Canberra Innovation Network in New Zealand.

As part of Canberra week in Wellington the CBR Innovation Network and Stir crew went across the ditch to talk to our Wellington friends about strengthening the global potential of the two cities.

“Wellington is a beautiful city with a vibrant and exciting creative community. The people we met were inspiring and keen to collaborate. We’re looking forward to building a bridge for creative entrepreneurship between our cities.” Camilo + Vinnie, Stir

Together our regions have a population of more than 900,000 people and via Singapore Airlines we are directly linked to the largest market place in the world. We share a goal to continually grow and engage with the innovation, creative and entrepreneurship community.

The team met up with some of the key innovation players to exchange experiences and develop opportunities to address some of the similar challenges we face.

Set up in 2009, BizDojo is a vibrant network of expanding co-working spaces that offer breakout pockets for the active, social and focussed to help unleash people’s potential.

“I am inspired by the buzz and ambition of the different Wellington innovation ecosystem players. The collective drive towards global success is present in everything they have already achieved, everything they talk about, plan and do. BizDojo’s focus on creating an environment where entrepreneurs of all kinds collide to create value and the volume of activity in their space is very impressive.” Petr Adamek, CEO

Positioned as New Zealand’s virtual, augmented and mixed reality centre, ProjectR provides creatives an outlet to develop new digital ideas and executions collaboratively. With ‘content sprints’ and ‘research labs’ being the norm, it encourages storytellers to come together to continually build a narrative for their city.

“Storytelling is at the forefront of every conversation, seeing it firsthand how they create and tell their stories is amazing, it is a skill that the Kiwis have mastered and our story needs to be collectively told better over here in Aus.” Bryden Campbell, Marketing Director

“I enjoyed the very diverse and energetic innovation community in Wellington – so many different activities and approaches to learn from. I especially enjoyed their risk-taking culture – everything from dogs in the workplace to trying a new non-equity incubation model.” Craig Davis, General Manager Growth Programs

The Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa have created a niche innovation incubator program called Mahuki for the GLAM (Galleries, Libraries, Archives and Museums) industry. They are aiming to commercialise new experiences that add value to operators in this sector.

“Wellington is such a cool place, a relaxed culture underpins a great balance that is supportive of risk taking in business, at work and at play. From virtual fireplaces where you can feel the heat, council built diving towers to dive into to the ocean, dog friendly workplaces, musicians on every corner and cool art all over town. #WELOVEWELLY!.” Liz Kobold, Business Ninja

New Zealand’s innovation experts CreativeHQ have worked with over 200 startups through their accelerator programs and work closely with Wellington Regional Economic Development Agency (WREDA) to help drive New Zealand’s innovation economy.

“The collision of creatives, techies and big thinkers creates a place of amazing opportunity.  We have all this right on our own doorstep, we just need to collaboratively pull it together and immerse ourselves in it and amazing things will follow.” Sharyn Smith, Chief Operating Officer

Our two cool little capitals are embarking on an inspiring and collaborative journey and the CBR Innovation Network is excited by the partnership with WREDA and a big thank you for hosting us in Wellington.

“All the organisations we visited and all people we talked to, including ProjectR, Mahuki, CreativeHQ, Angel Association New Zealand and of course our partners WREDA were contagiously ambitious about their purpose around supporting innovating entrepreneurs as a major force of progress for the city. What I am excited about and want to build on is our common interest in pursuing opportunities in Asia, especially Singapore.” Petr Adamek, CEO

To view photos from the CBR-IN WLG trip: visit our Facebook page

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