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Allied Farmers - Full Listing On NZSE

It will be a proud day in the almost 90 year history of rural services company, Allied Farmers Limited, when it achieves a full listing on the New Zealand Stock Exchange on 9 May, Allied Farmers Limited Chairman Mr Brian Train, said today.

“Allied Farmers Limited is a company with a long and proud past and we are fully focused on ensuring our future is one of growth and prosperity, “ said Mr Train. ”We achieved record profitability in 2001 and our recently released half year performance to 31 December 2001 was also a record.”

Mr Train said that a full listing – organised by brokers Forsyth Barr - was the next logical step for Allied. “We’ve been traded on the NZSE’s unlisted securities facility since October 1998 and have operated voluntarily under the NZSE rules for six years.”

Mr Train said that the advantages of a full listing were a wider base of shareholders, opportunities for capital raising and greater liquidity in Allied Farmers Limited shares. “Although we have no plans to raise capital in the immediate future, full listing gives us the opportunity to do so when we are ready.”

Although a public company since it’s founding at Hawera in 1913, Allied Farmers Limited operated under the principles of farmer co-operatives that were once a common feature of rural and provincial New Zealand. Financial difficulties in the late 1980s saw the company move to operating as a corporate entity in 1987 after it received the approval of creditors to trade under a scheme of arrangement under section 205 of the Companies Act 1955. Mr Train was appointed Chairman and also Scheme Manager in that year. The company was able to trade out of the scheme of arrangement by 1993, with all creditors paid in full.

Allied Farmers Limited has expanded steadily from its original Taranaki base and now operates in the King Country, Waikato and, through its specialist plant and equipment finance arm Allied Farmers Finance Ltd, Auckland. A recent acquisition saw operations commence in the Manawatu at the beginning of April 2002. Allied Farmers Limited provides merchandise and bulk farm supplies, advice and trading in livestock through a network of saleyards and field representatives, crop advice, wool storage and handling, financial services and a regional real estate network in Taranaki.

“One of the keys to our success has been the ability of our management team to see things from our customers’ point of view,” said Mr Train. “This has generated strong customer loyalty. Our key regional operations – Taranaki Farmers, Waikato Farmers, King Country Farmers and now Manawatu Farmers – build on strong local brands and loyalties.”

“Our future will be based on strong performance in our existing operations and continued expansion into areas which meet our rigorous criteria for investment. Farming is a cyclical industry but there are many opportunities for good investments that build on our existing base and which will provide a buffer against movements in commodity prices.”

In the year to June 30 2001 Allied Farmers profit before tax was up 36% to $4.308 million on revenue of $138.695 million (an increase of 28%). “The half year result to 31 December 2001 of $2.686 million profit before tax on revenue of $60.881 million was also a sign of our ability to provide profit growth,” said Mr Train.

ENDS

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