INSPIRED BY KIWI INNOVATION
Invenco- revolutionizing self-service payment globally, one of the top ten NZ technology companies to watch
Inspirational self-service payments company, Invenco, is taking on the world and winning.
Invenco is experiencing 300% growth from its Auckland North base, creating dozens of skilled jobs to develop its hardware, firmware, software and cloud based products.
Founded in 2009 by Sir Peter Maire and a team of entrepreneurs, Invenco has rapidly secured its place as a leading provider of self-service outdoor payment terminals (OPTs). Having dominated 98% of the New Zealand fuel retail market it has expanded across South East Asia, the UK, Middle East and most recently the USA.
Invenco enjoys partnerships with some of the biggest players in the global fuel retail market including NCR Corporation, Diebold Nixdorf, Tatsuno and Petrotec and as it sells under its partners’ brands outside of New Zealand, millions of people use Invenco technology every day without ever knowing it.
What makes Invenco successful?
Invenco produces incredibly, technically complex products that are extremely difficult to execute, to the point where nearly half the world’s major OPT manufacturers have opted to move to Invenco product rather than continue to build their own.
The layers of certification and complex security around managing self-service payments, particularly in unattended environments, is extensive; with tens of thousands of tests to attain just one level of certification. This complexity is significantly multiplied when you add handling loyalty and fleet cards plus the safety requirements for operating electronics on a petrol forecourt.
Invenco has been able to be disruptive in owning and developing the technology from the ground up. Because it produces every nut, bolt and chip it can manage all of those costs and ensure seamless integration. And in building the product on an open platform it can support the widest possible range of content and applications.
It has also fueled some world leading innovation including the first twelve-inch touch screen – not only the world’s largest but it has the highest certification of any OPT on the market. This strongly positions Invenco and its partners to capitalize on a significant regulatory change in the USA forcing all one million pumps with OPTs to change to chip-card enabled terminals by November 2020.
Invenco is looking to seize a significant share of this opportunity while revolutionizing the pay-at-the-pump experience for the US market. It’s a great export success story from a North Shore company that has largely flown under the radar – something that’s becoming increasingly difficult as it continues to expand exponentially to meet growing global demand.
For more stories about Kiwi innovators click here. For more information about Invenco click here.
Booktrack's CEO Paul Cameron with members of the team at their Takapuna office.
Booktrack is an AI company that creates movie-style soundtracks for Audiobooks.
Based in Takapuna on the North Shore, Booktrack began in 2007 when Paul Cameron, and his co-founder and brother Mark, noticed that people all around the world commuting on buses, trains, ferries and aero planes, would get out their headphones and listen to music while they read a paper book. They thought that this was a strange behavior, and wondered why we would read a book and listen to music that has nothing to do with the story? Paul and his brother then started to prototype, test and patent designs that would synchronize music to text & speech so that you would hear the right music matched in mood/emotion to the right part of the story. People loved it!
Today, Booktrack has evolved to use scalable artificial intelligence (AI) technology to automatically create movie-style soundtracks for audiobooks. There has been an evolution with new mobile devices and digital delivery, but the audiobook listening experience is the same as the 1970’s. The current audiobook experience is still a plain narration with no background music, ambient audio, or sound effects. Imagine if we still watched silent movies today! Audiobooks have not evolved to include soundtracks because soundtrack creation is expensive and cost prohibitive, it can cost up to $40,000 per title.
Booktrack solves this with a proprietary AI engine that generates unique soundtracks based on the mood and emotion of the story, which can then be customized by Booktrack’s tools and production capability to create a cost effective premium soundtrack. This production methodology is >50x more efficient, 10x faster than current competition and introduces new revenue streams for publishers and distributors.
Booktrack’s solution generates a new and totally immersive augmented reality listening experience by delivering a soundtrack while listening to Audiobooks; equivalent to the introduction of sound transforming the experience of film forever.
For more stories about Kiwi innovators click here. For more information about Booktrack click here.
