By Suzanne Green
Friday 3rd October 2003
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This involves its 32% stake in and contract to manage New Zealand Rural Property Trust.
It intends to distribute shares in Rural Equities, which will have as its principal assets the 32% NZRPT stake and the management contract, to individual shareholders on a pro rata basis.
"We have decided to separate our income-producing assets in the rural services business from the lower-yield NZRPT capital growth assets," chairman John Bayly said.
"This will result in W&K becoming a purely rural services company and Rural Equities will be clearly identified as a separate, land-based, capital growth company."
Both would then be able to focus on their core businesses rural services for W&K and rural property for Rural Equities.
NZRPT is an unlisted unit trust with net assets of $104 million, comprising a portfolio of 30 high-quality farms and a forest at Ngaruawahia. The total landholding is 18,290 ha.
Mr Bayly also announced a net profit after tax of $6.4 million for the year to July 2003, compared with last year's record result of $7.1 million and an increase in dividend from 23c a share to 24c a share.
The result was pleasing and after adjusting for non-recurring items was on par with last year.
"This has been achieved despite a more difficult year for the rural sector."
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