GridAKL recognised for driving innovation success

Auckland council’s innovation precinct has been cited as adding considerable value to the fastest growing industry in New Zealand – the technology sector.

Innovation in Auckland has been recognised in a NZTech commissioned report about the state of New Zealand’s technology sector.

The report, Digital Nation New Zealand: From Tech Sector to Digital Nation, was announced this week.

It cites GridAKL as a key element in accelerating information sharing and sector growth in Auckland.

Auckland accounts for almost half, 47 percent, of the New Zealand tech sector’s income, employment, GDP and exports.

GridAKL is the innovation precinct at Wynyard Quarter, which is an Auckland Council initiative delivered by Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED).

Its goal is to create Auckland as an innovation hub in Asia-Pacific.

NZTech chief executive Graeme Muller says the Auckland tech sector is large and diverse with a broad range of ICT and high-tech manufacturers.

“GridAKL at Wynyard Quarter is fostering a culture of connection and collaboration and that’s helping drive the technology and innovation sector forward.”

Patrick McVeigh, ATEED’s general manager of business, innovation and skills, says the report is a turning point for recognition of the technology sector.

“It acknowledges the growing importance of technology but also shoes it’s too narrow to think of it as an individual sector.

“Technology is transforming all different types of business models and has relevance across our economy.”

One of the biggest positives of the growing opportunities technology allows businesses is the breaking down of traditional geographical distance, he says.

Now New Zealand can be easily connected to the rest of the world.

For Auckland, this means it can properly established itself as an international city for business.

“Auckland is a ‘new world city’ and we compete for talent, investment and business with not just our neighbours but other mid-sized, high-quality of life cities.”

Having a report, which nationally recognises the importance of technology for the economy, means greater visibility for the country as not just a destination, but a centre for business and innovation, he says.

Ventures such as Auckland’s TechWeek in May prove the right things are happening to get the city on a global map, he says.