A Passion for Connecting People Business Things Everyone.

This is the bit where we’re meant to make bold claims about how we’re reinventing the industry by harnessing emerging technologies in our unfaltering pursuit of excellence. But everyone in the industry says that, right? Quite simply we help companies connect with the world and provide amazing service in the process. 

About Lightwire Business

Lightwire is an ISP with 15 years of operational history across New Zealand and Australia.

We are NZ’s largest independent wireless services provider with 7,000+ connected end points across the Waikato and Bay of Plenty, and currently contracted to deploy RBI2+ and Marae Digital Connectivity programs through the NZ Government.

Lightwire Business is dedicated to providing the best possible experience in connectivity via internet, bespoke WANs, Teams Calling, managed 3CX services and managed hardware to businesses through retail, wholesale and channel markets.

Through our New Zealand and Australian operations, we are committed to delivering fast, reliable trans-Tasman broadband solutions for clients on either side of the ditch. And to give our clients the ultimate broadband experience, we don’t just look for a better solution, we create one.

Lightwire Team

Our Values

Technology is our means, humanity is our foundation. We embrace a set of values that power our results, shape our culture, and lead to strong relationships inside our company and out.

We Care

We are focused on the best outcomes for our customers, communities, and team.

We Grow as People

We foster and challenge a highly capable and motivated team to be a bit better every day.

We Are Experts

We are a talented and collaborative team who work together to create smart and innovative solutions.

We Can Do It

No problem is too big. We are trustworthy, resourceful problem solvers who get the job done.

Great connectivity starts with great people

We’re a team of 50+ like minded people living and working in 3 countries. We’re working hard to build a diverse and collaborative team that can empathise with each other and our clients to solve hard problems and build solutions that we can be proud of.

We’re comfortable being the genuises behind the scenes, but sometimes people want to know who we are. Here are a few of the key people you are likely to cross paths with when working with Lightwire Business.

Brendan Ritchie

Brendan Ritchie

Chief Revenue Officer Lightwire

Nick Phillips

Nick Phillips

Head of Business

Rowena Loughnan

Rowena Loughnan

Health & Safety Compliance Officer

Catherine Dearlove

Catherine Dearlove

Business Development & Account Manager

Olivia Miller

Olivia Miller

Marketing Coordinator

David Rowe

David Rowe

Service Delivery Manager

Lars Asveld

Lars Asveld

Marketing everything

Richard White

Richard White

Junior Voice & Networks Engineer

Matthew Cheer

Matthew Cheer

Senior Network Engineer

Dannielle Cook

Dannielle Cook

People & Culture Team Lead

Juan van Rooyen

Juan van Rooyen

Voice Architect

Bree Humphreys

Bree Humphreys

Sales Support

Nathan Overall

Nathan Overall

Senior Systems Architect

Chaz Goodare

Chaz Goodare

Software Developer

Bob Sun

Bob Sun

Senior Developer

Stephanie Pullon

Stephanie Pullon

Geo-spatial Analyst

Luke Johnson

Luke Johnson

Senior Developer

Nuwan Naththandige

Nuwan Naththandige

Cyber Security Engineer

Our Culture

Our people are our foundation upon which everything else is built, and that’s why we take a lot of care to make sure our people are happy. With the average team member staying at Lightwire Business for over 5 years, we do a pretty good job in creating an amazing atmosphere.

Careers at Lightwire Business

Be a part of a better connected world.

We aim to create the best possible experiences in connectivity, and every team member plays an essential role in that vision. We build solutions that help connect organisations at even the most remote locations. We create software that cuts through mountains of data to surface critical insights that helps organisations to make the most out of our solutions. 

Currently, we’re looking for a;

More than 20 years of History

Late 2001

The beginning of CRCnet

Initial CRCNet (Connecting Rural Communities using WiFi) research project founded by Dr Murray Pearson, Dr Tony McGregor and Jamie Curtis at the University of Waikato’s WAND Network Research Group, part of the School of Computing and Mathematical Sciences.

The CRCNet Project was designed to be easy to use and to reduce the level of technical knowledge that is required to plan, build and operate a rural wireless network.

The project made it possible for rural communities to group together and get broadband style access to their schools and houses without having to rely on existing telecommunications infrastructure.

19 September 2002

CRCNet makes national news & Wins government grant

The CRCNet project featured in the New Zealand Herald after connecting 7 rural schools close to Hamilton but out of range of existing telecommunications infrastructure.

