New Zealand International Business Awards Winners Announced

25 March 2015: There was more than a touch of magic in the air tonight as winners of the 2015 New Zealand International Business Awards were announced, with Queenstown-based experiential tourism company Magic Memories sweeping up four awards, including the coveted Judges’ Supreme Award for International Business.

Launched 20 years ago to offer photography services for the Queenstown Gondola, the company now operates in 100 sites globally. It was Magic Memories’ focus on maintaining high quality operations at each site, whilst ensuring considerable autonomy is given to local teams within global processes, which made an impact on the judges.

“The judging panel was particularly impressed by the effort that Magic Memories puts into implementation and set-up of new sites, with the results showing through in customer advocacy, site revenue growth and customer retention,” commented the judges.

Magic Memories also took home accolades for categories ‘ANZ Best Business Operating Internationally –$10m-$50m’, Excellence in Marketing’, supported by AUT Business School, and ‘Excellence in Operations’, supported by The Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Trade.

The Awards, run by New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE) and Strategic Partner ANZ, celebratethe passion, vision and new approaches that New Zealand businesses are taking to achieve international success.

Further international success was exemplified by the night’s other winners; New Plymouth’s International Volunteer HQ, Rakaia’s Synlait Milk, Wellington’s Powershop, Auckland’s Milmeq and Taupo-based Miraka, who was named winner of the inaugural ‘He kai kei aku ringa for Māori Excellence in Export’ award, supported by The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE), Te Puni Kōkiri and The Treasury.

Dr John Penno, CEO and Managing Director of Synlait Milk, picked up the final accolade for ‘Excellence in Leadership’, supported by KPMG. Judges were impressed by John’s role in helping the firm rise up the value chain, his entrepreneurial spirit, the company culture and team dynamics he has built, and his leadership amongst the primary sector.

NZTE Chief Executive Peter Chrisp said this year’s winners demonstrate the lateral thinking that is becoming characteristic of New Zealand business, with each winners shaking up traditional markets by providing innovative, bespoke and cutting-edge solutions.

“All of these companies are immersing themselves in their markets, designing bespoke products and services to suit their current and future customers, and rapidly evolving their businesses to deliver. 

“There is no shortage of opportunities for New Zealand businesses, but the challenge is to design businesses to be relevant to the markets. Magic Memories has taken the traditional model of attraction photography and shaken it up by creating a much more personal experience for users who are happy to pay a premium for a truly bespoke product. The benefits extend to Magic Memories’ partners, who also reap the rewards of that premium.”

David Green, Managing Director Institutional at ANZ New Zealand, said: “These outstanding companies have demonstrated the international success that can be achieved when owners have the courage to take their business into new markets, and are prepared to commit the considerable time, investment and hard work, and have the resilience needed to ensure success.

“These awards give them deserved recognition. But they also offer a great source of inspiration for other business owners who aspire to international growth. And they add exciting new chapters to the success story of New Zealand businesses going offshore, creating value, supporting the creation of jobs and growth in our economy.”

2015 New Zealand International Business Awards Winners


Magic Memories


ANZ Best Business Operating Internationally

Under $10million: International Volunteer HQ (New Plymouth)

$10m-$50million: Magic Memories (Auckland)

Over $50million: Synlait Milk (Rakaia)


Excellence in Innovation, supported by AJ Park 

Milmeq (Auckland)

Excellence in Marketing, supported by AUT Business School

Magic Memories (Queenstown)

Excellence in Operations, supported by The Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Trade

Magic Memories (Queenstown)

Excellence in Design, supported by Special Group

Powershop (Wellington)

He kai kei aku ringa for Māori Excellence in Export, supported by The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE), Te Puni Kōkiri, The Treasury

Miraka (Taupo) 

Excellence in Leadership, supported by KPMG

Dr John Penno, Managing Director and CEO, Synlait Mil

Editor's notes

About the New Zealand International Business Awards

The New Zealand International Business Awards are organised by NZTE, with the support of Strategic Partner ANZ. They celebrate New Zealand business success in the world and recognise professional excellence and innovative practice. They provide an opportunity for New Zealand businesses to benchmark performance, build capability and boost employee morale. For more information, visit

The 2015 New Zealand International Business Awards judging panel

This year’s panel was comprised of ANZ Managing Director, Commercial & Agri, Graham Turley, BusinessNZ Chief Executive Phil O'Reilly, Hunter's Wines Managing Director Jane Hunter, AsureQuality Chair Janine Smith, IT entrepreneur Tim Williams, KPMG Executive Chairman Ross Buckley, NZTE board member and media consultant Julie Christie, Partner at AJ Park Anton Gibson, Clemenger BBDO/Melbourne Chief Executive Peter Biggs CNZM (retired), Chevron Corporation Chief Procurement Officer Leo Lonergan (retired), Special Group Managing Partner Michael Redwood, NZTE and Callaghan Innovation Board Member Robin Hapi, Lawson Powell Limited Chairman Sir Wira Gardiner, Iwi Investor Group CEO Tina Wilson and Convenor of Judges and General Manager ofServices at NZTE, David Downs.