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Ryman poised for expansion after record year

August 6 2004

Ryman poised for expansion after record year

Listed retirement village operator Ryman Healthcare today confirmed the acquisition of a new retirement village site in Christchurch.

The announcement of the latest village site was made at today’s annual meeting of shareholders.

The new 4.4ha site in Halswell is unconditional and will be developed into a new retirement village, similar to the flagship Ngaio Marsh village. It will accommodate over 200 residents and employ more than 50 staff.

``This latest development reflects our plans for growth and is in line with our target of increasing our profits at the rate of 15 percent per annum,’’ chairman Dr David Kerr said today. ``Our aim is to grow profits and dividends by developing new villages,’’ Dr Kerr said, “ and we can report that we are trading according to expectations in the current financial year.”

In the last year, Ryman has constructed a new village in Napier, purchased a site in Wanganui, and announced the expansion to the Shona McFarlane village in Wellington. Ryman managing director Kevin Hickman said Ryman now has a landbank sufficient to provide a further 940 retirement village units and 427 resthome / hospital beds.

``The demographics are in our favour, confirming there is a market for our product. Statistics New Zealand figures show the number of people over 65 years growing from 450,000 in 2001 to 924,000 by 2026.’’

Ryman posted a record net surplus of $18.4 million in the year to March 31, 20 percent up on last year and increased their annual dividend to shareholders from 7.5c to a record 9c.

In the financial year, Ryman was included in the New Zealand Stock Exchange Top 50 index (NZSX50) and welcomed over 1000 new shareholders.

Ryman’s villages, resthomes and hospitals are situated in Invercargill, Dunedin, Christchurch, Wellington, Lower Hutt, Napier, Hamilton and Auckland.

The company provides homes and care services to more than 2500 New Zealanders, employing more than 1200 staff. It has won the Australasian Aged Care Housing Award for the Best Retirement Village in New Zealand for three successive years.

ENDS

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