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LanzaTech all go to set up UK shop

Biofuels pioneer LanzaTech will find its foray into the UK a little easier as the winner of the GO UK competition.

The GO UK competition invited New Zealand companies to submit business plans for a chance to win a $30,000 prize package including airfares and professional services.

LanzaTech finance manager-operations Beno Samuel said: “Although LanzaTech has its roots in New Zealand, we are very much a global company having offices in the US, China and India.

“The UK and Europe, however, has been very much on our radar and is a place of tremendous potential for our business.”

British High Commissioner Vicki Treadell said New Zealand had a long and proud history of small businesses taking their ideas to the world and succeeding.

“We have every confidence that LanzaTech will quickly establish themselves, make an impact in Europe, continue to deliver strong results and put New Zealand on the map,” said Treadell.

The judging panel included sponsor of GO UK, Paul Beare of Kevin Beare & Co, Icehouse chief executive Andy Hamilton and UKTI’s investment promotion manager Paul Wilkinson.

The judges assessed the finalists using a matrix giving weight to whether finalists were knowledge-driven, ready to enter the UK, had understanding of the market, the ability to self-fund as well as the quality of their pitch.

“Winning this prize package will certainly make our entry into the UK a lot smoother – if only we had this prize when we were setting up in other international markets,” said Samuel.

New Zealand businesses get the same opportunities and benefits in the UK as local companies, thanks to a memorandum of understanding between the New Zealand and UK governments.