ikeGPS in global deal with GE Digital
Wellington-based measurement solutions company ikeGPS has won a global licensing deal with a subsidiary of energy giant General Electric.
It will supply GE Digital Energy with a device which blends laser, camera and GPS technology to collect location data on utility assets, many of which are in remote places.
ikeGPS CEO Glenn Milnes said the deal capped a couple of years of "phenomenally hard work" establishing the technology's credentials over- seas.
"We couldn't be more delighted with the GE deal, who will label one stream of our products as GE Mapsight, and open up a simply enormous potential database of global customers."
The GE deal follows a successful campaign on US-based crowdsourcing platform Kickstarter and a deal in 2012 with strategic investment firm In-Q-Tel.
Formerly called SurveyLab, ikeGPS has previously aimed its products at industrial use. Its products are used in the military, disaster relief, local government oil and gas, and environment sectors, which rely on mapping and modelling technology.
But this year the company launched a smartphone attachment called Spike which miniaturises the technology for the general public.
Spike promised to create a valuable new revenue stream, Milne said.
"We launched Spike via a kickstarter campaign largely as a marketing exercise - we just wanted to leverage the platform to get as many early adopter eyes on the product as possible.
"The sales we made were great, but the partner interest it ignited from some of the world's biggest and best-known brands has been nothing shy of staggering."
The technology has also attracted the attention of In-Q-Tel, which struck up a partnership with ikeGPS in late 2012 to support solutions for the US intelligence community.
In-Q-Tel was an early partner of other GIS companies such as Keyhole, which created Google Earth, said Milnes.
"We feel pretty good about 2013 but we're just ecstatic about the possibilities of 2014."