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MetService CEO of 9 years quietly resigns with Commerce Commission decision looming

The CEO of MetService, Peter Lennox, quietly but suddenly resigned two months ago as a Commerce Commission decision about MetService looms.

Peter Lennox was CEO with MetService for nine years and resigned late June – with no media coverage from what we can see.

As CEO his list of innovations over nearly a decade saw MetService acquiring MetOcean marine and MetService building a BBQ Index.

Lennox also dug his feet in over the years with regards to tax funded open data. While he was personally paid very well to run the MetService Government Agency, he insisted small businesses like WeatherWatch should not get access to data that was tax funded or owned by the Crown. But over the years MetService made so many contradictions on this the Commerce Commission had no choice but to investigate their behaviour.

WeatherWatch was only alerted to his resignation news release late last week – a PDF buried on the MetService website. Two mainstream science reporters we spoke to in recent days had no idea the CEO of one of our most well known Government Agencies had in fact suddenly resigned from such a high position two full months ago.

MetService is now scrambling to find a new CEO, saying their Chief Financial Officer (CFO) will take over the day to day operations as they begin the search for a new Chief Executive. Considering MetService works daily with the media it’s incredibly surprising this announcement was kept so quiet for two months. The timing is certainly interesting.

The New Zealand Commerce Commission, after a decade long campaign from WeatherWatch, launched an official investigation into MetService and Niwa a year ago. Lennox has jumped ship from MetService while the agency he ran for 9 years is now currently being investigated for “Anticompetitive Behaviour” and “Abuse of Marketplace power”.

Last month the Commerce Commission confirmed to WeatherWatch an update was coming in August.

Mr Lennox hasn’t quit Government though. His new role will be as Chief Executive for the ESR, a Crown Research Institute.

You can read the MetService press release here.

  • Story by Head forecaster Philip Duncan,


Ze;da Wynn on 24/08/2020 5:52am

WOW, Lennox sneakily departs. Good news!
Good links you have provided.
I am concerned he has been hired by ESR as plenty of opportunity to continue his ………
“Abuse of marketplace power”

Lewis on 24/08/2020 3:19am

You might want to brush up on your web searching skills. 🙂

Announced more than two months ago:

WW Forecast Team on 24/08/2020 3:49am

Hi Lewis, thanks for the comment but there’s quite the difference between his new employer putting out a press release on their website vs commercial SOE MetService – who work closer with NZ’s news outlets than any other Government Agency – not having ANY media coverage on this. It makes you wonder if NZ’s news media having business relationships with MetService limits this coverage – in my time at the NZ Herald the editors made several comments about “Not wanting to rock that specific boat” with challenging MetService due to their contracts with them. If the CEO Of TVNZ or AirNZ quit it would be headline news in every news outlet…tell me I’m wrong.

Philip Duncan

Grant MacDonald on 23/08/2020 9:49pm

Maybe he just resigned because he had another job offer.

Roly on 23/08/2020 10:52pm

@grant – I always wondered where the saying came from “rats jump first from a sinking ship ” – but maybe yes- just probably coincidence!

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