Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Limitless Conference 2018 1/2/3 August

Thursday, July 19th, 2018

The Limitless Conference was launched in 2016, as the flagship program of the Limitless Charitable Trust. Limitless exists with a mission to equip young people to lead lives of passion and purpose, doing work that aligns with their strengths and values.
Since beginnings in 2016, we have built content in partnership with some incredible people who have expertise across a range of sectors, delivered a pilot program and three Conferences for Year 10s throughout Christchurch and Canterbury, and launched our Limitless Online Portal.
This year, we have had a focus on increasing the quality of our resources and content, to deliver our program to the highest level, and to set a strong foundation to build from for the future! As of the end of 2017 have reached 500 young people from 32 schools as of the end of 2017 – and aim to grow more, but as we grow in volume we want to deepen and increase the quality of our content.
This year’s Limitless Conference will be held on the 1st, 2nd and 3rd of August, and is the first Conference we have run with a duration of three days.
We have a number of incredible speakers from across New Zealand – leaders who inspire by the way they have connected their values and their strengths to their craft, to do great things in their work.
This year’s cohort of Year 10 students will experience a program that includes interactive activities, engaging breakout workshops, speaker sessions and more – all based around the topics of strengths, values, goal setting, social justice and wellbeing. They will be given a customized Limitless Reflection journal for use at the Conference, as well as for the application of the concepts we cover after they leave.
The Limitless Online Portal is the second added aspect of the Limitless program. The Portal has been created as a place where young people eager and curious to learn about their options and opportunities can go to find out what opportunities exist for them, in relation to their path to meaningful work. This Online Portal works in a partnership model, where local organizations across sectors can offer their opportunities to be featured for free, and young people who have taken part in Limitless Conference are connected with opportunities that are relevant to their unique strengths, values and passions – in the areas of events, volunteering, project scholarships and more.
We are so grateful to have received funding from EPIC in 2018, to improve and “level up” the Limitless Online Portal!
We are also launching a pilot Year 11 program this September, for our previous year’s alumni – to continue exploring those themes of strengths, values, goal setting, wellbeing and more – and how these apply to where they are at now.
We are incredibly excited for the future as we continue building, developing and growing Limitless!
Check out our website:

Three ways of addressing the IT ‘skills gap’ in New Zealand

Wednesday, July 18th, 2018

As we all know, recruitment in New Zealand is notoriously difficult, particularly in the technology industry. New Zealand needs to educate or import thousands more information technology workers each year if it is to close a growing skills gap in the industry, according to a government-backed report.

The Digital Skills Forum study found the ICT sector employed 120,350 people in 2016 when it created 14,000 jobs, but only 5,090 graduates entered the industry the previous year and only 5,050 visas were granted to immigrants with technology skills, it said.

To exacerbate this problem, we have historically had large numbers of talented New Zealander technology professionals moving overseas to find work (possibly because they can secure better remuneration overseas), and employers that grapple with bias, either conscious or unconscious, toward certain minority demographics. These biases can lead to excluded consideration when hiring or developing the talent pipeline based on age, sex, culture, or disabilities.

There is another way

Due to our geographical isolation, New Zealand’s business community has become used to being self-sufficient. We have smaller teams who are experts in their field and as a result are more nimble and agile. New Zealand businesses are generally not afraid to take risks and there is a strong sense of innovation in our DNA. Even mature New Zealand businesses have demonstrated their ability to pivot and make decisions much more quickly than its overseas counterparts.

As a result, New Zealand is seeing success overseas – Grow North’s “Fast Five” companies are generating more than $90 million in revenue in the North America market and has the capability to offer challenging and rewarding careers to New Zealanders. Consequently, we’re already seeing young Kiwis return to New Zealand after spending time overseas, bringing with them relevant experience and skills.

So how do technology businesses in New Zealand continue to attract talent so they can innovate and grow moving forward?

