BNZ Start-up Alley


BNZ Start-up Alley!

BNZ Start-up Alley is a celebration of New Zealand start-ups. We want to celebrate businesses doing social enterprise and technology work who are seeking to scale rapidly and establish themselves as a long-term, sustainable businesses.

This competition is an opportunity to take your start-up to the next level. It might just be the helping hand you need and it’s certainly a promotional opportunity you won’t get anywhere else.

There are six finalist spots at Webstock ‘17 at the BNZ Start-up Alley. If your start-up is chosen you’ll be able to tell everyone at Webstock what you’re about and pitch your start-up to our panel of expert judges in front of a live audience, full of potential customers and investors. If you win, BNZ will give you $15,000 cash and a trip to the USA to help take your business global.

To enter just send us a document (1-5 pages) telling us about you, your start-up and why you should be a finalist. Make sure you give us all your links so we can check you out and send it all to before 5:00pm Friday 13th January.

The prizes

Each of the 6 finalists will receive:

  • A $1,000 cash prize, courtesy of BNZ (excluding winner and runner up).
  • BNZ and Webstock will also give you two free tickets to Webstock ’17 — Thursday 16th and Friday 17th February.
  • The opportunity to promote yourself to Webstock attendees and speakers via a specially produced BNZ Start-up Alley section in the conference handbook.
  • The opportunity to have a 30min meeting with the Start-Up Alley judges on Wednesday 15th February.
  • The opportunity to be part of the BNZ Start-up Alley event on Thursday night at Webstock. Three minutes to pitch yourself to judges. Ten minutes to answer their questions. All in front of a live audience.
  • BNZ “health check” – a chat about your business with one of our Banking Specialists to see how BNZ can help your business get ready for future growth.
  • A free legal consultation (up to one hour, in person or via video conference) with Buddle Findlay’s Early Stage and High Growth Company advisors.

The runner-up will receive:

  • $7,500 cash prize from BNZ.
  • Return trip for 2 from BNZ to the USA to further their business.
  • Up to $2000 worth of legal advice from Buddle Findlay’s Early Stage and High Growth Company advisors.

The winner will receive:

  • $15,000 cash prize from BNZ.
  • Return trip for 2 from BNZ to the USA to further their business.
  • Up to $5000 worth of legal advice from Buddle Findlay’s Early Stage and High Growth Company advisors.

Check out 2015 winner Banqer and their experience at Start-up Alley.

The Judges

Lance Wiggs

Lance is the founder of Punakaiki Fund, which has over $20 million of investments in high growth companies, including former Webstock Start-up Alley finalists, Timely (2013 winners), InfluxHQ (2014 finalist) and Boardingware (2014 finalist), and 15 other great companies.

Lance has helped over 100 companies through NZTE Investment workshops, is the Chair of the Return on Science ICT Committee, and a member of the Return on Science Physical Sciences Committee. He is a co-founder or investor in and director of My Tours, Lingopal, 200Square, Pocketsmith and Define Instruments, amongst others. Lance and Tash sat next to each other when they were both working at Trade Me in 1895, and he will be celebrating his 137th birthday on the night of the ‘Alley.

Derek Sivers

Originally a professional musician and circus clown, Derek Sivers created CD Baby in 1998.

It became the largest seller of independent music online, with $100M in sales for 150,000 musicians.

In 2008, Derek sold CD Baby for $22M, giving the proceeds to a charitable trust for music education.

Anna Guenther

Anna Guenther is the co-founder and Chief Bubble Blower of PledgeMe, New Zealand’s first crowdfunding platform. Since launching 5 years ago, over 1,000 creative, community and entrepreneurial campaigns have raised almost $14million through PledgeMe.

Anna has also worked for the New Zealand Government, MIT and Harvard, and completed her Masters in Entrepreneurship with a focus on crowdfunding.

Harry Ferreira

Harry Ferreira is Head of Small Business at Bank of New Zealand and responsible for building, growing, and leading this division of the bank. Harry’s passion is to support innovation, market growth and customer experience for New Zealand’s small businesses. The BNZ SME team is committed to growing New Zealand companies through supporting their development and enabling them in realising their ambitions.

Under Harry’s leadership BNZ has been awarded Best Small Business Bank by Canstar for six years in a row. The bank’s achievements in the SME space have been acknowledged through several innovation awards, recognising the way its product solutions make running a business easier.

And your MC for the evening

Nat Torkington

Nat ran the first web server in New Zealand, wrote a bestselling programming book, chaired the biggest open source programming conference in North America, and was a trend spotter for O’Reilly Media. He returned to New Zealand in 2005 and started Kiwi Foo Camp, a gathering of influential New Zealanders. He is Chief Banjo Officer in the
bluegrass band The Pipi Pickers.

Entry criteria

  • Be a New Zealand start-up business.
  • Be in the web/technology industry and must have an idea, working concept or product for their start-up business relevant to this industry.
  • Social enterprises will also be considered.
  • Companies slightly past the start-up phase will also be considered.
  • Be able to demonstrate they have a clear direction and purpose.

The Fine Print

Please read the Terms and Conditions [PDF] that apply to the event and competition. By entering into this competition it is deemed you have read the Terms & Conditions. You agree to be used for promotional purposes by Webstock and the BNZ. You agree to interviews as required.