The Waikato University won a grant of $927,000 for the CRCNet project from the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology to install high-speed wireless internet service for eight schools from west of Te Awamutu to Ngaruawahia. 

2005

CRCNet Rapid Deployment

Alongside the rural wireless network platform the CRCnet project is developed wireless equipment and software for use in rapid deployments.

Rapidly deployable wireless equipment could provide emergency networks for Civil Defence after a disaster or simply be used to provide a temporary Internet connection to the location of a special event.

2005

Prime minister visits CRCNET

Helen Clark (PM 2005) came to visit the CRCNet research project and personally test out the internet at the schools the CRCNet project connected. 

May 2006

Rural link commercialisation

The University of Waikato through its commercialisation arm WaikatoLink entered into a joint venture with local rural technology company Rezare Systems to commercialise elements of the CRCNet research project.

On the 5th of May, 2006, Rural Link was commercialised to bring high-speed wireless broadband to households, businesses and communities throughout rural Waikato.

2008

Internet at uni dorms

With students increasingly bringing their own devices to campus, the demand for internet access outside of traditional computer labs was growing. Through its partnership with the University of Waikato, Rural Link began providing fixed-line internet services to students staying at the Halls of Residence while studying at the University. 

2009

Prepay Internet

In 2009 Rural Link launched Lightwire Prepay, a casual pre-paid WiFi internet service across the University of Waikato campus, Halls of Residence, CBD, and other locations such as sports grounds and events centres. This same platform also powered the Hamiltonline free CBD WiFi network.

August 2009

500 RURAL customers

Alongside the development of internet access on campus, the rural network was still growing. In August 2009, Rural Link grew to 500 rural customers subscribed to a monthly broadband service across its small Waikato network.

2010

LIGHTWIRE at home

The Lightwire Prepay service was expanded to provide internet access to apartment blocks and student flats across Hamilton, which allowed students who lived off-campus to use their same internet account both on and off campus.  

2012

Rural link consultancy

With its unique capability set stemming from an academic network research background coupled with real-world implementation know-how, Rural Link was an effective knowledge partner for organisations involved in leading-edge network deployments.

Rural Link provided consulting and expertise to a number of organisations across the Waikato involved in building and maintaining next generation networks.

2012

Rebranding to Lightwire

Andrew Johnson brought well-needed business discipline and investment into Rural Link. The company was rebranded under the Lightwire brand which allowed it to operate more easily across different market segments. 

Under Andrew’s leadership, the company doubled down on our core competency, rural wireless broadband.

2013 – 2015

Capital Injection into the rural network

With the help of newly acquired business discipline and investment, Lightwire made the biggest ever push into the network with 2 – 3 new site builds every month throughout the 2013 to 2015 period, briging thousands of households in rural Waikato the ability to connect to fast wireless broadband for the first time. 

August 2013

1,000 Customers

In August 2013, Lightwire grew to 1000 rural customers subscribed to a monthly service. Doubling the monthly customer number gave Lightwire’s senior leadership team the confidence to continue investing into the network.

January 2015 & November 2015

2,000 & 3,000 Customers

The heavy investment into the network paid off with 2015 being a massive year for Lightwire in terms of customer growth. 

2016

Lightwire Acquires Netsmart

Lightwire acquired the broadband arm of Netsmart. Netsmart was the Bay of Plenty’s largest independent rural broadband provider that connected roughly 1000 households throughout rural Bay of Plenty. The acquisition allowed Lightwire to expand the geographic reach of its services into the neighbouring region.

January 2017

Lightwire Business

Brendan Ritchie approached Andrew Johnson with the offer to build out Lightwire’s business unit that specialises in serving businesses with internet, voice, and managed WAN solutions. A few days later Lightwire Business was born.

January 2017

NEW BUSINESS PoPs

New PoP builds start at pace, with Ashburton, Christchurch, Napier/Hastings, Sydney and Wellington getting completed first.

May 2017

Business Voice Platform

Lightwire builds its own voice platform, with SBCs and switches deployed in NZ and Australia. 3CX is selected as hosted UCaaS platform.

June 2017

Network Refresh

Juniper selected as the preferred vendor for the network refresh, resulting in an upgrade of all routers and switches across the NZ/AU network.

November 2017

5,000 RURAL Customers

Lightwire grew to 5,000 rural customers with the majority of the customer base located in rural Waikato.

