Snap Information Technologies is a Nelson, New Zealand-based technology company that seeks to capture innovation to inspire transformation. From our inception in 2007, our team of highly-skilled and dedicated specialist software developers and engineers have been singularly focused on our mission to capture and distribute images of the world, to the world. Our commitment to this mission has enabled us to design and manufacture world-leading high-definition image capturing and processing systems that have caught the attention of television broadcasters, weather reporters, fishing companies, construction companies, airports, tourism organisations, and governments from all over the globe.
In the course of the last fourteen years, we’ve discovered that true transformation—in any industry—requires a holistic approach. In the image capture space this has led us to expand our innovation efforts beyond cameras to also focus on building state-of-the-art electronics, power management, storage, communications, GPS based tracking, and delivery systems. This approach has been well-received in each of the verticals in which we operate, and we have been the recipients of numerous industry awards for our work and business practices.
Of the multiple verticals in which we operate, perhaps none illustrates the benefits of our holistic approach to innovation better than commercial fishing. Through strategic partnerships with fishermen and industry partners, SnapIT has been able to make state-of-the-art EM hardware and software technology an affordable option for fishermen around the world. Our journey has taken us far afield from Nelson to points of interest in North America, Europe, Australia, and beyond.
In North America, for example, we have partnered with TeemFish, to develop affordable technology solutions, tailor-made to work in the toughest fishing conditions. Utilizing SnapIT’s high-definition image capture marine cameras, hardware and software innovations, and AI development, TeemFish equips fishing vessels with the custom hardware, software and storage technology needed to capture, analyze, deliver and store fisheries data. The systems range from small solar-powered wireless satellite vessel tracking units to HD camera systems with 360 degree pan, tilt, and zoom capabilities, and on-board systems with remote data transmission. The technology also includes the ability to integrate AI in both data capture and analysis to reduce data review and storage costs, a system that we call EM2.0.
By designing EM systems that work for fishermen, we in turn are able to build healthier, more robust fisheries that better meet the needs of human communities and the natural systems on which we rely. This design approach is embedded in our DNA and reflects a most important lesson: if you are going to build a product for a particular constituency, you have to make sure that they want to use it.
In our view, one of the biggest challenges around the incorporation of EM systems has been that the systems are designed around solving the wrong problem. Most EM systems are touted as compliance solutions that enable a fisherman to comply with government requirements. From the perspective of the fishermen, EM becomes a necessary evil—it is something that the government is telling them must be on their boats and accordingly fishermen look at EM providers and their systems suspiciously. This approach doesn’t do anyone any favors. Fishermen resist EM mandates, the government faces an uphill battle over the adoption of the technology, and fisheries resources continue to be managed according to twentieth century (or even nineteenth century) practices.
At SnapIT, we’re taking a different approach. We believe that fishermen should want our EM systems on their vessels. Why? Because they are the end user and therefore we should build tools that are useful to them. This means that fishermen must see EM not merely as a compliance tool, but as a business intelligence system that can be scaled to meet their needs. That is what we are doing with TeemFish and other partners around the world.
In addition to business intelligence, we believe that EM can serve as an incredible tool for transparency and trust. In an era in which sustainability has become not merely a “best practice” but a “must practice,” we see EM as a critical component in the commercial fishing industry’s efforts to provide consumers with the assurances they need to confirm that the fish they eat was caught sustainably and ethically.
Above all, we believe that EM has enormous potential as a tool to connect fishermen with the people buying their fish. We believe that industrial food systems have eroded the bonds that once linked producers with consumers, with devastating consequences for individuals and communities. We think that EM has a role to play in reestablishing the link between fishermen and consumers, shortening complex and opaque supply chains, and cultivating long-lasting relationships between these parties that are capable of sustaining fishermen and their communities.
It is this promise of reconnecting fishermen with consumers that has led Chris Rodley, CEO of SnapIT, to team up with Cathie Gould and me to co-found Daily Catch, a food technology startup aimed at transforming food systems. Daily Catch is the natural next step for SnapIT, the culmination of a decade-plus spent turning capture innovation into transformative futures. We look forward to sharing more details about Daily Catch with you in the coming months.