• Takitimu Seafoods to close, 33 jobs to go

Takitimu Seafoods to close, 33 jobs to go

Takitimu Seafoods Limited today will close its retail store, online store and wholesale business in Ahuriri, affecting 33 staff, the company announced today. 

Takitimu Seafoods Limited, which was established in 2019, is Ngāti Kahungunu's fisheries business. It had reported three years of financial losses totalling $14.9 million to its shareholder Ngāti Kahungunu Asset Holdings Company (KAHC), the investment arm of Ngāti Kahungunu iwi Incorporated.

Ngāti Kahungunu Asset Holdings Company chair Trevor Moeke said with financial losses likely to continue, coupled with an enforced six week closure due to the impact to its operations from Cyclone Gabrielle, KAHC recommended to the Ngāti Kahungunu Iwi incorporated Board to close down the business. 

“We have been working hard to right the waka over the last nine months, but ultimately the business has a directive to be profitable for our iwi, so it can protect the interests of its members, and at the moment it isn’t a viable operation”. 

“The iwi has a long term strategic vision to ensure the wellbeing of its people and we need to focus our financial resources on other business opportunities; explore new opportunities as they arise, to create a financial return that ensures Ngāti Kahungunu delivers positive outcomes for its people now and well into the future.” 

The cyclone event on February 13-14 forced a shutdown of all operations initially due to electricity and telecommunication outages, then checks on any damage to the buildings and equipment, supply chain issues and rāhui that prevented fishing boats from leaving port. 

Takitimu Seafood Limited chairman Ngahiwi Tomoana said it was a difficult decision to close permanently and the priority now is to support the 33 fulltime and part time employees.  Management and Board met with staff today as part of its consultation process. 

“We have tried everything from a restructure last year, to cutting back on operational costs but the business is unlikely to return a profit for some time, which it is expected to do,”  Tomoana said.