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Kokiri

The first cohort of Kōkiri, a government-funded business accelerator programme, will soon learn if their innovations will receive investment.

The 10 early-stage businesses demonstrated their ideas to a packed audience earlier this month.

They were the first cohort of Kōkiri, a four-month programme delivered by Te Wānanga o Aotearoa and Callaghan Innovation, which aims to get high-growth potential business start-ups investment and market ready.

The Kōkiri participants received mentoring and financial help, enabling them to focus solely on their businesses for the duration of the programme.

The demonstrations were an opportunity for the businesses to present their ideas to public and private stakeholders.

The participants included;

Moving Pros: A company that makes it easy to compare multiple moving quotes in one place.

SeeCom: Which is prototyping the world’s first digital Interactive Sign Language Game, a virtual game-based experience of learning sign language through means of interaction and movements in front of digital screens.

Biome: Which turns pest-algae Didymo into high-end fashion materials. These high-quality materials are produced sustainably and strive to improve the New Zealand environment.

Origins: Is a cloud-based platform that provides complete visibility of the honey supply chain from on the land to the end consumer.

Papa Taiao: Papa Taiao Earthcare works with rangatahi across Aotearoa and across iwi to guide them into a life focused on social, ecological, economic and cultural regeneration through enterprise in rural and urban communities.

The Realness: Is the new way to find owner-operated eateries without having to rely on review sites, advertising platforms, personal opinion sites, magazines and mainstream media.

Arataki: Is an app that enables users to receive information about sites of cultural significance using a custom mobile application and proximity technology.

MyReo: The goal of MyReo is to provide Māori millenials with the digital tools and resources they need to learn, practice and grow in te reo Māori.

Hikurangi Enterprises: Are the first New Zealand company to take a New Zealand-grown medicinal cannabis product to clinical trials and plan to be the market leaders by 2019.

Akudos: Is a cloud based awards management system designed to streamline the awards process from beginning to end.

Aisha Ross, Innovation Development Group director at Te Wānanga o Aotearoa, said there was an overwhelming amount of positive feedback to the different ventures and the presentation evening itself.

“This related to the growth and development of the ventures, the execution of the event, the Kōkiri Business Accelerator kaupapa, Te Wānanga o Aotearoa and its partner organisations.”

Mr Ross said a number of these businesses and their innovations are being lined up by investors but with negotiations still progressing, these details are confidential.

“At this time I’m unable to disclose the funds raised by the ventures, however indicatively it is substantial,” he said.

The event included a number of key business leaders, angel investment groups, partners and sponsors.

Speakers at the event included Air New Zealand Cultural Specialist Henare Johnson, Callaghan Innovation CEO Vic Crone and New Zealand First deputy leader Fletcher Tabuteau.

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