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World’s First as NEC Robot joins Chamber of Commerce

He’s just 38 ½ cm tall, weighs the same as the average three-month-old New Zealand baby boy, can speak multiple languages, blushes when you cuddle him and now, PaPeRo will become the first ever robot in the world to join a Chamber of Commerce.

PaPeRo, an abbreviated name from Partner-type Personal Robot, is a prototype robot researched and developed by global Japanese technology giant NEC Corporation to investigate the relationships between people and robots. Development work has focused on PaPeRo being able to live and work as a companion for humans, particularly children and the elderly. Business-wise, on-going uses may include a simplified version for teleconferencing.

NEC New Zealand Ltd (“NEC NZ”) is the local subsidiary of NEC Corporation in New Zealand, with offices in Wellington and Auckland to provide the latest technologies and solutions to the NZ market. Glen Cameron, Head of Research and Development for NEC NZ says, “We’re really excited to be joining the Hutt Valley Chamber of Commerce at this time, when the association is focused on positioning this region as New Zealand’s
Technology Valley. It’s the perfect opportunity for PaPeRo and NEC to meet and network with, and learn from like-minded businesses.”

Helen Down, President of the Hutt Valley Chamber of Commerce, agrees, “We’re delighted to welcome PaPeRo to our organisation. While he may not be a starter for our famous Golf Tournament, I’m sure he will quickly make the most of the great networking, business advice and mentoring opportunities available to him.”

Kiwi PaPeRo is currently on a “working holiday” from NEC in Japan and has been visiting local schools and organisations to showcase NEC’s leading innovations in biometric technologies such facial recognition, object and image detection, video analytics, noise-cancelling speech recognition, speech synthesis, and ultrasonic and touch sensors.

PaPeRo will be appearing at the upcoming Tech After 5 event, hosted by the Hutt Valley Chamber of Commerce in partnership with leading technology companies NEC, WelTec, GNS and Industrial Research Ltd at the IRL Building, 69 Gracefield Road, Lower Hutt on 10th May 2011, 5.30pm-7.30pm.

Also on display will be the latest in innovative communication technologies for business and education from NEC including visual displays and digital signage, biometrics, and communications and network solutions.

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