Manifold Coworking Space - New Plymouth



Hack Taranaki is the region’s first Hackathon

Local companies and organisations will begin the process by presenting problems they are currently facing or opportunities for the future.  Teams of designers, developers and other creative and committed people will then form to address an issue. 

Over the weekend the teams will design and test a solution and then pitch their developed solution on the Sunday evening. It’s a competitive but supportive process. A facilitator and a team of mentors will coach teams throughout the weekend.

Hack Taranaki is a great opportunity to learn new skills and have a lot of fun.

While solutions developed at Hackathons are usually software based, successful teams require people with a range of experiences. 

Anyone can take part and contribute to a hackathon so please come along and contribute your skills, experience and knowledge to make a real difference to the Taranaki community.


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So what exactly is a Hackathon?



Why Attend Hack Taranaki?

Hack Taranaki is the first event of its type in our region. It is part of Tech Week 18 which aims to promote and foster New Zealand's rapidly growing technology and innovation sectors.  Techweek does this by providing the national ecosystem with a week-long opportunity for connection and cross-pollination, and an independent platform through which to amplify New Zealand's unique and inspiring innovation stories to the world.

So why attend a hackathon?


Passionate about Taranaki

The problems presented at Hack Taranaki will, if solved, will have a wider benefit to our community and or environment. By attending Hack Taranaki you could have a positive impact on our region. 

Connect with others

Participants at Hack Taranaki will be a vibrant, diverse and smart bunch of people. This represents and opportunity to make connections and friendships that often last far beyond the event itself.

Learn new skills

By joining a multi-skilled, diverse team you will be exposed to new ways of thinking and working. Our mentors, with technical and business backgrounds, also share their knowledge and wisdom.

Solve important problems

The problems presented at the start of Hack Taranaki will be real-life Taranaki problems as experienced by local businesses and organisations - this is an exciting opportunity for those addicted problem solving through technology and collaboration.

Access to mentors

Our mentors have a wide range of technical and business experience They are volunteering their time to share their skills with you to ensure the best possible results for the team and the event. Check out our mentor list below.

Great food

Hack Taranaki is a fully catered event. Three nutritious meals a day and all the coffee you need to keep those creative juices flowing. If you have dietry requirments please let us know when you purchase your tickets.


Event Judges

Check out the amazing Hack Taranaki judges ready to give you feedback on your solution


Liam Hodgetts

Group Manager of Strategy at New Plymouth District Council

Liam has nearly 20 years experience in various government roles in NZ, the UK and Australia. He started his professional career as an urban planner and moved into city and district management as a strategy and planning executive. Liam is currently the Group Manager of Strategy at New Plymouth District Council, looking after the Council's spatial and long term planning and community relationship functions. He leads a diverse team of 35 professionals in the areas of Governance, Community Partnerships, Iwi Relationships, Strategic Planning and Business Transformation.  He was the project director of Taranaki's recently launched 'Tapuae Roa: Make Way for Taranaki' Economic Development Strategy and Action Plan and has a keen interest in the economic development challenges and opportunities for New Plymouth and the Taranaki Region.

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David Duffy

Director at Datacom Systems Ltd

Beginning at Datacom in 2005 David has steadily been building high performing businesses across three regions – Bay of Plenty, Waikato, and Taranaki. With a passion for technology businesses, David gets a kick out of the generation of skilled jobs in small regions. David sits on Datacom’s New Zealand leadership team and also is involved in strategic decision making for Datacom’s business globally. A one-time law graduate and a recent attendee from MIT’s Entrepreneurship Development Program (EDP) David blends people leadership with calculated risk-taking. David has been a part of multiple Datacom Hackfests’ in the Bay of Plenty and Waikato and has witnessed first-hand benefits these events bring to the regions. He is keen to see how Hack Taranaki can help local companies and organisations in the region thrive.


Adrian Sole

General Manager at Efinity Digital & Trackit Energy

Adrian is the General Manager at Efinity Digital and Trackit Energy since 2015. Adrian leads both businesses with his strong people management skills, commercial development, marketing, ICT and FMCG experience. His previous leadership roles have been General Manager of Taranaki Daily News (A Fairfax Company), Web Farm / Free Parking, Peru Café, & Senior Account Manager Telecom. 

