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Gerhard Buitendach, GM - Network

Gerhard Buitendach has been appointed General Manager, Network at TLC

15 May 2023

The Lines Company (TLC) has recently announced the appointment of experienced asset manager, Gerhard Buitendach, to the role of General Manager, Network.

Buitendach brings a wealth of experience to the electricity distribution business which operates in the greater King Country and Ruapehu region. TLC recently released their 10-year asset management plan, outlining the future of the network as the nation shifts to consuming more renewable energy resources.

TLC chief executive Mike Fox says he was an ideal candidate given his extensive background.

“His career covers extensive reliability, operations, asset management, project management and leadership experience within the New Zealand electricity industry.

“Prior to that he consulted in the mining, minerals, manufacturing, dairy and petrochemical fields – a great background to have and one that will support changing customer and key customers’ needs.”

Buitendach was recruited following a highly competitive process which saw a number of high calibre candidates interviewed.

Buitendach holds graduate and post-graduate qualifications in engineering and business. He officially joined TLC on 15 May, based at the electricity distributor’s King St office in Te Kūiti where he is responsible for the strategic delivery and leadership of the Network Team, comprising the Customer and Community Engagement, Operations and Assets and Engineering Teams.

Since immigrating to New Zealand from South Africa 19 years ago, Buitendach has based himself in the Waikato, where he lives with his wife and children.

He sees his move to TLC as a pivotal one in his career, as he segues from generation and consulting into network distribution services.

“As Aotearoa moves towards decarbonisation, the role of distribution networks is going to become increasingly important – particularly balancing investment in new infrastructure while maintaining existing assets and keeping it affordable for the communities, we operate in.

“TLC’s network is very unique and covers some very challenging terrain. It’s large and has a small number of customers supporting the cost of operation.

“Being community owned means those network assets can be focused on supporting the communities it services, enabling people to thrive and I’m really looking forward to playing a role in making that happen.”

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