New Zealand Student-Founded Company Gives Employees $ 10,000 Thank You Bonus | New Zealand


An educational app founded by a group of university students nine years ago surprised its 53 employees with a bonus of NZ $ 10,000 after being named New Zealand’s fastest growing company.

Kami, which means paper in Japanese, is a digital classroom platform and app, which allows teachers and students to interact and collaborate on documents and learning resources, in the classroom or remotely.

The company isn’t alone in making the news recently to reward its employees – US fitness clothing company Spanx announced last week that it was offering its employees two first-class plane tickets and 10 US $ 000 each to mark its new valuation of US $ 1.2 billion.

Kami was founded in 2013 by University of Auckland students Hengjie Wang, Jordan Thoms, and Alliv Samson, who were looking for a way to digitally streamline their note-taking. The service is now used in more than 180 countries and by more than 30 million teachers and students, with its largest user base in North America. Today, more than 90% of American schools use the platform.

Last week, the company took first place in the 2021 Deloitte Fast 50 Index, with “a remarkable 1,177% revenue growth over the past three years,” according to Deloitte.

Last year, Kami gave away its software to teachers around the world to help them continue to reach students digitally during the worst of the global pandemic.

Sales dried up overnight, company general manager Wang said, but it reversed when teachers demanded to start paying, to secure the platform’s future.

“Fast forward 18 months, with this kind of massive change in education, we’ve seen maybe about five years of market growth in one year.”

To celebrate both this success and cross the 30 million user mark, the company has decided to reward its employees.

“Our team had worked incredibly long hours, made a lot of sacrifices over the past 18 months, supporting teachers and students around the world. We wanted a way to thank you and recognize what they have accomplished, ”Wang said.

Kami announced the bonus during a Zoom call to staff this week, saying they were all “shocked and surprised”.

“We live in one of the most diverse cities you can operate in, so, you know, I think we’ve just created a business that reflects the culture of Auckland… we really want to celebrate the best ideas and leave them behind. come to the top, and over time this clearly showed in our results.

Wang said he hoped Kami’s success could become an example for other local tech startups.

“You hear all these big seed funding announcements, and Kami certainly wasn’t one of them. But despite this, we have shown the world that it is possible to achieve this level of growth and the impact that we are having. It is possible to operate a startup with positive cash flow.

“We have shown that it is possible from little old New Zealand. Capital is not a barrier to growth and success.

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