The latest from Fiona Rotherham

News, opinion and analysis by Fiona Rotherham

Report on NZ social bonds pilot cites lack of commercial expertise by public officials
Fiona Rotherham | Thu, 15 Dec 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Dec. 16 (BusinessDesk) - A report on failures within the government’s first social bonds pilot blames them on a lack of commercial expertise from the bureaucrats involved. Work started in 2013 on social impact bonds where typically a central or local gove...

Update: Insurer Youi fined $320,000 out of potential $9 million fine for misleading sale practises
Fiona Rotherham | Thu, 15 Dec 2016

(Update: includes judge and victim comments) Dec. 15 (BusinessDesk) - By Fiona Rotherham South African-owned insurer Youi has been sentenced to a $320,000 fine out of a potential maximum penalty of $9 million in the Auckland District Court today after receiving hefty discou...

Youi fined $320,000 for misleading sales practices
Fiona Rotherham | Thu, 15 Dec 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Dec. 15 (BusinessDesk) - South African-owned insurer Youi has been sentenced to a $320,000 fine in the Auckland District Court today after agreeing to plead guilty to 15 charges relating to misleading sales practises in New Zealand. The Fair Trading Act c...

New Australian life sciences investment fund could have spin-off benefits to New Zealand
Fiona Rotherham | Thu, 15 Dec 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Dec. 15 (BusinessDesk) - Australia’s largest life science venture fund, the Medical Research Commercialisation Fund, just got bigger with the Australian government’s launch of a A$500 million Biomedical Translation Fund aimed at making the country a global l...

Sanford moves to restrict foreign shareholders to protect quotas
Fiona Rotherham | Wed, 14 Dec 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Dec. 14 (BusinessDesk) - Sanford, the fishing company which counts the Goodfellow family as a cornerstone investor, has asked shareholders to vote for a constitutional change so it can restrict the level of foreign ownership to 22.5 percent to avoid jeopardi...

Fonterra chairman Wilson appeals for patience on Beingmate formula
Fiona Rotherham | Tue, 13 Dec 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Dec. 13 (BusinessDesk) - Fonterra Cooperative Group chairman John Wilson expects it will take another one-to-two years before there’s clarity on how its Chinese partner Beingmate Baby & Child will fare under new regulations governing infant formula in China....

Fonterra chairman urges new PM to continue push for trade deals
Fiona Rotherham | Mon, 12 Dec 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Dec. 12 (BusinessDesk) - Fonterra chairman John Wilson has told investors in the cooperative’s unit fund that it’s critical the government continues driving regional and multi-lateral trade agreements. At the annual meeting of the Fonterra Shareholders Fu...

Fonterra Cooperative says total farmer payout this year likely to be $6.40/kgMS
Fiona Rotherham | Wed, 07 Dec 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Dec. 8 (BusinessDesk) - Fonterra Cooperative Group has told shareholders at its annual meeting in Darfield today that the indicative payout level to its 10,500 farmer suppliers this season will be $6.40 per kilogram of milk solids. The cooperative boosted...

Gareth Morgan says NZ's wealthiest 20% including Key would pay more under Opportunities Party tax policy
Fiona Rotherham | Wed, 07 Dec 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Dec. 7 (BusinessDesk) - Prime Minister John Key would pay an estimated extra $150,000 in tax a year on his Auckland home under a new tax on equity policy released by wealthy economist Gareth Morgan’s new Opportunities Party. In a media conference staged o...

Gareth Morgan's new party policy reiterates call for tax on equity
Fiona Rotherham | Tue, 06 Dec 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Dec. 7 (BusinessDesk) - The first policy of Gareth Morgan’s new Opportunities Party has been released this morning – repeating a call he made earlier this year for a tax on equity to make the revenue system fairer. The tax policy, which matches the conten...

Foreign ownership of NZ sharemarket hits highest level since 2010
Fiona Rotherham | Mon, 05 Dec 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Dec. 6 (BusinessDesk) - Foreign ownership of companies listed on the New Zealand sharemarket has risen to 36.3 percent, its highest level since June 2010, according to JBWere’s Foreign Ownership Survey. However, ownership by local retail investors fell 4...

