TAB NZ welcomes new Board appointments

16 July 2021

The interim Board of TAB NZ has welcomed the new Board appointments announced today by the Racing Minister, Hon Grant Robertson. 

TAB NZ Chair Liz Dawson says today's announcement is another welcome step towards completing the racing reform programme, and finalising the operational transition of TAB NZ to its new framework.

“As an interim Board, we’ve focused on creating the best possible foundation for the incoming Board to ensure the organisation is well placed to tackle the challenges and opportunities ahead. It’s great to see two members of the interim Board carrying over to the new Board which will provide some continuity for this work.”

Dawson says one of the last duties of the interim Board will be finalising TAB NZ's Five Year Plan and FY2022-2024 Statement of Intent as requested by the Minister, which are due by 31 July 2021. 

“These documents will help ensure the organisation not only builds on the momentum of the reform programme, but also capitalises on its strong financial performance across the last 12 months. The purpose of these documents is not to bind the new Board to any particular course of action, but rather to support them to make any decisions with the best information available.

“We believe the next few years will present considerable upside and excitement for this business and for all those who benefit from it, although there will be difficult challenges and decisions for the new Board to tackle along the way. We wish them every possible success.”

Dawson says being a part of the interim TAB NZ Board, and the Racing Industry Transition Agency and Ministerial Advisory Committee before that, has been challenging but rewarding. 

“The nearly three years serving the organisation and our stakeholders has been an immense privilege. I’d like to pay special thanks to our current Racing Minister, Hon Grant Robertson and previous Minister, Rt Hon Winston Peters.

“Between them, these Ministers helped the organisation navigate turbulent times and created an enduring framework which will support TAB NZ, and all the stakeholders who depend on us, to thrive.”

Chief Transition Officer Dean McKenzie says the new Board will inherit an organisation with strong underlying financial health. 

“TAB NZ’s distributions to both racing and sport are projected to increase significantly next year and increased revenue from improved margin performance has played a key role in that. We could see total distributions to the racing codes top $170 million next year (increase of $31 million on this year’s budget) and total distributions to sport are also projected to increase, to $19.7 million next year (increase of $3.6 million on this year’s budget).”

At the end of May, reported profit (normalised) across the financial year to date was $145.4m, which was $35.7m above budget. An additional $10 million payment against TAB NZ’s ASB debt facility was also made last month.

“As Chief Transition Officer, I’m looking forward to working with the new Board until they’ve got their feet under the desk and are in the position to appoint a new Chief Executive."