Panasonic Homes Co. Ltd. was established in Japan in 1963 by Konosuke Matsushita, the founder of Panasonic Corp. With industry-leading home-building technology, the company has expanded its business in Asia and this year is planning to establish its business in New Zealand as a home building materials supplier.
As a group company of Prime Life Technologies Corp. (established by Panasonic Corp. and Toyota Motor Corp.), Panasonic Homes focuses on integrating lifestyle and technology to deliver future-oriented town developments.
Meanwhile, home ownership rates have fallen in New Zealand and demand for affordable housing has increased significantly over the past decade.
KiwiBuild was established in 2018 by the New Zealand government to address the housing challenges facing the country and has since been taken over by Kainga Ora, a crown agency for housing development in the country.
“We want to use our technology and know-how proven in Japan, a country with earthquake and typhoons, to support housing needs of New Zealand,” said Kazuhiko Tanaka, general manager of Panasonic Homes’ overseas business division. “We promised to Kainga Ora to help improve the quality of New Zealand homes and shorten the construction period.”
Panasonic Homes will export high-quality housing materials manufactured at its factory in Japan to New Zealand. Steel-framed panel-type housing components have proven to strengthen building structures and are highly resistant not only to earthquake damage, but water damage as well.
Panasonic Homes partnered with Mike Greer Commercial (MGC), one of New Zealand’s largest privately owned residential building companies, and completed a prototype home in Waikato, New Zealand.
“While most homes in New Zealand take seven months to build, our technology reduces construction time and enabled us to complete the prototype house in three months and it will also lead to skill transfer to construction personnel.” Tanaka said.
“Through the introduction of housing technology cultivated in earthquake-prone Japan, we look forward to delivering solutions to the country’s building sector and sharing our expertise to contribute to the further development of construction industry in New Zealand,” said Tanaka.