Story image

“Go home Dotcom”… Drury slams “depressing” political ICT plans

26 Jul 14

As the political heavyweights debated the future ICT roadmap for New Zealand last night, Rod Drury sat shaking his head in the crowd.

Taking the stage amidst the backdrop of Auckland’s evening sky, key political figures debated long into the night about the future of New Zealand’s ICT sector.

Chaired by the New Zealand Technology Industry Association, CEO Candace Kinser orchestrated discussion with technology representatives from National, Labour, the Green Party and the Internet MANA parties.

But as the opinions flowed and policies were outlined, Xero’s charismatic CEO reawakened a conversation which, in the eyes of the entrepreneur, drifted widely off the overriding issue.

“I find this really depressing but I’ll try to be positive about it,” he said, in his typically outspoken manner.

Addressing Internet Party leader Laila Harre first, Drury told the recently elected head of the Kim Dotcom funded political party: “We’ve been in the industry for 20 years and you don’t speak for us, Kim Dotcom should go away and it’s kind of insulting to hear what you speak about because it doesn’t take into account the hard work we’ve done for the last 20 years.”

According to Drury, panelists Harre, Amy Adams, Clare Curran and Gareth Hughes spoke about “incremental stuff which everybody else is already doing”, branding the discussion “boring.”

Displaying a genuine passion for wanting to drive the ICT industry forward across the country, Drury believes all parties have an opportunity to “completely change New Zealand”, believing the appointment of a Chief Technology Officer to be the “way forward.”

“We have many companies in the tech space who can spend tens of millions of dollars,” he added. “We know the answer, you guys clearly don’t know the answer. What we’d love to do is actually use technology to change New Zealand.”

Insisting the best way to instil a positive change in the ICT industry is through engaging the private sector, Drury again referred to the need for a CTO.

“We need someone in the middle who can engage with both ends and say ‘these are the things that we need to change New Zealand’ which would help unlock investment and change the market,” he added.

Yet for Drury, the frustration is that the political parties are “not listening” - “We can absolutely change New Zealand with ICT,” he added. “We’re really good at it and would love to do it.

“I think you’re all really great people but you need to work together and with us to help change New Zealand - just give us a chance to do that because the old model hasn’t worked.”

Is appointing a CTO the right way forward for New Zealand’s ICT market? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below

Silver Peak hits big four with Google Cloud agreement
Silver Peak is the only SD-WAN vendor to partner with all four leading public cloud providers – Amazon, Google, Microsoft and Oracle.
Comms providers hit by most DDoS attacks in Q3 2018
New data indicates attackers preyed on the large attack surface of ASN-level communications service providers with a ‘bit-and-piece’ approach.
MNF Enterprise brings calling to MS Teams
Businesses can now use Microsoft Teams for local and international phone calling from their computer or device.
Survey reveals CX disconnect is risky business
Too much conversation and too little action could lead companies to neglect, lose, and repel their very lifeblood, according to Dimension Data.
Should AI technology determine the necessity for cyber attack responses?
Fujitsu has developed an AI that supposedly automatically determines whether action needs to be taken in response to a cyber attack.
Police making progress into Cryptopia breach
New Zealand Police say they are making ‘good progress’ into the investigation of an alleged cryptocurrency theft from Christchurch-based crypto exchange Cryptopia.
NEC concludes wireless transport SDN proof of concept
"Operation and management of 5G networks are very complicated and require automation and closed-loop control with timely data refinement and quick action."
Trend Micro’s telecom security solution certified as VMware-ready
Certification by VMware allows communications service providers who prefer or have already adopted VMware vCloud NFV to add network security services from Trend Micro.