Top ten finalists announced for BNZ Presents: The Virgin Business Challenge

Thursday 8 December 2011, 2:54PM

The top ten finalists for BNZ Presents: The Virgin Business Challenge have been announced, in the next step towards finding New Zealand’s best entrepreneurial talent.

The prize pack, which includes $100,000 cash and time with Sir Richard Branson, will be awarded to the top business which demonstrates that they have what it takes to go global.

In a surprise turn the majority of the entrepreneurial talent for this challenge has sprung from Auckland with nine out of the 10 based in the city.

Representing the pinnacle of New Zealand's global potential, the businesses whose owners will pitch live to a Dragon's Den style judging panel are:

FaceMe Ltd
FaceMe has developed a business-focused video conferencing system that is compatible with any device and allows anyone, anywhere, to video-conference with excellent quality of calls.

1Above is an electrolyte-enhanced drink containing many daily vitamin B needs and polyphenol extracts, both key to supporting circulation when flying as well as minimising the effects of jet lag.

Rocket Lab

This multi discipline business is focused on the rapid development of high quality, innovative technologies for the space and defence sectors.

MiniMonos Ltd

MiniMonos is a virtual world for children who love to play and love the planet. The site has core messages of sustainability and community focus embedded throughout, with every purchase made on MiniMonos going towards supplying clean water to kids in India.

Konnect Net Ltd

Konnect Net provides business process management solutions for the insurance, corporate and health sectors, aiming to provide more efficient ways of managing interactions within these sectors.

PowerbyProxi Ltd

PowerbyProxi is a global market leader in the commercialisation of wireless power solutions. It is leading the way in the ‘miniaturisation’ of wireless power technology.

WilliamsWarn Ltd

WilliamsWarn has developed the world’s first personal brewery, enabling customers to make professional quality beer in seven days from their own home.


Sonar6 makes performance reviews simple, rewarding and useful for managers, employers and human resources professionals. The system provides the simplest way to help businesses make better people decisions.

KlickEx Corporation Ltd

This new system of low-cost currency exchange technology connects millions of people, with a focus on expatriate work-forces in emerging nations, who send regular payments home to support their families.

The Collective

The Collective manufactures, distributes and markets high-end dairy products including gourmet yoghurt, yoghurt drinks and cheeses in New Zealand, the United Kingdom and Australia.

The winner will be announced at an awards ceremony in Auckland on December 15.