Our History

Tuaropaki is an Ahu Whenua Trust established by the Maori Land Court under the Te Ture Whenua Maori Act (1993). The Trust Order requires the Trustees to administer the Tuaropaki E lands for the benefit of the beneficial owners.

1951

An advisory committee was setup under the chairmanship of Hoani Wereta and its purpose was to work with Department of Maori Affairs land development staff. 

1952

297 land owners agreed to amalgamate their lands to be managed jointly by their representatives and the Department of Maori Affairs.

Tuaropaki Development Scheme loan approved.

1975

The Department of Maori Affairs loan was repaid in full.

1979

Sole responsibility for the management of the land and the farming operations was transferred to owner Trustees on behalf of the land owners under section 438 of the Maori Affairs Act (1956).

1982

The Crown enters Tuaropaki land without the need to use the Public Works Act (1981) and drills wells searching for geothermal steam.  The Ministry of Energy and the Gas and Geothermal Group recommend developing the Mokai geothermal field but the Crown decide not to proceed.

Tuaropaki formally released from the Department of Maori Affairs. 

1984

Tuaropaki Trust diversifies from dry stock farming and introduces a large scale dairy unit on its lands.

1994

Tuaropaki Trust establishes the Tuaropaki Power Company Ltd.

1996

Tuaropaki negotiate directly with the Crown and purchase the Crown's interests in the geothermal wells on Tuaropaki lands.

1998

Commercial and funding agreements for the Mokai I Geothermal Power Station are successfully concluded and construction of the power station at Mokai begins.

2000

The 'Mokai I' 55 MWe geothermal power plant is completed and commissioned – 100% owned by the Tuaropaki Trust.

2002

Tuaropaki and its JV partners build a 5.5 ha state-of-the-art geothermal heated glasshouse at Mokai and establish the produce company Gourmet Mokai.

The decision is made to build a second geothermal power plant.

2003

Tuaropaki enters the telecommunications sector and forms ESAT Tuaropaki Ltd with Australian-based business partner ESAT Communications.

Mighty River Power acquire a 25% shareholding in Tuaropaki Power Company.

2004

Tuaropaki purchases ESAT Communications interests in ESAT Tuaropaki Ltd and forms Tuaropaki Communications Ltd – 100% owned by the Tuaropaki Trust.

Tuaropaki Communications launches its satellite telecommunications product Rural Inzone.

2005

Construction of Mokai II is completed and the 38 MWe geothermal power plant begins generating power.

2007

Gourmet Mokai builds an additional 6.2ha geothermal heated glasshouse.


Tuaropaki invests in Vinoptima Estate winery and also NZ Communications, the later becoming 2Degrees Mobile.

2008

A power generating unit is added to the power station increasing its capacity to 113 MWe.

Tuaropaki acquire the neighbouring Pukemoremore lands (1,200 ha) from Contact Energy – formerly known as Electricorp who purchased the land in 1988.

2010

Tuaropaki and JV partners build a state-of-the-art geothermal heated and powered milk powder processing factory at Mokai – the first of its kind.

2011

Tuaropaki appoints its first Chief Executive Officer and transitions from long serving management company Strettons to an independent management structure.

Tuaropaki becomes a major shareholder after the merger between Tuaropaki Communications’ Rural Inzone product and the industry leader Farmside.