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Kami at the University of Auckland’s Velocity Innovation Seminar

Auckland, New Zealand – Kami Co-founder and CEO Hengjie Wang spoke at the University of Auckland’s Velocity Engineering Innovation Seminar in front of an audience of engineering students followed by a Q and A. The purpose of this seminar was to inspire entrepreneurial students looking to launch ideas of their own. Hengjie talked through our story – starting as a 4th-year project that himself, Jordan Thoms (CTO) and Alliv Samson (COO) launched. Kami, then Notable, first came into contact with Velocity (formerly Spark) when they entered the Velocity $100k challenge four years ago. The $100k challenge is specifically for teams with innovative ideas, looking to launch a business.

Hengjie had a few takeaway points for the audience that for Kami have been of major importance to our success so far:

  1. Fail fast (we failed in 18 months on the first product, and it took too long).
  2. Launch global from day one (we don’t focus on the NZ market as we did initially).
  3. Don’t rely on press to get traction; they’re probably not good users anyway.
  4. The founding team is super important when building startups. 50% of startups fail because the founders broke up.
  5. Listen to your audience. We got our first 50 users; they started selecting text and typing garbage into the text box. Why? Because they wanted a highlighting feature. We built highlight feature, today, it’s no #1 used feature.

Velocity is the country’s leading entrepreneurial development programme. Velocity launched in 2003 and is based at the University of Auckland in the Business School. They are about giving momentum to great ideas and to surge ahead and innovate the future. Since Velocity’s launch in 2003, they have helped with 110 business ventures, invested $200 million of capital which has helped create over 400 jobs. The world we live in has changed a lot since 2003, and today Velocity steps forwards, inspiring, educating and motivating young entrepreneurs to continue New Zealand’s transformation into a truly world-class economy. While the environment for entrepreneurs looking to start up their own company is competitive, there is also a strong startup community and plenty of room for innovative thinkers.

For more information and speaking opportunities, please contact Alliv Samson at hello@kamihq.com


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