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Prime Minister sees the future at Techweek‘17

Prime Minister sees the future at Techweek‘17

With more than 150 events from Whangarei to Greymouth, New Zealand’s Techweek has kicked off

The Prime Minister Bill English doesn’t usually get to hang out with robots and wear virtual reality goggles but Christchurch’s tech entrepreneurs were keen to show off their wares as part of Techweek ’17 which began over the weekend.

Techweek runs until May 14 and encompasses more than 150 events in 24 towns and cities around the country, showcasing the best New Zealand tech has to offer the world.

Mr English was welcomed to EPIC – the Enterprise Precinct Innovation Centre – by Corvecto CEO Henry Lane and Ministry of Awesome’s Chief Awesome Officer Lauren Merritt.

The aim of the aptly named Ministry of Awesome is to connect and activate entrepreneurs and social innovators. They do this through providing tailored support to early-stage ideas, a comprehensive events programme to connect business, education and entrepreneurs and co-working spaces.

Mr English was shown the virtual and augmented reality work being done by Corvecto. The Prime Minister was fitted out with state-of-the-art virtual reality goggles, which can be used to assist training for a wide range of trades and professions, including surgeons.

At Cerebralfix, game developers for The Walt Disney Company and DreamWorks, the Prime Minister had the opportunity to talk to some of the New Zealand’s most talented and creative developers who have worked on projects like Transformers and Toy Story as well as trying his hand at some of their games.

Final stop on the visit to EPIC was Christchurch tech-heavyweight SLI Systems who provide e-commerce solutions for the world’s top retailers. SLI operate on five continents, in 20 languages and across more than 1,000 websites and is the most chosen cloud-based site search provider to US Internet Retailer Top 1,000 retailers.

Jennifer Clamp, National Director of Techweek is in awe of the Techweek team, partners and advisory group members who have, over the past six months, miraculously coordinated so many events into one week of tech and innovation.

“The purpose of Techweek is to amplify the world-class work New Zealanders are doing to find answers to some of the biggest questions using and developing new technologies. We work with great organisations to tell the world about the cool stuff going on inside New Zealand Inc.”

Whether you want to know more about the agri-tech sector, augmented reality or wearable tech, or are interested in drone racing, encouraging our children into the Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) field, or want to learn how to turn your good idea into a start-up company, then Techweek’17 has something for you.


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