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  • 05 Jan 2021 11:28 AM | Mike Hearn (Administrator)

    As part of ongoing efforts to reduce the COVID-19 risk to aircrew, Air New Zealand will re-route its North America flights to allow aircrew to overnight in Honolulu rather than Los Angeles or San Francisco.

    From Monday 11 January, aircrew on all cargo flights between New Zealand and the United States will overnight in Honolulu. North America passenger services will be routed via Honolulu from 2 February.

    The changes mean flights from New Zealand will make a brief stop in Honolulu to change crew before continuing onto Los Angeles or San Francisco. Aircrew operating into those ports will then remain airside and operate the return flight to Honolulu where there will be a further crew change to operate back to New Zealand.

    Re-routing North American flights through Honolulu means aircrew can overnight in a lower risk destination while still maintaining vital connections into North America.

    Air New Zealand Chief Executive Officer Greg Foran says operating in a pandemic means the airline is constantly assessing the risks to its people and operation.

    “While it’s important to keep trade routes open and passenger services operating for our customers, looking after our people is our first priority.

    “I’d like to thank everyone who has helped us to move so quickly in re-routing our flights, from officials in New Zealand and the United States, to our ground partners and our teams who have worked through the holiday break to make this happen.”

    Air New Zealand has worked closely with the unions representing aircrew to progress these operational changes rapidly for the safety and wellbeing of those aircrew operating into high risk destinations.

    The airline also continues to work closely with the Government and Ministry of Health officials on safe travel protocols to protect employees, customers and the community.

    Air New Zealand currently operates eight cargo and two passenger and cargo services per week between New Zealand and Los Angeles in addition to four cargo services between New Zealand and San Francisco and one cargo service from Australia to North America. Customers will not be able to end their journey in Honolulu. The airline will be contacting cargo customers and passengers affected by the changes in flights directly.


    Issued by Air New Zealand Communications.

  • 18 Dec 2020 11:06 AM | Mike Hearn (Administrator)

    Advance purchase agreement signed for NVX-CoV2373, Novavax’ adjuvanted protein vaccine candidate

    GAITHERSBURG, Md., Dec. 16, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Novavax, Inc. (Nasdaq: NVAX), a late-stage biotechnology company developing next-generation vaccines for serious infectious diseases, today announced an Advance Purchase Agreement with the government of New Zealand for the purchase of 10.7 million doses of NVX-CoV2373, Novavax’ candidate vaccine against COVID-19. Currently in Phase 3 clinical testing in the United Kingdom for the prevention of COVID-19, NVX-CoV2373 is a recombinant protein vaccine adjuvanted with Novavax’ proprietary Matrix-M™ to enhance the immune response. “The global reach of the pandemic requires that all regions of the world have an adequate supply of vaccine available to protect their entire citizenry,” said Stanley C. Erck, President and Chief Executive Officer of Novavax. “We appreciate the confidence of the government of New Zealand and are pleased to contribute to ensuring that New Zealanders will have access to a protein-based vaccine through standard distribution channels, should it receive regulatory approval.” Under the terms of the agreement, Novavax will manufacture NVX-CoV2373 with a target of delivering initial doses by mid-2021. The company will work with Medsafe, New Zealand’s regulatory agency, to obtain product approvals as needed. Given the urgency of timely approval and delivery of vaccine during the pandemic, the regulatory review process may leverage review by prioritized regulatory bodies such as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, European Medicines Agency and/or Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Authority in the United Kingdom. Additional terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

  • 16 Dec 2020 5:15 PM | Mike Hearn (Administrator)

    A defence analyst says a new surveillance and anti-submarine aircraft training deal with Boeing should boost New Zealand's military credibility in years ahead.

    Boeing has been awarded a $153 million contract to train Royal New Zealand Air Force crew and maintenance staff in the use of the new P-8A Poseidons.

    The Government has invested $2.3 billion in four of the Boeing maritime patrol aircraft.

    Other P-8A Poseidon operators included the US Navy, the Royal Australian Air Force and the Royal Air Force.

