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NZ Technology companies target Latin America

NZ Technology companies target Latin America

28 February, 2006 -- The drive to win new business for savvy New Zealand technology companies takes a step up next month, with companies showcasing their strengths in the fast growing Latin American market.

New Zealand stands to gain good international exposure when six ICT companies head to the Brazilian city of Sao Paulo to take part in Telexpo, Latin America's largest telecommunications trade show and an event that attracts over 40,000 industry professionals from around the world.

New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE), is supporting the initiative, with funding through its Enterprise Network programme.

Maurice Stilwell, NZTE ICT Sector Manager, says attending Telexpo, being held from 7 - 10 March, gives New Zealand ICT companies the opportunity to secure business in the giant Brazilian telecoms market.

"After several years of frenzied growth in the Brazilian mobile market - subscriber numbers have jumped more than 30% in the last 12 months alone and now number around 90 million connections - the market is consolidating and mobile carriers are focusing on increasing revenues through value added services (VAS)," Mr Stilwell says.

"With client base now taking a back seat to profitability the time is right for New Zealand mobile developers to secure business in Brazil. New Zealand mobile developers at Telexpo, like SimWorks, Synapse Group, Navman and Bulletin Wireless, have the expertise to show Brazil's mobile operators how to leverage VAS revenue off their subscriber base."

This is the third consecutive year New Zealand ICT companies have taken part in Telexpo and Mr Stilwell says the previous visits have resulted in good business for New Zealand companies.

Scott Wattie of Latitude Consulting, who will be representing New Zealand companies on the mission to Sao Paulo, says New Zealand's track record as a test bed for the development and deployment of value added services, which have generated real returns for developers and telcos alike, means 'we have a real story to tell the Brazilians'.

"Brazil is where New Zealand was around two years ago, but it's moving fast. Now is the time to really secure business in this market. Operators know that they don't need to reinvent the wheel, they just need to use the best ideas from other countries and avoid making the same mistakes."

The President of the New Zealand Wireless Forum, Steve Inglis, sees attendance at the Brazil show as an important leveraging opportunity in Latin America for the New Zealand industry.

He says New Zealand has good infrastructure, in depth experience and a nimble, can-do environment.

"It's partly the sheer size of the potential market on the continent along with the drive there to develop new generation wireless networks. Because we have two 3G (3rd Generation) networks in New Zealand working on different standards, Kiwi companies are creating applications across a broad spectrum.

"We can provide the value add that Latin America is looking for."

Christchurch company Blue Water Systems will be exhibiting its capability in ARM based solutions and Single Board Computer Modules while Wellington technology company 4RF will be showcasing its digital radio technology. In a country as vast as Brazil the point to point radio market is worth tens of millions of dollars a year and 4RF established an office in Sao Paulo in 2005 to demonstrate its commitment to the market.


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