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Former Fairfax Media chief executive David Kirk is joining the board of trans-Pacific data cable company Pacific Fibre and is investing in the project.
TradeMe founder Sam Morgan, The Warehouse founder Sir Stephen Tindall and Xero founder Rod Drury unveiled the project earlier this year.
Other founders include former Vodafone chief marketing officer Mark Rushworth, technology industry veteran John Humphrey and entrepreneur Lance Wiggs.
The company said today Mr Rushworth has been appointed fulltime chief executive and Mr Kirk, a former All Black captain, has joined the board.
Alongside further investment by Mr Morgan, Sir Stephen and Mr Drury, a new group of investors has also taken stakes, including Mr Kirk, Gareth Morgan, who is Sam Morgan's father, Seaworks chairman Bill Day and MYOB founder Craig Winkler.
nzherald.co.nz reported that the estimated cost has fallen to $500 million from the original $900m and that a capital raising was expected before Christmas.
"My priority as chief executive is meeting with potential customers," said Mr Rushworth. "Over the past three months I have met with Asian, Australasian and North American companies and we've been very encouraged by the response we've been getting."
Pacific Fibre will connect Australia, New Zealand and the United States with a fibre cable by 2013. The Pacific Fibre cable will be five times the total current capacity of the existing data cable to the United States operated by Southern Cross.