Ex-Fonterra chairman van der Heyden to lead Auckland Airport board

Former Fonterra Cooperative Group chairman Henry van der Heyden will head up the board of national gateway Auckland International Airport after the annual meeting in October.

Van der Heyden replaces Joan Withers, who also heads up MightyRiverPower’s board, who signalled her exit last year. The company’s board will start looking for a replacement director in the coming months, it said in a statement. Van der Heyden joined Auckland Airport’s board in September 2009, and currently sits on its remuneration committee.

“The announcement of Sir Henry’s appointment to the chairmanship will ensure a smooth governance transition over the next six months,” Withers said. “I know the board will support Sir Henry in the exemplary way I have been assisted in my time as chair.”

This week the airport got a clean bill of health in the Commerce Commission’s draft report on the effectiveness of information disclosure rules for the airport, which found the regime has “been effective in limiting Auckland Airport’s ability to extract excessive profits over time.”

Auckland Airport’s shares fell 0.6 percent to $3.07 yesterday, and have gained 16 percent this year.

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