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Pacific tech on the rise with Pacific Business Trust

Pacific tech on the rise with Pacific Business Trust

Young Pacific entrepreneurs are on the rise, with a growing number making their mark in tech innovation and providing solutions, having being developed by the Pacific Business Trust from the start

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Enterprise (MBIE) states that 2016 was a record year for the technology sector. There was 12% revenue growth for the top 200 revenue earning technology firms (over $1B) and technology was New Zealand’s third largest export sector, contributing 16.2B to National GDP.
Pacific technology businesses are contributing to that growth, with the number of innovative tech solutions on the rise.

One of those is the Manaui Media Language App being created by Cook Islander / Tahitian Koni Rairoa and Samoan Lillian Arp.

Their product is a language preservation app that provides an intuitive piece of technology, customised by the user to empower them to speak their language with confidence, using it regularly in a seamless way.

“I can’t reveal too much more, but say that at a personal level, the journey has helped me discover what my passion is, and I see it helping so many other Pacific people who want to rediscover their language,” says Koni.

“This project is still in the discovery stage, but we’re planning to begin the development stage before the end of the year, followed by the design then production of the app.”

Another Pacific tech initiative is KidsCoin, an online tool that allows kids to earn ‘Kids Coins’ through online quizzes that teach the fundamentals of transactions, banking, saving, making loans, paying tax, entrepreneurship and more.

KidsCoin co-founder Brittany Teei says the solution is designed to help equip young people through hands on learning, with basic financial management skills.

“…The crucial thing for today’s young ones is to understand how money works so you can make it work for you instead of the other way round. Starting it the younger the better is the best way to create good habits,” she says.

Coder and founder of tech company Best by Peers, Niuean Janet MacFarlane, is developing an online social discovery platform focused on creating a credible and trustworthy digital presence, using social technology to influence more positive change.

“Establishing trust is the key. As our lives become increasingly digitalized, your online reputation will be your most valuable digital asset. I’m looking at using social technology to express and extend your physical self,” she says.

“Today’s corporate culture demands soft skills as much as technical, which will become increasingly important given the prediction that 40% of manual jobs will disappear over the next decade.”
Pacific Business Trust Chief Executive, Kim Tuaine is leading the Trust’s work within the sector to develop strategic partnerships, connect Pacific businesses and identify opportunities to innovate.

“It’s an exciting time to be in the technology sector and there are so many exciting Pacific businesses operating in this space,” says Kim.

“The Pacific Business Trust is focused on supporting these businesses, whether it’s connecting them to new investment, helping them to commercialise and reach new markets or develop their product.”

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