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Innovation Heroes: Hear their story

This year’s Innovation Heroes are: Glenn Martin (founder and inventor of Martin Jet Pack), Lisa King (Co-Founder and CEO of Eat My Lunch), Toni Moyes (COO of 8i), Stephen Henry (CEO of Kode Biotech) and Dale Clareburt (Co-founder and CEO of Weirdly).

Innovation Heroes is about inspiring kiwi innovators and business owners to go on their own journey of growth of innovation, building business and developing new products and services that make a real difference.

“As a small country, we have a competitive advantage to collaborate, connect and develop great partnerships with others,” Louise Webster, founder and CEO of the New Zealand Innovation Council says. “The doors are open to talk to and collaborate with anyone we choose, every business owner needs to take advantage of the opportunities that are right in front of them to build their own success”.

The Innovation Heroes series which is running in four locations – Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin – in May is about inspiring business owners and helping them to connect to organisations that can support their growth journey at whatever stage or industry.

“This is the perfect opportunity for you to meet your next staff member, business partner, or investor”, says Webster.


The NZ Innovation Council is running four Innovation Heroes events this year, starting in Dunedin

• INNOVATION HEROES – DUNEDIN – 10TH MAY 8am – 10am, light breakfast event and beverages

• INNOVATION HEROES – CHRISTCHURCH – 11TH MAY 8am – 10am, light breakfast event and beverages

• INNOVATION HEROES – WELLINGTON – 12TH MAY 5pm – 7pm, evening event, beverages and canapés, with live music

• INNOVATION HEROES – AUCKLAND – 18TH MAY (a part of Techweek run by ATEED) 5pm – 7pm, evening event, beverages and canapés, with live music



Making the world a better place one school lunch at a time 

Lisa King, along with two business partners and their team, is taking on the very real social problem of kiwi kids going to school hungry.

Eat My Lunch is a lunch delivery service that donates one school lunch to a Kiwi kid in need for every lunch a consumer buys; a buy one give one model. Company co-founder Lisa King says it’s a simple, easy concept that seems to be resonating with kiwi’s who are craving something “more meaningful” and Eat My Lunch provides them with an easy healthy way to give back.


Jet-packing his way into the future

Glenn Martin is the inventor and entrepreneur behind the Martin Jetpack, the world’s first practical Jetpack. Glenn was born in Dunedin, New Zealand. As a boy he saw the Bell Rocket Belt on television and dreamed of flying a Jetpack. It became an obsession, a mission and then a reality. Hear Glenn’s extraordinary story of turning a science-fiction dream into working reality through, ingenuity, discipline and plain hard work. It’s a story about personal loyalty and giving back to a new wave of Kiwi Innovators.


Making virtual reality more human

8i delivers a breakthrough new consumer media platform that lets you create, experience and share the most immersive 3D video of real people. “Our aim is to make the internet more human with immersive 3D video that allows you to be ‘in the same room’ in virtual reality which allows you to walk around them.” Says Toni, COO of 8i. Toni has a fun and ambitious attitude and some wonderful stories to share from her experiences in both the corporate world and government sector.


Biological engineering with nanotechnology paint

Professor Steve Henry was awarded the 2015 Supreme New Zealand Innovators Award for his breakthrough biotechnology company Kode Biotech. Steve started Kode Biotech to commercialise his nanotechnology biosurface engineering technology – Kode Technology. Hear how Steve and his team at AUT have created and licensed a global platform technology. This has enabled a cancer immunotherapy that teaches the human immune system to fight cancer tumours. This major advancement by a licensee of Kode Technology has the potential to cure many forms of solid tumour cancer.


Putting the culture back into recruitment

Dale is a Co-Founder of Weirdly a company that that offers a new approach to recruitment. Connecting companies with potential employees who are a ‘better fit’ for their organisation. “At Weirdly we are getting businesses to focus on getting people that are aligned with their values and purpose, first, and skills and experience second. By doing this we’re making recruitment more cost effective by retaining staff for longer”. Hear how to create an environment of happy staff for a happy and healthier company. Dale passes on many valuable practical insights on collaboration and finding success in a new market.

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