    Political scientist and aeronautical engineering graduate, Associate Professor Stephen Hoadley, said the aircraft would pay for themselves in the long run.

    But much of that pay-off came in intangible terms like international credibility which was hard for Treasury accountants to measure, Hoadley said.

    "It makes New Zealand interoperable with the Five Eyes partners, from whom New Zealand gets a lot more intelligence data than it provides."

    Hoadley, from the University of Auckland, said the P-8A could enhance New Zealand's surveillance skills in the South Pacific and potentially relieve some pressure on Australia.

    "It's a fortuitous and logical division of labour," Hoadley told the Herald.

    He said the training could also help RNZAF staff work better with allies in years ahead.

    "It makes the individuals who learn to fly the aircraft also interoperable."

    He said when allies knew how to operate each others' aircraft, pilots and other staff could be seconded to other countries if needed.

    Hoadley said Chinese expansionism in the South Pacific presented another challenge.

    He said Beijing used a "highly-subsidised and semi-official" fishing fleet to gather information and increase its influence in the ocean.

    "It's expanding its operations in the South Pacific all the time. These aircraft will be able to keep tabs on them."

    The Orions would be useful in anti-poaching operations, Hoadley said.

    Mike Yardley, Ministry of Defence Deputy Secretary for capability delivery, said a simulator and classroom training suite Boeing provided in the deal was important.

    "The simulated environment allows for crews to be trained to fly in more diverse and challenging scenarios," Yardley said.

    "The suite is also a safe, economical and environmentally friendly way to train personnel."

    He said funding for the US$109 million training suite came from within the NZ$2.3 billion budget for P-8A Poseidon fleet, already announced back in 2018.

    "The Royal New Zealand Air Force already use a range of simulator suites for training, including the NH90 helicopter and T-6 Texan Aircraft," Yardley added.

    Boeing on Wednesday said the US Navy awarded it the Foreign Military Sales contract to provide training for the Poseidons.

    The contract included a weapons systems training programme.

    The company said it would prepare the RNZAF to operate and maintain "the world's premier maritime patrol and reconnaissance aircraft for decades to come".

    Boeing said all training for the new aircraft would eventually happen at RNZAF Base Ohakea, near Palmerston North.

    Aerospace analysis website Shephard Media said initial crews were training in Jacksonville, Florida.

    Training systems were expected to be installed and ready for training at Ohakea in January 2024, Shephard added.

    The new aircraft were bought to replace Orions which entered service in the 1960s and were upgraded in the early 1980s and given the P-3K2 designation.

    The P-3K2 this year conducted patrols supporting New Zealand Customs and surveillance flights to report on damage Cyclone Harold caused in Vanuatu and Fiji in April.

    As the national coronavirus lockdown neared its end, one P-3K2 conducted surveillance for police of recreational boats in Auckland over Anzac Day weekend.

    The ageing aircraft's replacement was discussed for years before the $2.3 billion deal was signed.

    At one point, Parliament's Foreign Affairs Defence and Trade Committee considered replacing the Orions with drones.

    Last month, Forbes reported that the new P-8A Poseidons might be able to locate submarines from the air thanks to a "radical" new Raytheon radar system.

    By: John Weekes
    Reporter, NZ Herald

  • 03 Dec 2020 11:32 AM | Mike Hearn (Administrator)

    Heads will turn out on the water this summer with the arrival of high-end American boat brand, Crownline to our shores.

    Award winning Hawkes Bay company Euro City Ltd has secured the distribution rights to Crownline boats and that means one thing for people out on the water. Boat envy just got real.

    Entrepreneur and managing director of Euro City, Terry Elmsly says he had a choice of boat manufacturers to distribute, but in the end, it came down to two important factors.

    "I ran with the boat that in my view is most suitable for the New Zealand market. I also have a passion for beautiful things. My mother will tell you I have been like this since I was little. Because I deal in high end cars, I struggle with something that represents mediocrity and so I chose Crownline because of the quality it represents."

    Crownline made a brief appearance in the country in the early 1990's. Since then, the Illinois company has changed ownership, undergone a large restructure and evolved into one of America's most respected brands.

