Tauranga student Laura Kerrison is a member of the Garden Genie smartphone app team that beat out stiff competition from 11 other innovative ideas to win the latest Auckland Startup Weekend. It is also the only New Zealand team that will compete in the Global Startup Battle of business ideas.

An initiative created by Startup Weekend, Global Startup Battle aims to generate a stronger global community of entrepreneurs through the largest startup competition in the world.

Led by Jennifer Clamp, a growth programme specialist at Auckland Tourism Events and Economic Development, the Garden Genie team is now campaigning to get as many votes as possible in the Global Startup Battle in which startups from around the world compete for votes to win a range of prizes, funding and exposure. Supporters can vote through http://tinyurl.com/votegenie until Friday.

Garden Genie is designed to help people who don't have the knowledge or time, to grow their own produce.


Users are asked to provide basic information about their garden and what they want to grow. They are then sent instructions for growing produce and reminders when it's time sow seeds, prune trees and for watering. Users can also purchase their gardening supplies through the app.

Laura Kerrison was born and raised in the Bay of Plenty and currently lives in Tauranga. She has a diploma in freelance journalism, diploma in graphic design and is currently working towards her Bachelor of Design (graphic) at Auckland University of Technology. The other team members are Kiet Vo, Mahsa Dordahan, Mohit Baweja and Perrin Reilly.