Low profit margins and a Panama Papers link – who’s behind Wilson Parking?
In a time when an inner-city park can cost up to $15 an hour, we take a look at the big players in New Zealand’s parking game.
Love them or hate them, there’s no escaping them; Wilson Parking continues to dominate the paid parking market in New Zealand.
The state of private parking is a woeful one, with Wilson, which is part of an international corporation linked to the Panama Papers, gobbling up the market.
But the parking giant insists there’s no paid parking monopoly in New Zealand and customers’ needs are still at the forefront.
Wilson Parking launched in New Zealand in 1987 and now employs around 300 staff, operates more than 300 parking facilities on behalf of the property owners, and parks about 50,000 vehicles daily.
The Kiwi branch is owned by Singapore-based Wilson Parking Holdings, which was established in 1979.
Wilson Parking Holdings says it’s the largest parking business in Southeast Asia, with operations in Australia, China, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Korea and Malaysia.
But the parking operator first started with fallen Australian entrepreneur Laurie Wilson in the 1960s.
SIMON MAUDE / FAIRFAX NZ
Since then ultimate control of Wilson Parking, along with a string of related companies, has passed to one of Asia’s richest families.
SO, WHO CONTROLS WILSON PARKING?
Privately owned Wilson Parking New Zealand has a list of directors as long as your arm, including Auckland lawyer Norman Carter, Australian director Gary Koch, who also directs Wilson Security (we’ll come back to these guys too), UK-based David Prince and three Hong Kong-based directors – Edward Kwok, Raymond Kwok and Kwok Wing Ma.