1. Bridging the skills gap

According to the World Economic Forum, many of the skills we need for the future are ever-changing – disrupted by the rapidly evolving technology market. Demand for digital skills, in particular, is on the rise from employers across New Zealand and we expect this trend to continue. However, digital skills are evolving and the pool of talent with existing experience in this area is small. So, hiring new talent based on their experience and skill-set is an outdated model that will only perpetuate the skills gap[1]. Instead businesses should look to:

2, Re-skill existing staff

Going forward, we’ll need a generation of workers who are hungry to learn and eager to keep pace with the times. Organisations should look for curious, flexible employees with the proven ability to keep learning and stay relevant in their field of expertise; people who actively pursue opportunities where their transferable skills might be applicable. Businesses will then need to invest in the appropriate learning and development to help these talented employees transfer into new roles.

3. Recruit from different demographics

It’s easy to say your organisation doesn’t discriminate against potential employees due to gender, race, age or disability and for almost all of us that’s true. We certainly never would intentionally discriminate against anyone. But what about the unintentional discrimination that may be going on without anyone even realising?

Unconscious bias happens when our brains make incredibly quick judgements and assessments of people and situations without us realising. Our biases are influenced by our background, cultural environment and personal experiences. We are more than likely not aware of these views, but their impact is still fully-felt.

Though it’s rooted in human nature, it’s important to understand what unconscious bias is, in order to overcome it and build strong, diverse teams. Appropriate will teach you and your employees about the different kinds of unconscious bias and how to recognise them in action as well as how to address unconscious bias in the workplace.

There is no doubt the technology sector in New Zealand is a great place to work. Having spent a number of years working with Skillsoft customers and teams in high-growth markets before returning to New Zealand, I believe there is no other region that offers the unique organisational culture and business environment New Zealand does. This country has much to offer both existing and potential employees.

However, technology businesses need to learn to look beyond their traditional recruitment avenues and start investing in reskilling existing employees as well as recruiting from previously neglecting minority groups to attract and retain talent. This will ensure a strong pool of talent to help local business innovate and grow in an increasingly competitive global market.

Article by Skillsoft New Zealand sales director Kath Greenhough.

From local to global: Verizon Connect celebrates its Christchurch roots

Wednesday, July 18th, 2018

From its roots as a local Christchurch business to a multinational enterprise, tech firm Verizon Connect says Christchurch will always be its home.

Verizon Connect, formerly called Telogis, has offices in 15 countries including the US, UK, and Australia – a story that all began back in 2000 with a dream to improve the way people, vehicles, and other things move through the world.

When Christchurch local Ralph Mason teamed up with American-based Newth Morris, Telogis was born. Back then, they developed a fleet tracking software to track vehicle locations.

In 2014 the company rebranded from Telogis to Verizon Connect and created a new portfolio of solutions and services.

Despite the renewed global focus, Verizon group vice president of mobile research and development Gary Jenson says Christchurch is still at the heart of research and development opportunities.

“We have the capability and go-to attitude to think laterally and build the most innovative solutions in ways that other countries and locations might not be able to,” he says.

Because much of the group’s original technology was developed in Christchurch, it has been instrumental in transforming the company into a ‘pioneer’ in the telematics industry, Jensen says.

What’s more, Verizon Connect still engages with up-and-coming Christchurch talent by regularly hiring university graduates for its Christchurch office. It also hosts interns, many of whom stay as permanent employees after graduation.

“The quality of software engineering students and the close relationships we have with Canterbury University and other groups has helped to make Christchurch a thriving place for our technology company,” Jensen says.

He notes that the Christchurch tech sector progressed in massive leaps, particularly over the last decade.

That local tech sector is the second largest in the country and contributes around $2.4 billion of GDP, as well as annual exports of $1.1 billion.

Diversity, creativity, tech talent and strong relationships between business and students all enable the region ensures the right skills for the city’s future workforce pipeline.

“Community groups like CanterburyTech have also helped increase the profile and strength of the Christchurch tech sector significantly, bringing to light some of the strong engineering work the city has always been good at, but no one was aware of,” Jensen says.

He adds that Christchurch’s closely connected tech community and supportive business environment also makes it an ideal environment for start-ups with big ideas.

His advice?

“Focus on the big picture beyond the local market, while still keeping roots in the Christchurch and Kiwi way of doing things.”

