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A successful new start up showcase event this year was Caffeination. A celebration of all things coffee in New Zealand’s Coffee Capital.
Mario Wynands and a couple of friends wanted to make video games for a living so started their own business in Wellington 17 years ago.
“There’s just a lot of creative and technical talent that’s able to come together and get things off the ground.”
“Now, with the opening up of the digital age, it’s just becoming easier and easier for us to get our product into every market in the world.”
Wellington born and bred, Mario says Wellington is a perfect place to set up a high tech business.
“It’s a great city to collaborate and to build on ideas, to find great people – we have lots of great learning institutions here – so there’s just a lot of creative and technical talent that’s able to come together and get things off the ground.
And for Mario and the staff at Pik Pok, getting to work to make games couldn’t be easier.
“To get to work in the morning is 12 minutes walk for me. Most of the studio actually has less than 15 min commute whether that’s walking, cycling bus train or by car. It’s just very, very accessible.”
Visual effects whiz Seb Marino came to Wellington to make James Cameron’s blockbuster Avatar and has since founded a number of his own companies in the city.
“My favourite thing about being in Wellington is that it’s the kind of place that lets you write your own story.”
Seb, an Academy Award-winner for the visual effects in the Star Wars prequels, says Wellington has an exciting mix of people that makes things happen.
“You have this amalgamation of interesting people – artists, engineers, some from the film industry, some from other sectors – all coming together in this place and doing cool stuff, and not being afraid to swing for the fences.
“If you look at what Weta Digital has done, I mean they are absolutely the world class visual effects company. And it’s staffed by the best computer graphics researchers in the world. So to say that some of them have left and are doing other interesting things in town should not be a surprise to anyone.”
Catalyst IT began outsourced services in Wellington in 1997 with an application hosted on two servers.
From these small beginnings, Catalyst has grown consistently year by year to the point where they are now New Zealand's largest open source service provider with offices all over the world.
Philip Fierlinger is the Head of Design and Co-Founder of Xero Accounting Software in Wellington.
The company was recently named the most innovative growth company in the world by Forbes.com. "Xero raising nearly $325 million in capital – it's proven that you can build a globally viable business here."
"Kiwis have a great entrepreneurial spirit and immense talent that is out of proportion and doesn’t make sense – they’re always thinking of the bigger picture and broader community".
"I still cannot understand and reconcile how much amazing talent is here, it’s phenomenal".
"Wellington is a fantastic place to build a global business with the talent, creativity, passion and diversity the city attracts." - Rod Drury, CEO, Xero.
Previous Did you know... Next
Wellington has the most educated workforce in New Zealand
1Top ranked labour environment on the FDI Asia Pacific Cities of the Future 14
One of the top 20 most innovative cities on the Innovation Cities Asia Index
Previous Did you know... Next
Wellington has around 750 cafes and restaurants
Wellington has 2,110hrs of sunshine per year
Wellington region has a population of 492,500
Wellingtonians have an average commute to work of only 5km
Wellington has 363km of mountain biking and walking tracks
Wellington's median house price is $455,899