Late 2017

RBI2 Funding

In late 2017, Lightwire was contracted by Crown Infrastructure Partners under the second phase of the Rural Broadband Initiative (RBI2). The implementation of the initiative enhances the broadband coverage in Waikato and Bay of Plenty to an extra 1,990 households and businesses, as well as 20 marae.

October 2018

Zscaler partnership

Zscaler launches first New Zealand public node for their Zscaler Internet Access (ZIA) in partnership with Lightwire. 

October 2019

Advisory Board Launched

At Lightwire, we want key stakeholders to have a consistent and clear opportunity to help steer our direction. We launched the advisory board to allow our clients to guide development priorities via quarterly deep-dive sessions. 

February 2020

1st Business Hyperfibre ISP

Lightwire becomes the first ISP to release Hyperfibre, the new generation of GPON services to businesses. 

March 2020

Teams Calling with Direct Routing launched

Teams Calling with Direct Routing launched with per channel model driving cost savings for Enterprise customers

April 2020

Praise for Rapid Deployment

Lightwire earns praise from DXC and Queensland Rail for (5 day) rapid deployment of Australian transit service in response to COVID-19 lockdown

July 2020

Top 10 ISP by Revenue

Lightwire debuts in the New Zealand telco levy, marking our arrival to the top 10 in terms of ISP revenue

November 2020

FortiGate platform
locked in

FortiGate platform locked in with roll out of  FortiManager and FortiAnalyzer, streamlining deployment and management of ever growing number of managed devices sold.

May 2021

7,500 Rural Customers

All marketing was brought in-house over 2020 and 2021, and as a result, Lightwire saw a record growth in customers. 

May 2021

15 Years of Lightwire

On May the 5th, 15 years ago Lightwire (CRCnet/Rural Link) was commercialised. 15 years of Lightwire wouldn’t be possible without our great customers and staff.

May 2021

50+ Staff

Lightwire surpasses 50 staff, with a further 11 more hires planned in near future.

More than 20 years of History

Late 2001

The beginning of CRCnet

Initial CRCNet (Connecting Rural Communities using WiFi) research project founded by Dr Murray Pearson, Dr Tony McGregor and Jamie Curtis at the University of Waikato’s WAND Network Research Group, part of the School of Computing and Mathematical Sciences.

The CRCNet Project was designed to be easy to use and to reduce the level of technical knowledge that is required to plan, build and operate a rural wireless network.

The project made it possible for rural communities to group together and get broadband style access to their schools and houses without having to rely on existing telecommunications infrastructure.

19 September 2002

CRCNet makes national news & Wins government grant

The CRCNet project featured in the New Zealand Herald after connecting 7 rural schools close to Hamilton but out of range of existing telecommunications infrastructure.

The Waikato University won a grant of $927,000 for the CRCNet project from the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology to install high-speed wireless internet service for eight schools from west of Te Awamutu to Ngaruawahia. 

2005

CRCNet Rapid Deployment

Alongside the rural wireless network platform the CRCnet project is developed wireless equipment and software for use in rapid deployments.

Rapidly deployable wireless equipment could provide emergency networks for Civil Defence after a disaster or simply be used to provide a temporary Internet connection to the location of a special event.

2005

Prime minister visits CRCNET

Helen Clark (PM 2005) came to visit the CRCNet research project and personally test out the internet at the schools the CRCNet project connected. 

May 2006

Rural link commercialisation

The University of Waikato through its commercialisation arm WaikatoLink entered into a joint venture with local rural technology company Rezare Systems to commercialise elements of the CRCNet research project.

On the 5th of May, 2006, Rural Link was commercialised to bring high-speed wireless broadband to households, businesses and communities throughout rural Waikato.

2008

Internet at uni dorms

With students increasingly bringing their own devices to campus, the demand for internet access outside of traditional computer labs was growing. Through its partnership with the University of Waikato, Rural Link began providing fixed-line internet services to students staying at the Halls of Residence while studying at the University. 

2009

Prepay Internet

In 2009 Rural Link launched Lightwire Prepay, a casual pre-paid WiFi internet service across the University of Waikato campus, Halls of Residence, CBD, and other locations such as sports grounds and events centres. This same platform also powered the Hamiltonline free CBD WiFi network.

August 2009

500 RURAL customers

Alongside the development of internet access on campus, the rural network was still growing. In August 2009, Rural Link grew to 500 rural customers subscribed to a monthly broadband service across its small Waikato network.

2010

LIGHTWIRE at home

The Lightwire Prepay service was expanded to provide internet access to apartment blocks and student flats across Hamilton, which allowed students who lived off-campus to use their same internet account both on and off campus.  

