World Class Wellington: Gollan Creates Control and Money Out of Retail Clutter
Mel Gollan’s offer for more control, and the company that has become, was born out of chaos. Receipts and bills littered the living room of his home in Gisborne.
“You think it’s really stupid for me to do this,” she recalls.
“So I looked at the receipts and invoices, which are created digitally, and I looked at a bank statement, which is created digitally, and I thought why these things are not talking to each other, in a meaningful way to the client… what has to happen so that I never need to see this again?
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The answer was RIP Global, a business and digital integration platform that brings commerce and compliance together, making redundant “painful” receipts and paperwork, for customers and the businesses they deal with.
Using what he calls “dynamic QR codes,” customers of participating companies have purchase receipts and other financial administrators automatically loaded and processed into their accounts, eliminating paperwork. The company’s software is integrated with MYOB and Xero to facilitate the process.
This is a similar result for the business, reducing the time and cost of certain accounting processes.
The company was founded by Gollan, largely funded by family, friends and Maori interests, and is now based in Wellington.
It employs 12 people in the capital and a few more in Singapore, where Gollan is expected to head early next month to establish the Asian hub for the next step in securing a slice of what it thinks could be an industry. of a trillion dollars ”.
But first she needs to finish her coffee and head to Scots College and her 11-year-old son’s rugby game. Her other son is 14 years old.
Where does she find the time?
“I’m female. Next question. I’m thriving on it. Either you’re wired that way or you’re not.
And she’s been hip and working since she was young.
“When I was in high school, I worked two part-time jobs, I was a competition rider, I used to take time off every Friday, to walk around the country alone when I had 15 years old with a horse chariot and two ponies.
“If I have nothing to do, then you are in trouble.”
Not that she stays inactive for long.
To turn the revelation of her Gisborne salon into the completion of a new Wellington-based business, she had to do the research at her own pace, while also holding sales and marketing consulting roles for others, including a contract for Plunket.
And she had to surround herself with people who knew more about the technology and the coding required.
There were some mistakes at the start – “because I’m not a technologist you don’t really know what you’re looking at so you have to learn pretty fast” – but now she has the team in place, government contracts multi-year moving and plan.
RIP Global has produced an app and software integrated with various accounting platforms and using QR codes at participating retailers to help people better organize their purchases. Some government agencies use the technology as part of their own procurement processes.
But it’s a small change, says Gollan.
It targets a global audience and new technology which, due to its high level compliance and protected intellectual property, allows customers to load money onto their personalized QR codes.
Gollan says RIP Global has a pilot project with a government organization, and a lot of interest from others here and abroad.
“I think it could reach a trillion dollars,” she said. “If we get 10 percent of our total addressable market, that’s a trillion dollar opportunity. “
Funding for this next step remains a problem.
The company is now part of the New Zealand Trade Enterprise Focus 700 group, “so they co-invest with us when we move to a new country, a percentage of our costs”.
It helped settle in Singapore, but local support for meaningful scale-up remains elusive.
“The New Zealand investment landscape has what I call the America’s Cup mentality – they won’t help you until you get your hands on the cup.”
So, like Team New Zealand in the America’s Cup, Gollan will likely seek financial support overseas.
“I’m more likely to get funding and support from abroad – 100%,” she says. “American investors are much more competitive and aggressive, and they are ready to back you up, whereas in New Zealand they want to see how many years you’ve been in business, your profits …”
You wouldn’t bet against Gollan’s success either.
“In every store? No, we are not yet, but neither was Visa when they started.
* This is the second installment in a week-long series showcasing Wellington companies with global ambitions.