"Callaghan Innovation will accelerate the commercialisation of New Zealand innovation,” says Science and Innovation Minister Steven Joyce.
The new organisation commences operations today, and is being officially launched at functions in Auckland and Wellington.
“Callaghan Innovation will be a one-stop shop for business innovation support whether it be in science, engineering, design or technology. It will be a high-tech HQ for New Zealand businesses,” Mr Joyce says.
Callaghan Innovation brings together the former crown research institute IRL, MBIE’s business investments team, the Auckland Foodbowl, and NZTE's Lean Manufacturing programme. It will commence operations with 400 staff and offices in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.
Callaghan Innovation’s early focus will be to refine the services and support it provides to best serve New Zealand business - driving innovation and commercialisation of products and services and economic success.
“The organisation’s goals include helping high-value manufacturing and services firms to become more competitive by connecting them with innovation resources, supporting them with R&D advice and funding, and strengthening their technological capability,” Mr Joyce says.
“To accelerate the growth, scale, intensity and success of innovation in New Zealand, Callaghan Innovation will work to build appetite among firms to invest in research and development and, above all, translate smart ideas into high-tech products and services that we can sell to world markets.”
Callaghan Innovation will work across industries as diverse as food and beverage manufacturing, agri-tech, digital technologies, health technologies, therapeutics, and high-value wood products. "The common theme is encouraging innovation and higher value products and services," Mr Joyce says.
The organisation is being led initially by acting Chief Executive Murray Nash.
Over the coming months the new Board of Directors, chaired by Sue Suckling, will complete the appointment of a permanent Chief Executive and oversee the bedding in of the organisation’s operations in Auckland, Wellington and Canterbury.
Callaghan Innovation is a key part of the Government’s Business Growth Agenda, and received funding in Budget 2012 of $166 million over four years.
For more information about Callaghan Innovation visit: www.callaghaninnovation.govt.nz