2012

Rural link consultancy

With its unique capability set stemming from an academic network research background coupled with real-world implementation know-how, Rural Link was an effective knowledge partner for organisations involved in leading-edge network deployments.

Rural Link provided consulting and expertise to a number of organisations across the Waikato involved in building and maintaining next generation networks.

2012

Rebranding to Lightwire

Andrew Johnson brought well-needed business discipline and investment into Rural Link. The company was rebranded under the Lightwire brand which allowed it to operate more easily across different market segments. 

Under Andrew’s leadership, the company doubled down on our core competency, rural wireless broadband.

2013 – 2015

Capital Injection into the rural network

With the help of newly acquired business discipline and investment, Lightwire made the biggest ever push into the network with 2 – 3 new site builds every month throughout the 2013 to 2015 period, briging thousands of households in rural Waikato the ability to connect to fast wireless broadband for the first time. 

August 2013

1,000 Customers

In August 2013, Lightwire grew to 1000 rural customers subscribed to a monthly service. Doubling the monthly customer number gave Lightwire’s senior leadership team the confidence to continue investing into the network.

January 2015 & November 2015

2,000 & 3,000 Customers

The heavy investment into the network paid off with 2015 being a massive year for Lightwire in terms of customer growth. 

2016

Lightwire Acquires Netsmart

Lightwire acquired the broadband arm of Netsmart. Netsmart was the Bay of Plenty’s largest independent rural broadband provider that connected roughly 1000 households throughout rural Bay of Plenty. The acquisition allowed Lightwire to expand the geographic reach of its services into the neighbouring region.

January 2017

Lightwire Business

Brendan Ritchie approached Andrew Johnson with the offer to build out Lightwire’s business unit that specialises in serving businesses with internet, voice, and managed WAN solutions. A few days later Lightwire Business was born.

January 2017

NEW BUSINESS PoPs

New PoP builds start at pace, with Ashburton, Christchurch, Napier/Hastings, Sydney and Wellington getting completed first.

May 2017

Business Voice Platform

Lightwire builds its own voice platform, with SBCs and switches deployed in NZ and Australia. 3CX is selected as hosted UCaaS platform.

June 2017

Network Refresh

Juniper selected as the preferred vendor for the network refresh, resulting in an upgrade of all routers and switches across the NZ/AU network.

November 2017

5,000 RURAL Customers

Lightwire grew to 5,000 rural customers with the majority of the customer base located in rural Waikato.

Late 2017

RBI2 Funding

In late 2017, Lightwire was contracted by Crown Infrastructure Partners under the second phase of the Rural Broadband Initiative (RBI2). The implementation of the initiative enhances the broadband coverage in Waikato and Bay of Plenty to an extra 1,990 households and businesses, as well as 20 marae.

October 2018

Zscaler partnership

Zscaler launches first New Zealand public node for their Zscaler Internet Access (ZIA) in partnership with Lightwire. 

October 2019

Advisory Board Launched

At Lightwire, we want key stakeholders to have a consistent and clear opportunity to help steer our direction. We launched the advisory board to allow our clients to guide development priorities via quarterly deep-dive sessions. 

February 2020

1st Business Hyperfibre ISP

Lightwire becomes the first ISP to release Hyperfibre, the new generation of GPON services to businesses. 

March 2020

Teams Calling with Direct Routing launched

Teams Calling with Direct Routing launched with per channel model driving cost savings for Enterprise customers

April 2020

Praise for Rapid Deployment

Lightwire earns praise from DXC and Queensland Rail for (5 day) rapid deployment of Australian transit service in response to COVID-19 lockdown

July 2020

Top 10 ISP by Revenue

Lightwire debuts in the New Zealand telco levy, marking our arrival to the top 10 in terms of ISP revenue

November 2020

FortiGate platform
locked in

FortiGate platform locked in with roll out of  FortiManager and FortiAnalyzer, streamlining deployment and management of ever growing number of managed devices sold.

May 2021

7,500 Rural Customers

All marketing was brought in-house over 2020 and 2021, and as a result, Lightwire saw a record growth in customers. 

May 2021

15 Years of Lightwire

On May the 5th, 15 years ago Lightwire (CRCnet/Rural Link) was commercialised. 15 years of Lightwire wouldn’t be possible without our great customers and staff.

May 2021

50+ Staff

Lightwire surpasses 50 staff, with a further 11 more hires planned in near future.

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