Invenco wins top company in Hi-Tech Awards

The self-service payments company exports worldwide. PLUS: See who won the Flying Kiwi award.

Scroll down for winners' list. Social feed: #htanz

Invenco won the PwC Hi-Tech Company of the Year at the annual Hi-Tech awards held in Christchurch, with the international judges saying it “prevailed with its unique combination of extraordinary growth, scale and profitability.”

The Auckland-based private company was started in 2009 by Navman co-founder Sir Peter Maire and technologist Dave Ritten after acquiring the retail automation business of the collapsed Provenco Cadmus.

It develops self-service payment solutions for retailers and petroleum companies, with products including outdoor payment terminals, electronic payment servers, payment switches, and cloud services. Headquartered in Auckland, it also has offices in Malaysia, the US and the UK, and its clients include Pak’nSave, Z Energy and Gull.

Sir Peter Maire is the main shareholder and chairman while Mr Ritten has an 11.3% stake and still helps out with new product development. Professional directors and investors Justine Smyth and Paul Lockey hold a 17.35% stake.

Invenco has been a finalist or won a number of awards, including a finalist in last year’s Hi-Tech awards, and was one of only around 20 Kiwi companies to make the Deloitte Asia Pacific Tech Fast 500 last year, with growth over 2014 to 2016 averaging 117%.

The judges said the company’s outdoor payment terminal systems combine hardware, software, and data communications, showing Kiwi expertise in all those fields.

One of its recent developments was the Fastlane project in collaboration with Rush Digital, Focus Security and Paymark for Z Energy. The Z-Energy Innovation Refinery asked the companies to find a way to use number plate recognition to let customers fuel and go, so they can pay for their petrol when filling up at the pump without having to get out of their car. Invenco contributed its site payment enablement technology to manage the communication between the cloud and the site.

Flying Kiwi
The 2018 Flying Kiwi award went to Claudia Batten who helps Kiwi tech companies succeed globally through her role as regional director North America for New Zealand Trade & Enterprise.

The US-based Kiwi entrepreneur, speaker, and director is also co-founder of a new tech startup, Broadli. Her entrepreneurial bent started in the US as a founding member of Massive Incorporated, which later sold to Microsoft, and Victor & Spoils, the first advertising agency based on crowd-sourcing principles, which was also sold.

“Her success is inspiring so many of our up and coming companies,” says NZ Hi-Tech Trust chair Jennifer Rutherford.

The not-for-profit trust runs the awards, now in their 24th year, to celebrate the success of New Zealand’s producers of goods and services from the software, electronics, telecommunications, mobile, agritech, creative and other hi-tech industries.

Ms Rutherford says there was a big push this year to encourage and celebrate diversity, which was reflected on stage at the event.

Watch the full video on Grant Straker's NBR Radar profile by pressing the play button

Other winners include:


• Xero Hi-Tech Young Achiever: Aliesha Staples

• Visa Most Innovative Hi-Tech Solution for the Public Good: Emergency Q by Healthcare Applications

• IBM Most Inspiring Individual: Lillian Grace

• NZ Venture Investment Fund Hi-Tech Startup Company of the Year: Banqer, with Code Avengers highly recommended

• Coretex Hi-Tech Emerging Company of the Year: Ask Nicely

• ATEED Most Innovative Hi-Tech Solution for the Creative Sector: Dexibit

• Callaghan Innovation Best Hi-Tech Maori Innovation: Straker Translations, with Code Avengers highly commended

• Duncan Cotterill Most Innovative Hi-Tech Software Solution: Dexibit

• Endace Most Innovative Hi-Tech Hardware Product: Enatel

• Kiwibank Most Innovative Hi-Tech Services: Beca

• NZTE Most Innovative Hi-Tech Solution for the Agritech Sector: Gallagher Group

• Quick Circuit Best contribution to the NZ sector by an internationally headquartered company: IBM