Backing today's innovators

So you’ve identified a gap in the market or believe you may just have ‘the next big thing’?

Breaking new ground is challenging and often a solo journey but with some belief and right advice it can be very rewarding. Callaghan Innovation is an important national innovation partner with a key aim of making New Zealanders’ fresh ideas a reality. They have a comprehensive set of tools, resources and programmes, with expert teams to assist research, development and innovation. Callaghan Innovation also provides R&D grants, and supports technology and product development. 

One of the greatest challenges when embarking on a research and innovation journey is working out how you’ll cover all the costs of the project while maintaining your day-to-day business. Northland Inc’s Business Innovation & Growth team includes innovation specialists who have collectively spent thousands of hours working with new and established leading-edge businesses and pointing them in the right direction. Northland has enterprises working on new product development, processes and systems for primary industries, manufacturing, marine, and health Sectors. The innovation integrates new technologies such as:

  • Robotics
  • Internet of Things
  • Big Data
  • E-vehicles
  • Bio-extracts
  • E-healthcare
  • and much more.

If you are looking for support for your innovation journey, you're in the right place. Check out the support tools below then get in touch so we can help you plan and navigate your pathway to success.

Getting new ideas off the ground

5 ways we can help you innovate

→ Help plan your research and development pathway
→ Connect you with experts and leaders from our region
→ Facilitate government funding and services
→ Match your needs with programmes, events and funders
→ Access publications and reports on innovation topics.

Plan your innovation pathway

book your innovation discovery session today!

Innovation Grants

More on Getting Started Grant
Getting Started Grant

The Getting Started Grant is designed to help you navigate through R&D roadblocks – whether it's troubleshooting, basic prototyping, project planning, technical feasibility studies, development of an Intellectual Property strategy, or determining product specifications and user requirements. It also supports businesses to access technical expertise to take your development in the right direction. Learn more

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Project Grant

The Project Grant is designed to help you build or expand your R&D expertise by giving your business an opportunity to push the boundaries and uncover new scientific or technical knowledge and understanding. Break new ground in an R&D project for the development of new or substantially improved devices, products, processes, systems or services. Develop your business into a stable and substantial R&D performer, and grow your investment in R&D. Learn more

More on Growth Grant
Growth Grant

Is your business an experienced R&D performer? This three-year Growth Grant will help you increase your R&D investment. It is designed to help you; add scale to your R&D investment for greater market impact, be flexible by allowing you to adapt to where you want to take your R&D programme - outside the constraints of traditional R&D grant criteria, and continue to grow your investment in R&D for maximum return. Learn more

More on Student Grant
Student Grant

Student Grants are designed to support New Zealand businesses and students. Businesses can access the latest thinking and fresh talent in science, technology, engineering, design or business at minimal cost, and build links with universities around R&D opportunities. You’ll also support universities in producing skilled graduates, and help students develop technical and commercial skills. Learn more

Innovation Skills

  • Lean

    LeanUnleash the value in your business by putting every step of the business process under the Lean lens. Eliminate waste and improve your customer experience.

    Lean is a workshop and coaching programme designed to boost your competitiveness and performance through the entire operational system. Lean can improve many things in your business from product development to supply chains, production and distribution, customer touch points and staff skill levels.  

     Learn More

  • Build for speed

    Build for SpeedAccelerate software product development and deliver successful project outcomes.

    Build for Speed is a tailored programme that helps digital businesses speed up software product development by updating architecture, managing technical debt and adopting continuous delivery principles. Build for Speed uses Agile practices that are prioritised according to the specific requirements of each participating business.

    Learn More

  • Driving Innovation

    driving innovation img3Change cultures and mindsets, unchain product development, and increase the pace of your innovation.

    Driving Innovation is a 12-month skills development programme designed to help your business increase both the value and rate of its innovation efforts. Unleash your scope to innovate by bringing the world’s leading product development methods into your business.

     Learn More

  • Innovation IP

    innovation ip img3 0Identify your IP assets, manage them strategically and maximise their value.

    Innovation IP® is a programme that gives innovative and ambitious New Zealand businesses the knowledge, capability and confidence to leverage their intellectual property (IP) and intellectual assets to enable growth and reduce risk.

     Learn More 

2018 Westpac Northland Business Awards

Northland Inc Innovation Award

2018 Winners: Extrutec Ltd

Congratulations to Extrutec Ltd who took out the Northland Inc Innovation Award for 2018, and Tankful and Kai Ora Honey were finalists.

Entry information for 2018 Express your interest

Access to Experts

  • Founder Incubators

    incubators img3Do you have a great idea or an early stage, high-growth business? Founder incubators provide concentrated, core business support and extensive networks for you to accelerate your path to market.

    Founder incubators are for people with great ideas. They provide services to help you and your team validate your idea in the market and build a strong business around it.

    Our extended network of incubators help startups with:

    • Technology and market validation
    • Business planning and development
    • Capability building
    • Investment preparation and access to networks
    • Governance and establishment of advisory board
    • Shared working spaces.
  • Accelerators

    accelerator programme img3Are you an entrepreneur with an early stage technology start-up? Accelerator programmes can help you rapidly build your business.

    Accelerator programmes typically run over three to five months and focus on rapid and intensive product development to establish and investment ready start-up.

