Canterbury software start up bags $700k Japanese investment

Canterbury-based digital marketing firm Shuttlerock has taken another major international step forward by partnering with Opt, Japan’s largest Internet marketing agency.

According to the Kiwi start up, which launched in 2011, the plan is to unveil a subsidiary in Japan, with plans to inject $700,000 into the business.

“It’s incredibly exciting for us,” says Jonny Hendriksen, CEO, Shuttlerock.

“Opt is the largest digital agency in Japan. They have over thirteen hundred staff and around twelve hundred clients so partnering with them is a huge opportunity and shows that they have a very strong belief in Shuttlerock as an online visual marketing tool.”

Shuttlerock offers a software platform which is embedded onto a company website, identifying and collecting relevant content from all key social channels.

It also uses contests and instant rewards to encourage customers to upload photos and videos directly with customers incentivised to share the content driving additional website traffic.

It has begun marketing the business globally and has clients in the United States, Australia and the UK, but Hendriksen says the deal with Opt in Japan is very significant and is a ‘huge endorsement’ for the business.

Shuttlerock was launched in 2012 and has a growing range of clients in New Zealand and overseas that includes Fly Buys, the All Blacks, and the Lonestar restaurant chain, Jucy Car Rentals, Carls Jnr and Wendy’s.

The Japanese deal with Opt would also cover South Korea and Malaysia as Opt has offices in those countries, and although based out of Opt offices it will also mean extra jobs in New Zealand as the Japanese operation will be supported from Canterbury.

Hendriksen said Opt’s cash injection of funds will be used to fund operations in the new subsidiary in Japan.

“Shuttlerock helps businesses manage their interactions through social media services such as Facebook, Instagram, You Tube and Twitter,” he adds.

“It is a next-generation product that lets clients create a social hub on a company website.”

“There is just so much going on in social media now that having a tool that can harness all of a company’s online activity, pulling it all into one website, is very valuable.”

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