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An Entrepreneurial Exemplar

Case Aims: To illustrate that some technological entrepreneurs are continually interested in solving new problems

Andrew Wigney's first job as an electronics technician started him on exhibiting a personal competence which has supported his entrepreneurial journey of seeking technological solutions to encountered problems. His first achievement concerned shortcomings in the digitising process for electronic chart plotters being undertaken in Japan for use by Australian fishermen. He developed a new process for digitising maps that delivered higher accuracy and resolution. Then, running his own consultancy business while studying computing at university, he developed for a client a system electronically linking their call-centre telephones directly to their computers by creating a touch-screen interface (Baker 2016).

In his thirties he was employed in the data cabling industry where he noticed that cablers often had problems installing cables in solid ceilings and wall cavities because they could not be sure what they might encounter (e.g. drilling through a wall and hitting a water main). His solution was to develop the Cable Ferret wigwam, a compact, lightweight wireless rechargeable camera (www.cableferret.co.nz).

In 2014 Andrew from his own analysis of the situation he decided that standard batteries in tap timers did not have sufficient power to drive the timer solenoids. Only Energizer lithium disposable batteries would work, but these are extremely expensive and cannot be recharged. Andrew's solution to obtaining the desired high output in a rechargeable form was to develop his BOOST FP battery. Although precise details remain confidential while patents are being finalised, the system consists of a high-energy rechargeable lithium ion battery that, combined with advanced electronics, creates a 1.5v battery providing greater power output than any other AA or AAA battery. The potential of his new product is evidenced by the fact that across the world annually billions of AA and AAA batteries are sold, of which only one billion are rechargeable.

 
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