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Tait Communications Hi-Tech Hall of Fame - Flying Kiwi

Murray Holdaway

Murray Holdaway

Murray started as a graduate software engineer at Ford in Manukau and moved to London and the world of tech start-ups three years later. His time in London inspired him to start Madison Systems with some friends when he came home in 1987. Madison weathered the stock market crash and became one of New Zealand’s largest software companies.

Madison had some cinema companies as clients and began developing software for that industry. Recognising this new software’s potential, Murray and his co-founders sold Madison and later, via a management buyout, set up Vista Group. This was at the time of the dotcom crash – establishing a trend of starting new ventures at the worst-possible time.

Again, defying the odds, Vista rapidly became successful, and Murray led its sales across the globe, gaining customers in Argentina, Singapore, Taiwan, Australia. the USA and UK, Germany, India and China.

Under Murray's leadership as CEO, Vista grew to have offices in 10 worldwide locations, with customers in over 110 countries. To date, Vista has made eight acquisitions in international territories. In 2014 Vista listed on the NZX and ASX and in 2015 was named the IPO of the year. The following year Vista was honoured with the PwC Hi-Tech company of the year award. Post the IPO, Vista Group remains predominantly a New Zealand-owned company.

Since listing Vista, Murray has helped set up the Vista Foundation – a charity assisting NZ filmmakers, and with his wife Helen, established the Awhero Nui Trust to address inequality and social justice issues. He has also served as Chairman of Auckland United FC, one of New Zealand’s largest sports clubs for 12 years. Whilst he has stepped down from full time executive responsibilities to focus on his philanthropic pursuits, he remains an active and very committed Vista director.

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