Oct 6, 2023

Over 100 Years of Community Service in Dunedin

Media Release: Friday 6 October 2023 

Dunedin has a rich history of many well-known New Zealand companies founded in the city and Otago region, like the 142-year-old company Trustees Executors, one of the oldest companies in the country.  

From the 1860s Dunedin found itself rapidly evolving into a bustling business centre, with Princes Street, Bond Street, and Water Street accommodating many companies in the financial and warehouse sectors. Trustees Executors settled at first on Princes Street, before moving to the corner of Water and Bond Streets in 1906 into the Russel Ritchie and Co. building.  
Trustees would then continue to stay in the building for over 100 years.  

Dunedin 1870 Princes Street picture

Princes Street, Dunedin, 1870. David Thhongs and Ben Schrader, City history and people - Towns to cities', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand


As the financial powerhouse of Aotearoa New Zealand, Dunedin was a centre of innovation, which reflected the many types of businesses that were founded here. For Trustees Executors, their innovation as the first Trustee company in the country started with a private Act of Parliament that enabled the company to begin directly managing client trusts from 1882.   

This meant Trustee's Executors could:  

“...be named as executor in the last will and testament...to be and act as executor; and... be entitled to apply for and obtain probate of the will...and to perform and discharge all other of the acts and duties of an executor as fully and effectually as a private individual may do when appointed executor.” 

Dunedin building Trustees Executors

Source: Trustees Executors photo library


Trustees Executors has been with Kiwis through trying times – two World Wars, the Great Depression, the Global Financial Crisis, multiple recessions, and most recently, the challenges of COVID-19 and the longer-lasting impacts to businesses and individuals.  

Throughout this time Trustees has continued to innovate, develop, and evolve to meet the needs of Kiwis across Aotearoa New Zealand by offering services for corporates, including corporate trustee services, registry services, custodial services and investment accounting services, as well as wealth management for individuals and families, expanding their offices across the motu.   

Earlier this year the Dunedin team at Trustees Executors moved premises to Forsyth Barr House on the Octagon. Whilst this move signalled the end of an era for Trustees' staff occupying the historical 24 Water Street building since 1906, the change to the new location showed the ongoing commitment to providing the community with exceptional service and care for their private wealth needs. 


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