4th October 2019 – In a commissioning ceremony held Thursday 3rd October, Fullers360 officially welcomed two fully refurbished vessels, Kekeno and Ika Kākahi – a $15 million investment in the resilience of its fleet.
Auckland Mayor, Phil Goff, formally commissioned the vessels on board Ika Kākahi, where he spoke to more than 50 guests including local government representatives, key partners, and transport and tourism stakeholders about his vision for the future of Auckland transport and Fullers360’s role in keeping the city moving.
Mayor Phil Goff said that Fullers360’s investment in the new vessels is a substantial commitment and that ferries are playing an increasing role in the provision of public transport.
“For those who take the ferry to work, there is one less car on the road. This helps address carbon emissions and I welcome that Fullers are looking to the future, including e-ferries, to provide a better and more sustainable service.”
Fullers360 CEO, Mike Horne said the new vessels will provide a more sustainable network for its commuter customers and demonstrate the company’s investment strategy, committed to a better and more reliable service.
“These new vessels will primarily service Devonport and Waiheke Island and our $15 million investment will add resilience to our entire network of ferry destinations across Auckland. We know that particularly this year, issues have been expressed by members of our commuter communities and we are committed to investing in our fleet to address these.”
The two four-engine sister vessels have a capacity of 400 customers and wide side doors for quick boarding. They each feature four new engines for added reliability, plus luggage and bike racks, tables and canopies. The introduction of these vessels help Fullers360 move closer to achieving a level of standardisation.
In celebrating the new vessels, Horne acknowledged the need for collaboration to keep Auckland moving for visitors and commuters, particularly in periods of high demand.
“2021 is an opportunity for all of us who care about keeping this city moving, to showcase the best of the waterfront to the world, while showing the commitment to our loyal customers through continuing to deliver a reliable transport service, even in periods of high demand.”
Taiaha Hawke, Pou Taki, Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei opened the event with a karakia. Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei also blessed both Kekeno and Ika Kākahi earlier in the day.
As the Department of Conservation collaborated with Fullers360 to name the vessels after Hauraki Gulf marine mammals, Kirsty Prior, Operations Manager, Auckland Mainland also spoke on the longstanding partnership between the two organisations.
For more information about Kekeno and Ika Kākahi, please visit: https://www.fullers.co.nz/customer-updates/customer-updates/introducing-two-new-fullers360-vessels/