Be part of the change — Duncan Cotterill invite you to join us at our breakfast panel to discuss social enterprise as a vehicle for sustainability

Wednesday, July 18th, 2018

Thursday 2 August, 7:30am – 9:30am Duncan Cotterill, 148 Victoria Street, Christchurch

We are excited to be joined by:

Rebecca Mills Founder/Managing Director of The Lever Room
Samantha Jones Founder/CEO of Little Yellow Bird
Anton Matthews Co-founder of FUSH
Fraser McConnell Co-founder of Squawk Squad & Choice to Pay Jo Blair Founder of Brown Bread (facilitator)

RSVP to by 27 July

Please note places are strictly limited so don’t wait to RSVP

Hi-Growth Launch Programme 2018 – Showcasing extraordinary business talent by ChristchurchNZ

Wednesday, July 18th, 2018

Tue. 24 July 2018 6:00 pm – 8:30 pm NZST
LOCATION -The Piano -The Philip Carter Concert Hall, 156 Armagh Street, Christchurch Central

July 24 will be an occasion to remember as we celebrate innovative, entrepreneurial thinking across our city of exploration.

We’d love you to join us as the ChristchurchNZ 2018 Hi-Growth Launch Programme concludes with a showcase of our extraordinary talent in Christchurch.

You’ll hear from alumni and current mentor, Nick Burns, the mastermind and co-founder behind Emendo, world leaders in high-tech health analytical software, recently sold to global giant McKesson Corporation.

Sharing their journey will be previous alumni: Location data specialists, Orbica; Kitset Assembly Services from their European base; and Ethique, who are winning accolades around the world for their skin and hair care products from their Christchurch base.

Our team of industry leaders and mentors will be on hand to impart their substantial knowledge and there’ll be an opportunity to hear from and interact with the class of 2018.

We hope that you can join us.

Effectus announces new General Manager

Tuesday, July 17th, 2018

For the last 11 years Effectus has built a strong presence in IT Management & Governance Consulting throughout New Zealand of which I am very proud. When we celebrated our 10-year anniversary I reflected on how much had been achieved, including founding the EPIC Innovation Centre, and I predict another fulfilling decade ahead of us with specific focus on supporting our customers with disruption and transformation.

I will now be focusing my energy on the Effectus work that I enjoy most; client relationship building and consulting, and to have time available for some other activities, so I decided a few years ago that I needed to prepare someone to manage the business itself. As of July, Scott Adams assumes the role of General Manager at Effectus after working for the company for six years initially as a Principal Consultant and over the past two years as the National Consulting Manager which required a shift to Christchurch from Auckland.

Scott and I share the same values, business ethics and ambitions for Effectus so we will be continuing to improve our ability to provide value for our clients through effective use of information and technology. I am transitioning Effectus to someone who I trust and like and look forward to working with him in his new role.

Colin Andersen
Founder & Executive Director
Effectus Ltd

EPIC Westport – NEM Blockchain Developer Event

Thursday, July 12th, 2018

NEM Blockchain Training event 26th & 27th July 2018 (2)EPIC Westport Blockchain Event

We have Senior NEM members and Engineers from Malaysia holding a training event in Westport at the end of July. Its a really good opportunity to learn about developing in blockchain and there is also a have a go Hackday! You just need a basic competence in any programming language such as Javascript, Java, C#, Swift, Python, etc and bring a laptop!

It is a free event with food laid on and even free transport. There will be transport leaving from EPIC Christchurch at Midday 12pm Wednesday 25th and return Friday evening. Depending on numbers we can even sort out your accomodation – subject to numbers.

Please RSVP as per the invitation.

Alexia Hilbertidou – ChangeMakeHer Christchurch!

Wednesday, July 11th, 2018

The Philippines could be NZ’s next big export market, says tech entrepreneur

Tuesday, July 10th, 2018

Kiwi businesses that are on the path to expanding their export potential overseas are missing out on a wealth of potential if they overlook the Philippines, says one New Zealand based entrepreneur.

Rachel Strevens, who is co-founder of cryptocurrency investment platform Invsta, says that few New Zealand businesses are harnessing the Philippines’ potential.

Strevens was part of a cohort led by the Asia New Zealand Foundation, which took five tech entrepreneurs to the Philippines to learn about tech disruption in Southeast Asia.

