An extra $50 million to $100 million of investment is set to enter the kiwifruit industry, and Gisborne is earmarked for about a third of that.
The private equity fund, established by origin Capital Partners, which comprises of Paul Jones (Zespri deputy chair), Lain Jager (ex-Zespri chief executive), Craig Greenlees (ex-Zespri chair) and Dominic Jones (ex-banker), will invest exclusively in SunGold kiwifruit orchards.
The fund already purchased three properties, two of which were in Gisborne. Origin Capital Partners managing partner Dominic Jones: “We've bought an existing orchard in Gisborne and we've bought some bare land in Gisborne, which we are going to build an orchard on.”
That would mean more jobs for the area, Mr Jones said.
“Kiwifruit is labour intensive. There is a lot of growth in kiwifruit in Gisborne anyway and we are a part of that. Once we are deployed we won't be the largest kiwifruit portfolio in the country but we will be up there and we are very bullish about Gisborne. We like it as a kiwifruit growing area, as long as you get good soil and access to water, the long summers and light hours and temperature.”