Rotorua Economic Development, also known as Destination Rotorua, is changing its name to RotoruaNZ.
The organisation’s representatives say the name change provides “a really clear signpost of what we’re all about - our people and our place”.
The council-controlled organisation revealed its new name in a Rotorua Lakes Council Strategy, Policy and Finance committee meeting on Thursday.
The name change will apply to its legal and trading name. At the moment, the organisation’s legal name is Rotorua Economic Development (RED) and its trading name is Destination Rotorua.
RotoruaNZ, as it is now known, is the district’s combined regional tourism and economic development agency.
Rotorua mayor Steve Chadwick says she loves the new name and it's "significant".
“I didn’t ever like it being called RED.”
Deputy mayor Dave Donaldson says he likes the name and thinks it has already been changed.
Councillor Tania Tapsell says she thinks the name change could be a “backwards step” because it appears to focus only on tourism, not economic development.
“RotoruaNZ doesn’t accurately reflect the significant and important work that’s done to support our local businesses.
"If we have people [who] want to invest, that want to bring new businesses here, does RotoruaNZ mean anything to them? Potentially not.”
Chadwick says it's a combination of both.
“It’s how people find us, it’s all about search engines.
“They’re not going to drop … those other activities at all.”
Councillor Merepeka Raukawa-Tait says she's sure the RotoruaNZ board has “looked carefully at it” but she thinks the name “looked like a trucking company”.
“Where’s the economic part of it? But however, they would have done their homework on that.”
Councillor Raj Kumar says the name change could “polarise” the community.
Council district development deputy chief executive Jean-Paul Gaston says RotoruaNZ will remain the council’s combined regional tourism and economic development agency.
“It’s not to diminish any those two roles.
“It’s not intended to create disruption or demean any part of that organisation.”
Councillor Fisher Wang says Rotorua Economic Development has been “a bit of a mouthful” and the new name is “more personalised” and “more intimate”.
The discussion is part of the committee’s oversight of the council’s three council-controlled organisations’ statements of intent for the new financial year.
In a statement in RotoruaNZ’s statement of intent, which is jointly attributed to chairman John McRae and chief executive Andrew Wilson, it says the name change comes “alongside” the new logo for the organisation.
The logo on the RotoruaNZ website. Photo / Supplied / RotoruaNZ.
“This name is already well-established through our marketing social media channels and provides a really clear signpost of what we’re all about - our people and our place.”
The committee voted unanimously to “support” the name change.
-Local Democracy Reporting is Public Interest Journalism funded through NZ On Air