    "The construction methods the company uses are exceptional. It doesn't cut corners and the quality is all there. When the first shipment arrived in July, I was totally blown away by how good the boats actually are. The level of fitment inside them is sensational. Then when you put them in the water - the ride is something else," says Elmsly.

    Recently he took a group of boating journalists and staff out to test a Bow Rider. "The waters were choppy at Gulf Harbour and people were warning us not to take it out. But we got back, and nobody was wet. Everybody was blown away with how good the boat was in the rough."

    There are some very good-looking boats in the range, he says, and clients are spoilt for choice with 35 model derivatives. The vessels range from 19 to 35 feet and can be speced to suit individual requirements.

    The 220CC Finseeker Centre Consul is perfect for a fish and standard features include engine options with 26 variants ranging from 175 to 300 horsepower. Twin Garmin 7 touchscreens, six built-in rod holders, six wet sound splash-proof speakers, aerated bait well and many, many more features will keep the family in comfort and safety without compromising fishability, says Elmsly.

    "I recently sold a Finseeker to a Hawkes Bay local and rang him up to see how the fishing was going. He told me he was pinching himself - the boat is that good."

    The smooth ride on rough waters is almost a metaphor for Elmsly's business attitude.

    While many businesses are hunkering down in response to Covid, Elmsly has taken the gloves off and by expanding his luxury car dealership into the marine business.

    Choppy waters are not something to fear with adaptation, planning and a vision.

    "I never look at the negativity that life throws at you. Over the centuries there's been world wars and pandemics, but the sun always comes up at some point."

    While Covid is this year's disaster, he believes the car industry faces more challenges with the electrification of the motor industry. Expansion into the marine industry by choosing a reputable boat manufacturer to partner with is his way of future proofing his staff and business with the challenges to come.
    He believes automotive servicing will change with electrification and as a result up to 40% of his car servicing might be lost in the next decade.

    "Being a realist, we are probably facing a downturn in our work, so we need to look at something else. If you take 30 to 40 percent of revenue away, you are facing a lot of unemployment. I'm attempting to future proof for my staff. I'm okay as I'm at the end of my career anyway, but my staff have to be able to work and keep going.

    "I know from experience putting an Audi flag up doesn't necessarily mean you will get people flocking in the door straight away - you have to earn your position in the market."

    The payoffs have already started with the expansion resulting in the company employing more staff and looking for more marine specialists to come on board. Orders for boats are coming in and as a result, Elmsly plans to focus on after sales care for Auckland clients.

    He has successfully negotiated the acquisition of a marine business that has a 50 year history in the city. "The intention is to grow this business, retain staff and adopt the same principles of customer care of our award-winning Hawkes Bay base."

    This attention to customer care will also include the addition of a marine shop to its inventory, "This is so we can offer customers everything they need from life jackets to anchors to keep them safe and having fun out on the water," says Elmsly.

  • 02 Dec 2020 4:19 PM | Mike Hearn (Administrator)

    Discovery, Inc. (“Discovery”), the global leader in real-life entertainment, has completed its acquisition of New Zealand’s leading independent free-to-air commercial broadcaster, MediaWorks TV Ltd, now operating as Discovery NZ Limited.

    The acquisition makes Discovery a major player in New Zealand’s free-to-air television market and includes the entertainment channels Three and Bravo, streaming service ThreeNow, multi-platform news and current affairs service Newshub, as well as channels Three+1, Bravo+1, The Edge TV and The Breeze TV. Discovery will continue the existing partnership with NBCUniversal for the Bravo channel joint venture.

    Discovery will now look to combine its businesses across New Zealand and Australia into one organisation spanning both countries, a move designed to increase scale across the region as a whole. The business will be jointly led by Glen Kyne and Rebecca Kent, General Managers for New Zealand and Australia, who report to Simon Robinson, Discovery President APAC.

    Simon Robinson, Discovery President APAC, said: “Today is an exciting moment for Discovery as we significantly expand our operations in New Zealand, and look to create a trans-Tasman powerhouse organisation led by Glen Kyne and Rebecca Kent. The acquisition of MediaWorks TV, with its popular brands and prominent position in New Zealand, will be pivotal in achieving long-term growth and success in both markets.”

