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Google, disruption, game-changing ideas: Spark's Innovation Month keynotes announced

05 May 2016

Spark Lab’s Innovation Month takes place this May, and will see a number of innovative and successful characters arrive in New Zealand to share experiences and insights with local businesses.

Spark’s May events series will bring together top international and local business innovators for eight sessions at Spark Lab in Britomart, Auckland. Among others, Google’s Reuben Halper and Sunny Bates of TED and Kickstarter will visit New Zealand's biggest city.

The keynote event will feature New Zealand’s own Sir Ray Avery, who will share his thoughts on how businesses can best develop a disruptive, game-changing culture. Other speakers will cover a range of topics directly applicable to business strategy and growth, from practical insights through to the ideational and inspirational.

Richard Sandford, Spark head of business marketing, says the company was confident the lineup would be of value to SMEs still in the early stages of growth, right through to more established businesses. 

“We’re thrilled to be able to bring some incredibly influential innovators from around the world to the Lab this month, alongside some of New Zealand’s top innovators, to pass on their insights and experience to the New Zealand business community.

“Innovation month will be something that every business can benefit from, and will help to unlock some of the huge potential we know is out there amongst Kiwi SMEs,” he says. 

The sessions will be open to everyone and are free to attend, although spaces are limited. A number of sessions will be live streamed on Facebook and videos from all of the events will be available online, enabling businesses around New Zealand to see the sessions.

Those interested can go to to find out more or to register their attendance. 

Innovation Month schedule:

  • Hello America 10 May, 5:30pm: San Fran-based Ben Ridler from on how leap over and launch into the US.
  • World’s best 13 May, 7:00am: Previously Unavailable’s James Hurman on how some of the world’s biggest companies manage to be the most innovative.
  • Innovation via disruption 17 May, 7:00am: Squirrel’s John Bolton on the innovative thinking that’s driving the peer-to-peer revolution.
  • Why should you be getting out more? 18 May 7:00am: Sunny Bates from Kickstarter and TED on how networking and simply meeting people are key to attracting innovative talent.
  • Innovative strategies 18 May 5:30pm: The Results Group’s Simon Mundell on Strategies to take innovation from ideas to execution.
  • Creating your niche 19 May, 7:00am: Movio’s William Palmer on how to move first and move fast.
  • Keynote event Sir Ray Avery 25 May, 5:30pm: Master of Innovation Sir Ray Avery on how to build a game-changing, disruptive culture.
  • Google culture and innovation 26 May, 5:30pm: Reuben Halper on Google’s focus on culture, ways of working, talent acquisition and retention.
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