Media Release: 4 July 2022

New Zealand IT company Qual IT goes global through acquisition by Planit to become world’s third largest independent IT testing company


 (Jon McPhee, Mike Weale and Shane Hewson meet in Wellington as the transaction is announced between Planit and Qual IT. Photo credit: Silver Quinn Productions)


New Zealand IT quality assurance company, Qual IT, and partner company SEQA, have agreed to be acquired by Planit, an Australian-headquartered global leader in quality engineering and application testing services. Planit is owned by Nomura Research Institute (NRI) Australia, part of NRI Global, a member of the Nomura Group. Based out of Tokyo, Japan. NRI Global employs 13,500 people around the world and has a market cap of US$15.7bn. In 2021, NRI acquired Planit and has continued to expand globally by acquiring Qual IT and SEQA in New Zealand.

The combined entity of Planit and Qual IT will create the largest independent IT testing company in New Zealand and Australia, and the third largest globally. Qual IT’s partner company, cyber security company, SEQA has also been acquired as part of the deal - with plans for growth in this sector. The deal puts the value of the Planit Group within the top 10 New Zealand technology companies.

Senior management at Qual IT and SEQA will remain in place and continue to lead the business with existing employees and clients. Qual IT and SEQA will initially retain their brands. 

Shane Hewson and Jon McPhee, the founding partners of Qual IT, started the business almost 20 years ago in Wellington, and have grown it to over 250 employees across Christchurch, Auckland and Wellington. 

“This is an incredible milestone for Qual IT and SEQA and will launch the next stage of growth,” says Shane Hewson, co-founder of Qual IT. “It will provide immediate scale, IP, geographical spread, and a significantly bigger balance sheet. 

“Joining a global company is a huge and exciting opportunity for our employees and clients, providing access to global expertise, networks, resources, systems, and opportunities,” says Shane.

“The decision to partner with NRI and Planit was made after careful deliberation,” says Jon McPhee, co-founder of Qual IT. “The shareholders, all who will remain as part of the business, decided that Planit as part of NRI was the right organisation to partner with for the next stage of growth for the business, for employees and for clients,” says Jon.

“SEQA is a relatively new business which has fast-become recognised as a New Zealand leader in cyber security solutions - the transaction with Planit will turbocharge us into the future and immediately scales up our business,” says Mark Keegan, chief executive officer of SEQA. “This provides immediate and significant upside to our employees and clients.” 

“This is about launching to a bright future and partnering to form a stronger group. It is a huge opportunity for Qual IT and SEQA to grow exponentially and become global players while retaining our core culture,” concludes Shane.

“Welcoming Qual IT to the Planit group will enable us, as a combined entity, to maximise our service offerings and industry expertise,” says Mike Weale, CEO of Planit. “We are focused on presenting enhanced opportunities for employees across the combined entity, as well as for our customer base. Through each other’s strengths, Planit and Qual IT will jointly contribute to a progressive, safe, and secure society.”

Qual IT joins Planit locally in New Zealand and globally into the wider business footprint across Australia, India, UK and the Philippines. The acquisition figure is confidential.