February 1, 2008

What does Marko Bogoievski joining Infratil mean for their investment strategy ? Lance points out they might be looking to unlock some value from Telecom. With Telecom looking to separate its retail business from the infrastructure, there looks to be an opportunity for Infratil.

Another opportunity could be Kordia (formally BCL) which is currently owned by the Government. Kordia operates a national communications network and provides network feeds and broadcast services for the major television and radio networks. The company recorded $264m in revenue and $12m in net surplus for the year ended June 2007. This would look to be a good fit for Infratil with Makro Bogoeivski on board.

Smart Orthotics

September 21, 2007

No 8 Ventures has invested in Smart Orthotics, a company developing a robotic exoskeleton for disabled users.  

I picked up the news from the No 8 Ventures blog, with the most recent post about Smart Orthotics.

Key points from the post. 

  • The new capital will be used to support further product development, production engineering and enable a release to market of their Robotic Mobility Aid for disabled persons.
  • Smart Orthotics’ robotic exoskeleton is worn on the lower limbs by a disabled person providing the user with a normal range of mobility functions including standing, sitting, walking, ascending and descending stairs and navigating sloping surfaces.
  • Their vision for a robotic exoskeleton that restores mobility was prompted by the limitations of the wheelchair.

A quick search at Companies Office revels Smart Orthotics Limited was registered on 19 March 2007. The shareholders include: 

  • Richard Little (Director of Smart Orthotics): 600,000 shares
  • Robert Irving: 550,000 shares
  • No 8 Ventures: 200,000 shares
  • Total: 1,350,000 shares

Companies Office also links to Smart Orthotics new Constitution (pdf).

McKinsey – Delivering Software As A Service

September 11, 2007

Just came across this article (free registration required or use bugmenot’s login) from McKinsey Quarterly about delivering software as a service. Thought it is relavent to the high profile Xero, who provide accounting software as a service.

Main points in the article:

  • An IDC report projects that 10% of the market for enterprise software will migrate to a pure software as a service model by 2009.
  • Software as a service vendors are less profitable than some traditional software vendors today, this gap is primarily caused by a lack of scale.
    • A few service vendors already have much higher margins (WebEx, at 26%, and Digital Insight, at 19%) because they’ve been able to achieve scale and a leading position in their niches.
    • Other leaders, such as (which provides on-demand CRM and sales force automation tools) and ADP (the world’s largest automated check processor) have also gained mainstream uptake among midsize and large companies.
  • Software as a service offers several advantages to IT buyers:
    • More frequent (and potentially less painful) upgrades.
    • Lower cost of ownership.
    • Higher level of service from vendors that must become more responsive to customer needs or risk losing subscription revenues.
    • Countering these benefits are the acknowledged risks of reliability and security.
  • The article has a great graph showing the migration of software applications, broken down software catergory, large enterprises, SMEs, if the speed of migration is different for each customer segment).
    • The conclusion was for core financial applications that SMEs are already migrating (pace depends on customer segment) while it may be unlikey for for large enterprises to migrate at all.

Above the fold – Economist

June 7, 2007

Quick note about the increase in New Zealand’s interest rate from The Economist’s blog free exchange.

The Reserve Bank of New Zealand on Thursday raised interest rates for the third time since March. The central bank based the increase to 8% on inflationary pressures due to housing demand, consumer spending and increased world prices of dairy products. The New Zealand dollar rose to 75.67 US cents, the highest since March 1985, and further attracting investors.