Category Archives: Events

2 years ago


The NZVRARA (The New Zealand VR/AR Association Inc.) will be presenting to the New Zealand advertising community this Thursday 16th November at the annual ad:tech exhibition, held at AUT’s City Campus in Auckland.

Presenting as part of the NZVRARA exhibit, using the latest in virtual and augmented reality are New Zealand companies: M-Theory, One Fat Sheep, Imersia and Polytronik.

Polytronik was sponsored by local VR/AR company, Blackeye VR, as the first recipient of their annual scholarship for New Zealand start-ups to exhibit immersive innovation derived from the cross reality space.

The term ‘cross reality’ (XR) is increasingly being used to refer to the virtual-to-reality continuum of immersive technologies including augmented and mixed reality.

Blackeye VR has provided Tony St George from Polytronik with exhibitor fees, flights and met his NZVRARA membership fees for the next year. Michael Gregg, Managing Director of Blackeye has offered the annual scholarship to help one NZVRARA member each year to market their work.

“We’re pleased to be able to play our part to expand awareness of the sector and celebrate the VR and AR work being done in New Zealand,” says Mr Gregg.

“Tony has been a stalwart of this sector in its formative years and is thoroughly deserving of this scholarship, given his commitment to the VR sector ever since the first Oculus Rift DK1 headsets arrived on the market.”

One Fat Sheep will be demonstrating the power of the PLATTAR augmented reality platform that they developed in 2015.

Sebastian Deans from Auckland-based One Fat Sheep will be showcasing “our world-beating AR platform along with some of the bespoke AR experiences that put us on the map and will keep us there in the future.”

“ad:tech brings a great opportunity to connect with savvy marketers who are interested in understanding the cross reality landscape further. ad:tech helps businesses to discover how AR and many other exciting marketing tools can be connected to drive truly great customer experiences” says Mr Deans.

Imersia are planning to showcase shared augmented reality.  “This new technology has been shown to be a powerful influencer of behaviour using digital storytelling and gamification.  We are excited to be leading the future of marketing and media” says Mr. Davies.

M-Theory is a spin out from successful digital production house, Method Studio and has already completed a number of commercial advertising campaigns for Unitec, Contact Energy, Torrens University, Panuku Development, NZ Post, Kumeu Film Studios, QMS and Ngati Whatua Orakei.

Brad Smith from M-Theory is excited about the potential of the advertising community to embrace these new technologies.

“We’re showing a mix of VR and AR experiences across brands and entertainment. VR and AR will be the future of advertising providing a more immersive and engaging experience for consumers and brands,” says Mr Smith.

Tony St George from Polytronik said, “we are very interested in communicating with agencies that need any AR/VR built. We will be showing a range of past projects that include a AR game that we developed for the Wellington Chocolate Factory”

NZVRARA Executive Director, Courteney Lomas believes adding immersive technologies to ad:tech demonstrates leadership by the event organisers and acknowledges the emerging role of VR and AR in advertising campaigns and marketing communications. “Having the NZVRARA as an active sector promoter, educating wider New Zealand markets on the value of cross reality technologies represents a fantastic opportunity for all of our members to grow and engage with new audiences.” says Ms Lomas.



Courteney Lomas
Executive Director, NZVRARA
Mobile 027 738 9340 or courteney@nz

2 years ago


UPDATE: Visit here to download a copy of the VIRTUAL GETS REAL report

The NZVRARA (The New Zealand VR/AR Association Inc.) is to release a 120-page report titled ‘VIRTUAL GETS REAL’ about the current New Zealand Cross Reality ecosystem at a launch event from 4pm, Thursday 19th October 2017, at the Industry Connect facility within the AR/VR Garage in Auckland’s Mt Eden suburb.

The first of two commissioned reports, VIRTUAL GETS REAL reviews the global sector and what’s happening in New Zealand with a deep dive into each of the three main centres: Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. It provides an oversight to some of the current research and development activity underway and takes a particular look at the role of VR in architecture. It also includes the aggregated results of the first survey undertaken by the sector. The survey enjoyed a high response rate, thanks to active contributions by Association members and industry participants, many of who are highlighted throughout the text.

This book will be available to download from the NZVRARA website from the 20th October, with a small number of hard copies available to those attending the launch function. To register for the event, please go to .

The second of the two reports, GOING NEXT LEVEL, is slated for release at the end of November 2017. This book will include a comprehensive independent assessment of the potential value of the sector to New Zealand and consider the value of cross reality in delivering productivity gains to other sectors. In addition to this robust analysis, the report includes a deep dive into games & entertainment, the role of the screen sector, education, and engineering. The second report will provide insights into potential channels for securing international business for Association members, and highlight possible gaps to be addressed in order to secure the sector’s future.

VIRTUAL GETS REAL was commissioned by NZVRARA and authored by Chair, Michael Gregg, in partnership with the Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment (MBIE), NZTech, Jasmax, WREDA, ChristchurchNZ, ATEED and Callaghan Innovation. Produced for the Association by Blackeye VR, the report follows the style of the initial BlackpaperOne™ self-published and released by that company in March 2017.

The timing of 4pm on Thursday 19th October allows those attending the New Zealand Innovation Awards in Auckland to first enjoy a celebratory glass to toast VIRTUAL GETS REAL at the AR/VR Garage before heading down to the Awards evening.

NZVRARA Executive Director, Courteney Lomas, who has enjoyed early access to the first volume, is confident that there’s something interesting in the book for all those working or studying in the sector, or seeking services from sector organisations. “The numerous case studies about sector start-ups, research projects and local innovation should give pride to this nascent immersive technology industry,” says Courteney.

These reports represent a strategic investment into promoting the fast-growing New Zealand wider VR/AR/MR sector and accelerate adoption of virtual and augmented reality technologies within New Zealand organisations – at the heart of the objectives of the New Zealand VR/AR Association.

The New Zealand VR/AR Association was established to champion, support and grow innovation in the virtual, augmented and mixed reality sectors throughout New Zealand with objectives of promoting collaboration, education, R&D and economic development for the benefit of its over 100 sector members. These reports provide a cornerstone resource to educate potential clients of sector companies, to inform local and central government agencies and department staff of the scale and potential of the cross reality sector, and to assist sector organisations to identify possible partners for project collaborations.

 UPDATE: Visit here to download a copy of the VIRTUAL GETS REAL report


Courteney Lomas
Executive Director, NZVRARA
Mobile 027 738 9340 or

2 years ago


The NZ VRARA launched their new event series, Virtual Skies, on August 8th. The first event of the series,VR: Who owns the future?, saw a diverse mix of people gather together to discuss the utopian and dystopian possibilities of the VR/AR future.

42 people came together to spend an evening debating questions of ethics, ownership and sexuality, within a futuristic VR/AR context . From students to content creators, educators, and business women/men, there was a healthy representation of the Wellington VR/AR community, with a balanced ratio of young, old, male, and female.

A brief presentation on the future predictions for VR/AR was followed by facilitated group conversations set around a series of questions that ranged from the ownership of virtual “tags” to debating the ethics and ramifications of dangerous sexual practises being enacted in a virtual world.

NZ VRARA Executive Director, Courteney Lomas, says “I think that it is really important for the association to be leading this type of conversation alongside promoting, supporting and advocating for our NZ members working in VR and AR. By debating the hard questions and sharing viewpoints amongst the community we are in a better position to build a healthy VRAR future, that harnesses and champions the best of human nature.”

Virtual Skies will be an ongoing event series that deep dives into the hard questions, focusing on different themes each month.

To find out when the next one will be near you, head over to the FB page, NZ VRARA, and stay in the loop!