“The biggest revelation for me was that the Philippines has an enormous potential market for financial services,” Strevens says.

With a population of more than 100 million people, widespread English proficiency, and a growing middle class with growing income, she believes the Philippines is a huge market opportunity for her company.

“On top of this, the population is tech-savvy and very young, with a median age of just 23. Millennials are eight times more likely to buy Bitcoin than baby boomers so it’s an incredibly large and attractive market for us.”

Cryptocurrencies, says Strevens, are here to stay – and beyond trading purposes the underlying blockchain technology has many different uses.

One of those uses is the capacity to streamline sluggish traditional financial systems. Strevens says many overseas Filipinos are sending large amounts of foreign wages back into the Philippines.

“Crypto and blockchain technologies are speeding up the transaction time of transferring money around the world and this is having a huge impact on the remittance industry as people can move money back home faster at a lower cost,” she explains.

However, she believes New Zealand businesses shouldn’t just consider the Philippines as a place for outsourcing.

“The Philippines will remain a great country to outsource tech work to because its people are some of the best in the world and have far lower wage costs than New Zealand.”

“On top of this, though, with a growing middle class across the region, Southeast Asia should be increasingly seen as both a place to source from and sell to. The market is certainly there.”

Invsta is currently raising a seed fund to support its growth plans, particularly in Asia markets including the Philippines.

Invsta recently took part in the Kiwibank FinTech Accelerator, which is the second Kiwibank-sponsored Lightning Lab business accelerator focused on FinTech companies.

“The Asia New Zealand Foundation trip allowed me to start making crucial connections with players in the local market,” Strevens concludes.


Article credit BizEDGE NZ

Hi-Growth Launch Programme Graduation evening

Tuesday, July 10th, 2018

Join us to find out more about the 2017 Hi-Growth Launch Programme graduates.

The evening will feature tradeshow exhibitions, presentations from the graduating businesses and keynote speech ‘Every brand has a story to tell. What’s yours?’ by renowned advertising guru Andie Spargo.

Date: 28 June 2017

Time: 6pm to 9pm (registrations open at 6pm for a 6.30pm start)

Venue: Savoy Ballroom, Rydges Latimer, 30 Latimer Square

RSVPplease register by Wednesday 21 June

Official Boma New Zealand Launch | Christchurch 2018

Monday, July 2nd, 2018
Hi there,

I hope your world is awesome 🙂

For the past nine years, my team and I have been working hard to produce TEDx and, more recently, Singularity University events that leave attendees feeling inspired.

Along the way, we’ve had a front row seat to some pretty big ideas: ideas about the way we live, about the challenges we face, and about the kind of future we’re creating together.

We’ve learned, for example, about the dramatic impact exponentially accelerating technologies are having and will continue to have on all our lives, for good and for ill.

We’ve also learned technology is only one of the vectors of disruption coming our way. We need to be thinking about our economic structures. Our political structures. Our social and civic structures.

And we’ve learned that, sometimes, we can find solutions to our problems by focusing less on the new and more on the tools we already have. Or by focusing less on the tech and more on the humanity.

Until now, our work has been limited to bringing people together around the sharing of ideas like these: events intended to inform, challenge, uplift, and delight. What you did with those ideas was up to you.

But the sharing of ideas is only useful if action eventuates.

It’s time for a new way forward — a new paradigm — to tackle the tough questions we are facing in the rapidly changing world around us.

So now, I’m excited to invite you to join us on the next evolution of our journey.

Along with a group of my global colleagues and counterparts, we are launching a new venture, designed not just to bring people together around ideas but to offer the structures and frameworks to lead towards tangible action and outcomes.

Welcome to Boma.

Boma is a new organisation offering transformational learning experiences, linked directly to outcomes, to change your world.

If this sounds exciting to you, here are two steps you can take right now:

One: Sign up for the Boma New Zealand email list. You are receiving this email because you attended a TEDxChristchurch event or a SingularityU event — you will not receive further updates about Boma unless you opt-in.

