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R&D intensive businesses dominate at NZ International Business Awards (NZIBA)

This article was published on 27 October 2013

Research and development (R&D) intensive companies earned the lion’s share of prizes at this year’s New Zealand International Business Awards (NZIBA), announced last night in Auckland.

Callaghan Innovation CEO Dr Mary Quin says the results demonstrate the key role investment in innovation plays in achieving business success.

“The results of this year’s awards show a clear link between investing in technological innovation and retaining or developing the kind of competitive edge that leads to international business success,” Dr Quin said.

Judges awarded the 2013 NZIBA Supreme Award to innovative agri-tech company Tru-Test, a leading manufacturer of high tech equipment for the agricultural and security sectors with a global network spanning more than 100 countries. It also won the ‘Best Business Operating Internationally – over $50 million’ category. Tru-test is an R&D intensive business that has received more than $4m in government R&D co-funding, administered by Callaghan Innovation.

The winner of the ‘International Success through the application of Innovation’ category, sponsored by Callaghan Innovation, was Auckland-based Buckley Systems, a world leading manufacturer of precision electromagnets, ion beam physics hardware, and high-vacuum equipment. Buckley Systems partners with companies driving technology advancements in human health, electronics, energy and security. Committed to ongoing R&D and innovation, Buckley Systems is also the recipient of significant government R&D co-funding.

Government R&D support has also benefited many of the other category winners, including ARANZ Geo, developer of 3D geological solutions for the mining, hydrogeology and geothermal industries; Gentrack, a specialist in software solutions for international utility companies and airports that are now used in 25 countries; and 3i innovation Ltd, which designs and manufactures active on-road LED guidance systems based on patented technology developed at the University of Auckland.

Auckland UniServices, which partners with Callaghan Innovation in supporting business innovation, won the category of ‘James & Wells Best Commercialisation of Intellectual Property in International Business’.

“The success of these companies clearly demonstrates how government support for R&D is helping increase business R&D spending,” says Dr Mary Quin.

“We congratulate not only the 2013 winners of these awards but also the many other innovative companies driving New Zealand’s economic growth.”