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Pacific Retail plans $20M rights issue

By Phil Boeyen, ShareChat Business News Editor

Monday 18th March 2002

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Retailer and Bendon (NZSE: BEN) suitor Pacific Retail Group (NZSE: PRG) has announced plans to raise up to $20 million through a pro rata rights issue, with the proceeds earmarked to fund future growth.

Although shareholders have previously approved the issue of shares to institutional investors CEO, Peter Halkett, says the board felt that a pro rata rights issue would better allow all shareholders to participate in new opportunities.

He says the cash issue has the full support of PRG's major shareholder, Cullen Investments, and that the proceeds of the issue will be used to fund the company's growth strategy, including acquisitions.

"We are considering a number of interesting opportunities including our bid for Bendon, which now looks likely to proceed."

"The additional equity will provide us with a great deal more flexibility."

PRG currently has an offer in the market for Bendon at $1.90 a share, below the $1.94 - $2.19 range set out in an appraisal report into the offer.

The offer is due to close next Tuesday, March 26. Peter Halkett has previously stated that PRG has no plans to either increase the bid price or extend the offer period.

Further details on the rights issue are expected to be advised in the near future, following a board meeting.

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