Kāinga Ora board refreshed, new Letter of Expectations issued

The board of Kāinga Ora – Homes & Community has been refreshed and Ministers have issued a new Letter of Expectations demanding better financial performance, Housing Minister Chris Bishop says.

“Earlier this year we released the report of the independent review into Kāinga Ora led by Sir Bill English, which found that Kāinga Ora was underperforming and not financially viable without significant savings. The review also contained concerning findings about the governance of the organisation, noting that there had not been a clear separation between the board’s governance role and operational management, and that the board had been acting more as an advisory function than governing.

“One of the recommendations out of that review was to refresh the Kāinga Ora board. The independent reviewers also recommended that Kāinga Ora provide to Ministers a credible and detailed plan to improve financial performance.

“A new chair of the board, Simon Moutter, was appointed in May. To ensure continuity, John Duncan remains the deputy chair until the end of his term in September this year, and John Bridgman will continue as a member until the end of his term in December.

“The new members of the board are Arihia Bennett, Jenn Bestwick, Alan Dent, Peter Jeffries, Ceinwen McNeil and Fiona Mules.

“I thank former board members Robin Hapi, Professor Philippa Howden-Chapman, Nicole Anderson, Sir John Hanson and Campbell Roberts for their service.

“The refreshed board collectively has the experience to drive change in Kāinga Ora and ensure the organisation stays focused on delivering its core functions well, ensures value for money in its spending, and is fiscally sustainable.

“To ensure the new board has clarity of purpose, Ministers have provided them with a new Letter of Expectations.

The board is being asked to focus on Kāinga Ora’s financial stability by delivering a credible turnaround plan to eliminate losses to Ministers by November this year. The plan is expected to materially reduce operating losses and manage within the approved debt appropriation, and will include investment scenarios, greater visibility of total capitalised costs incurred within the social housing programme, approaches to treasury and liquidity management practices, the approach to delivering Crown-funded programmes and statutory obligations, and detailed implementation plans for the savings proposals incorporated into Budget 2024.

“Kāinga Ora is a $45 billion company with over $2.5 billion expenditure each year. It owns about 70,000 homes and is a landlord to approximately 185,000 people. It is essential that the organisation functions well.

“The new board members’ terms begin on 8 July. The Government expects to receive the new board’s turnaround plan later this year.”

Note to Editors:

Attached you will find:

  • The Letter of Expectation 
  • Bios of new board members