NZ Fry Up: Government creates startup advisors’ council; P-Tech welcomes 4 secondary schools; A/NZ software spending up; Small businesses invest in tech again

New Zealand IT, tech, and telco news and views from our editor.

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NZ central government appoints startup advisors’ council

The New Zealand government has created a startup advisors’ council to help identify and address the opportunities and challenges facing high-growth startups.

The council members have experience in the startup and angel investor industry, which the federal government expects will help enable more co-ordinated and targeted action from the government.

The council has seven members who will sit for a term of 12 months. The council will be chaired by Phil McCaw, founding partner at venture capital fund, Movac and former chair of the Angel Association New Zealand. The other six members are:  

  • Suse Reynolds, chair of the Angel Association New Zealand 
  • Marian Johnson, chief executive of Ministry of Awesome 
  • Grant Straker (Ngāti Raukawa), co-founder of the AI language translation platform Straker Translations
  • Mike Carden, founder of several startups, including Sonar6 and Joyous 
  • Imche Fourie, cofounder and chief executive of Auckland-based Outset Ventures 
  • Carl Jones, managing partner of WNT Ventures. 

Auckland secondary schools join P-Tech training program

Four Auckland secondary schools have joined P-Tech, an IBM-led education program that offers in New Zealand a free, five-year structured programme that combines high school, tertiary university education, and tech workplace experience.

Tāmaki College, Onehunga College, Southern Cross Campus, and Māngere College join existing participant schools Manurewa High School and Aorere College. Participating employers are ANZ Bank, Foodstuffs North Island, IBM, Kyndryl, Spark NZ, and Vodafone NZ.

P-Tech expects 250 students from year 11, 12, and 13 will enrol in 2022. Upon completing the program, students will have acquired the National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA) and a diploma.

A/NZ spending on software more than doubled in 2021

Customer relationship management, digital workflow and collaboration, enterprise resource management, and security products were the biggest drivers of spending in software across New Zealand and Australia in 2021, according to research firm IDC.

In 2021, the software market grew by 17.5%, IDC said—a big jump from 2020’s 8.5% growth.

Out of survival mode, NZ small businesses invest in tech again

More than half (57%) of New Zealand and Australia small and medium businesses are out of survival mode, according to a survey of 1,011 organisations conducted by IDC. These businesses are now focusing on growing and transforming their organisations.

For 2022, 62% of New Zealand small businesses expect to increase their IT spending. IDC anticipates spending in cloud, cybersecurity, and laptops and PCs to increase the most.

Trends towards expanding application portfolios and increased complexity of deployments across cloud and on-premises environments will continue to create integration challenges for A/NZ SMBs, IDC said.

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.

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