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Sydney base for new Nuplex boss

By Phil Boeyen, ShareChat Business News Editor

Friday 10th November 2000

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Nuplex Industries plans to keep its head office in New Zealand although its new managing director will be based in Australia.

Retiring MD Fred Holland told shareholders at the AGM today that the chief executive of the company's Australian operations, John Hirst, would replace him from January 1 next year.

Mr Holland will become non-executive chairman, and will also work part-time on shareholder relations and on the boards of Nuplex's major subsidiaries and joint ventures.

He says in making the new MD appointment the company recognises it is best for Mr Hirst to remain based in Sydney given that over 70% of revenue is generated outside New Zealand, and the major growth opportunities are in Australia and Asia.

"The board however considers it appropriate to continue to maintain the head office in New Zealand, recognising the fact that 80% of our shareholders and domiciled in this country."

Mr Holland told shareholders that Nuplex has had a favourable start to the current financial year, with profit for the first four months well ahead of the same period last year.

He says growth is coming from the strong recovery of waste treatment earnings in both Australia and New Zealand, increased penetration of the Australian construction products market, and additional synergy gains from last year's acquisitions.

The company is also experiencing growth in Asia, including its operation in Vietnam.

Mr Holland says the downturn in the New Zealand housing construction market is a negative factor, but overall positive signs outweigh the negative, and the company is still forecasting strong double-digit growth for the current year.

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