Adrian is passionate about leadership, his community and people achieving their potential.

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Claudia King

Founder and CEO of Automio

Claudia is fiercely committed to making quality legal help available to everyone, everywhere. She is the founder and CEO of Automio, a tech company based here in New Plymouth.

Automio's software robots tirelessly carry out client interviews and create instant, error-free legal advice and contracts so lawyers can focus on higher-value legal work. Claudia is a recovering lawyer and in 2017 was an Australia & New Zealand Legal Innovation Index winner.


Coaches and Mentors

Check out the amazing Hack Taranaki coach and mentor team ready to support you throughout the weekend

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Belinda Pool

Head of Brand and Digital, Marketing at TSB

Belinda has over 12 years of Marketing and Sales experience across a range of Financial Services and Retail roles. In her current role at TSB, she’s responsible for developing the brand, communication, digital marketing and website strategies, with a focus on understanding the customer and making the experience as easy and simple as possible.

Her leadership style centres on building an effective and enthusiastic team dynamic; encouraging ownership, asking questions and challenging the status quo. Outside of work, Belinda is a keen snowboarder and a bit of a foodie.

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Sophie Braggins

Chief Executive Officer at Govett Quilliam

Sophie comes from a strategic business and people background, with experience in human resource management and psychometrics in the United Arab Emirates, people and marketing at TVNZ, and as Managing Director of local Taranaki Accounting firm Strategy Collective. She holds senior governance roles as Chair of the Taranaki Chamber of Commerce, Chair of the CEO Forum, and participation on the Committee for the Regional Economic Development Strategy. Sophie is responsible for managing Govett Quilliam's capability to innovate and make the most of opportunities, from a technology, functionality, skills and cultural perspective. She is a strong advocate for engaging with the team to ensure innovation becomes a cultural mind-set.
Outside of work, Sophie has two children, Isabella and Theo, and leads a busy and active lifestyle with a keen interest in ocean swimming, boxing and running. She also has a strong community spirit with involvement in youth programmes such as Accelerator, Big Brothers Big Sisters and student exchanges.


Rob McEwan

Director, Business Computing Services at Staples Rodway Taranaki

Rob has over 30 years of computer and commercial experience from companies in the United Kingdom and New Zealand. He also has extensive experience working in the petrochemical industry with responsibility for IT engineering and service delivery to the Asia Pacific region. Recently Rob has focused much of his time on assisting clients to develop and implement cloud computing strategies and as Director of the Business Computer Services division, his internal roles include team leadership and project management with a proven record of accomplishment working with diverse teams to deliver projects.


Loren M Anderson

Business Analyst at PwC

Loren is an innovative thinker and uses this skill to help businesses solve important problems. She is part of the Executive Leadership Team of PwC’s Taranaki Office. Her day job is also her passion – helping businesses design strategies to achieve their business growth goals. Outside of her role at PwC Loren actively contributes to the local community and has held various volunteer positions, including being an executive committee member of the Taranaki Young Professionals and mentoring at Startup Weekend. Loren is also involved at a governance level in her family’s dairy farming business. Loren has a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and International Relations from Victoria University and an Executive MBA from Massey University.  


Natalie Wiseman

Business Transformation Lead at New Plymouth District Council

Natalie has an agile mindset and loves helping teams solve problems. She’s a registered Change Practitioner, and is passionate about delivering the best project outcomes through building inclusive, supportive, high functioning teams.

Natalie has a diverse marketing, change, communications and project management background. She spent six years working in Tokyo, before sharpening her skills in Sydney and Perth prior to her return to Taranaki.


Signe Bokær Wilkinson

Account Director at Datacom Systems Ltd

Signe comes from a management background in IT and Central Government. She is a problem solver drawing from her wide experience in different professions and cultures. 
Signe knows how to excite and motivate people around her using her coaching skills to bring out the best in people.Signe has a Master degree in Political Science, a Diploma in Management and is a certified coach.

Late last year Signe returned to New Zealand with her family after 17 years away, living and working in Denmark, Europe (EU) and India. Signe enjoys music and loves singing. She is active in the ‘Mauao Contemporary Choir’ and have for many year practised Kapa Haka.


