Optimation Celebrates Its 20th Anniversary
This week is a special week in Optimation’s history – our 20th anniversary. It’s a great moment to thank customers and staff for being part of our amazing journey, and take a few moments to reflect on what we’ve achieved and what the future holds.
It was around our kitchen table at home that the business began and our doors opened on the 16th August 1992 in Wellington. We only had 4 staff to start, but we already had our sights set high and grew to 15 inside a year. Our first customer was IRD, connecting mainframe systems to then-new Unix technology which resulted in dramatically lower costs for IRD and the value we delivered convinced them to stick with us. The dedication, smarts, and Kiwi can-do attitude we brought to that very first project has been part of Optimation’s DNA ever since.
We’re now a $50 million business with over 200 staff and have a well-earned reputation for boxing above our weight. We have an enviable track record of delivering robust business-critical systems to some of the biggest companies in New Zealand but, just as important, we are known as great people to work with.
People are at the heart of this company’s ethos. I have always appreciated our staff’s commitment to achieving excellence for our customers, and admired the determination not to walk away, even when the challenges have been really tough. It’s that attitude that has underpinned Optimation’s success and this is borne out by the enduring relationships we enjoy with our customers and partners.
Key to our success has been staying ahead of the curve in terms of technology and business innovation. In 2000, to meet the needs of a freshly deregulated electricity market, we rolled-out our smart electricity billing platform called Equip, billing 40 – 60% of NZ’s commercial and industrial electricity consumers for the next decade.
We were also the first local company to observe the global offshoring trend and embrace its strengths rather than looking inward. We enhanced the model by blending our Kiwi capability and culture with global expertise and scalability to drive unparalleled value for clients. Today, our Outsourcing, Managed Services model and strategic partnership with HCL have helped us to step up into the top tier of the NZ IT industry. Our latest joint venture with Barbador, partnering with Google, is yet another example of how we continue to innovate and bring new ideas to our customers.
20 years on, Optimation is now firmly woven into New Zealand’s IT fabric. We’ve been enthusiastic supporters of the work organisations such as NZICT, the Hi-Tech Awards and NZRise are doing to help build a high-wealth, knowledge-based economy. It’s also great to see the number of Optimates who’ve gone on to set up their own businesses or to lead IT innovation for some of our customers.
I am truly humbled by what we have achieved so far and I’m excited about what the next 20 years will bring.
Neil Butler – Founder and Executive Chairman