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NZTech Inform – inspire, connect and upskill

It’s always great to see something you’ve been working on come to life. Last week’s launch of kiwiSaas is one of the major initiatives to emerge from the Digital Technology Industry Transformation Plan (ITP), so far. Led and developed by Callaghan Innovation and New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE), kiwiSaaS is funded by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE). This community is for New Zealand’s software-as-a-service (SaaS) business founders, directors, leaders and their teams to come together and share knowledge and experience with each other to help accelerate the growth of our fastest growing tech export sector.

Why is the SaaS sector so important for New Zealand?

  1. It creates jaw dropping productivity with high revenues per employee.  For example, Pushpay $623k, Xero $233k and Vista $187k.
  2. It generates high revenue growth.  For example, Xero has been growing at 26 percent for the past three years and has almost a billion dollars in revenue. Pushpay has been growing at 38 percent for the past three years.
  3. It creates high value jobs for New Zealanders.

While there are plenty of great tech sector statistics, the merger and acquisitions (M&A)statistics for the SaaS sector are impressive. New analysis from investment bank Clare Capital, has shown that New Zealand has benefitted from over NZD $11b worth of technology M&A activity in the period since Trade Me was sold for $750m in 2006, with 2021 breaking all previous records.  SaaS businesses now make up 95 percent of New Zealand headquartered NZX/ASX listed technology companies. So if you’re a founder, director, leader or shareholder in a Kiwi SaaS business join kiwiSaaS today. It’s simple and it’s free.

This week, I am meeting with Ara Ake, the public funded agency focused on accelerating New Zealand’s transition to a low-emissions energy future through innovation and technology. In the recent NZTech submission on the Emissions Reduction Plan we recommended the creation of a Technology Roadmap, so it will be good to hear Ara Ake’s plans.

Later this week, at the final meeting for 2021 of the Government’s Research and Development (R&D)Advisory Group the Inland Revenue will be providing us with an update on in-year payments and the progress of specific sector guidance. There should also be some data on the uptake of the R&D tax incentive (RDTI). It will be very interesting to learn how software firms have been transitioning from the Growth Grant to the RDTI.

The week concludes with a panel discussion at ATEPS21, the annual conference for the Auckland University Trade and Economic Policy School, where we will be discussing New Zealand’s tech sector and the huge opportunities that digital trade presents for New Zealand.

Stay safe and well.

Ngā mihi,
Graeme Muller

NZTech We connect, promote and advance the New Zealand Technology ecosystem to help the tech sector and the economy grow.