Corinne Davies

User Experience Designer at New Plymouth District Council

Corinne is a User Experience (UX) professional, and an advocate for a customer-centric approach to designing and delivering services to make them easier for people to access, use, and understand. She has practical experience in product and service design that is focussed on the end-user and backed up with robust data. Over the last 15 years, her professional experience has spanned technology funding and investment, founding and managing a NZ-wide web development company with an innovative remote working model, authoring a course in web writing and usability for the Open Polytechnic, and providing a UX design approach for projects at New Plymouth District Council.  She has held governance roles with a focus on the end-users of public services through the Taranaki DHB's Clinical Board and the Ministry of Health's National Health IT Board Consumer Panel. After completing her MSc at the University of Otago and spending many years in Wellington, Corinne returned to New Plymouth to enjoy the unique Taranaki lifestyle with her daughter, Elliott.


Thomas Emmerson

Marketing Strategist & Director at Vanguard 86

Thomas was instrumental in creating international marketing campaigns for Honda Europe's motorcycle division and worked in PR and communications for Aston Martin.  His passion for marketing, and strategic planning led him to create several marketing training courses in NZ.Thomas has contributed to the Marketing Association blog, been printed in NZ Business and campaigns he's worked on in Europe were featured by DRUM marketing, and shortlisted for marketing awards in the UK.  Thomas founded Vanguard 86 in 2016 and it has quickly grown into a leading digital marketing and inbound marketing agency in New Zealand.  In 2018 Vanguard 86 won Bronze in the CRM and Multichannel category in the New Zealand Direct Marketing Awards for their work with Genius Homes.


Aaron Taylor

Lead Developer at Efinity Digital

Aaron has 10 years of experience developing large software applications across a range of industries. He is a keen problem solver and is adept at seamlessly integrating solutions with external software and services.

Currently, Aaron is the lead developer at Efinity Digital, a New Plymouth based software company, working predominantly on a suite of products that are being used in the oil and gas industry both locally and internationally. In his spare time, Aaron likes to stay active and keep up to date with the latest technological trends. 


Neil Yeats

Solutions Architect at New Plymouth District Council

Neil is a Software developer born in England and since 20XX based in Taranaki. With over 25 years’ experience he worked in both public and private sector for companies such as NHS, Vodafone, Sky using full stack Microsoft technologies from Windows applications through to modern JS Frameworks.

Neil loves designing systems whether it’s a microsite or a full software application.  He’s always exploring the cutting the edge and trying to work out how in the real world we apply this. At the moment he’s wondering which will win out in 5 years Web Assembly or an evolution of PWA and how we’ll be subscribing to block chain as a service.


Richard Allen

Senior Software Developer at Datacom

Rich has been developing software for the past 20 years. He has worked in the superannuation, local government, and agriculture sectors over this time. Rich has experience with both open source and Microsoft technologies, as well as Android and iOS mobile development.

The seed was planted back at Hawera High School, where Rich started writing Commodore 64 games with his brother. Rich enjoys understanding real world problems, and also the thrill of solving them.




Jane Treadwell-Hoye

Co-Founder and Corporate Lead at ZeroPoint Ventures

Jane heads up our corporate venturing division. She is an internationally experienced business leader with specific expertise in leading strategic transformation and customer experience programmes.  Jane has more than 20+ years NZ, AsiaPacific (based out of Singapore) and London-based, global experience.

She focuses on innovation via people-centred design-thinking and disruptive approaches to problem solving.  Jane engages with ZeroPoint’s corporate, government and regional partners working with them to bring startup thinking and continuous innovation approaches to their organisations. She has co-designed and led corporate innovation programmes, is founder/co-founder of a number of startups, a startup coach, and a Startup Weekend organiser and mentor.


Event Organisers


Frank Lachmann


Graham Nelson


Adarsh Lal


John Haylock

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Marcel Schadt

Simeon Theobald

Nick Field


Matt Sagen

Thinking of Participating?

Calling all Software Developers, Designers, Technologists, Business experts and the curious!


Got a problem worth solving?

Problem submissions have now closed.
Thank you Taranaki organisations for submitting so many compelling problems. We are super excited to see how some of these issues will be solved over the weekend.