    Glen Kyne, General Manager, New Zealand & Australia, said: “I am incredibly excited to officially join the Discovery family today and welcome this new beginning for our people, audiences and customers, as well as the production companies that we support both locally and abroad.

    “We have worked hard to get Three to a clear number two position in the free-to-air market*, and now have the opportunity to apply that same focus across the wider portfolio to further strengthen our position. Our increased share in New Zealand, alongside our established offering in Australia, will enable us to realise the full value of Discovery brands, delivering premium news and entertainment to our audiences and enhanced solutions for our advertisers.”

    Rebecca Kent, General Manager, Australia & New Zealand, said: “This is the next phase of growth for our region, giving us an opportunity to build audiences further with locally produced and internationally acquired content across multiple screens. We are focused on bringing audiences the local stories that Discovery and Three are renowned for through our successful local productions, and using Discovery’s international network to bring local audiences the best of our stories from around the world.”

    Discovery has had a presence in Australia and New Zealand for more than 25 years, when it first launched Discovery Channel on Foxtel and Sky. In addition to the Discovery NZ Limited brands, the New Zealand portfolio includes free-to-air channels, Choice and HGTV, and six pay-TV channels - Discovery Channel, TLC, Animal Planet, Food Network, Living and Discovery Turbo.

    Discovery Australia’s portfolio includes eight pay-TV channels across Foxtel and Fetch - Discovery Channel, TLC, Investigation Discovery, Animal Planet, Discovery Turbo, HGTV, Food Network and Travel Channel, free-to-air channel 9Rush, a partnership with Nine Entertainment Co, and golf streaming service GOLFTV.

  • 19 Nov 2020 5:36 PM | Mike Hearn (Administrator)

    New Zealand cancer diagnostics company Pacific Edge Limited (NZX: PEB) today announces a new leadership structure to strengthen the executive team of its US based subsidiary, Pacific Edge Diagnostics USA Limited (PEDUSA).

    Coupled with this Pacific Edge is boosting its in-market US sales force to accelerate sales of its bladder cancer Cxbladder products in the Company’s largest market.

    US-based Non-Executive Director David Levison has been appointed Executive Chairman of PEDUSA and will report directly to Pacific Edge Group CEO David Darling. PEDUSA Chief Executive Jackie Walker and the US based team will report to Mr Levison, who will take up the new role and step down from the Pacific Edge Board, effective today.

    Pacific Edge Group Chief Executive David Darling said: “The commercially momentous July outcome provides coverage by the US Federal Government’s Centres for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) for Cxbladder fully enabling national reimbursement for the 62 million patients covered by CMS.

    “This achievement, coupled with our growing commercial relationships with leading healthcare providers such as Kaiser Permanente, further validates Cxbladder’s recognition as an approved clinical test for urologists, encouraging other healthcare organisations and insurers to bring our Cxbladder products into their battery of cancer diagnostic tools.

    “Combined, these developments are now driving a step change in the growth of our US business. To meet this growth we are stepping up our US team with the appointment of David Levison, the expansion of our US sales force in key territories and the addition of a new role in medical affairs to support our medical director. David’s appointment will also help the Company overcome some of the Covid-19 related international travel restrictions.

    “David will add his expertise and networks to the US executive team, helping carry the load and to make the most of the significant opportunities Pacific Edge now has opening up in the US. Meanwhile, the scale-up in our sales force in some new US territories will extend our reach into the market and grow Cxbladder’s adoption.

    “David has spent 25 years in the healthcare industry, working across a range of sectors from pharmaceuticals to services and diagnostics. And, after more than four years on the Pacific Edge Board, David is very familiar with our products, systems, people and culture. Additionally, having founded and led several high growth medical and medical technology businesses in the US, he is acutely aware of the challenges and opportunities we face in growing our business in the US market. The Pacific Edge team is looking forward to working with him as they take advantage this growth opportunity.”

