Dr. Ben O’Brien is the CEO of StretchSense and a pioneer in the wearable sensor industry. Since co-founding StretchSense in 2012, Ben has been awarded some of New Zealand’s most prestigious science and technology awards, including the Prime Minister’s MacDiarmid Emerging Scientist Prize and New Zealand Hi-Tech Young Achiever’s Award.

Ben is passionate about applying cutting-edge research to commercial applications. He envisions a future of ‘disappearables’ — wearables that are so unobtrusive they are invisible to the user, and has nurtured a welcoming and collaborative team culture within StretchSense to achieve that goal.

Ben was also included among the University of Auckland’s inaugural “40 Under 40” alumni achievers, and the company now has customers across the globe developing wearable applications with StretchSense technology.

Starting the business with a handful of staff in a cramped garage, Ben has led StretchSense to become one of New Zealand’s fastest-growing technology businesses, with over 100 employees and featured in the 2017 Deloitte Fast 50.