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AMP Henderson Private Capital

AMP Henderson Private Capital and Direct Capital Announce Sale of Robinson Industries

AMP Henderson Private Capital and Direct Capital have today accepted a conditional offer from Alesco Corporation Limited to buy Robinson Industries for $31 million. Final settlement is expected on April 30 2003.

Robinson Industries manufactures and distributes Robinhood rangehoods, supertubs, ironing centres and waste disposals. The business is to rename as Robinhood Limited as part of this transaction, in recognition of the strength of the Robinhood brand. Alesco Corporation is listed on the ASX and supplies branded building products, earthmoving tyres and automotive specialties to niche markets.

The offer reflects another successful private capital investment for investors and continues to strengthen the investment record for New Zealand private equity.

“The successful growth and sale of Robinson Industries is further evidence of the strong returns that are possible with private equity,” said Martin Turner, head of private capital for AMP Henderson.

“It also underlines the importance of quality private equity exposure for institutional investors at a time when listed markets are experiencing turbulence. ”

AMP Henderson is New Zealand’s largest private equity investment manager and continues to look for further opportunities in the local market.

Robinson Industries was sourced and managed by Direct Capital. Direct Capital offers institutional investors the opportunity to invest in all classes of private equity in New Zealand and Australia. The offer follows the rapid growth of both supertubs into the Australian market and ironing centres into the United States.

“Both of these initiatives took several years to develop to this point and required additional investment by the shareholders. Direct Capital and AMP Henderson were willing to commit the initial risk capital for these initiatives and Alesco will now be able to reap the ongoing growth opportunities,” said Steve Bootten, managing director of Robinson Industries.

The exiting shareholders of Robinson also includes AMP Henderson Global Investors, Australia. The sale results in an attractive rate of return for the institutional investors and supports the call from the New Zealand private equity industry for institutions and super funds to invest in the New Zealand private equity market.

Steve Bootten and all staff will continue with the Company in their existing roles.

Mark Hutton, director of Direct Capital commented that “Robinson Industries has been an excellent example of how management buyouts can lead to a successful transition for the founder and create shareholder value for all parties.”

“It also highlights the global potential of New Zealand-based niche manufacturers with a strong distribution skills.”

“Direct Capital has been involved with Robinson Industries, alongside the company’s founder, since the initial investment by listed fund Direct Capital Partners in May 1995,” he said.

“In 1999 Steve Bootten joined with Direct Capital and AMP Private Capital to complete a management buyout.”

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