Virtual and augmented reality, start-up competitions and a showcase of Kiwi innovation heroes are on the cards for May as Techweek AKL 2015 hits Auckland, aiming aiming to provide a forum to connect people and creator opportunities for partners and investors to discover locally grown solutions.
The week of technology innovation, supported by NZTech, Ateed and the HiTech Trust, includes more than 30 events organised by universities, private businesses, start-up communities and industry associations.
Ateed is curating the programme and providing overall marketing support.
The events are designed to showcase New Zealand as a centre of innovation and technology, and will bring together a cluster of technology and innovation events to provide ‘a real focal point in the calendar for local, national and international audiences’, organisers say.
Headline events include the Hi-Tech awards, The Project, Innovation Heroes, OMG Tech and Auckland Collective, with speakers including Forbes ‘Top 30 under 30’ lister, Savannah Peterson, and serial Silicon Valley entrepreneur Gary A Bolles.
Google creative director Tara McKenty, social media ‘celebrity’ Cleo Wade, Martin Jetpack founder Glenn Martin, Orion Health founder Ian McRae and NZTE International director Claudia Batten will also be among the 35 speakers at the ‘reshaping our world’ themed events.
Patrick McVeigh, Ateed general manager of business, innovation and skills, says while Auckland is seen by international audiences as being a great place to live and visit, it’s not necessarily seen as an innovation hub of Asia Pacific, despite being the region being home to plenty of world-class innovation.
McVeigh says while there are plenty of innovation focused events in Auckland, it can be a challenge for audiences to understand the full range of events available and to make choices about where their time and money is best spent.
“In response to this, Ateed decided to launch the Techweek AKL 2016 initiative to showcase Auckland as an innovation hub and provide a focal point for Auckand’s innovation and entrepreneurship community to connect.”
The event coincides with the Tripartite Summit taking place in Auckland in May, with delegations from Los Angeles and Guangzhou in attendance, and the annual New Zealand Hi-Tech Awards.
“This offers a unique opportunity to promote Techweek AKL 2016 events to local and international audiences alike,” organisers say.
A number of events will also focus on youth, with the Lion Foundation Young Enterprise Scheme (YES) and DigMyIdea Maori Innovation Challenge winner Kid’s Coin running events, while Smart Seeds young engineers will be designing solutions for ‘an Auckland of the future’.
Techweek AKL 2016 will run from May 14-22, with more details due to be revealed next week.