with

their nearby primary schools

to aid in making the step to

school a smooth one.

Enviroschools is another

programme which has been

adopted by our kindergartens

and centres since it was first

offered to the early childhood

section and brings a strong

connection to environmental

sustainability to all areas of

education.

There is so much more

being offered by Waikato

Kindergarten Association

services, we invite you to

visit our website to find out

more; more recently several

of our kindergartens have

extended their hours to offer

more flexibility to families

by being open 8am-5pm;

while five of our kindergartens

have become part of the

KidsCan Early Childhood

Programme, offering free

food, shoes, socks and raincoats

to children.

Find out more at

https://kindergarten.org.nz

- Supplied copy


WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

21


22 WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

New Zealand transport sector innovation

leads the world

A world-leading innovation has emerged from a roading sector

project standardising the performance of New Zealand roads.

Believed to be a world

first, a national roading

database has been

created for an online measuring

tool.

The One Network Road

Classification Performance

Measures Reporting Tool,

into which all New Zealand’s

road controlling authorities

have imported data, was

built for the Road Efficiency

Group (REG) by Hamilton

software specialist Company-X.

REG is a collaboration

between Local Government

New Zealand (LGNZ), Waka

Kotahi NZ Transport Agency

and 68 road controlling

authorities including the

Department of Conservation

and city and district councils.

REG enables road controlling

authorities across

New Zealand to monitor and

measure roads with the same

tools and standards.

Infrastructure asset management

specialist Theuns

Henning of the University

of Auckland said the One

Network Road Classification

Performance Measures

Reporting Tool (ONRC

PMRT) and subsequent creation

of a national roading

database was a world first.

“New Zealand is in a much

better position and has a

much clearer appreciation of

where we stand with regards

to their network performance

from a national perspective,”

Henning said.

“Now people can see how

they perform and how their

costs are doing compared to

their peers, which is a significant

step forward from

the central funding perspective.

So, it's much clearer and

more transparent.”

Waka Kotahi Director of

Regional Relationships Jim

Harland described the ONRC

PMRT as an essential system,

streamlining previous issues

with accessing consistent

data.

The beauty of the PMRT is

its consistency.

“We have used PMRT

quite religiously over the

last three or four years. Our

assurance and audit teams

use the tool a lot for our audit

work, and the benefit is that it

provides consistent reporting

data for all, because everyone

puts their data into the tool.”

Waipā District Council

service delivery group manager

and former REG Evidence

and Outcomes Group

chair Dawn Inglis said the

PMRT was a great step forward.

The ability for road controlling

authorities to compare

their networks to their

peers, the region and the

nation was fantastic, Inglis

said.

“We are getting better

understanding of our safety

outcomes in our networks,”

Inglis said.

“That classification

enables us to understand our

networks on a much richer

basis when we've got the data

broken down to that level of

granularity. It was an ‘aha’

moment for me and a lot of

the people in the sector.”

REG Evidence and Outcomes

group member and

Queenstown Lakes District

Council transport asset manager

Alison Tomlinson said

the reporting tool and its dataset

had changed the thinking

around asset management.

“The delivery of the

ONRC PMRT has given asset

managers a tangible tool,

enabling them to challenge

and ask questions about their

networks,” Tomlinson said.

“It's about understanding

how we as a council look

compared to our peers.”

The transparency the tool

provides enables road controlling

authorities to learn

from each other and improve

their roading network and

ultimately the experience for

road users.

“The REG programme and

the tools developed has been

really good at helping us connect

with our peers,” Tomlinson

added.

“It's been quite empowering

for the local authorities.”

In his role as REG Programme

Manager, Andrew

McKillop worked closely

with Hamilton software specialist

Company-X in the

Manager Partnership Programmes

at Waka Kotahi Andrew McKillop.

development of the tool.

Investment advisor teams

soon got involved because

they could see the opportunity

to make the national

roading network more efficient.

“Having the essential

information on hand to

exchange and learn from

other people – that is where

the value is.”

Chair of REG Jim Harland

said the PMRT was a significant

piece of work that had

brought clarity to the national

roading sector.

“There's that old adage

about what gets measured

gets done,” Harland said.

“In doing this work, we

are clear on performance

around different components

in the network, we are clear

on the value for money on the

investment that goes in, and

we have also got an understanding

of how competent

the sector is to develop the

skills of their people.”

Former Local Government

New Zealand chief executive

and REG board member

Malcolm Alexander said the

tool came out of a transport

sector-wide desire to improve

operations and maintenance

across the national network.

The tool, Alexander said,

helped Waka Kotahi and

city and district councils

understand the nature of

seal on their roads, the quality

of materials used, where

there was a bumpy ride, and

other metrics.

“There's a whole swag of

metrics,” Alexander said.

“We’ve got six complete

years of data in the tool and

that's brilliant. The mere fact

that we would even do this

was seen to be extraordinarily

impossible. Yet here we are.”

