Software company Re-Leased wins top Hawke’s Bay export award
An awareness of developing a future product set and turning data into meaningful insights and analytics across connected sectors has seen commercial property management software developer Re-Leased win the ExportNZ Hawke’s Bay ASB Exporter of the Year award.
The Napier business was presented with the award by the Head of International Trade at ASB Bank, Mike Atkins, at the sold-out awards dinner last night at the Napier War Memorial Centre.
Earlier in the evening, Re-Leased won the inaugural T&G Global Best Medium to Large Exporter Award, to go head-to-head with Phoenix Firepumps, winner of the Tomoana Food Hub Innovation in Export Award, and LilyBee Wrap, winner of the ContainerCo Emerging Exporter award for the big award.
The judging panel included New Zealand Trade and Enterprise board member Wayne Norrie, ASB Head of International Trade Mike Atkins, Jenny Brown of Callaghan Innovation and New Zealand Trade and Enterprise Customer Director Dan Taylor.
They said Re-Leased stood out from the many strong entries.
They were impressed by the company’s technology-agnostic offering which meant they could co-create with any other partner "for a common good and scaleability", their "awareness towards developing a future product set, turning data into meaningful insights and analytics across connected sectors, such as insurance and electricity", their ability "to win in a big market", and their "openness and desire for a fresh external perspective".
Tikokino fire portable fire pumps manufacturer Phoenix Firepumps were praised for moving from traditional product innovation and traditional markets "to effectively creating a new category. Phoenix have created a new market space through pioneering new product innovation". The judges said Managing Director Mike Harrison was "a visionary for his customers".
They said eco-friendly food wraps manufacturer LilyBee Wrap, of Napier, was riding the eco-wave and had taken the time to understand their consumers, target markets and entry strategies. "This is a company with a clear vision and purpose, who have created an environment where every voice is heard, ensuring no good idea is missed." They were impressed by the willingness of LilyBee to seek external input from a variety of sources, and believed it stood them in very good stead for their exciting growth journey ahead.
The finalists were:
-ContainerCo Best Emerging Exporter: LilyBee Wrap (Napier); Phoenix Firepumps (Tikokino); SL Racing (Taradale), rowing boat manufacturer.
-Tomoana Food Hub Excellence in Innovation: Waimarama Maori Tours (Waimarama), tourism operator; IMS (Napier), engineering and helicopter equipment specialists; Phoenix Firepumps; Trinity Hill Wines (Hastings), winemaker.
-T & G Global Best Medium to Large Exporter: First Fresh (Gisborne), citrus, persimmon and kiwifruit grower; PetfoodNZ (Gisborne), canned pet food manufacturer; Re-Leased (Napier).
The Unsung Heroes Award, which recognises work done behind the scenes of exporting organisations, was shared by Adele Williams of PetfoodNZ International and Megan Williams of LilyBee Wrap.
T&G Global CEO Gareth Edgecombe, who presented the award, said successful companies always had a number of exceptionally passionate people driving the company forward and Adele and Megan were typical of that.
"Without people like them, companies wouldn’t be able to achieve their exporting success and I commend their dedication and devotion."
ASB’s Mike Atkins said the calibre of finalists had again been exceptional across a wide range of industries.
"This is the fifth year ASB has sponsored these awards, and every year we are impressed by the quality of companies that put their names forward. Hawke’s Bay companies do an amazing job on the world stage and this year’s winners continue that tradition. We’re incredibly proud to play a role in helping Kiwi companies to progress and succeed.
"These awards are a fantastic opportunity to recognise the hard work and achievements of the export sector, so congratulations again to all of this year’s finalist and winners."
ExportNZ Hawke’s Bay Executive Officer Amanda Liddle said the innovation and sheer hard work on display was as good as any of the four previous awards.
"We’ve been really thrilled with the entries, and I want to congratulate the winners and finalists for having the courage to believe in themselves and their teams."
She acknowledged the general sponsors of the gala evening, Hawke’s Bay Airport and Napier Port, and other sponsors Great Things Grow Here, Napier City Council, Grundy Productions, Trinity Hill, Singapore Airlines, OPure, Business Hawke’s Bay, and New Zealand Trade & Enterprise.
ExportNZ Hawke’s Bay is overseen by Business Central. Chief Executive John Milford said he was very impressed by the huge interest in the awards and the quality of the entrants.
"They do us all proud as they go about their vital work on the world stage."
Business Central represents employers across the lower North Island, providing employer, health and safety, and human resources advice, and advocating policies that reflect the interests of the business community.