Archive | Archive – local property

Snapshot on local property, week to 22 February 2004

20 February 2004

The AMP NZ Office Trust’s $62 million 1:7 unit buyback information document will be mailed to unitholders on Wednesday 25 February. The buyback is at 87c/unit. The trust understands its 2 major shareholders, Ronin Property NZ Ltd holding 30% & the AMP Property Securities Fund holding 26%, intend to accept the buyback offer for at least their pro-rata shares.

Holders of Urbus Properties Ltd convertible notes have the right to convert all or part of their notes into ordinary shares on 5 April, the next election date. Urbus said notice of conversion must be received by the Urbus Securities Registrars, Private Bag 92119, Auckland, by 5pm on Thursday 25 March. The notes will be converted on a 1:1 basis. Urbus said noteholders should be aware the current market price of the shares (89c at the close on Friday) is less than the 92c principal amount for which the notes were issued and the price that will be paid to noteholders on the maturity date (30 March 2007), and the shares issued on conversion won’t carry any dividend or distribution rights for the March half year. Holders of unlisted mandatory convertible notes also have the right to convert all of their notes in any 1 class into shares on their next election date, 31 March 2004, also on a 1:1 basis and also without dividend rights. The 14 mandatory convertible notes have all traded infrequently, in a wide price spread.

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Snapshot on local property, week to 11 March 2001

Latest: Francis agrees to sell Force, censure for Savoy, Newmarket profit falls 30%, Damba’s fortunes rise, Servcorp takes PWC Tower floor, bigger loss for Australasian Property, Restaurant Brands sales up 10%, Kiwi Income secures development trust, change at Bayleys Research helm, Britomart work starts, airport Foodtown, work to start on two Taradale projects, Calan earnings up marginally, appraisal explains wide Force value range.

9 March 2001

Force Corp executive chairman Peter Francis headed off to play golf this weekend with a conditional agreement in his pocket for Sky City to buy his 50.19% of the company at 25c/share. Apart from an Overseas Investment Commission technicality which is hardly likely to get in the way, Sky will be free to pursue the rest of the company, offering small shareholders the same price. Mr Francis said Sky had the financial strength and expertise in entertainment, food & beverage and facility management to take Force forward. Settlement should be in two or three weeks. One issue which could get in the way, the dispute between Force and MTM Entertainment Management of Sydney over the Force Entertainment Centre on Queen St, was back in the High Court this week for an evaluation conference behind closed doors.

The stock exchange’s market surveillance panel has censured Savoy Equities for claiming in its half-year report last September that the forecast $5 million net profit for the year was “already substantially realised,” but later deciding to review the profit projection. The panel found the half-year statement misleading. Surveillance panel Philippe Leloir said no other penalty was envisaged for the company or directors: “It’s a public reprimand. What you suffer is that publicly you’ve been censured. That should be quite enough.” He disagreed with me that it was “duck’s back” treatment, saying most directors who found themselves in this predicament worked hard to escape a reprimand.

Newmarket Property Trust’s net profit fell 30% to $2 million on revenue down 21% to $4.5 million and an operating surplus down 34% to 2.28 million in the December half, producing earnings/share down 25% at 2.99c. The trust is beleaguered: it’s looked at several options for the future and rejected them and can’t raise capital without causing dilution because of the 29% unit price discount, 50c compared to net asset backing of 70.4c.

Damba Holdings Ltd has turned in more substantial earnings, wants to invest in a more diverse activity range than its basic furniture business and intends to change its name to Cube Capital at the annual meeting, in Wellington on 26 April. Damba increased sales 5.8% to $19.1 million, increased ebitda 13.5% to $1.3 million, increased net profit after tax by 276% to $224,000 and increased earnings/share by 287% to 1.28c.

AMP NZ Office Trust has leased another floor of the PricewaterhouseCoopers Tower on the Auckland waterfront. International serviced offices company Servcorp has signed up for the 1345m² level 27. Project manager said that took the tower to 59% precommitment, with two more leases close to being finalised. Servcorp offers serviced offices in Australia, Japan, Europe and South-east Asia. It has also taken five floors in the ASB Centre in Auckland.

