Xerocon Auckland 2014: from sheep to shares
Three from the Sharesight crew spent last week in Auckland for Xerocon NZ 2014. The verdict was unanimous, the event was a smashing success. And not just because of the waterfront setting, the Olympic athletes in attendance, or the free beer. Since Sharesight was originally built and run out of Wellington, we (and the Xero team who do so much to support us) have a bit of a head start in New Zealand. Accountants and advisers on that side of the Tasman are well into the cloud space by this point and their knowledge and expectations of Xero Add-On Partners is commensurate. We don't spend much time talking about how our beautiful Xero integration works versus time spent talking investing and Sharesight features.
We had a ton of traffic at our booth (yeah, yeah, the below photo was taking during setup), met a lot of clients, and generated hundreds of new leads. I think it's fair to say we managed to wow the crowd with our automated FIF reporting feature too. During our presentation, we covered basic Sharesight functionality, but there was an audible gasp when we showed that not only do we keep tabs on which shares are FIF eligible, we also run the calculations on the fly and allow you to drill down into the worksheets and export the data. One Xero Partner told us that our FIF feature will save him 30 hours of admin.
Rod Dury and Team Xero covered a lot of ground over two days. Check out the highlights over on the Xero blog. Much was made about their push into the farming sector. What's striking is Xero is so flexible and wide-ranging that you can manage your sheep inventory and track share dividends all in once place. That's not hyperbole. We have a lot of farmers for clients! Their temperament makes them good investors.
Any tech company with a story like Xero's, a share price to match, and a founder as dynamic as Rod is bound to generate a lot of press and raise a few eyebrows. First off, their app is terrific. Secondly, they're genuine in their pursuit to empower the accountants, advisors, and SMEs using their product. They're essentially helping to unleash thousands of small business owners and entrepreneurs so they can save time, optimise their services, and cheesy as it sounds -- live life on their terms. This was a repeated theme throughout the conference.
This event, primarily due to the quality of attendees, will be tough to beat. We're keen to see how far along Australian-based accountants and advisers have come at Xerocon Australia in August.
Many thanks to Xero and all of the Sharesight clients we met last week!