Rakon, the high-tech components manufacturer, has bought an 11 per cent stake in Australian start-up Thinxtra for A$800,000 ($852,000), seeking exposure in expanding machine-to-machine connectivity, known as the "internet of things".
The Auckland-based company said Thinxtra planned to launch operations in Australia and New Zealand in the second quarter of next year, offering a network, products and services for machine-to-machine communications. Thinxtra's website doesn't provide more detail on those services.
"Rakon sees opportunities ahead with the IoT [internet of things] where there is exponential growth in the number of devices connected to each other, through the advancement of the IoT network and M2M [machine-to-machine] connectivity," it said.
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"This investment in Thinxtra provides Rakon an excellent opportunity to leverage future IoT opportunities, both through the investment in Thinxtra itself and the business opportunities that Rakon expects it to bring with Rakon's current technology base and ability to develop new products for the IoT market."
Rakon returned to profitability this year by restructuring its business, closing manufacturing facilities in France and Britain and shifting its plants to New Zealand and India, reducing its global workforce and cutting operating costs.
The company turned its focus to the telecommunications sector and away from the lower-margin smart wireless device market, however it said the sector had slowed in the latest period as network operators delayed investment decisions in next generation infrastructure, crimping earnings.