    Pacific Edge Chairman Chris Gallaher said obtaining David Levison’s agreement to move into the senior executive team and growing out the on-ground sales executive team are very positive steps for the Company and its growth in the US market.

    “David is very well credentialed for this new role and through his membership on the Pacific Edge Board, he has an excellent knowledge of the Company, its products and culture. I would like to thank David for his contribution as a Director. He has been an invaluable source of knowledge and advice on all aspects of our US business.”

    A replacement Non-Executive Director will be appointed in due course.

  • 19 Nov 2020 3:25 PM | Mike Hearn (Administrator)

    Company Builds a Future on Artificial Intelligence Starting with a Platform That Reads, Writes and Reasons Like a Lawyer.

    HOUSTON – November 17, 2020 – Onit, Inc., a leading provider of enterprise workflow solutions including enterprise legal management, contract lifecycle management and workflow automation, today announced that the company has acquired McCarthyFinch and its artificial intelligence platform that accelerates contract reviews and approvals by up to 70% and increases user productivity by more than 50%.

    The acquisition reinforces Onit’s innovation strategy to deliver powerful AI-based workflow and business process automation solutions. The company plans to further its innovation through AI by evolving its product offerings as well as the software provided by its legal operations management software subsidiary SimpleLegal.

    The technology will become an integral component of Onit’s new artificial intelligence platform Precedent, and the company’s first release on the platform will be ReviewAI.

    “Our vision is to build AI into our workflow platform and every product across the Onit and SimpleLegal product portfolios,” stated Eric M. Elfman, Onit CEO and co-founder. “AI will have an active role in everything from enterprise legal management to legal spend management and contract lifecycle management, resulting in continuous efficiencies and cost savings for corporate legal departments. Historically, legal departments have been thought of as black boxes where requests go in and information, decisions or contracts come out with no real transparency. AI has the potential to enhance transparency and contribute to stronger enterprisewide business collaboration in a way that conserves a lawyer’s valuable time.”

    McCarthyFinch’s breadth of AI expertise from lawyers, technologists and data scientists speaks to the ever-evolving needs of the legal profession and Onit customers.

    “AI is a natural extension of our evolution,” continued Elfman. “In addition to acquiring award-winning technology, we have gained some of the brightest minds in the AI space.”

    Nick Whitehouse, McCarthyFinch’s CEO and co-founder, is now the general manager of the newly rebranded Onit AI Center of Excellence. He has focused on digital innovation and AI for more than 15 years and was recognized in 2019 as the IDC DX Leader of the Year for his advocacy across the legal industry and Australasia. He is joined by McCarthyFinch’s vice president of legal, Jean Yang, who is now vice president of the Onit AI Center of Excellence.

    “McCarthyFinch has been dedicated to building world-leading AI that augments lawyers and helps automate low-value and time-intensive manual legal processes. Drafting contracts and redlining documents shouldn’t take up 70% of a lawyer’s time, as statistics suggest. There’s a better way to work,” stated Whitehouse. “With AI, we’ve dramatically changed the contract management lifecycle and enabled businesses to move faster, provide higher-quality services and lower the cost of legal services. We are excited to join the Onit team and apply AI to Onit’s contract lifecycle management solution and expansive product offerings.”

    Onit Is AI: Introducing Precedent and ReviewAI

    Onit’s new intelligence platform, Precedent, is uniquely positioned to complement its existing workflow automation platform, Apptitude, and drive AI and digital transformation in the legal market. The Precedent intelligence platform reads, writes and reasons like a lawyer, enabling legal and business professionals to get more work done faster. It combines machine learning and natural language processing so legal teams can automate tasks and processes to make them more efficient, cost-effective and faster.

    The first release on the Precedent intelligence platform, ReviewAI, focuses on pre-signature contract review. Law departments need a rapid path through drafting and negotiation to contract closure so they can accelerate the pace of doing business, increase contract compliance and enhance employee productivity. Using ReviewAI, lawyers can streamline intelligent activities like contract creation, redlining, complex negotiations and risk rating contracts on their terms. Through Precedent, ReviewAI learns from the vast inventory of a company’s contracts, leverages the company’s playbook and presents the results in a Microsoft Word plug-in so the legal team can work where it is accustomed to operating. Legal and contract teams can save up to 70% on review time, increase contract compliance and lower company risk.

