Pitopito kōrero


Nexus Summit a hit!

10 October 2023
The inaugural Nexus Summit was held on Thursday last week in Toroa Room at PwC tower.

The inaugural Nexus Summit was held on Thursday last week in Toroa Room at PwC tower. More than 70 people from 24 different organisations (including seven people from the UniServices’ Investment Team) who work within Aotearoa New Zealand’s innovation and commercialisation ecosystem were in attendance. The majority of the attendees were early to mid-career commercialisation professionals, each of whom are viewed as future leaders in their organisations and the wider ecosystem.


This event was packed with opportunities for attendees to learn and gather insights from emerging and seasoned people involved in research commercialisation in Aotearoa NZ.

  • It began with a presentation given by Jacques Richter (Associate Investment Director at NZ Growth Capital Partners) on the basics of capitalisation tables.
  • This then led into panel discussions around capitalisation models and expectations from those who represent publicly funded research institutes (both University TTOs and CRIs), spin-out founders, venture capital firms and angel investors.
  • The attendees’ learnings from the presentation and the panel discussions were put to use in a workshop, developed and facilitated by Dr Andrew Chen (Venture Partner at Matū Group). The attendees were put into groups, with each group given a scenario (a hypothetical technology, a term sheet and capitalisation table). Drawing on their knowledge and learnings from the previous sessions, each group discussed the implications of the deal terms and what they think are the changes needed to better reflect a win-win situation for all stakeholders.
  • This was followed by an insightful presentation, given by Phil Morle (Partner at Main Sequence Ventures), on the role of venture studios, what Main Sequence does to accelerate start-up companies and industries, and their unique “Venture Science” approach that has led to the success of their portfolio companies.
  • The event was topped off with a panel discussion amongst senior-, mid- and early-career commercialisation professionals on what the future of research commercialisation, and what it ought to shape into from what it is today.

The energy and positivity in the room was fantastic, and the post-event feedback was very positive. This inaugural event was a great first, and we can’t wait for Nexus Summit 2024!

A big thank you to the sponsoring organisations - KiwiNet, KCA (Knowledge Commercialisation Australasia Ltd) and NZ Growth Capital Partners.

Also a big thank you to the brilliant individuals (and their organisations) who made this happen: Abi Thampi (Venture Consultant at AUT Ventures), Charlotte Vandermeer (Commercialisation Associate at Plant and Food Research), Cindy Luo (Venture Consultant at AUT Ventures), Dan Carlisle (Commercialisation Manager at Massey Ventures), Thomas Grant (Investment Manager at UniServices), Samuel Wojcik (Commercialisation Manager at Wellington UniVentures) and Stephen Lo (Investment Manager at UniServices).