Two: Come to one of the official Boma launch events! Boma’s official New Zealand launches are happening in:

Auckland: Tuesday, 24 July
Wellington: Wednesday, 25 July
Christchurch: Thursday, 26 July

You can also watch the global launch live as it’s announced in Paris, France, on Friday, 6 July at 4:45am NZST.

I hope you’ll join us on this adventure. As I’m often reminded, the future doesn’t happen to us. It’s created by us. The more of us who participate, the better the future we can create.


Kaila ColbinKaila Colbin
Co-founder, Boma Global
CEO, Boma New Zealand |

Alexia Hilbertidou-10 Changemakeher workshops free to Christchurch.

Friday, June 29th, 2018

Alexia is in Christchurch thanks to the generosity of EPIC Innovation, led by Wil McLellan and Colin Andersen. EPIC is committed to lifting participation of young people in technology and as a result of their support, Alexia is able to offer 10 Changemakeher workshops free to Christchurch.

Alexia will be at Rangi Ruru 2.30pm – 3.30pm on Monday 2nd July to speak to 110 Y12 girls, with approx. 30 other parents/teachers and students in attendance.

She will then be back at Rangi on Wednesday 4th of July to do two 2 hour Changemakeher workshops with Year 10 and 11 students.

This would be a good photo opportunity, seeing the girls participating in the workshops. It is interactive and a lot of fun!

Wednesday 4th July is a day Alexia is best placed for media interviews as she will have just arrived back from London from the Queens Young Leader Awards and will need some time to re-charge her batteries.


Alexia Hilbertidou

Alexia is a sought-after speaker who has spoken to more than 20,000 people in corporate offices, government agencies and schools in the last 18 months.

Just returned from a mission with NASA, Alexia’s own mission is to get young women to the table – the boardroom table that is, and she believes the decisions made while young are crucial in paving the way.

Alexia’s passion for STEAM led her to create Girlboss when she was just 16 years old. Less than two years later GirlBoss has become an 8000 strong network for ambitious, young New Zealand women.

Despite being only 18, Alexia has packed a significant amount of leadership and entrepreneurial experience into her life. A Global Teen Leader, a Ministry of Youth Development Top 5 Young Leader, and winner of the Westpac Young Leader Award, Alexia’s humble origins and incredible journey make her a positive and relatable role model for young women from every corner of New Zealand.

Girlboss Founder At Rangi Ruru Girls’ School on Monday

Friday, June 29th, 2018

How Did She Make the Queen Laugh at An Awards Ceremony in London This Week?

“You’re doing good work.”

That’s what 19-year-old Alexia Hilbertidou was told by Queen Elizabeth at an awards ceremony in London this week.

On Tuesday, this driven Kiwi received a Queen’s Young Leaders Award for her work founding GirlBoss where she encourages women into science, technology, arts and maths (STEAM) careers and higher leadership. The NZ Herald reported that Alexia told the queen that currently in the NZX 50, there are more CEOs named John than CEOs who are women and that she was striving to change that. Alexia says the Queen chuckled at the John fact and said she was doing very good work.

Ms Hilbertidou, who has recently returned from a space mission with NASA, is visiting Christchurch’s Rangi Ruru Girls’ School on Monday (2 July) to share her story and talk to girls about GirlBoss, a women’s network of more than 8000 members.

School principal Dr Sandra Hastie says the whole school is really excited about Alexia coming to Rangi.

“We know about Alexia, our girls know who she is and how influential this amazing young woman is,” she says. “We all need positive and inspiring role models; Alexia is one of ours.”

“With strong and effective female leadership being such an important part of Rangi’s ethos, Alexia’s work around empowering women through STEAM (Science, Technology Engineering, Arts and Math) is a perfect fit for us,” says Dr Hastie.

Alexia’s passion for education is why she was named a Top 30 Global Teen Leader, the most influential New Zealand woman under the age of 25 at the 2016 Westpac Women of Influence Awards, and only this week being named a 2018 Queen’s Young Leader.

Alexia will be here at Rangi Ruru on the 2nd July and the 4th of July – photo / interview opportunities are available on Wednesday 4th July (see schedule on pg 2).

#weknowgirls #girlpower#girlbossnz #rangi4life 

For more information please contact Ali Jones 0272473112