    To learn more about the acquisition, listen to the Onit podcast featuring Elfman and Whitehouse and visit us online.

    About Onit     

    Onit is a global leader of workflow and artificial intelligence platforms and solutions for legal, compliance, sales, IT, HR and finance departments. With Onit, companies can transform best practices into smarter workflows, better processes and operational efficiencies. With a focus on enterprise legal management, matter management, spend management, contract lifecycle management and legal holds, the company operates globally and helps transform the way Fortune 500 companies and billion-dollar corporate legal departments bridge the gap between systems of record and systems of engagement. Onit helps customers find gains in efficiency, reduce costs and automate transactions faster. For more information, visit or call 1-800-281-1330.


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    For more information, contact:

    Melanie Brenneman
    Onit, Inc.

  • 11 Nov 2020 11:29 AM | Mike Hearn (Administrator)

    The creative work of a team of local animators is currently being showcased in 27 countries around the world.

    The three-minute short film, telling the tear-jerking story of the bond between a grandmother and granddaughter, was developed by Flux Animation for Disney's annual Christmas advertising campaign.

    While Flux has worked with Disney on a number of campaigns over the past few decades, the animation studio's general manager Joshua Forsman says this is the largest-scale piece of work his team has ever worked on for the entertainment juggernaut.

    Flux landed the brief for the job in the first week of lockdown and then spent the next six months working on the project around the clock.

    Forsman says that given the rapid turnaround, Flux established a 24-hour work cycle that saw contributors working on the project in New Zealand, Europe and even South America.

    "The limitations of geography disappeared due to coronavirus," says Forsman.

    Having visited Los Angeles a few weeks before New Zealand's lockdown occurred, Forsman said his team realised relatively early that they would have to get accustomed to remote work.

    "We saw how things were escalating in the United States and we knew the same was inevitable for New Zealand," he says.

    Before production on the Disney campaign started, Flux had already set up the entire team for remote work – meaning everyone was able to transition seamlessly into the strange working conditions.

    From the outset, the project posed a number of interesting creative challenges.

    Animation director Laban Dickinson says the challenge of making an ad resonate across 27 countries – and their cultures and languages – meant that Flux needed to find a way to tell the story without losing anything in translation.

    The creative team felt that the best way to do this was by telling the story without the use of dialogue and letting the expressions on the animated faces do all the talking.

    "In advertising, we normally only have around 60 seconds, so we felt quite fortunate to have three minutes to tell this story," says Dickinson.

    "We ended up using more of a short-film approach to the idea."

    The ad was launched in the UK as Disney's contribution to the Christmas advertising tradition in that country and it has since been rolled out around the globe.

    This is not the first time work by Flux has appeared on a giant global platform. A 2019 ad by Flux for Ram Trucks appeared on arguably the world's biggest advertising stage – the Super Bowl.

    Any time an ad appears in such a competitive space, the pressure is on to develop something that stands out from the crowd.

    This challenge of standing out in the cluttered Christmas ad market was already tough, but the stakes were heightened by the pressure of developing something suitable for a company long celebrated for its ability to enthral audiences.

    "It was the first time Disney had gone this route, so we really needed it to hold up," says Dickinson.

    If the early metrics are anything to go by, the campaign seems to have hit the mark by attracting over 1.8 million views online within the first 24 hours of its launch.

    And despite this success along with the recent appearance at the Super Bowl, the Flux team isn't ready to rest on its international laurels quite yet.

    "You're only ever as good as your last project," says Forsman.

    By: Damien Venuto

    Business Reporter, NZ Herald

  • 05 Nov 2020 7:12 PM | Mike Hearn (Administrator)

    New Zealand’s red meat sector continued to demonstrate its agility in the third quarter with exports to the United States growing by 50 per cent over the three months from July to September compared to a year earlier.

    Total exports to the US reached $400 million for the quarter, closely followed by a 42 per cent rise to the UK ($71m) and Germany, a 25 per cent increase to $70m.

