News

New look for the fund, new name for our manager

You may have noticed that we’ve rebranded. Why, thank you. The new look is the result of several months chin-scratching and naval-gazing with branding strategists Previously Unavailable who helped us define Punakaiki Fund’s core point of difference.

It essentially comes down to our determination to make venture capital available to all New Zealanders. We want as many people as possible to get access to our great Kiwi tech companies before they hit the big time. It’s about potential, growth and participation.

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2021 retail launch kicks off, could be last – watch our video

Punakaiki Fund hit the streets mid-November with a Retail Offer, which could be the last before we consider the journey to initial public listing (IPO). The offer comes off the back of a great year for the fund, with two major exits, Vend and Timley, and new investments in Whip Around, Moxion and GetHomeSafe, as well as investments in existing companies Coherent Solutions, Weirdly, Mobi and Conqa.

You can read the PDS here (please read this before investing) and watch the 13-minute summary by Lance here. It’s gripping!

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Punakaiki takes stake in Whip Around for US expansion

Punakaiki Fund invested $3.5 million in WhipAround, the USA’s industry leader in driver inspections, and one of New Zealand’s most admired tech start-ups.

The investment is testament to the fast uptake of Whip Around’s paperless driver inspection tools in the USA. Some 97% of its 1800 trucking customers are US-based.

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Conqa saddles up for post-Covid ride and sets an eye on the USA

The Covid-19 pandemic has proven a game of two halves for Conqa. The construction software company which started in 2015 had a stellar first few years, winning customers in Australia and New Zealand and getting backing from investors such as Punakaiki Fund. With a pipeline of new products and a staff of 30, the future looked, well, conquered.

Then came 2020. The building industry took a dive as lockdowns closed building sites on both sides of the Tasman. Customers, worried about survival, put their tech spending on the backburner.

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PFL results defy Covid gloom: fund hits $74m

For the second year in a row Punakaiki Fund chair Mike Bennetts last week beamed into shareholders screens for a virtual AGM. Locked-down but up-beat, Mike had the pleasant task of chairing an uncontentious meeting filled with good results.

Despite the global pandemic PFL reported a stellar year. “While Covid-19 wasn’t the change anyone was anticipating we saw how technology firms, even those exposed to the retail sector, exhibited strong resilience to market conditions.”

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Right team, right tech, right time: the Quantifi Photonics story

Some products do what’s on the box. Quantifi Photonics does exactly what you think: it counts photons. That is, it measures light.

Such carry-on would normally be an arcane science – and it surely can be – but you need only consider your last Netflix binge to understand the importance of light, fired down a fibre optic cable, to our modern lives. From the roll out of Ultra Fast Broadband, to the millions of cables that enter a datacentre, the thousands of undersea cables, the exploding use of light inside computers and for facial recognition and in satellite communications – the business of light is big.

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Punakaiki leads $15m Series B round for Quantifi Photonics

We are very happy to share the news that we have invested $5 million into Quantifi Photonics, leading a $15 million raise.

With this investment Quantifi Photonics is well set up to meet its growth challenges over the next few years, as the market for silicon photonics and optical transceivers explodes.

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