Education Policy | Post Primary | Preschool | Primary | Tertiary | Search


UC-born robot company wins a major NZ business award

Invert Robotics CEO
James Robertson
Invert Robotics CEO James Robertson

UC-born robot company wins a major NZ business award

August 29, 2012

University of Canterbury-born company Invert Robotics has won the annual ANZ Flying Start Business Plan’s supreme award and $56,000 in prizes.

The world class robotic inspection company, based on the UC campus, received the award at a special event presentation in Wellington today.

``This is not only fantastic news for our company and UC but it’s great for our clients as well,’’ Invert Robotics chief executive James Robertson said after receiving the prize.

This success comes on the heels of Invert Robotics winning the New Zealand Hi-Tech Start –up of the Year Award earlier this year. Its wall-climbing robots are the only ones in the world that can be used to inspect stainless steel structures in an industrial environment, outside a lab.

Invert Robotics is already earning revenue. The cutting edge tech company has inspected milk powder dryers for Westland dairy in its first major contract.

They were founded as a result of research performed at the University of Canterbury (UC), the intellectual property for which was subsequently licensed from UC.

Robertson said today they had been targeting NZ's largest export market (milk production) to ensure the market was large enough to sustain the company while they continued development of robots for even larger international markets such as the petrochemical storage industry.

``These industries face significant revenue losses if cracks go undetected in their equipment and perform regular inspections. By providing the safest, most accurate inspection method we will secure a recurring revenue stream.’’

Invert has spent the last 18 months developing a robot to service the dairy industry and over the next 12 months they plan to build market share using their technology.

``After we have become the market standard method for inspection of stainless dairy equipment we will look at entry to similar markets overseas. A portion of revenue will be used to develop robots for new markets, beginning with the petrochemical storage industry,’’ Robertson said.

``We have had lots of interest from construction and service companies in Australia, Asia, the USA and throughout the Middle East. There is a worldwide trend towards safer work practices and it is a no brainer to remove people from hazardous areas.’’

They have patents pending surrounding climbing robots and the adhesion mechanisms for them that they have developed either in-house or at UC.


© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Howard Davis: Emerald Fennell's Promising Young Woman'

The Guardian needed not one, but three reviews to do justice to Fennell's unsettling approach, which indicates exactly how ambiguous and controversial its message really is. More>>

Howard Davis: Jill Trevelyan's Rita Angus

Although Angus has become one of Aotearoa’s best-loved painters, the story of her life remained little known and poorly understood before Jill Trevelyan's acclaimed and revelatory biography, which won the Non Fiction Award at the Montana New Zealand Book Awards in 2009, and has now been republished by Te Papa press. More>>

Howard Davis: The Back of the Painting

Painting conservators are the forensic pathologists of the art world. While they cannot bring their subjects back to life, they do provide fascinating insights into the precise circumstances of a painting's creation, its material authenticity, and constructive methodology. More>>

Howard Davis: Black Panthers on the Prowl

A passionate and gripping political drama from Shaka King, this is an informative and instructive tale of human frailty that centers around the charismatic Chicago Black Panther leader Fred Hampton, who was murdered at the age of twenty-one during a police raid. More>>

Howard Davis: Controlling the High Ground

Stephen Johnson's raw and angry film not only poses important questions with scrupulous authenticity, but also provides a timely reminder of the genocidal consequences of casual bigotry and xenophobia. More>>

Howard Davis: Dryzabone - Robert Conolly's The Dry

After the terrible devastation caused by last year’s bushfires, which prompted hundreds of Australians to shelter in the ocean to escape incineration and destroyed uncountable amounts of wildlife, The Dry has been released during a totally different kind of dry spell. More>>

Howard Davis: Hit the Road, Jack - Chloé Zhao's Nomadland

Nomadland is perhaps the ultimately 'road' movie as it follows a group of dispossessed and disenfranchised vagabonds who find a form of communal refuge in camp sites and trailer parks after the economic contraction of 2008. More>>



  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland