GeoZone is a technology start-up that began life in 2013 however our story goes back to 2006 and involves a Yamaha 50cc scooter, 60 kilograms of bacon, and 1,200 eggs.
Out of boredom in 2006, Adam rode a 50cc scooter the length of NZ, from Cape Reinga to Bluff, collecting GPS coordinates using a handheld GPS unit. The following year, he bought his first smartphone.
Fast forward three years (and a LOT of door knocking on councils later), Adam had assembled a database of 6,000 GPS coordinates. With the help of Deb and Bruce this information was made available through a free iPhone/Android app called ‘CamperMate‘. We launched the app in September 2011, during the Rugby World Cup, by driving around New Zealand in a campervan cooking free bacon and eggs for tourists and spreading the word about CamperMate.
The main purpose of CamperMate is to show locations of things like public toilets, dump stations, campsites, hostels, and free wifi, and it allows users to geocache new, undiscovered locations and submit them directly onto the app. Once approved, this information is added to the database for others to use.
By using this crowdsourcing function we have managed to grow the database from the initial 6,000 GPS coordinates to now well over 25,000.
In 2013, we started sharing our database with selected partner apps such as YHA, BBH Hostel Network, Wicked Campers, Holiday Parks Association, Maui, Mighty, Britz, Thrifty and the NZMCA(whose users are also geocaching to this single database). You can see a daily crowdsourced location of the day here.
In 2014 we were one of six finalists in the Hi-Tech awards in the pre commercialisation category and grew to a team of 7. In 2015 we are growing faster than ever, and are also using our innovations to also keep tourists safe while they travel here. We also won the UK Trade & Investment Innovative Hi-Tech Mobile Product at the at the 2015 Hi-Tech awards and were acquired by Tourism Holdings Limited.
2016 is the year we launched in Australia after 18 months of preparation. We are looking forward to continuing our growth and helping tourists and operators in both New Zealand and Australia to connect through technology.