PlantTech’s founders and funding

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Dr Mark Begbie and Opposition Leader Simon Bridges at the PlantTech launch. Photo/John Borren Photography.

Bluelab

Bluelab, formerly NZ Hydroponics International, has more than 30 years’ experience in the manufacture and export of hand-held meters and control equipment for measuring and controlling parameters such as pH, conductivity and temperature of liquid growth media. Its equipment is used by everybody from home gardening enthusiasts to large-scale commercial operations. 

Cucumber 

Cucumber is a full-service digital partner that assists organisations to use technology and innovation to build bespoke technical solutions that manage risks, increase productivity and encourage collaboration. 

It has built a software management product to support the global pip-fruit industry by using intelligence to deliver valuable information from data. 

Eurofins 

Eurofins Bay of Plenty has a 30-year track record in providing independent high-quality horticultural services and solutions. It is the independent laboratory contracted by Zespri International to collect and process kiwifruit samples for Zespri’s export maturity clearance programme. 

Eurofins is developing a range of disruptive technologies to deliver a step-change in the economics and value of quality management throughout fruit production.

GPS-it 

GPS-it is an aerial farm mapping and software development company specialising in high-quality customised geospatial solutions. 

It is a Tier 1 partner of the global GIS provider
ESRI (Environmental Systems Research Institute). 

It has developed AgBox, a full-spectrum agricultural management platform, which is the chosen solution for ESRI clients.

LANDx

LANDx is a leading information technology firm delivering IT and communications-based products and services. 

LANDx works with several partners to integrate data platforms for horticultural land use decision-making. This also includes combining environmental data, pest and disease prediction. 

PlantTech is going to continue to grow our ability to increase value in the horticulture space, and it’s got to be good for the BOP.”

– Simon Bridges

Priority One 

Priority One is the economic development enabler for Tauranga and the Western Bay of Plenty, established by the business community. 

The organisation reflects a collaborative partnership between the business community and local authorities, with substantial funding and support provided by businesses and individuals committed to seeing positive change through increased economic prosperity across our community. 

The backing of the business community lends strength, insight and credibility that is crucial as Priority One advocates for change to bring more diversity to the economy and build real and defensible competitive advantages. 

Robotics Plus 

Robotics Plus emerged from the need to solve the growing challenges in the primary industries globally; such as labour shortages, sustainability for growers, pollination gaps and yield security. From apple sorters to autonomous robotic kiwifruit pickers, it is at the forefront of intelligent automation in the horticulture sector. A highly research-engaged company, it is developing many technological advancements on different fronts with academics and other research partners.

The University of Waikato

The University of Waikato is strongly connected to the regions, in particular the Bay of Plenty, and its researchers are focused on finding solutions that will make a positive difference to the primary production sector. The university offers research, advisory and consultancy services to industry, government agencies, iwi and community organisations. 

The university is engaged in research, applied research and commercialisation, and takes a strong interdisciplinary approach to provide positive outcomes for the region.  

Its approach brings together expertise in business, entrepreneurship, big data, artificial intelligence, robotics, mechanical engineering and computer science to deliver marketable solutions for industry.

Trimax Mowing Systems 

Trimax Mowing Systems is a world leader in commercial mowing – designing, developing, manufacturing and distributing tractor-powered mowing equipment. 

Its aim is to create mowing solutions which focus on low Total-Cost-of-Ownership and a long commercial life – releasing consistently innovative and sustainable products to the world. 

Trimax has an extensive research and development programme. As a company with 95 per cent of sales in export, it is targeting a number of very high-value external markets with new and disruptive technological approaches 

Zespri International 

Zespri International is the world’s largest marketer of kiwifruit – selling kiwifruit into more than 50 countries and managing 30 percent of the global volume. A consumer-driven, grower-owned company, it works with growers and post-harvest operators to source top-quality Zespri Kiwifruit and supply this kiwifruit through its distribution partners to wholesale markets and retail customers.

MBIE

PlantTech also  acknowledges the support of the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and particularly the Regional Research Institutes Fund. Their investment of $8.425 million was critical to PlantTech’s establishment and MBIE is a key partner for PlantTech’s founders in creating the initiative.

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