Waikato-Tainui is reporting solid performance in a year significant for advances in its social development initiatives, environment programmes, diversification of its commercial activities and the 20th anniversary of its historic Raupatu settlement.
Maxine Moana-Tuwhangai, Chairman of the tribe’s governing entity Te Kauhanganui, said gains had been made across a wide range of development initiatives.
“While there is always much more to be done, we are making good progress to deliver benefits for our marae and members,” said Ms Moana-Tuwhangai.
Progress had been seen across education, housing, marae development, employment and training, river restoration and education, and commercial activities all of which were aimed at supporting members towards prosperity.
Rahui Papa, chairman of the tribe’s executive committee Te Arataura, said $22.3M had been distributed to fund social development programmes and activities including the Kiingitanga, education, marae, and kaumaatua health and wellbeing across the region for its people.
This compared to $6.1M last year and included a $15M grant to marae for development purposes.
Notable initiatives for the year to 31 March 2015 included:
- Introduction of a unique collective marae insurance scheme
- Launch of River Rush, a digital app to engage and educate tamariki in river conservation
- Launch of a dedicated careers website
- $2.8M invested in education
- Graduation of second MBA cohort from Waikato-Tainui College for Research & Development
- Tai Tumu, Tai Pari, Tai Ao environment strategy awarded NZ Planning Institute Best Practice award for strategic planning and guidance
- Acquisition of shareholdings in Genesis Energy, Go Bus and Waikato Milking Systems.
Ms Moana-Tuwhangai said the tribe was reporting a steady consolidated result with total assets now at $1.2B, an increase of $123M on 2014. Net operating profit was $26.1M and Tainui Group Holdings (TGH) and Waikato-Tainui Fisheries were reporting a combined dividend of $12.5M.
TGH Chairman, Sir Henry van der Heyden, described the performance of the tribe’s commercial entity as solid, achieving another year of sound financial returns.
“The new shareholdings in Waikato Milking Systems, Go Bus and Genesis Energy have been a highlight of the past year with all three providing strong returns from day one,” said Sir Henry.
“They are a good start but we have a long way to go to achieve the balanced portfolio of investments that we’re seeking from our diversification strategy.”
TGH was reporting total assets of $875M, up $53M on last year, and a net operating profit of $35.6M.
Sir Henry said TGH was committed to growing the economic prosperity of Waikato-Tainui and said its diversified investment strategy would “generate more jobs, provide more cash to support tribal objectives, and grow the tribal land estate” in the period ahead.
20 Years of Raupatu Settlement
This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Waikato-Tainui raupatu settlement with the Crown. In December last year the tribe began commemorations with a ceremony acknowledging the signing of the Heads of Agreement two decades before at Hopuhopu.
Mr Papa said the 2015 year marked a milestone in the tribe’s development and was an opportunity to remember those tuupuna who had supported Waikato-Tainui to achieve settlement and to acknowledge all those who had since contributed to its progress.
Mr Papa also acknowledged the members of Te Kauhanganui and Te Arataura, directors serving on the tribe’s boards, management and staff, and its many corporate, Crown, local Government and iwi partners for their continued commitment to supporting Waikato-Tainui’s goal of prosperity for its people.
Press Release: Waikato Tainui Group