Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


Dunedin City Skips Dividend on Aurora Energy Network Upgrade

Dunedin City skips dividend from investment arm on Aurora Energy network upgrade

Sept. 26 (BusinessDesk) - Dunedin City Council didn't get a dividend from its investment division this year as the local authority braces for a $721 million decade-long capital investment programme to upgrade Aurora Energy's ageing infrastructure.

Dunedin City Holdings paid $5.9 million to the council in the year ended June 30 through interest payments, but didn't make a dividend payment, as projected in the statement of intent, due to the planned capital expenditure for Aurora, the investment arm said in a statement. The unit isn't projected to make any dividend payments for the next three years, although it will continue to pay interest.

"With planned capital investment by Aurora, it is prudent the company reduces dividend distributions to ensure the funds are invested into capital while maintaining an appropriate equity to total assets ratio," DCH chair Graham Crombie said in a statement. "This impacts on the distributions DCHL can make to the DCC as some funds will need to be retained to continue the maintenance programme."

The investment unit reported an annual net surplus of $18.5 million, down from $20.3 million a year earlier. A pre-tax surplus of $29 million was $5.8 million ahead of budget, it said. Revenue increased 1.7 percent to $275.1 million.

Aurora kicked off its network upgrade with $45.2 million invested in capital projects in the year on new sub-stations, overhead line upgrades, power pole replacement and progress on the longer-term network system control and communications. The electricity distribution firm had 88,000 connections at the end of the financial year, with total assets of $472.6 million.

The network operator plans to apply to the Commerce Commission to switch to a customised price-quality path - the regulated price it can charge - "to fund future investment" which wouldn't come into effect until 2020, the annual report said.

DCH's accounts also included Dunedin Stadium Property for the first time, which earned the statements a tagged audit report by Audit New Zealand, which considered the stadium assets should have been recorded using a commercial valuation rather than public benefit one and would have been a materially lower carrying value than the $185 million accounted for.

The stadium property unit widened its net loss to $8.2 million in the year from $3.6 million in 2016, while the venues management arm posted a surplus of $299,000 on revenue of $13.7 million.

City Forests Ltd, which owns 16,795 hectares of forestry, generated a surplus of $20.1 million on revenue of $46.2 million. Delta Utility Services, the infrastructure services firm, posted a surplus of $4.8 million on revenue of $105.7 million, while the Taieri Gorge Railway tourism unit posted a profit of $172,000 on sales of $6.9 million.


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Electricity Authority: Review Of Competition In The Wholesale Electricity Market Raises Questions

In March 2021 the Electricity Authority announced it would conduct a review into competition in the wholesale electricity market. The period of the review covers the sustained elevated electricity prices since an unplanned outage at the Pohokura gas facility in Spring 2018... More>>

Government: RSI ‘State Of The Nation’ Report Published
latest research, science and innovation system report card is now available, and outlines how the system is performing, Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods has announced. “The report seeks to increase transparency, act as a reliable data source and stimulate discussion... More>>

Fonterra: Increases 2021/22 Forecast Farmgate Milk Price

Fonterra Co-operative Group Limited today increased and narrowed its forecast Farmgate Milk Price range to NZD $7.90 - $8.90 per kgMS, from NZD $7.25 - $8.75 per kgMS. The midpoint of the range, which farmers are paid off, has increased to NZD $8.40 per kgMS, from NZD $8.00 per kgMS... More>>

Pamu & Westpac: Market-leading Sustainability-Linked Loan

Westpac NZ and Pāmu have signed New Zealand’s most comprehensive Sustainability-Linked Loan to date, also the largest in the agricultural sector, and the first involving a state-owned enterprise. Pāmu, also known as Landcorp, is New Zealand’s biggest farming business. It will borrow $85m from Westpac NZ over three years... More>>

Retail NZ: Some Good News In COVID Announcements, But Firm Dates Needed

Retail NZ is welcoming news that the Government is increasing financial support for businesses in light of the ongoing COVID-19 lockdown, and that retail will be able to open at all stages of the new “Covid Protection Framework... More>>

ComCom: Companies In Hot Water For Selling Unsafe Hot Water Bottles And Toys

A wholesaler and a retailer have been fined a total of $140,000 under the Fair Trading Act for selling hot water bottles and toys that did not comply with mandatory safety requirements. Paramount Merchandise Company Limited (Paramount) was fined $104,000 after pleading guilty in the Manukau District Court... More>>