From 28 October all New Zealand companies must have at least one director who lives in New Zealand, or who lives in Australia and is a director of an Australian registered company.

New Zealand companies that don’t comply risk being removed from the Companies Register.

If your company doesn’t have a New Zealand-based director, you will need to appoint one who lives in New Zealand or in Australia immediately.

There’s also additional information about directors you’ll need to provide when filing your Companies Office annual returns.


To-do list

When: As soon as possible

Who: All companies on the New Zealand Companies Register.

What action to take:

Make sure you have a director who:

  • lives in New Zealand or
  • lives in Australia and is also a director of an Australian incorporated company.

Provide the following information to the Companies Office:

  • name of each director
  • home address of each director
  • date and place of birth of each director
  • details of your ultimate holding company, if applicable
  • for any Australia-based directors, provide the name, address and Australian Company Number (ACN) of their Australian company.

How: You can update director details online on the Companies Office website(you’ll need to log on with RealMe).


Overseas director

Alya owns a Malaysian takeaway in Wellington. The company’s director is her father in Penang, who helped buy the premises. To stay compliant, Alya and her father decide she should also be appointed a director. She adds her name to the list of directors, along with her address in Wellington, and her date and place of birth.

Backed by investors

Kirstie and Hemi run a New Plymouth start-up, backed by a private equity firm. As this firm owns shares in their company, it is considered an “ultimate holding company”. Kirstie and Hemi now need to provide details of the private equity firm to the Companies Office.

Backed by a family trust

Ben and Tim are about to register their new cleaning business – owned by a family trust – with the Companies Office. As co-directors, they’ll need to provide their dates and places of birth. But they don’t need to include details of the family trust, as it does not count as an “ultimate holding company”.