NZ start-up star, says Aussie firm

Last updated 09:16 19/05/2014

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The Australian boss of trans-Tasman recruitment firm Talent International has blasted Australia's start-up scene, saying New Zealand is doing much better.

To rub the point home, Talent International managing director Richard Earl said the firm had decided to appoint Kiwi Candace Kinser alongside Sir Richard Branson and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak as a judge of this year's Talent Unleashed Awards, which the company runs.

Kinser is chief executive of industry body NZTech and was last week appointed to the board of Auckland start- up Eroad.

"While other regional tech start-up scenes languish, particularly Australia's, dependent almost entirely on dwindling private sector funding, New Zealand's ICT industry is the fastest growing industry there," Earl said.

The five global winners of Talent Unleashed win a five- day business mentoring workshop at the Branson Centre for Entrepreneurship in South Africa.

In an "open letter" to Australia's start-up community, Earl criticised the Australian Budget, and in particular the axing of Australia's two "primary start-up funding programmes".

"Our comments are known here and in the wider Asia- Pacific region about the rate of growth in the Australian technology sector compared to our counterparts in New Zealand, Israel, and the United Kingdom," he said. Fairfax NZ

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