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Celebrating One Year Of Tech Tāmaki Makaurau

Reflecting on first year of momentous three-year programme to drive the region’s technology sector and establish Auckland as a global ‘tech city’

Tātaki Auckland Unlimited is celebrating the successful completion of the first year of work for Tech Tāmaki Makaurau, a three-year strategy to grow Auckland’s technology industry, create jobs and attract talent and investment to the region.

Tech Tāmaki Makaurau was launched in 2022 by Tātaki Auckland Unlimited, the region’s economic and cultural agency, in collaboration with industry, government and partners. The strategy identifies significant opportunities for the tech industry to drive economic prosperity for the region’s communities and to establish Auckland as a ‘tech city’ on the world stage.

There are three pillars to the Tech Tāmaki Makaurau strategy: manaakitanga (attracting home-grown and international talent); kaitiakitanga (a sustainable and equitable future) and kōtahitanga (a globally connected, inclusive and collaborative tech city).

Nick Hill, Chief Executive at Tātaki Auckland Unlimited says: “Tech Tāmaki Makaurau is an exciting and ambitious programme, which aims to have a powerful impact on driving long-term economic growth, innovation, productivity, state of living and wellbeing. This work facilitates growth in the region that will support the wider economy to thrive while building a foundation for future prosperity.”

Head of Tech and Innovation at Tātaki Auckland Unlimited, Marissa Brindley says: “In this first year, we have delivered on an impressive list of actions which deserve to be celebrated. Working with partners and industry has been key to this success and we look forward to what we can accomplish together in the years to come.”

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Some of the key achievements Tātaki Auckland Unlimited has been responsible for in the inaugural year of Tech Tāmaki Makaurau include:

  • In conjunction with Spark Foundation, commissioned Te Au Hangarau research to understand which factors influence participation and success of Māori in the tech industry.
  • Launched Auckland is Calling international talent attraction, achieving 200,000 unique website views in two months.
  • Launched the Migrants in Tech community event series with four events held bringing together over 100 attendees at each.
  • Established Aerospace Auckland Inc., an independent industry body to advance Auckland’s aerospace sector, with four events held.
  • Released the 2022 Auckland Tech Sector Insights report in conjunction with Technology Investment Network.
  • Facilitated the NZ CleanTech Mission to Singapore in partnership with Callaghan Innovation and New Zealand Trade and Enterprise.
  • Enabled five emerging deep tech companies to showcase their technology and innovation to a Prime Ministerial trade delegation from Finland.
  • In partnership with University of Auckland, delivered the Digital Manufacturing Light pilot to support SME manufacturing firms with digital transformation.

Nick Hill says Tech Tāmaki Makaurau found its origins in the inaugural Auckland’s Future, Now summit hosted by Tātaki Auckland Unlimited in 2020.

“Tātaki Auckland Unlimited developed and delivered Auckland’s Future, Now as a way to explore how local and central government, the public and private sectors, and industry could mobilise and work together to advance the economic recovery of Tāmaki Makaurau through COVID-19. A key commitment emerging from the summit was a strategy to grow Auckland’s tech industry and it’s fantastic to see that idea brought to life as Tech Tāmaki Makaurau, delivering positive outcomes for the region, its businesses and people,” says Nick Hill.

Recently, Tātaki Auckland Unlimited launched The State of the City 2023 report, an annual global benchmarking project, in partnership with Committee for Auckland and Deloitte.

Head of Tech and Innovation at Tātaki Auckland Unlimited, Marissa Brindley says: “The findings from The State of the City study reinforce several drivers and objectives behind the development of Tech Tāmaki Makaurau. The report highlighted the need for an increase in focus on innovation and fostering wider ways to innovate, as well as the importance of connecting Auckland into international markets, cities and clusters. It also identified having tighter co-ordination between tech employers and education providers will be crucial to grow the domestic talent pipeline. This validation of the Tech Tāmaki Makaurau strategy and actions within an international context is highly informative and encouraging.”

Nick Hill says: “Tātaki Auckland Unlimited has had a significant reduction in funding as part of Auckland Council’s recent annual budget. Through this, we remain committed to delivering key aspects of Tech Tāmaki Makaurau, with a focus on the growth of deep tech industries with strong ties to universities and investment, as outlined in our 2022-2025 Statement of Intent. I feel confident in us building on the momentum gained already.”