    The growth in the third quarter offset a 25 per cent decline to China ($530m) although the value of sheepmeat and beef exports to China remains at an historically high level. Overall, exports in the third quarter were $1.69 billion, unchanged from the same period in 2019.

    For the year ending September 2020, exports were up eight per cent to $9.39 billion compared to the previous year. The value of exports to nearly all of the top 10 markets (except the Netherlands) increased.

    In the September month, overall red meat exports were worth $501 million, down six per cent from September 2019. Both China and Japan were down, but there were increases to United States, Germany and UK. Sheepmeat exports to the US, Germany and the UK rose, as did beef exports to the US and Canada.

    Sirma Karapeeva, chief executive of the Meat Industry Association, said the trade data was positive, especially given the volatility as a result of COVID-19.

    “There has been some shift from chilled to frozen product for sheepmeat as the industry pivoted away from the challenging food service sector into retail and e-commerce.

    “There was also some re-balancing to other markets from the record levels that were going to China last year. This demonstrates the industry’s ability to adjust product specifications and destinations to meet the demand from our global markets.

    “There are indications that demand in China will continue to increase and we anticipate strong buying patterns as China prepares for its Chinese New Year celebrations next year.

    “The red meat processing and exporting sector has been a real success story during the COVID-19 crisis and continues to generate crucial export revenue for the country when other sectors are facing significant headwinds.

    “However, we cannot be complacent. We are yet to see the full economic and social impact of COVID-19. With the UK, Europe and parts of the US going into a second lockdown, we can expect further disruptions in our global markets.

    “We are also concerned about potential disruptions to shipping lines from Europe, the impact of the last drought in New Zealand and the prospect of extreme dry conditions in the coming months. This means the uncertainty and volatility will continue for some time.”

  • 02 Nov 2020 7:15 PM | Mike Hearn (Administrator)

    FileInvite, the document and data collection engine that improves customer experience and employee productivity, has raised an additional $2.3M for a total of $4.5M. Investors see a growing market for solutions that help businesses to digitize and automate processes to adapt to a changing landscape. FileInvite has doubled its revenue in the past 10 months, increased staff more than 300 percent, and evolved the solution to serve more than 300,000 users in 26 countries.

    The over-subscribed capital raise was led by Flying Kiwi Angels, and supported by investor groups including Icehouse Ventures, Enterprise Angels, and NZGCP among others.

    “Interest in secure document transfer was growing strongly even prior to COVID-19 as stricter privacy laws in Australia and Europe drove brokers to improve their operational processes dealing with personal data. More recently, the pandemic has accelerated consumers adopting online transactions rather than visiting bank or mortgage brokers in person, and this is happening as economic stimulus packages in the US such as CARES Act are increasing the volume of loan transactions,” says James Sampson, CEO and founder, FileInvite.

    FileInvite’s cloud-based platform allows consumers and professionals such as loan officers or mortgage brokers to remotely share, track and audit the collection of personal documents, without compromising security or complicating the process by using email.

    powered by Rubicon Project

    The new funds will be used to accelerate sales and marketing in the US, where financial services organisations are accelerating adoption of digital solutions to improve customer experience and operational excellence. In July FileInvite signed its first US reseller, Arizona-headquartered sales software and consultancy firm Performance Insights which counts Wells Fargo and Bank of America as clients.

    The US push builds on customer momentum closer to home. Since adding Loan Market and Aussie Home Loans in Australia to FileInvite’s customer list, as many as one in three brokered loans in Australasia now goes through FileInvite each month.

    “We know from talking to our top brokers that this tool can save them anywhere up to two hours per application, so if you think about that, we've given well over 60,000 hours a year back to our brokers to be out there providing more service to more Australians,” says Rainer Rhedey, Chief Digital Officer, Aussie Home Loans.

    Founded in 2015, FileInvite now has 22 staff in its Auckland office and other remote locations throughout NZ. The company was a finalist in 2020 in both the NZ Hi Tech Awards 2020 and the Westpac Business Awards for Excellence in International Trade.