Every day we have pathways in front of us; choices to make. Today we are tasked with making vital choices to protect and care for our land and environment. It is our home. It nurtures us. Our people are born of the land and through it, all relationships are connected. As it was passed to us, so must we see it endure for those who come next.

Ara Ake will accelerate New Zealand’s transition to a low-emissions energy future through advancing the development and commercialisation of low-emissions energy innovation. Ara Ake’s area of impact is the demonstration and commercialisation stage of the energy innovation lifecycle. Through our network of local and global connections, we identify opportunities and technology with change-making potential and collaborate with the right expertise, infrastructure and capital to develop, test and commercialise low-emissions energy solutions.

Together, we are not just safeguarding our future, we are shaping it.

Our name

Our name

Onwards and upwards! Our name, Ara Ake, is formed from two separate words, that come together to represent new pathways to be explored on a continuous journey forward. It is a call to awaken and understand that change is normal. When thinking about a name for New Zealand’s new energy development centre, we knew it needed to align with its future potential and be able to expand its meaning as the company grows and evolves over time. Ara Ake’s true depth of meaning allows us to speak to a much greater idea, connecting with people through a shared agenda that is bigger than just the Ara Ake organisation.

Developing the name Ara Ake involved a collaborative process, and workshops were undertaken as part of the research phase. Final name development was done in collaboration with brand agency, Plato Creative, and Rangi Kipa, a creative director well known for his creative work. Dr Will Edwards kindly provided reo guidance and creative input as a member of the establishment project steering group. Venture Taranaki Board members Jamie Tuuta, Hemi Sundgren and Hinerangi Raumati-Tu'ua were also consulted, and Ara Ake thanks all those involved in this process.

As attitudes and perspectives shift and demand for new ways to power our lives increases, New Zealand’s unique energy ecosystem is key to advancing the development of sustainable low-emissions innovation. And we sit right amongst the action.

New Zealand has a global reputation as smart thinkers and doers. Combined with our unique environment, we are primed to be a test bed for low-emissions energy innovation. Our abundance of natural resources has spawned a diverse energy ecosystem and skilled and knowledgeable workforce. As a young country, we are not held back by legacy thinking or outdated processes and systems; regulation is flexible and agile so change can be enacted swiftly. And our small but not insignificant population size offers cost-effective reach to pilot new technologies and assist developments to become investment ready and commercialisable.

Why Taranaki?

Based in Taranaki - the heart of New Zealand’s energy sector - Ara Ake is ideally placed to lead advancements in low-emissions energy solutions. The energy sector is a key contributor to the region’s economy, producing 25 percent of its GDP. It is home to over 7000 highly skilled people with world class energy sector, technical capability and expertise.

Taranaki offers a complete energy ecosystem within a concise geographical location, with access to invaluable knowledge and expertise, infrastructure, supply chain, and many energy resources.

Global connections

To accelerate our journey to a low-emissions energy future, the sharing of knowledge globally is critical. Ara Ake is actively building on ideas, knowledge, actions and models from around the world. We are creating global connections and international partnerships to take our new energy innovation to the world and introduce global investors to the opportunities presented by New Zealand’s unique energy ecosystem.

Change is in motion and we’re excited to be part of this significant opportunity to showcase to the world, what makes New Zealand leaders in future energy development.

What we value

Ara Ake is focused on organisational resilience and long-term sustainability and fosters a diverse, culturally aware and inclusive environment.

We align to the principle of āta, fostering respectful relationships and engaging with others with trust and integrity. We also recognise the importance of kaitiakitanga, the guardianship and protection of our environment for present and future generations.

We value knowledge and understand the need to balance collaboration and transparency with the protection of intellectual property. We are agile and proactive, allowing an open approach to opportunities as they arise in a fast-paced, technology driven future.

Our history

Ara Ake’s origins come from Taranaki’s Tapuae Roa Strategy, the economic development strategy adopted by the region in 2017; and the Taranaki 2050 Roadmap, a co-design strategy that was developed in 2019, providing the big picture plan for Taranaki’s journey to a low emissions economy.

Three years in the planning, in early 2019 Venture Taranaki completed the initial business case to establish the (then titled) National New Energy Development Centre (NNEDC). In May 2019, they gained Central Government’s backing when ongoing government funding was announced. Venture Taranaki was responsible for the NNEDC establishment project which commenced in September 2019. During its establishment, the name Ara Ake was conceived to replace the project name. Ara Ake was launched in July 2020.