Graeme Hart gives Otago University its largest ever donation

Graeme Hart gives Otago University its largest ever donation
Photo credit: Getty

The University of Otago has announced it is "delighted" to have received a $10million donation.

The donation was gifted by billionaire and philanthropist Graeme Hart and his wife Robyn, and was the largest single donation in the near 150-year history of the University.

"We are immensely grateful to Graeme and the Hart family for their generosity," University Foundation Trust Chair John Ward says.

It will be used to help develop a new dental teaching facility which will provide students with diverse practical learning opportunities and dental care for the local diverse communities at a "highly accessible cost".

The facility will be built in South Auckland, and will cost an estimated $28.2 million.

Mr Hart says he is glad that his donation will help the university and the wider community. 

"We are delighted to be able to assist our university in providing a dental school that will meet the needs of lower socio-economic groups. We are very pleased that the youth of this region will benefit from this facility."

Vice Chancellor of Otago University, Harlene Hayne says the donation will assist in making a positive difference to the healthcare and wider wellbeing of residents.

Mr Hart lives in Auckland, but studied at The University of Otago.

Last year he was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Commerce degree from The University of Otago to recognise his contribution to the business sector and philanthropy, by supporting education and children's health.

Construction on the new dental facility is expected to begin on site in the near future.