Wellington hologram innovators Point Zero wins funding to open in Brisbane
The creators of an interactive hologram display, which they claim is a world-first, have opened an office in Australia to help expand its global reach.
Point Zero, a Wellington technology company, opened its doors in the Queensland capital of Brisbane on Tuesday.
The firm, which specialises in the development of interactive three-dimensional holograms, believes it has developed a world-first product, which puts viewers into a world of virtual reality (VR) without the need for goggles.
In August, the company began a six-month trial of a prototype hologram at Auckland International Airport, which hovers over a disposal bin at the customs arrival gate. It explains the threat the Queensland fruit fly poses to New Zealand's environment.
Point Zero founder and chief executive Chris Mather said opening a Brisbane office and showroom meant the company could test the Australian market.
"We've been expanding through New Zealand for the past couple of years … with set ups in Auckland and Wellington, so now it is time for us to see where we can expand to and if we can take our product global."
Point Zero received a $100,000 funding boost from Advance Queensland's Hot DesQ programme, which aims to lure international and interstate start ups. This allowed the company to set up shop, and employ three staff.
If Brisbane proved successful, Mathers would look at opening a showroom in Sydney and Melbourne, as well as other major cities around the world, he said.
Point Zero had been selling and marketing it products internationally prior to securing a spot in Australia, however, physical showrooms helped increase sales and attract clients, he said.
"Because all of our things are holographic displays, we have a lot of international clients but it is very expensive to actually fly out and set them up in other countries.
"So the idea is if we could have showrooms or holographic displays permanently located in major cities around the world, then we can provide a lot cheaper rentals for our clients and can make this technology more publicly available for bigger companies, launch events, and conferences everywhere."
The firm was "on the verge of huge holographic innovation", so setting up in Brisbane provided an opportunity to focus on "pushing the boundaries on what is possible with holographic technology", Mather said.
Wellington Regional Economic Development Agency interim chief executive Derek Fry said it was satisfying to see Point Zero "spread its wings".
"Wellington has an internationally recognised mixed reality sector. It is fuelled by the likes of Xero and the Weta Group of companies which not only attract world class talent, but provide valuable mentoring for startups in the city.