26 September, 2019

E70 – Dylan Lawrence, New Zealand Trade & Enterprises (NZTE)

On this week’s OTPBD – EP70, we’re happy to have Dylan Lawrence, General Manager (Investment) at New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE) as our guest. After partnering together for our annual VC conference in New Zealand, Venture Downunder, it was great to catch up with Dylan and spend some time learning more about New Zealand’s tech startup ecosystem.

NZTE is a government agency designed to support companies to grow bigger, better, and faster—which in turn benefits the New Zealand economy and its citizens. As a result, they play a crucial role in the support of founders and the startup ecosystem in New Zealand. One of New Zealand’s biggest challenges is their geographic positioning. To quote Dylan, “A lot of countries are small, and a lot of countries are distant, but we’re the only country in the world that’s small and distant”.

The New Zealand startup scene is flourishing with ingenious and innovative startups rising every day; however, these startups need to expand to international markets in order to scale and compete with global giants, which is where NZTE can play an important role. Dylan observes that it’s important for founders to understand the four Cs: Culture, connectedness, capabilities, and capital. Many NZ startups struggle with the second C, connectedness, because tapping into offshore markets, and growing and selling products offshore is tricky as a result of New Zealand’s geography.

We wrapped up with Dylan’s career journey into government, and his take on the Maori economy. We learned a lot in this pod, and we hope you will too! Tune in now.

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