Looking ahead, the industry prioritisations for the second year of the Tech Tāmaki Makaurau strategy are:

  • Continuing to focus on developing a pipeline of diverse talent for the industry, particularly Māori and Pacific youth.
  • Showcasing Auckland domestically and internationally as a place of tech and innovation for the purpose of attracting investment and talent.
  • Fostering partnerships with offshore tech hubs, investors and companies.
  • Seeking to understand how we can support ethical adoption and leverage of emerging AI technology for the benefit of Auckland’s tech ecosystem.
  • Leveraging Auckland’s strengths in engineering and science-based innovation.
  • Fostering culture of collaboration and knowledge sharing within our domestic tech ecosystem.

A video capturing highlights from the first year of Tech Tāmaki Makaurau is available online here. (available 10am on 10 October)

notes to editor

Tech Tāmaki Makaurau year one achievements:

  • Te Au Hangarau: The Wave of Technology research
    Commissioned by Tātaki Auckland Unlimited and Spark Foundation, the Te Au Hangarau research examined the participation gap of Māori in the Tāmaki Makaurau tech sector.
  • Ambicultural Kickstart Pilot
    In partnership with Amia, Tātaki Auckland Unlimited launched the Ambicultural Kickstart Pilot, a cultural capability building programme for Auckland tech industry employers.
  • Tech23
    Tātaki Auckland Unlimited, NZTech, the Ministry of Education and Media Design School partnered to host Tech23, an event designed to inspire Year 11-13 ākonga (learners) to consider technology as a career path.
  • Auckland is Calling
    Tātaki Auckland Unlimited’s global tech talent attraction campaign Auckland is Calling targeted international senior tech talent, in particular Immigration NZ’s Green List of hard-to-fill, highly skilled roles that provide a priority pathway to residency.
  • Migrants in Tech
    Migrants in Tech is a Tātaki Auckland Unlimited initiative designed to build a support network for recent newcomers to Auckland in the tech industry. Over the past year, four events and one webinar have been held, with 100 participants at each event.
  • TIN Tech Insights Report
    The 2022 Auckland Tech Insights Report was commissioned by Tātaki Auckland Unlimited and conducted by Technology Investment Network (TIN). The report focuses on the 112 Auckland-based companies that featured on last year’s TIN200; the annual list of the country’s top 200 high-tech export companies by revenue earned.
  • Aerospace Auckland Inc.
    Tātaki Auckland Unlimited is one of the founding members of Aerospace Auckland Inc., an independent industry body to advance Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland’s aerospace sector.
  • Medtech-IQ Tāmaki Makaurau
    In collaboration with Auckland University of Technology; Te Whatu Ora - Te Toka Tumai and Ara Manawa; Te Whatu Ora – Waitematā; i3 Institute for Innovation & Improvement and Callaghan Innovation; Tātaki Auckland Unlimited championed and supported the establishment of Medtech-IQ Tāmaki Makaurau, a virtual collaborative ecosystem for the medtech sector.
  • CleanTech Mission
    Tātaki Auckland Unlimited is one of several partners behind the New Zealand CleanTech Mission, an initiative led by Callaghan Innovation, along with New Zealand Growth Capital Partners, Science for Technological Innovation National Science Challenge, Auckland UniServices, Ara Ake, New Zealand Trade and Enterprise and KiwiNet. In October 2022, Tataki Auckland Unlimited facilitated the CleanTech Mission to Singapore with 12 Auckland companies participating.
  • Finnish trade delegation
    Tātaki Auckland Unlimited hosted a trade delegation from Finland, including the Prime Minister of Finland and its Minister for Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade.
  • Digital Manufacturing Light pilot
    The Digital Manufacturing Light pilot supports SME manufacturing firms to take their first steps towards digital transformation and was delivered by Tātaki Auckland Unlimited in partnership with the University of Auckland.
  • Tech Connect
    Tātaki Auckland Unlimited hosted two Tech Connect events to facilitate connection and collaboration in the industry.

About Tātaki Auckland Unlimited
Tātaki Auckland Unlimited is Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland’s economic and cultural agency committed to making our region a desirable place to live, work, visit, invest and do business.

About Tech Tāmaki Makaurau 
Tech Tāmaki Makaurau is a three-year programme of action to grow Auckland’s technology industry, to create jobs and to attract talent and investment to the region. Its vision is for the region to be a global epicentre of innovation, technology and talent that creates an inclusive and equitable future for all.

About The State of the City 2023 report
The State of the City - Benchmarking Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland’s international performance 2023 report is an annual benchmarking project to better understand how the Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland region is faring on a global scale. The report was initiated in 2023 by Committee for Auckland in partnership with Tātaki Auckland Unlimited and Deloitte, and is part of a three-year study.

The report ranks Auckland against a series of pillars that successful cities should be focused on: political and social environment, medical and health considerations, public services and transport, consumer goods, recreation, natural environment, and housing.

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