The saga started in 2005 when a high profile New Zealander crashed his helicopter and was not found for two full weeks. Meanwhile, in the back of a garage in the middle of no-where, a few creative brains interested in aviation got talking over some instant coffee and biscuits about a better and more affordable way to find downed aircraft. Not too long after that decisive morning tea break the first Spider was born. And man it was beautiful!
The first Spider owner loved it so much he threw a whole lot of money at two of the other guys and said 'lets take over the world with this Spider!'. Since that day in early 2007 the Spider brand has grown, units have been sold all around the world, people have been saved, an office has been established in the US, and we have worked with great people. And we still proudly make all of our products right here in New Zealand!
Speaking of those people, they can often been seen contorted into various different shapes on a Monday morning during the spidertracks pilates session or drinking a beer at the local on our Friday spidertracks lunch (yeah - we might be telling a white lie when we mention 'so and so' is in a meeting at the moment...). Here is a sneak peak into the spidertracks team.
Good kiwi bloke
Known as Andrew on his passport, Daff likes to spend his time fishing, hunting and embarrassing his teenage daughter. He also has a little bit of experience flying planes, fast planes. Yep, back when he had a little more hair he was flying for the Royal New Zealand Air Force which may explain why his favourite movie is from the '80s and stars Tom Cruise. Daff also dabbles in a small amount of programming from time to time.
Helen brightens everyones day when she arrives at Spider HQ with a boisterous 'good morning' in that awesome British accent. Helen spends most of her time child wrangling, chasing Barbara the rooster around the section, and working on the bus committee in her local town. Helen also has the most infectious laugh in the office, where she manages production of the Spiders and the accounts in the US.
Being the somewhat forgetful type, James has more shoes in his closet than most Kiwi blokes. James is known for initiating the suit up day in the office. From his experience in the school choir at 10 years old, James can often be heard signing along to some '80s techno dance remix. James is the Jack of all Trades at spidertracks, and leaves mastery to the team.
With multiple entries into the line book, Ruth may feel that sometimes she is misunderstood, however surely there is only one way to interpret the phrase 'Hey Todd, maybe you should take your pants off?'. Our first German import, Ruth is not only fluent in English but Spanish as well. She puts everyone to shame at pilates on a Monday morning, and she is the one who will be chasing you down if you don't pay your bills!
"Hey Dave, can you please help me with this?" is what Dave hears all day being the operations manager, in charge of our continuous improvement program, Immer Besser. He also has extensive knowledge of the trucking industry, having run operations in both New Zealand and the US. Dave is known for his jokes and will often have Luke in stitches throughout the day.
Luke likes a good one liner, whether he says it or not, and believes that Daff has the best 'old man' jokes out. He loves explaining to Matt the intricacies of a good sandwich over lunch. It must contain cheese, lettuce, tomato, any meat, and be lightly toasted. Luke is best known for the phase "What would be cool is if...", which sees the programmers run in fear. He looks after the sales team.
Coming from the deep south of New Zealand Matt is a bit of a handy man making his own furniture, skateboard, and now guitar. Having been married for only one year he is still a bit under the thumb but sees that this will change, one day, maybe. Matt enjoys listening to Luke discuss the intricacies of making a good sandwich at lunch. Matt is currently trying hard not to have the first Spider baby. You can find Matt in the cave with the other programmers.
We have the pleasure of Andrews company all week, but Friday is definitely when he is most excited. Let's face it, Andrew is just here for the spidertracks Friday lunch. This man can chow down an unbelievable amount of pizza in one sitting. He spends the rest of his time grooming his sideburns and walking around in his top hat. Oh, and he does do some programming from time to time.
You will have to ask Daff 'Why Chelsea?', we still don't have an answer. Last week her hair was blond, this week it is purple. Grace actually comes to spidertracks after a few years on farms milking cows. Grace will be the lovely voice at the end of the phone if you call our New Zealand office, and she will also make sure you get a Spider, if you want one, assisting our sales team.
Citizen of the world
Originating from Austria, now living on the West Coast of the United States, Hannes is renowned for his one liners. He is often 'As busy as a one-eyed cat watching two mouse holes' doing his job as business development manager for North America. You will likely catch Hannes at one of the many tradeshows we attend in the United States.
Jerry is our main man on the ground, clocking up many hours flying around the United States visiting new or existing customers. And when he is not flying commercial, he is enjoying the skies around Florida in a light aircraft. Jerry is the North American Sales Manager and will be one of the main people our American friends will talk to.
Rotary Wing Man
Having been in a helicopter accident and lived to tell the tale, Richard has every right to explain why we should all be flying with Spiders on board. Richard is also the only one in the company that flies helicopters, does that make him better than the rest? Either way, Richard is the kiwi that loves dealing with Aussies being the Australia, New Zealand, and Pacific sales representative.