Ready for your own virtual assistant? Why AI needs a human touch

Avatars, chatbots and virtual agents are getting smarter by the day, and the AI that powers them is helping customers get more of the right content at the right time. But humans will remain as important as ever.

Why property managers are terrible – for everyone

Property managers. Two words to make the blood run cold, whether you are a tenant or a landlord. Rebecca Stevenson weighs up the data and anecdotal evidence, and her ruling is final: property managers suck.

Cheat Sheet: What’s the big deal with Krispy Kreme?

Welcome to the Cheat Sheet, a clickable, shareable, bite-sized FAQ on the news of the moment. Today, Jihee Junn finds out what all the fuss is about with global doughnut brand Krispy Kreme, which launched in New Zealand this week.

Pushing landlords out will only make renting more expensive

With legislative changes set to increase costs for landlords, some smaller players may be forced out of the market. Property Investors' Federation head Andrew King warns this won't be good news for tenants.

Business Archive

Christchurch’s rollercoaster rental market

Earthquakes knocked houses down and rents went up. But it's a different story now in the garden city, Jamie Small finds.

The Primer: the NZ underwear company employing refugee seamstresses

Every week we ask a local business or product to introduce themselves in eight simple takes. This week we talk to Elisha Watson, who quit her full-time job as a lawyer to start Nisa — an organic cotton underwear company that employs women from refugee backgrounds.

I lived in a van for two years

His friend did it, so he thought he would try it too and save some money. In his last year at university he started living in a van. Now, two years later, he's moving on.

Recycling in New Zealand: not so green, not so clean

Kiwis use about 2 billion bottles and cans each year, but Marty Hoffart says we are recycling less than half of them – and worse, we're not doing the one thing that could make the most difference.

Tinder for flatmates: how Flat Candy is improving the flat-hunting experience

A new Wellington-based service is looking to match rooms with roommates with as little pain as possible. Don Rowe talks to co-founder Brayden Gosse about Flat Candy, the so-called 'Tinder of flatting'.

The app that swallowed Auckland: UberEats, one year on

The concept of food delivery has become synonymous with UberEats for thousands of New Zealanders. Customers love it for its simplicity and convenience, but what about the restaurants?

Ten numbers that tell the story of A2 Milk’s astonishing $10 billion value

A2 Milk Co briefly burst through a landmark this week, reaching a market capitalisation of $10 billion on news of its deal with Fonterra. Here are ten numbers which encapsulate the milk brand's inexorable rise.

The Primer: why Little Bird Organics wants to sell you shares

Every week we ask a local business or product to introduce themselves in eight simple takes. This week we talk to Megan May, founder of whole foods company Little Bird Organics which today launches its first-ever equity crowdfunding campaign with fellow Kiwi company EcoStore.

How Apple gave the big Aussie-owned banks a spanking

Who is bigger and badder than the banks? Apple. The tech giant is slowly capturing the mobile payments market – but is it good for consumers?

What it’s really like to own an electric car

You plug in your phone at night, why not the car as well? Gareth Shute describes the joys (and dramas) of being an EV owner.

Are all businesses social enterprises? It’s a question of definition

What does it mean to be a social enterprise today? Is it about profit, purpose, or both? Steven Moe takes us through the various definitions.

Pay your bills: The Spinoff survey of corporate payment times

Imagine you didn't get paid for a month or two for your work. Big businesses have been using this tactic to keep cash in the bank – but how long do our corporates take to pay? Rebecca Stevenson investigates.