Scales mulls mid-July NZX debut
By Suze Metherell
June 3 (BusinessDesk) - Scales Corp, the fruit and vegetables logistics group controlled by private equity firm Direct Capital, says it is considering listing on the New Zealand stock exchange.
It will release a prospectus mid-June and expects to debut on the main board by mid-July, the Christchurch-based company said in a statement. New shares will be issued by the company while Direct Capital, along with co-investors ACC and the New Zealand Superannuation Fund, will sell down some of its 84 percent shareholding, but remain a cornerstone investor.
The fruit logistics company lifted its annual profit 50 percent to $20.4 million in calendar 2013, with sales from its orchard and exporting business Mr Apple benefiting from strong apple prices and growing Asian demand, Scales said at the time. Apples made up a third of New Zealand's $1.55 billion in fruit exports in the year ended March 31, with Thailand the biggest destination in Asia accounting for $46 million in annual sales.
Scales also owns and operates air freight service Balance Cargo, has North and South Island cold storage operations Polarcold and Whakatu Coldstores, a fruit juice concentrate business Pro Fruit, and a pet food unit Scales Meateor.
Deutsche Craig and First NZ Capital are lead managers of the offer.