High tech bible also delivers insights into business disposition

By Peter Kerr 12/11/2013

The TIN100 Report aims to be an authoritative, dispassionate look at the high tech manufacturing, ICT and biotech industries of New Zealand.

Through a thorough process, TIN100 founder Greg Shanahan, and research and publication manager Jo-Anne Hazel have put together a 9th edition of what is the go to bible for these clever companies.

As such it is quantitative, and as a type of tool, Shanahan says the report isn’t necessarily trying to be an opinion leader or think tank.

But such is the qualitative gems unearthed through its discovery process, the TIN100 does reveal far more than meets the eye.

This was especially so during the three city launch, with some of the following points provided by Shanahan in his presentation, and equally the questioning (in Wellington on Thursday October 24).

  • The vagaries of exchange rate movement almost appear to be a given by CEOs. They’re accepting of the environment they play in, and trying to be more competitive. Their focus is therefore sales growth, staff, profitability and R&D
  • R&D expenditure increased 7.5% across the TIN100
  • The aspirational business model for ICT companies is recurring revenue, especially through Software as a Service (SaaS), which allows companies to keep in touch with their customers, retain a relationship (compared to an enterprise model
  • Recurring revenue can be just as important for manufacturing companies – Fisher & Paykel Healthcare makes 70% of its money through consumables sales
  • ICT companies haven’t (yet) had to concentrate on Asian markets – which are perceived as being less easy to enter. ICT companies have more than enough on their hands in markets such as the USA
  • One of NZ’s competitive advantages is companies here can very cost effectively develop world leading cost effective solutions compared to large offshore entities.
  • Kiwi innovation (in NZ) being done by South Africans, Russians, Indians and others (as well as NZ-born people). NZ is attracting some of the world’s best talent
  • Is quite a good chance that NZ companies under-report R&D. Can carry out research “on the smell of an oily rag” compared to what it could cost in say America. Multidisciplinary teams in NZ, with low overheads
  • ICT companies within NZ needing 1000 new employees a year

Shanahan made the final point that the CEOs of these TIN100 companies are invariably very focused, smart and pragmatic.

“They’re grounded. No one is too cocky and they’re very self-effacing. At the end of the day too, they’re communicators and they’re salespeople.”