    Accelerators often complement the services offered by founder and technology incubators.

    With concentrated, specialist mentoring, coaching and business support, the programme concludes with a final pitch to an audience of potential investors at which seed, angel or venture capital funding might be attracted.

  • Technology Incubators

    accelerators incubators img2Technology incubators invest in and actively help commercialise complex technologies. They concentrate on taking your concept to the next level by building a business around the technology – with the aim of growing globally competitive hi-tech businesses.

    Technology incubators have access to Callaghan Innovation pre-incubation grants and repayable loans for eligible projects. The incubator co-funds the project for which the loan is provided. The loan is only available to businesses partnering with one of the technology incubators below.

  • Technology and Innovation Networks

    networks img3Lead your business to shared research, innovation and technology opportunities which can be grown through several connections to give your product and process development critical exposure.

  • Global Experts

    global expert img3 0Global Expert connects you to innovation experts and resources that will help boost your research and development.

    Through our extensive network of local and international partners and collaborators, Global Expert has enabled more than 700 connections across multiple sectors and industries.

  • Enterprise Europe Network (EEN): Gateway to Europe

    een logo without strap img3The Enterprise Europe Network (EEN) provides a platform that supports small and medium enterprises to grow internationally through technology and business partnerships. 

    The network is made up of 600 organisations from 30 countries across Europe, and 21 business co-operation centres from other parts of the world.

Technology and Product Development

advanced manufacturing img3Give your business a competitive advantage with experts in advanced engineering, robotics, automation and manufacturing technology. The experts will help you solve complex manufacturing and design challenges – from concept feasibility and testing through to production and commercialisation. 

Learn more 

ur robot img3We are committed to helping manufacturers embrace the digital revolution that is changing the face of manufacturing and industry (often referred to as ‘Industry 4.0’ or the 'Industrial Internet of Things'). Collaborative robots – robots work alongside humans in a shared workspace – are an important part of this revolution and are poised to disrupt all types and scales of manufacturing. Trial a collaborative robot in your workplace to validate digital manufacturing as an R&D tool for your business. 

Learn more

advanced materials img3Our advanced materials experts can help you select the best materials for your product or process development, materials characterisation, and testing. Every product we produce, use, or consume is generated from one or more materials, whether metal, ceramic, plastic or concrete. Picking the right material to produce your product can be the difference between success and failure.

Learn more

add lab img3Manufacturing processes are changing. New design and development solutions, including additive manufacturing, are allowing the production of highly complex parts to realise new innovative designs and enable individually tailored manufacturing outcomes. AddLab is designed to help you explore new business opportunities and find new solutions to R&D problems through growing capability in new design, materials and manufacturing technologies.

Learn more

biotechnologies2 img3The biotechnologies experts can help your business transform biological resources, such as meat, dairy, plant and seafood products, into high-value products that include nutraceuticals, cosmeceuticals, food ingredients and natural agrochemicals. The experts can also deliver you a competitive advantage in pharmaceutical drug discovery and development.

Learn more 

sensing automation img3 1The experts in microfabrication, transducers and sensing, wireless communications, data science, computer vision, assisted devices and AR/VR will accelerate your product development throughout the entire Internet of Things (IoT) stack. From the fabrication of high-value sensors through to advanced analytical insights, the experts rapidly deliver commercially viable products and technology solutions. 

Learn more

light spiral img3 0Five digital technologies - Artificial Intelligence (AI), Big Data, Blockchain, Cloud Analytics and the Internet of Things (IoT) - are disrupting the energy sector, and adjacent sectors, such as transport and manufacturing. This is creating exciting business opportunities for innovators in New Zealand and abroad.

Callaghan Innovation helps New Zealand businesses to understand and make the most out of such opportunities. We do this by connecting you to the capabilities, funding and networks you need to succeed, and by providing valuable insights and ideas.

Learn more and subscribe online

measurement standards img3The team of testing and measurement experts can help you to understand your products and processes with world-class calibration and verification, measurement and consultancy services. Services also include technical advice on difficult measurements, and R&D on measurements and measuring instruments.  

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gracefield innovation quarter img3Set on a 10 hectare site, the Innovation Quarter has 34,000m2 of laboratories, office space, workshops and pilot labs, including a well-equipped machine shop, rapid prototyping facilities, glassblowing, materials analysis and testing laboratories, a supercritical fluid extraction plant and world class measurement facilities. The Gracefield Innovation Quarter gives resident businesses access to specialist facilities and expertise to help your business fast-track your product development, scale up, deploy and test technology and collaborate.

Learn more


te whare a maui img3Te Whare a Māui - The Māori Innovation Hub at our Gracefield Innovation Quarter in Lower Hutt is a shared working space for Māori businesses, with tools to help you collaborate and innovate. Purpose-built for businesses currently working with Callaghan Innovation, the hub can provide you with additional support and help you connect with other Māori innovators. You'll also be surrounded by, and have access to, Callaghan Innovation's research facilities and experts.

Learn more

biotechnologies img3Search a database of research papers published by our scientists and engineers in a range of academic journals.

Search the database

What's happening in our region - Innovation

Business Lean Canvas

Got an idea?

Use the Business Lean Canvas to map your idea out and then validate all of your assumptions.

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