Send in the clichés! ‘David vs Goliath’ and ‘comeback kids’ were just two well-trodden phrases popping up in triumphant articles following Team New Zealand’s victory, led by helmsman Peter Burling, at the America’s Cup in Bermuda.
But headline writers weren’t the only ones to benefit from the win. The New Zealand technology sector was also triumphant. Innovative technology, such as the virtual reality cameras developed by Dunedin-based Animation Research - and used by both Emirates Team NZ and Oracle Team USA – was a critical factor in making both teams race so well.
What makes this tech victory so sweet is when you consider the Goliath in this America’s Cup race is Oracle – that’s a global technology company that reported revenue of US $37 billion last year. It is second only to Microsoft in being the largest software provider in the world.
When New Zealand software companies go to market they know one thing – if they have any chance of making it, their second sale needs to be offshore. And that is not an easy thing to do when you live so far from your market.
But Animation Research pulled it off. So too did the New Zealand marine sector which exemplifies the innovative, can-do, Kiwi attitude, in its approach to creating the fastest sail boats in the world.
And I’d add to that ‘grit’. It takes nothing away from sailors to point out the incredibly long, hard grind put in by Grant Dalton, who battled away to regain the cup following the defeat in San Francisco four years ago. It was a struggle for money, and for mana, but he persevered and has made the country so proud. As he summed it up last week in the New Zealand Herald:
“It's just embodied who we are as New Zealanders really. We're tough and resilient and resourceful and really the team just embodied that and I'm just a part of it. I'm just so proud of the guys today. I really just can't explain how proud I am."
At Orion Health, we’re proud too. Congrats to Grant, Peter and their amazing team.