The second largest city in the South Island; located at the head of a large harbor on the Otago Peninsula, Dunedin is considered one of New Zealand’s four main centers both for its national historic importance and for its prominence within Otago and the south Island. The Dunedin economy creates lots of jobs and wealth and is a potential investment destination with its city council having a dedicated Economic Development Unit (EDU). The city is home to high tech companies with it’s a vibrant and robust IT sector. The number of IT choosing to call the city home has gone up over the years despite the tough economic times that have most businesses decline.
The Dunedin ICT cluster includes businesses in niche areas such as offshore business solutions for a range of industries such as health, sports and performance, physiology, finance, agritech, film, gaming, 3D, education, GPS, software development, database management, e-learning and e-commerce. The national broadband speeds were generally lower when compared to the improving web browsing speeds since the start of 2009 according to a recently released report. The city’s council supports technology companies through its EDU plan, the New Zealand Trade and Enterprise and the UPSTART Business Incubator. However, the principal industry in the city over the last few years has been the property and business services that accounted for 28.6% of all business within the city and its retail trade industry comes a close second.
Other crucial sectors to the Dunedin economy include Tourism with places such as the Octagon, Lamach castle, Otago Museum, Dunedin Public art gallery, Speight’s brewery etc that have been a source of revenue for the Dunedin tourist businesses. The city encourages local business and employment growth, and attracts increasing numbers of new business and tourists each year. A ten year economic development strategy began in 2000 and updated in 2006, focuses on making the city a prosperous economy. As it is, the city has a well developed Research and Development mechanism through its institutes that aims at a knowledge base economy. At present however, three of the main industries in the Dunedin harbor area fear they could be put out of business by the City Council’s proposal to rezone harbor side industrial land for its usage as a residential and commercial area. The industries launched an appeal in the environment court and it’s yet to be determined. The companies employ about 200 staff.