DecisionConsent granted
Section 13(1)(c) Overseas Investment Act 2005
Decision MakerOverseas Investment Office
Decision Date25 August 2020
Pathway(s)Significant business assets
National interest assessment
InvestmentAn overseas investment in significant business assets, being the Applicant’s acquisition of interests in non-sensitive land used in carrying on business in New Zealand for consideration exceeding $100m
ConsiderationThe investment involves the acquisition of interests in land for the operation of data centres, the value of which is not yet confirmed but will exceed $100,000,000.
Applicant

Microsoft New Zealand Limited
Microsoft 6399 New Zealand Limited
United States Public (60.28%)
Various overseas persons (31.83%)
United Kingdom Public (5.02%)
Canada Public (1.73%)
Norway Public (1.14%)

VendorVarious data centre service providers and property owners with assets and land in New Zealand.
Background

The Applicant is a wholly owned indirect subsidiary of multinational computer hardware and software company Microsoft Corporation. Microsoft Corporation is a NASDAQ listed company with operations worldwide.

The Investment involves the Applicant’s acquisition of various interests in several pieces of land in Auckland for the purposes of establishing a cloud based data centre in New Zealand. Data centres are centralised locations where cloud computing and networking equipment is present, for the purposes of storing and processing large amounts of data. The Applicant proposes to improve its ‘hyperscale cloud services’ available to organisations in New Zealand, by creating an on-shore data region, which will allow organisations and agencies to keep at rest in New Zealand data (including sensitive data about New Zealanders), to help organisations and agencies comply with regulatory requirements.

The proposed data centre was announced by the Prime Minister on 6 May 2020, who described the data centre as a ‘significant investment’ which ‘serves as a signal to the world New Zealand is open for business and quality investment’.

The Applicant has satisfied the OIO that the individuals who will control the investment have the relevant business experience and acumen and are of good character. The Applicant has also demonstrated financial commitment to the investment.

The Minister of Finance has determined that the Investment is not contrary to New Zealand’s national interest.

More informationTara Wylie
Simpson Grierson
Private Bag 92518
AUCKLAND 1141