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New Brand for Crown Research Institute

19 OCTOBER 2005


The Crown Research Institute formerly known as Geological and Nuclear Sciences Limited has shortened its name to GNS Science.

The company also has a new logo, replacing the logo it has had since it was formed in 1992. The new name and refreshed logo were unveiled in the company's 2005 annual report, released this week.

Chief Executive Alex Malahoff described the new brand as a refurbishment rather than a totally new look.

" We've modernised our logo to succinctly encapsulate our values and capabilities," Dr Malahoff said.

" The stronger visual identity will make us recognisable as the major organisation in New Zealand focused on a broad spectrum of sciences from earth sciences to isotope technologies. Our purpose is to transform the knowledge from our activities into economic, social, and environmental benefits for New Zealand."

Dr Malahoff said renewal of the brand would coincide with the company's move to a new building at Avalon in Lower Hutt, which is scheduled for the end of this year. The building will house the company's Lower Hutt staff, currently accommodated in five buildings at the Gracefield Research Centre.

The new brand includes the company's Maori name Te Pu Ao, which means the origin and source of the world from atomic to planetary scales.

Major achievements during the past year included leading a successful deep-sea expedition using a submersible to explore 10 active submarine volcanoes in the Kermadec arc, northeast of the Bay of Plenty.

GNS Science secured extra funding for its GeoNet project, which will enable New Zealand to build a world-class instrument network to monitor earthquakes, volcanoes, landslides, and tsunamis. The Earthquake Commission has boosted its funding in GeoNet by $3 million to $8 million a year.

The company's extremophile facility at Wairakei has collected 200 heat and acid-loving microorganisms from New Zealand's geothermal and volcanic areas and has used DNA sequencing to identify 75 of them. The research is helping to open up exciting biotechnology applications such as treatment of waste water, bioremediation of contaminated land, and recovery of valuable metals from geothermal fluids.

Nanotechnology is another area that has made solid progress in the past year. The company's nanotechnology facility has a growing portfolio of patents and is moving closer to producing commercial nanostructures for the electronics industry.

GNS Science posted an after-tax profit of $1.2 million ($1.4 million, 2004) on revenue of $43 million ($39.4 million) for the year to 30 June 2005.

Fifty-three percent of the company's revenue came from the government's contestable public good research funding and 14 percent from the Earthquake Commission-funded GeoNet project. The remaining 33 percent came from consultancy work for a wide variety of sectors in New Zealand and overseas.

GNS Science has 280 staff based at offices in Lower Hutt, Wairakei, and Dunedin.


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