Case Study | GridAKL
The GridAKL innovation hub was established as the showcase for innovation in Auckland’s ICT and digital media industries, and a key focal point in the long-term development of Auckland’s Wynyard Quarter Innovation Precinct. O/TG Principals led the strategy, establishment and delivery of the GridAKL brand, innovation hub and events and activation programme.
A key component of Auckland Council’s strategy to help fuel Auckland’s economic success and achieve its goal of becoming a high tech innovation hub of the Asia Pacific region was the establishment of an innovation precinct in the Wynyard Quarter. They required a solution to develop a brand, identity and engagement strategy for the precinct, along with a physical space and activation programme which would act as a front door to the precinct and provide a showcase of Auckland’s innovation ecosystem.
The innovation precinct brand, GridAKL, was established as “the home for innovation in the heart of Auckland”. A clear strategy was developed to engage with the wider innovation ecosystem locally, nationally and internationally, and to launch an innovation and startup hub within the precinct that didn’t compete with other parts of the Auckland innovation ecosystem but rather act as a nucleus for innovation and industry activity.
The GridAKL innovation hub was designed to bring together and help facilitate access to resources, connections and opportunities required to accelerate business growth, stimulate innovation and propel technology-based ventures on the global stage. It provides the space, support, inspiration and community needed for a strong and vibrant innovation culture in the city.
A place of discovery, the GridAKL hub showcases and celebrates innovation with an aim to inspire all innovators. It provides the pathways for innovative individuals and businesses to connect, share ideas and access the tools they need to grow.
As the GridAKL precinct rapidly became a central meeting point and showcase of Auckland innovation, the startup hub became the nucleus of activity and the front door to both the precinct and the Auckland innovation ecosystem.
In the second year of operation, the hub had over 17,000 people through its doors participating in events, workshops and training sessions. It was also the permanent home for 72 businesses - an increase of 350% over two years. It also had an additional 200 early stage entrepreneurs holding memberships for the GridAKL tech cafe. The hub has since provided a home for a number of public and corporate startup accelerators which benefit from being co-located with a broad range of entrepreneurs and startups, along with ready access to support services, advisors, mentors and funding sources.