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Careers New Zealand Purchases Motivational Website

Careers New Zealand Purchases Motivational Website

Careers New Zealand announced today that it has purchased OOMPHER – a motivational website of interviews with high profile and successful New Zealanders.

“OOMPHER’s founder Jake Millar was just 18 when he developed the website,” Careers New Zealand Chief Executive Keith Marshall said today.

“Through perseverance and hard work, he has built up a significant video bank of ‘wise words’ from professionals from a wide range of backgrounds including business, arts, politics and sports.

“The site complements other Careers New Zealand work aimed at helping young people make good career decisions which benefit both themselves and the country.

“Over the next few months Careers New Zealand will be looking at how we maintain both the motivational aspect of OOMPHER, and its ‘by youth, for youth’ focus.

“We will also be closely linking the site to other tools and resources we manage so that young people who are inspired by what they see on OOMPHER can get help to identify subject and qualification options to support their ambitions,” Mr Marshall said.

Jake Millar said establishing OOMPHER had been hard work but very satisfying.

“The Careers New Zealand acquisition is really exciting because it’ll mean lots more school careers advisors will be interacting with the site. They can really highlight the inspirational angle to their students.”

Mr Marshall said developing new and existing digital tools to help people make informed learning and work choices was a key priority for Careers New Zealand.

“We have more than 4 million unique visits to our website each year and giving those visitors access to a range of career-related services enhances their experience.

“The purchase of OOMPHER has the advantage of coming with strong commercial sponsorship and we will be working closely with sponsors to build on those commercial partnerships for the benefit of all young New Zealanders,” Mr Marshall said.

Media contact for Careers New Zealand: Moerangi Vercoe - 027 548 4568 Media contact for Jake Millar: Leigh Harris - 021 594 052


A teen entrepreneur sure to stay in the spotlight has sold his first start-up to a crown entity.

Jake Millar today announced the sale of OOMPHER to government careers advisory service Careers New Zealand. OOMPHER was started by Millar as an 18-year-old determined to carve his own path as an entrepreneur.

Taking inspiration from the drive and determination of top performers in their fields, Millar, now 19, filmed video interviews with high flyers such as butchery mogul Sir Peter ‘The Mad Butcher’ Leitch, MasterChef winner and co-founder of My Food Bag Nadia Lim, rowing gold medallist Mahe Drysdale and more than 80 other luminaries. Real estate mogul Mike Pero was also interviewed, and was an instrumental early supporter.

Those videos, 55 of which are currently uploaded to view online at the OOMPHER website are central to Millar’s message that success comes from ambition and hard work – and in many cases success need not be accompanied by a university degree.

“I started OOMPHER on a spark of inspiration and not much else,’’ he said.

“From day one we had firm goals to show other young people what’s achievable by profiling people who’ve built wildly successful careers and companies, and become real influencers in their fields simply because they had the vision and the drive to carry it out.”

Millar, the 2013 head prefect of Christchurch Boys’ High School declined a $40,000 law scholarship at the University of Otago in favour of forming the start-up.

“I have a ‘start yesterday’ approach because there’s no use waiting for success to find you. While I have huge respect for knowledge and learning, I feel those years it would’ve taken to get a degree will be better spent doing my own projects.”

The West Coaster from Greymouth was dealt a blow as a 15-year-old, when his father, Skydive NZ director Rod Miller, was one of nine people killed in the 2010 Fox Glacier plane crash.

“My dad's death really brought home the fact that you can be living life to the full one minute, then gone the next – so there’s no use wasting time on things you don’t absolutely love.”

Forward momentum is a constant in Millar’s life, and he has embraced OOMPHER’s sale to Careers New Zealand.

“I’m hugely excited about this development, and things have turned out better than anyone could’ve imagined. This is a new beginning for OOMPHER, where Careers New Zealand will take the site next level and discover new and amazing distribution channels.”

Careers New Zealand Chief Executive Keith Marshall said the match with OOMPHER was a great fit.

“The site complements other Careers New Zealand work aimed at helping young people make good career decisions which benefit both themselves and the country,” he said.

“Over the next few months Careers New Zealand will be looking at how we maintain both the motivational aspect of OOMPHER, and its ‘by youth, for youth’ focus.


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