I started my working life as salesman in my father’s watchmaker and jeweller supplies business, selling tools and watch parts to a highly technical industry. Early in my career, I developed a wide range of business and life skills, and trained as a teacher, professional musician, contracting painter, fishing trip & boat hire operator to name some of my various ventures.
After a decidedly colourful and varied start to my working life, my career finally settled with a technical sales role, initially selling facsimiles for a New Zealand based office equipment supply company. After setting sales records within my division, and moving into a Sales Management role, I returned to self-employment – my natural calling.
My first serious business sold and serviced 386 and 486 Computers and other office equipment, turning over an impressive $1.1m in its first full year of trading.
Frustrated at not being able to find simple, single ledger, accounting software for my small business clients, I purchased a locally designed package, and redeveloped it into a full suite of accounting software – Kiwi Accounts. Still used by many loyal clients almost 20 years later, the program was eventually sold to over 500 businesses in New Zealand and Australia.
I began developing websites in the early days of the Internet, and in 1999 established Go Kiwi Internet – a commercial website development company. My vision, passion and love of the industry have seen me develop over 500 commercial and charity websites between 1997 and 2006.
In my teenage years I spent time searching for truth, dabbling in Eastern religions along the way. At the age of 20, and newly married, my wife suggested we attend a “proper” church. I obliged and my conversion to Christianity was unexpected and sudden. Basically I actually didn’t DO anything to become a Christian. I didn’t plan it, it was more like I was “zapped” with a recognition that the bible was more than true, it was the truth. Despite early wanderings, I have allowed that seed of faith to grow over the 30 years since, working through many issues and challenges in the maturing process.
I struggle with Religion, Churchianity and Political Correctness. I really “see red” with liars, cheats and dishonestly, especially the personal sort. Along with a relatively strong understanding of human nature, I have a sensitivity toward and general understanding of political and religious manipulation. I therefore have a deep mistrust of mainstream systems – be they political, financial or religious.
As a result of my Christian faith, I established Red Cross Ministries in 2002, which formalised my commercial support of religious and community group websites. I helped establish Light Party (a Halloween Alternative) in 2003.
In early 2006, I established the Web Developers Association of New Zealand (WDANZ) and have helped establish a range of Joint Ventures to train and support the web development industry.
In 2007 I developed the blueprint for the Internet UNMASKED!! events and wrote the primary content for the Book published in 2008 of the same name.
I was born in Auckland, and live in
Milford on the North Shore Samoa (as of February 2010). I am married with two teenage/adult children and two step-children. I was one of New Zealand’s first snowboarders and regularly travelled to Mt Ruapehu – a truly magic mountain, in the middle of an amazing country!
In 2008 I wrote the blog VICTUS IN AMBITUS (Latin for “living on the edge“) a loose description of my attititude and approach to life. Living on the edge is an amazing way to live – full of fun, measured risk, and excitement. Sure, when you live on the edge you occasionally fall off, but it is a life that has no regrets, because opportunity is maximised moment by moment. There is no rest. Work is hard – but play is hard too. I love life and approach all things with passion, full-on, shooting straight, with faith but very real. That is the VICTUS IN AMBITUS way. I converted this blog into my second book Lipstick On A Pig.
In October of 2009 I took my daughter Rebecca to Samoa. A week before we we arrived the Tsunami struck and I found myself in a country in turmoil. Internet skills and expertise are low in Samoa and their web presence
sux is less than ideal. I found myself compelled to return and help; sold the family home and immigrated in February 2010.
I established the SWAP Foundation (Samoan Web Ambassadors Programme) which aims to teach and mentor and develop inbound tourism through improved marketing and a bunch of creative business ideas.
In 2010 I established the Airport Lounge, an information centre, Internet Cafe and base for SWAP Foundation in the village of Satapuala that was opened by the Prime Minister Tuila’epa. Following difficulties with the landlord I moved our entire operations to 5 acres of land at Falelauniu, Aleisa East where I live and conduct business for the SWAP Foundation.
Over Christmas 2011/2012 I wrote my third book “A Little Slice of Paradise – Engaging with post-Tsunami Samoa” in which I detail my experiences coming to and living in Samoa. I am currently (2012) writing my fourth book “Fun in the Sun” that shares many of the sometimes hilarious anecdotes from living and working in a “foreign” country.
I walk the fine line between genius and insanity, often going where no-one else does, and sometimes actually doing the impossible!