Fresh from delivering this year’s Fifa Women’s World Cup, Aucklander Dave Beeche is Arrowtown-bound.
Beeche, 53, was last week named as RealNZ’s next CEO, replacing Stephen England-Hall who quit in March.
The former chief executive of Triathlon New Zealand, Triathlon World Champs, Ironman Oceania and Lagardere Unlimited Oceania — through which he first established the Queenstown Marathon in 2014 — says he’s ready to roll his sleeves up, get to work and add some value to the company, and Queenstown, once he starts on January 29.
He believes the company, founded in 1954, will have a huge part to play in fostering sustainable and regenerative tourism, and balancing that against the shareholders’ ambition for further growth.
Decarbonisation of the historic TSS Earnslaw, first announced in 2021, is also ongoing, he says.
While switching the Earnslaw from burning coal to either wood pellets, biofuel (diesel or gas) or hydrogen was met with some controversy, Beeche says there’s ‘‘no doubt’’ the history of the ‘Lady of the Lake’— which turned 111 last month — needs to be preserved, but ‘‘we also have to find a way to reduce its carbon footprint’’.
In terms of immediate headwinds, the ongoing rental housing crisis in Queenstown is a major focus, he says.
‘‘There’s a lot of work under way to help resolve that.’’