Read some of our fabulous stories from the Morgo community.
SIR RAY AVERY
“There’s not one person in this room that’s as clever as all of us put together,” Sir Ray Avery recently told a classroom full of 12 year old students. His cooperative approach has seen him collaborate with scientists and engineers around the world to refine his charity’s growing stable of life-saving inventions.
Datacom’s estimated revenue for 2014 is $880 million, making it a mammoth amongst New Zealand’s technology companies. Group CEO, Jonathan Ladd, explains that a key to the company’s success has been the small group of stable, united shareholders.
Zero to 100 in eight seconds is certainly not remarkable if you’re talking cars. But Xero to NZ$100million in recurring revenue in eight years is quite something for a company, especially if small businesses are the target market. This is exactly what Xero has achieved in 2014.
Working at Vend HQ must be a Gen Y’s waking dream. The office is a large open plan affair that features a delicious-smelling café coffee machine, a ping pong table, raised work benches, low-ball desks, couches, and a hotchpotch of casually dressed 20-somethings chatting in small groups or working independently on laptops. “Forty-somethings,” says CEO Vaughan Rowsell, “are a very exclusive club here.”
Wireless power company PowerbyProxi is on a mission: to unplug the last cable in your home and workplace.
It may be one of the oldest ‘new’ technologies around; Tesla first demonstrated wireless energy transmission more than 120 years ago.
But finally, it seems, wireless power’s time has come.
WYNYARD GROUP – CRIME BUSTERS
Crime fighters harnessing the power of complex algorithms to halt human trafficking or crack down on corruption might sound like the stuff of a primetime TV show.
But arming government agencies and companies around the world with high-tech tools to fight threats, crime and corruption is very much a reality for Kiwi firm Wynyard Group.
CLAUDIA BATTEN – THE SQUIGGLY LINE
Claudia Batten reckons there are a couple of paths you can take in life: the straight or the squiggly.
She’s followed the latter, full of unexpected twists, turns and downright uncomfortable moments. But taking the road less travelled has led the technology entrepreneur to some truly exceptional places.
GOWER SMITH – SUPER SHOPPER
Serial entrepreneur Gower Smith has learnt a bundle in a career that has spanned starting five companies. But his latest venture, ZoomSystems, combines much of what he’s learnt into one big disruptive idea.
San Francisco-based ZoomSystems makes ZoomShops — self-service stores that completely automate the retail process, from product manufacturer to consumer. Last year a billion people walked past ZoomShops, which collectively sold $100 million worth of product.
DR MARK SAGAR – SCREEN LIFE
When Dr Mark Sagar came to Morgo in 2012, he brought an unusual companion — a baby.
But this was no ordinary offspring.
Although it could cry, laugh and interact with those around it, the ‘baby’ was actually computer generated and borne out of the cutting-edge Laboratory for Animate technologies, based at Auckland University’s Bioengineering Institute.
SLI SYSTEMS – SEARCHING AND FINDING
Say you’re after a new laptop. So, you type ‘laptop’ into the product search field on the website of a big-box gadget retailer.
Hit enter and your search brings up a laptop charger, a laptop bag, a laptop battery … everything, it seems, except an actual laptop. It all leads to, well, a big grrr…
IKEGPS – MEASURING UP
Here’s a bit of trivia: did you know there are 160 million power poles in the US?
That’s a lot of poles – especially when you consider every one of them needs to be checked and measured every year, and the incumbent technology to do that largely involves a bloke with a stick calling out the measurements to another bloke who enters the details into a computer.
VISTA ENTERTAINMENT SOLUTIONS – MOVIE STARS
If you’re looking for the heart of the movie business, you’ll undoubtedly find it in the US.
There’s Hollywood, of course, but the US also accounts for around 45% of the world’s total box office revenue.
What might surprise you, then, is it’s actually a Kiwi company’s software increasingly running the show in the world’s biggest movie market.
ORION HEALTH – RIDING THE TSUNAMI OF CHANGE
Orion Health is something of an elder statesman in New Zealand’s IT scene. But the country’s largest software exporter is sure there’s still plenty more room to grow.
Orion Health, which celebrated its 20th birthday in 2013, has annual revenue of more than $100 million and around 760 employees in 18 offices worldwide.
PIKPOK – BIG GAME HUNTERS
You might not think being hounded by zombies across an apocalyptic landscape would appeal to many.
Turns out more than 10 million are enjoying the gruesome experience — thanks to Wellington game developer PikPok.
THE FUTURE OF 3D PRINTING – ROSS STEVENS
If you’ve ever broken a limb you’ll be all too familiar with the itchy, grubby, smelly, bulky hassle of being stuck in a cast.
The future, however, could hold something quite different: a biometrically designed, lightweight, ventilated, washable cast, that’s recyclable and thin enough to wear under a shirt sleeve — oh, and looks pretty damn cool, too.
THE MATHEMATICS OF WAR – SEAN GOURLEY
On the surface, war seems defined by chaos and every conflict motivated by its own complex interplay of factors ranging from the political to the religious, the cultural to the economic. But what if you could use data and mathematics to delve beneath the chaotic surface? Kiwi Sean Gourley, a Rhodes Scholar studying physics at Oxford University, was determined to look at war in this new way — and to see if there were underlying patterns to conflict that could offer new insights.
ALTITUDE AEROSPACE INTERIORS
Keep looking skywards and you’ll notice things getting increasingly busy. Over the next 20 years the number of big jets flying the world’s skies is set to double, from 20,000 to 40,000. And during that time around 18,000 of the current 20,000 planes, will also be replaced with niftier, more fuel-efficient models. Globally, however, there’s a shortage of the aerospace design engineers needed to make it all happen, and as a group they’re getting older – 58% of them are currently aged over 50.
SURGERY FROM THE STONEAGE TO IT’S ROBOTIC FUTURE – CATHERINE MOHR
The history of surgical procedures stretches back millennia. Evidence of trepanation — a surgical intervention where a hole is bored into the skull — has been found among Stone Age remains, many with signs of healing that showed some patients lived beyond the experience.
FISHER & PAYKEL HEALTHCARE
In the 1960s Fisher & Paykel’s legendary founders, Sir Woolf Fisher and Maurice Paykel, were on the lookout to develop new technology and diversify from their business manufacturing home appliances, mainly under licence to overseas companies.
A physician at Auckland Hospital had noticed the drying and damaging effects new portable ventilator technology could have on patients’ lungs.