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South Canterbury Finance's Hubbard to underwrite Wrightson offer

Monday 29th September 2008

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Allan Hubbard, chairman of South Canterbury Finance, agreed to underwrite PGG Wrightson's share offer to retail investors for up to NZ$32 million.

An entity associated with Hubbard has signed the underwriting agreement, providing certainty over the proceeds of the capital raising and the equity component of the Silver Fern Farms acquisition financing, Wrightson said in a statement.

Wrightson, New Zealand's biggest rural services company, last week raised NZ$78 million selling shares to institutions to help fund its half stake in Silver Fern. It sold the stock at a 14% discount of NZ$1.80 a share, sending the shares plunging to near that level.

It plans to offer $5,000 shares at the same price to retail investors. It will use debt to fund the balance of its NZ$220 million purchase.

Shares of Wrightson fell 4.9% to NZ$1.74 and have declined 3% in the past month.

By Jonathan Underhill

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