2009: Datalight goes up the Awatere.

Rural broadband is traditionally a difficult and contentious issue. Slow line speeds, unreliable satellite connections were the norm for most homes, farms and rural schools. With the assistance of the farming community, Datalight and Datalight Partners. The Awatere valley now has access to a 100Mbps circuit providing unrestricted broadband at a flat rate price. VoIP calling and lower bills!


At Datalight we are dedicated to a business model that is not exclusively profit-driven, but focuses on  a positive social impact to communities.

2010: TWLP Media Release November 2010.

Torotoro Waea announces its local access model for Ultra-Fast Rural Broadband is now running

Torotoro Waea announced today that its local access network model for delivery of Ultra-Fast Broadband to rural communities is now up and running. Te Wananga o Raukawa has installed the first Local Broadband Access Point (LBAP) on a genuine open access fibre optic network in the town of Otaki, one hour north of Wellington.

The Torotoro Waea model has been developed to provide a cost-effective approach in creating ultra-fast telecommunications infrastructure for local rural communities. As well, it is a blueprint for open access, maintenance, operations and revenue sharing that allows many different parties to contribute to the building and operation of rural infrastructure.

A new pricing model has been set for schools, marae, farms, homes, businesses and government entities. Running over the top of this infrastructure is the KAREN network for connectivity to educational and research institutions. Antony Royal, spokesman for Torotoro Waea commented that "over the next weeks we will be adding more businesses, schools, farms homes and marae".

Ana Winiata, General Manager for Te Runanga o Raukawa says that the potential for connecting the 24 marae of Ngati Raukawa through ultra-fast broadband will not only provide educational benefits but will encourage whanau to connect with those near and far. Ms Winiata added that "Rangatahi (young) Maori are using the latest technology and the internet for education, employment, social activities and in all areas of their lives. Our communities and marae need to be able to provide the environment for them to communicate in this manner. We're really pleased that our whanau, hapu and iwi will have access to this technology."


2011: Datalight shortlisted for Government Rural Broadband Initiative Mar 2011.

Torotoro Waea Limited Partnership including DataLight's OPTO consortium comprising 2 Degrees, Opto Network, Federated Farmers, VSAT/WiMax providers and a number of Power Lines Companies was shortlisted as one of the three final national level tenderers for the Government's $300M Rural Broadband Initiative.

Torotoro Waea's tender offered Government an opportunity to complete its Rural Broadband objectives without any expenditure of Taxpayers money.

Torotoro Waea's bid included providing:

o fibre to 750 rural schools to exceed the minimum 93% RBI coverage requirements (estimated 5,800km fibre);

o high speed wireless, cellular and satellite coverage to the remaining 7% of rural schools and health providers;

o National Backhaul Infrastructure within Northland, Hauraki Plains, Western North Island, Eastern North Island, Western South Island to meet the above requirement (estimated 2,100km network);

o up to 400 open access cellular towers to support 3G/4G/WiMax mobile broadband throughout rural Aotearoa New Zealand;

o up to 1,000 Marae through rural Aotearoa New Zealand (estimated 500km fibre); and

o up to 300 Health Providers

2011: Datalight to manage and operate Smartlinx3 as General Partner for Torotoro Waea Jul 2011.

Following a due diligence analysis of Smartlinx3 managed by Datalight over the Apr-Jun 2011 timeframe, Torotoro Waea invested funding into Smartlinx3 to take majority shareholding and board control as at 1 Aug 2011. DataLight's Managing Director Roger MacDonald has assumed the position of Managing Director for Smartlinx3 Ltd with DataLight being responsible for management and operations of the regional Layer 2 fibre and wireless network.

2011: TNLP Media Release August 2011.

Northland Iwi Consortium Forms Telco

A group of Northland (Taitokerau) Iwi are backing a unique high speed broadband infrastructure development for the Northland region that will operate as Taitokerau Networks.

The project is being managed by telecommunications operator, Datalight Ltd - the company also acting as General Partner for Torotoro Waea and recently taking the management and operations role for Smartlinx 3 in the Wellington region.

The formation of Taitokerau Networks has been led by Te Runanga o Whaingaroa, Te Runanga o Ngati Whatua and Te Runanga o Te Rarawa.

Roger MacDonald of DataLight, says construction will commence 25 August 2011 and all agreements between Iwi, industry, local and international funders are in place to build, operate, maintain and govern Taitokerau Networks initial Fibre Optic Transmission Network infrastructure from Auckland to Whangarei. Once complete early 2012 the network will complement the Government's broadband activities and will be a significant contribution to the delivery of cost effective broadband connectivity to rural communities within Northland.

He says "Taitokerau Networks uses a model that will substantially improve performance, connectedness and cost effectiveness of communications within and beyond Northland. At the same time, it focuses on achieving the outcomes sought by Taitokerau Iwi to improve education, employment, health, and prosperity across the predominantly under-served rural Northland region."

A spokesman for the Taitokerau Iwi behind the project, Haami Piripi, chair of Te Runanga o Te Rarawa, says the business model is designed to stimulate Northland's regional economy, and in particular, Maori communities.

"We have designed the model to ensure there are returns to cover our costs, and that will also enable an adequate level of profit to reinvest in our communities."

He says a number of full-time jobs have already been created to develop the network, and it is expected that TNL will influence the creation of a significant number of jobs across the Northland region over time.


For further information, please contact:

Haami Piripi: 027 4419426, email:

Roger MacDonald: 021 917217, or email: