Who: Ogo Rotorua
What: A big plastic ball adventure!
Where: Rotorua, New Zealand
Can you tell us a little bit about how you got started and what you’re all about?
To keep a long story short, many years ago I invented a massive inflatable plastic ball that people roll down hills in today! Adventure activities are huge in New Zealand and the industry is incredibly vibrant and fun to be involved with, so I sold out of the original business 5 years ago and started anew with OGO to provide the ultimate adventure experience.
What’s your local community like?
Rotorua, New Zealand is a smallish town of around 50,000 in the heart of the North Island, and it’s the hub of the indigenous Māori culture. The surrounding landscape is stunning with lakes, forests, and spectacular thermal activity. There’s so much to do, from white water rafting to some of the best mountain biking in the world! And this makes it a utopia for those who want to experience real adventure. The community is very close-knit, everyone knows each other and works to make sure visitors always feel welcome and see Rotorua at it’s best.
What brought you to Vend and how have you found it? Would you recommend Vend to retailers like you?
We searched for a new POS for about 3 years with the requirement that it would be easy to use, look really good, be fast and integrate with Xero. When the new Register came out we were so excited, the customizability is great and our reception staff love Vend! Not only would we recommend it to other retailers like us, we have, and they’ve implemented Vend too.
What does your passion come from for what you do?
You need to reconsider what you’re doing if you’re not having fun. It’s so important! We have customers visiting us from all over the world wanting to have a unique once-in-a-lifetime experience, and we need to have as much fun as they do to make that experience. Having fun creeps into every element of what you do, including everyday tasks like managing your accounting or using point-of-sale systems. We can see that Vend shares this outlook as it shows at every touchpoint.
Do you have any advice for retailers that you wish you’d known?
If you’ve been using an outdated POS system then you need to understand that nowadays, everything has changed. Vend puts you in charge of your POS – the look, the feel, and most importantly, the ability to view what’s going on in your business from any location is a game changer. Setting your system up with hardware is a breeze, and it all runs beautifully on iPad.
What’s your best retail tale?
The best tales we have involve customers that are nervous or cautious about getting involved with OGO activities. They’ve seen it on TV or someone has recommended it to them, but they’re not really sure that it’s their thing. This is especially true of older customers – mums who have seen their kids roll down the hill or a group of retirees who have come in “just to look”.
We never pressure anyone to ride, but we’re good at convincing them that it’s an amazing opportunity that can’t be missed! The best part is seeing them come out of an OGO ball at the bottom of the hill, dripping wet, crying with laughter and explaining that it’s the best thing they’ve ever done. You’re reminded again that this job is all about having fun, and that fun shouldn’t stop at any age!
About Ashley Gilgrist
Ashley looks after product marketing at Vend — working hard to bring exciting product launches to retailers around the globe. When she’s not busy talking all-things-Vend, Ashley also has a love of tea, candle-crafting, binge-watching, and hiking the pointy peaks of New Zealand.