Kiwi startup Datagate raises $620,000 to expand in North America
Fiona Rotherham | Mon, 05 Dec 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Dec. 6 (BusinessDesk) - New Zealand cloud-based software startup Datagate has raised $620,000 so far in an over-subscribed capital raise supported by existing and new investors which will be used to expand its sales team as it pushes into North America next...

Lobby group loses challenge to state housing sale
Fiona Rotherham | Mon, 05 Dec 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Dec. 5 (BusinessDesk) - The High Court has dismissed a challenge by a lobby group against the government’s plans to sell 1124 state houses in Tauranga to a private provider. Lobby group State Housing Action argued in the High Court at Wellington that the...

Synthase Biotech raises $800,000 to develop plant-based enzyme that stops fats going rancid
Fiona Rotherham | Mon, 05 Dec 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Dec. 5 (BusinessDesk) - Synthase Biotech, set up last year to commercialise a plant-based enzyme that stops fats going rancid, has raised $800,000 in its first external capital raising. The Waikato-based company is initially targeting artificial inseminat...

Top-10 law firm partners average $1.3m in billings a year
Fiona Rotherham | Sun, 04 Dec 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Dec. 5 (BusinessDesk) - The 10 best-performing law partners in New Zealand earned average revenue of $1.3 million a year compared to the bottom 10 who averaged $422,800 per partner, according to an annual survey. The survey of 41 law firms nationwide was...

New vehicles sales hit record highs for November due to higher net migration and low interest rates
Fiona Rotherham | Fri, 02 Dec 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Dec. 2 (BusinessDesk) - High migration and low cost of debt is fuelling record sales of new vehicles which have already passed the amount sold for all of 2015 and looks likely to hit 140,000 for the full year. November was another record month of registra...

Instance Finance boss accuses retail banks of 'poaching' lenders by under-cutting high rates
Fiona Rotherham | Fri, 02 Dec 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Dec. 2 (BusinessDesk) - Instant Finance chief executive Richard de Lautour is accusing retail banks of poaching clients by undercutting loans the finance company has made at high interest rates once it has already done the hard yards on establishing borrower...

Former F&P Healthcare boss Michael Daniell wins Beacon leadership award
Fiona Rotherham | Wed, 30 Nov 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Nov. 30 (BusinessDesk) - Michael Daniell, the former boss and current director of Fisher & Paykel Healthcare, has won the New Zealand Shareholders Association’s 2016 Beacon Award for guiding the company from a tiny startup with a handful of staff to a recogn...

Airlines expected to rake in US$67.4 billion globally from ancillary revenue this year
Fiona Rotherham | Wed, 30 Nov 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Nov. 30 (BusinessDesk) - The amount airlines make from charging travellers for extras such as in-flight food and drink or selecting a seat with more leg room, is forecast to rise by 13.8 percent this year to US$67.4 billion. The projection, from airline a...

Update: New licensing regime for insolvency practitioners follows 10% to 20% falling short of expectation
Fiona Rotherham | Wed, 30 Nov 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Nov. 30 (BusinessDesk) - (Update: Adds in more detail from Cabinet Paper only available now) Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Paul Goldsmith, who is introducing a new licensing regime for insolvency practitioners, said between 10 and 20 percent of t...

Insolvency practitioners to be licensed under new regime to stop poor behaviour, Goldsmith says
Fiona Rotherham | Tue, 29 Nov 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Nov. 30 (BusinessDesk) - The government is introducing a long-awaited licensing regime for insolvency practitioners after finding the current system “too loose” and enabling dishonesty and incompetence. Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Paul Goldsmit...

UPDATE: Government helps wine industry fix storage tank damage from Kaikoura quake
Fiona Rotherham | Tue, 29 Nov 2016

(Updates wine industry quake damage story, recasts to include government assistance) By Fiona Rotherham Nov. 29 (BusinessDesk) - Officials from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and the Ministry for Primary Industries are working with New Zealand Winegrowe...

Synlait to spend $305 million on capex to support growth, identify second site
Fiona Rotherham | Tue, 29 Nov 2016

By Fiona Rotherham Nov. 29 (BusinessDesk) - South Island milk processor Synlait Milk has said it will spend a further $305 million on a capital expansion programme over the next three years including investing in a second site which should be identified by the end of the 2017...


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