Agritech and scitech were the winners at this year's New Zealand Startup Bootcamp, with two teams taking away $10,000 each for their innovative ideas. The bootcamp put 20 teams through 48 hours of coffees, ideas and innovation as they put their skills to the test.
“It's been a massive journey for the 20 teams involved. They've all come so far in such a short amount of time, it's great to see the progress and the passion,” says Soda Inc CEO Erin Wansbrough.
Agritech team RH Innovation won the ASB Best Startup category for their creation that provides a ‘revolutionary' way to measure soil moisture, salinity and NPK using cost effective sensors and effectively gather information with unprecedented ease. The information is stored in their database and is available to their clients via the cloud. This information will later serve as the backbone of their AI/model which will help farmers save money by providing precise information on soil condition.
RH Innovation team members included CEO Rahat Hasan, electronic engineer Tyler Crabree, materials and processing engineer Bismark Simeon, business development team member Daniel Blair and intern Cooper Stephenson.
Waikato University student team Crisis Management won the Gallagher Best New Idea category for their product called Chameleon. It is a gel-based colour changing product for refrigerators in order to help reduce the emissions generated from gas leaks.
Crisis Management team members included students Namrah Siddiqui Carpio, Callum Macdonald, Chun Ho Tse (Leo), and Jiabao Zhao (Boa).
The People's Choice Award was bestowed on Dunedin-based team Pōtiki Poi, who ‘stole the show'. As a fundraiser for an upcoming event mother and daughter duo Anna Tiatia Fa'atoese Latu and Georgia Tiatia Fa'atoese Latu made poi and sold them on social media. In just two days they made $1000.
During Pōtiki Poi's pitch, Georgia told her story and danced with poi. The crowd gave the duo a standing ovation after they sang a waiata when they received the People's Choice Award.
Rocketspark also handed out awards to three website platform teams - VxT, Wolfgang Creative and VoxPop. All teams took home a website worth $1500.
“Our choices came down to defining a real need and authenticity played a major role in our decisions,” comments event judge Dame Julie Christie.
“We felt it would've been good for some of the teams to pitch to their families and had them ask what they were actually talking about, perhaps not the scientist next door – something to keep in mind for future teams,” she says.
“We'd like to say well done to everyone. It was a tough decision.
Photos by Jeremy Tritt.