Telecom New Zealand’s startup incubator, Telecom Digital Ventures, has made a modest investment in App La Carte for a minority 20% stake, with an option to increase it to 40%.
App La Carte, launched in November 2012, aims to allow businesses to build a professional mobile app without significant development costs. Businesses can log in, pay a monthly subscription fee and utilize an app builder to put their app together.
“Businesses don’t need to be intimidated about developing an app. These days apps are like the front window for your shop or as important to your brand as an advertisement in the paper,” said Telecom Digital Ventures CEO Rod Snodgrass.
“Part of Telecom’s strategy has been to look for businesses to partner with where we can bring our telecommunications, marketing, networks and commercial expertise to the innovation and ingenuity of new startup companies.”
The move comes as Telecom NZ, which is in the process of changing its name to Spark next month, seeks new revenues from data and cloud services.
The incubator has previously invested NZ$5 million ($4.4 million) in Sir Ray Avery's health monitoring wristband company, Vigil.
Chair of App La Carte John Holt says the partnership with Telecom Digital Ventures is a huge opportunity to take the business to another level.
“App La Carte has the potential to do something special and revolutionize how businesses and organizations communicate with their customers through a mobile device,” said Holt.