5 Oct 2015

Ngāi Tahu records $109m profit

6:53 pm on 5 October 2015

Ngāi Tahu says it is very happy with its net profit of $109 million for the 2015 financial year, despite the drop from last year's $160 million profit.

New Zealand seafood: a bin full of snapper

Ngāi Tahu Seafood has achieved its sixth record result in a row. Photo: 123RF

Ngāi Tahu Holdings CEO Mike Sang said the decline in profit was mainly due to a one-off earthquake insurance payout in 2014.

He said, overall, it had been a good performance across the group.

"In terms of our seafood, they made just under a $20 million operating surplus and that's their sixth record result in a row. That's underpinned by the export of koura or the export of lobster to China.

"Our property company also had a very good result, so we've been doing a lot of residential subdivisions in Christchurch since the earthquake, and so those subdivisions have been underpinning their results which have been very strong.

"And our tourism guys also had a very good result, we've seen a boost in numbers."

Ngāi Tahu Property achieved a $42.39 million net operating surplus, while Ngāi Tahu Tourism achieved a $7.81m net operating surplus.

Mr Sang said China was an important part of Ngāi Tahu's business through demand for seafood exports and agricultural products, and as the source of a fifth of its tourist visitors.

The chief executive said this year and the previous two years have seen Ngāi Tahu's best-ever results.

He said, as post-earthquake business flattened out, Ngāi Tahu would look to diversify by investing in areas such as residential property in Auckland, converting forestry into farming, aquaculture, and tourism opportunities such as hotpools in Queenstown.

New home ownership scheme to be rolled out

A third of Ngāi Tahu's profit - or $36 million - will go towards programmes to boost health and wellbeing, culture and identity, iwi capability, and the environment, while the rest will be reinvested for future generations.

Te Runanga o Ngāi Tahu CEO Arihia Bennett

Arihia Bennett Photo: Te Runanga o Ngai Tahu

Te Runanga o Ngāi Tahu CEO Arihia Bennett said it was a good balance.

"It's a proven approach that we've administered for some time. If I think about the return on investment to growing our people, and their strengths as who they are as individuals, families and contributing members of society, with a Ngāi Tahutanga cultural identity and strength, this formula that we have is successful and it seems to get better each year. It enables us to do more and more each year."

Ms Bennett said one new initiative was a shared equity home ownership programme.

"So families who have been saving for a deposit in their own home under our Whai Rawa savings scheme will have that opportunity to apply for funding which could be up to a 30 percent shared equity funding contribution.

"If you think about a $450,000 home, that's about $130,000 they'll be able to apply for."

Ms Bennett said the shared equity scheme should roll out next year.

Other programmes include a new education strategy focussing on providing resources in the community and growing iwi capability, internship programmes for rangatahi, construction industry leadership programmes, land-based industry career pathways, and training for potential governors.

Ngāi Tahu has now invested $355 million in tribal development since its treaty settlement in 1997.

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