Digital disruption is not just a buzz term. It’s a reality in the travel and hospitality industry today.
Look at Airbnb. It has changed the way we book accommodation, giving power to the customer who can book into anyone’s spare room – literally! For accommodation providers, this spells a need to ramp up online marketing efforts.
There is a Kiwi company that is making it easy for operators to do this – STAAH.
STAAH opens up an accommodation provider’s inventory (or rooms) to more than 200 online channels. As hospitality businesses world over strive to keep multiple rooms occupied, isolated listings on a few online travel agency (OTA) sites (i.e. booking.com) is simply not enough. They need the power of a STAAH channel manager to be seen and booked.
A dynamic, cloud-based platform, the STAAH channel manager allows accommodation providers to make updates easily and in real time across multiple OTAs, reaching millions of potential guests with very little effort. Following a user-first approach to technology, clients who use STAAH products love them for its ease-of-use. You don’t have to be a geek to master it!
STAAH’s online distribution marketing repertoire doesn’t end there. Included in its product suite is a website booking engine, gift voucher management system and an online reputation management tool. Together, or used in parts, each of these are designed to enable properties to unleash their online potential.
STAAH has turned digital disruption into an opportunity to scale its business. Its agile approach to technology development with an objective of adding value has made its products invaluable for accommodation providers of all sizes. In addition to its cutting-edge technology, affordability, reach and a stellar service has made it a preferred choice for many. In less than 10 years, STAAH has managed to partner with more than 4000 properties across 60+ countries, handling in excess of 700,000 room nights every month (4.5 million bookings annually!).
STAAH was recognised for developing effective and long-standing partnerships in India with NZTE’s Innovation Showcase Award in 2016. In the same year, it was also chosen as one of the finalists in the Westpac Business Innovation Awards.
For more stories about Kiwi innovators click here. For more information about STAAH click here.
Members of the Northern Arena team celebrate after winning Westpac North Supreme Business of the Year and Employer of the Year.
As kiwis, we love the water and as a nation surrounded by water, learning to swim is an essential life skill to be learned as children. Research carried out by the Griffith Institute for Educational Research and Swim Australia shows that children who have attended swimming lessons have many advantages when starting school.
“While we expected the children to show better physical development and more confidence through swimming, the children were ahead of the normal population when it came to cognitive skills, problem solving in mathematics, language and following instructions.”lead researcher Professor Robyn Jorgensen said.
Based in the Auckland North innovation district, Northern Area operates a centre for fitness and well being.. During the last 5 years Northern Area has provided over 6,000 babies in the North Shore /Rodney area with a free term of swimming lessons.. Today 21 full time and 96 part time staff members teach 4,700 students a week, with more lessons under one roof than any other swim school in Australasia. This has been possible through developing an innovative programme and teaching system involving video analysis of teaching techniques – the only swim school in Australasia to use such advanced teacher development.
Northern Arena’s mission is to help Kiwis of all ages enjoy the benefits of a healthy lifestyle. They want to see as many children as possible become competent swimmers and gain the early development benefits uncovered by the Griffith Institutes’ research. And for Kiwi adults, swimming is the perfect way to gain and maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Their vision is to produce twenty Olympian swimmers in twenty years and their highly motivated team continually improves the methodology that will make that vision possible. Outside of Auckland North, Northern Arena’s innovative swimming and teaching programmes are being used in Auckland Central, Tauranga and Hamilton.
This passion, dedication and their tight focus on their vision has seen Northern Area win 2016 ‘Best of the Best’ Auckland Westpac Business Awards, 2016 Employer of the Year, Swim School of the Year and Fitness Facility of the Year . Even the café in their Silverdale facility wins awards, most recently the Best Suburban Café, Auckland Region, in the Meadow Fresh New Zealand Cafe of the Year Awards . For more stories about Kiwi innovators click here. For more on Northern Arena click here.
Grow North articles are written by those who work closely with businesses, incubators, accelerators, academics, investors and business interest groups within the Auckland North Innovation Corridor.
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