Alexander said the REG

projects had empowered

the sector to be inventive

and find new ways of doing

things.

A large team of people had

input into the development of

the ONRC PMRT, refining

requirements and testing it

to ensure it met the needs of

users.

“People are putting a lot of

their own time into this project,

and I've seen that around

the leadership group.”

Approachability key

for emerging leader

In Mitre 10 Mega Ruakura

there is a saying for when

you need to celebrate a personal

achievement. It’s called

‘doing a Jess’ and involves

Jessic Fearnley

shouting out an enthusiastic

yes and giving yourself a

resounding high-five. It is this

fun, self-confident and infectiously

positive attitude that

exemplifies Jessica Fearnley’s

approach to business and leadership

and is a key reason she

was crowned the Emerging

Leader at the 2020 Westpac

Waikato Business Awards.

Fearnley started in the

human resources department

at Mitre 10 in 2007, fresh

from studying a double degree

at Victoria University. She

accredits Mitre 10’s willingness

to let her explore new

departments and areas as a

core contributor to her growth

as a leader.

“Mitre 10 has given me a

massive amount of opportunities.

I started in their payroll/

HR department but since then

have spent time in multiple

departments. They’ve given

me the opportunity to show

my skillset and the chance to

try new things and continuously

do that. They’ve allowed

me to add new portfolios to

my responsibilities and have

supported me along the way.”

She says winning the award

means a lot. “It’s one of those

things that are quite hard to

put yourself into the fold. It

requires a little bit of personal

encouragement but I think

even if you don’t come away

a winner doing the process is

a massive accomplishment

in itself. To then have all the

hard work you’ve been doing

recognised by your peers and

everyone else in the industry

was an awesome feeling and I

am really proud of what I have

achieved.”

She also paid tribute to

mentors, including CEO Clifford

Buchler as well as Lynne

and Terry Wilson, Myles

Witcher and Gary Cornwall.

Fearnley says she tries to

be an approachable leader,

someone who can have a

laugh and a joke and be able

to connect to people from all

levels of the business. “I don’t

believe anyone in the team is

more important than anyone

else, no matter their position

in business. It is so important

to treat every employee as

an individual and not a number

in order to build a culture

that encourages teamwork and

communication.”

From a business

perspective I learnt

how important it is to

stay agile and flexible

because we really

don’t know what

tomorrow will bring.

2020 was certainly a year

of challenges and opportunitie.

Navigating a business

landscape in a world altered

by strict regulations and decimated

supply chains taught her

invaluable lessons.

“As a leader, Covid-19

really helped me see that in

times of crisis it’s really about

the bigger picture. It showed

me that it’s not just about the

business, but it’s about the

people, about what’s happening

with their families and in

their world. It showed me that

empathetic leadership is something

that is really needed right

now and it is vital to prove to

your team that you care about

them on a personal level.

“From a business perspective

I learnt how important it

is to stay agile and flexible

because we really don’t know

what tomorrow will bring. On

a more personal level, rediscovering

the importance of

the simple things like playing

cards with the kids for hours

was really rewarding and

reminding me sometimes that

a simple life is just as good as

a busy life.”

Fearnley encourages

younger leaders to find people

they can trust and whose experiences

they can draw from.

“It’s really important to

find your person, a mentor that

you can bounce ideas off and

ask for advice. You are not

expected to know everything

straight away and you are

allowed to ask for help from

those who have done it before.

Also surround yourself with a

network of people with different

backgrounds and experiences.

Being able to tap into a

wide range of perspectives and

ideas is incredibly helpful in

order to approach problems in

a different light.”


WAIKATO BUSINESS NEWS January/February 2021

23

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ZERO FIRE (L-R) - Fire Manager - Steven Duffy, Director - Travis Pocock & BOP Regional Manager - Scott Taylor

Zero Fire recently moved into their new

Hamilton premises, a purpose-built office

and workshop architecturally designed with

plenty of room for future expansion.

After outgrowing their start-up premises,

creating a space for the team was an

important step in the growth of Zero Fire,

bringing the team together, enhancing

collaboration and customer experience was a

key objective.

Having worked with Fosters on a number of

projects Director of Zero Fire Travis Pocock

knew he could rely on Fosters to deliver a

high quality build, on time, on budget.

Travis says “as a first-time commercial build,

seeing the final product come to life is more

rewarding than I could have imagined, and

the process was seamless.

I put that down to the excellent preparation

and communication between Foster’s and

the architects. There were no grey areas and

no delays. Where there was a query, it was

quickly resolved.”

Travis concludes that from his experience

as both subcontractor and client, Foster’s

inclusive approach is one of the key reasons

for their success.

“Everyone on a Foster’s project is treated

equally and with respect, which is important

to Zero Fire as it is one of our company

values. Everyone knows exactly what’s

expected of them and they’re valued for their

contribution. That’s how Foster achieves the

quality product they’re renowned for.”

FOSTERS.CO.NZ . 07 849 3849

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