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New Zealand owned and Los Angeles-based company ShapeShifter is producing computer aided design systems for manufacturers of some of the biggest global clothing brands in the world such as Nike and Adidas.
ShapeShifter’s Prophet (SSP) software enables manufacturers to reduce their fabric costs through reducing fabric consumption. 
The software does this by providing the very best cutting solution resulting in fabric savings which can translate into tens of millions of dollars of savings per year for the largest manufacturers, ShapeShifter chief executive Tim White says. 
“Fabric costs in some cases may need to be balanced with cutting time however and a number of our customers also want to see a marked improvement in cutting time freeing up precious capacity in their factories so that they can either increase through-put, or meet customer-imposed deadlines.
“Because our Prophet software is so powerful and utilises the massive processing capacity available in the cloud, customers are able to process an infinite number of orders concurrently whereas with other competing software these orders need to be queued resulting in a considerable amount of lost time waiting for results. 
“The speed of our software enables merchandisers and sales staff to provide very fast and accurate quotes for their customers. Historically, most manufacturers have been unable to provide accurate quotes within 24 hours and run the risk of over-quoting and losing the job, or underquoting and losing money on the order. Our Prophet software enables them to accurately quote in 10 to 15 minutes which is a game-changer for them.
“Our software isn’t the cheapest on the market by any means. Our customers are paying on average $US10,000 to $US15,000 per month for their subscription. We have zero customer churn in the business which I believe reflects the significant and quantifiable savings our customers are seeing from using the software.
“In the next 18 months we see opportunities to explore new solutions and expand on what we currently have. I believe there are some significant changes coming in the market which has seen relatively little technological change in the last 15 years. ShapeShifter is well-placed to take advantage of these changes.
“While ShapeShifter has most of its team headquartered in Los Angeles, the parent firm is a New Zealand company with the majority of revenues returned to New Zealand.”
In the past 12 months ShapeShifter’s focus has been on improving market presence in Asia particular in Taiwan and Vietnam. The company has substantial experience in sportswear and expects to have its customer support team set up in Vietnam this year, producing good growth in the region. ShapeShifter is one of the first three New Zealand companies immediately engaging with the newly opened Kiwi Connection tech hub in Ho Chi Minh City.
The hub is founded and operated by Augen Software Group, a Kiwi tech business who initially established their permanent local presence in Vietnam in 2005, in order to tap into the abundance in technical resource to support New Zealand’s rapid growth in innovation (see Exporter magazine's Winter edition).
As Vietnam and the ASEAN region continue to advance international trade, there is increase in demand for technology products and services to lift business and industry capabilities and competitiveness. Augen chief executive Mitchell Pham sees Kiwi Connection as the answer to accelerating presence and engagement for New Zealand tech businesses to support such growth in the region.
Photo: Tim White.
Glenn Baker

Glenn is a professional writer/editor with 50-plus years’ experience across radio, television and magazine publishing.


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