Australasian Property Holdings Ltd, listed in New Zealand but with its assets at Katoomba in the Blue Mountains west of Sydney, doubled its half-year loss to $156,000. Managing director Tracey Lake said the Escarpments residential and resort hotel project was still in a preconstruction phase with no sales. About 80% of project-related expenses were capitalised. Marketing of the first 14 villas began in February. The company raised $513,000 from a rights issue during the December half and is debt-free.

Restaurant Brands NZ Ltd reported first-quarter sales up 10% to $57.7 million, including a 60% rise in Pizza Hut sales to $14.7 million (from the acquisition of Eagle Boys). Non-KFC sales rose 58% and represent 31% of the total (21% a year ago). KFC sales fell 3% to $39.9 million, or 3.5% on a same-store basis. Starbucks sales were $3 million, 8.4% higher on a same-store basis. Thirteen new Starbucks and three Pizza Hut delcos (delivery and takeaway) will open this year.

Kiwi Income Property Trust secured 95.3% of Kiwi Development Trust by mid-afternoon today, as owners of 25% of the stock poured their acceptances of the takeover in just ahead of deadline. KIPT can now proceed to mop up the remainder under an unconditional offer.

Bayleys Real Estate’s research head, Kerry Coleman, leaves the firm today after 13 years to take over the helm as general manager of the Auckland Catholic Diocesan office. He’ll still have a property role there, getting a better performance out of the church’s portfolio. Mr Coleman’s position as research head at Bayleys will be taken by Gerald Rundle, who has been there for four years.

8 March 2001

Demolition of the annexe behind Auckland’s central post office has begun, and the Britomart carpark will also be demolished by August so work can start on a Queen St railway station. Auckland City Council plans to call tenders for the station midyear.

6 March 2001

Auckland International Airport Ltd will build a 2000m² Foodtown supermarket next to The Warehouse on the corner of George Bolt Memorial and John Goulter Drives. It’s scheduled for completion in September.

Taradale Properties starts construction next week on two tourist-area residential projects — the 80-lodge unit Marama Point, with 48 marina berths, on 4.5ha beside the popular Ohau Channel trout-fishing spot on Lake Rotorua, and Greenstone Terrace in Queenstown, 63 terraced homes. Taradale director said both had attracted strong overseas interest and the two are in similar price brackets — $215,000-319,000 for two- and three-bedroom units at Marama Point, $219,000-290,000 at Greenstone Lodge.

5 March 2001

Calan Healthcare Properties Trust earned $4.36 million, just under 1% more in the December half, on rent up 17.2%% to $7.7 million and total revenue up 13.1% to $7.9 million. Basic earnings fell 18.8% to 3.428c/unit. Debt:gross assets was 31%. The trust said delays at the Ascot Clinics and Waitemata Private projects cut 0.5c/unit from the distribution, which fell from 4c to 3.4c. Calan said it was reconsidering its Australian portfolio, including exiting parts, and might consider shell-only development so it doesn’t have to go to a rights issue.

Grant Samuel & Associates says in its appraisal report on Sky City’s 25c/share offer to take over Force Corp that every $1.5 million shift in value of the Force Entertainment Centre translates to a 1c shift in overall value of Force. The centre’s ownership is still in dispute between Force, which wants to sell, and MTM Entertainment Trust of Australia, which doesn’t want to buy. The centre was valued at $74 million in March 2000, Grant Samuel put current market value at $65 million and gave a post-dustup value range of $57-60 million. Sky needs capitulation by Force’s controlling shareholder, executive chairman Peter Francis, and can then start buying onmarket on Thursday. The appraisal values Force at 22-32c/share.

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Snapshot on local property, week to 14 October 2001

14 October 2001

Conservation minister Sandra Lee has approved a permit for Hastings District Council’s discharge of wastewater, but has cut the expiry date from 2020, which the Environment Court endorsed, to 2014. Along with the decision itself, Ms Lee has provided a full explanation of the procedure and her role in it.

Foodland Associated Ltd is off to the Privy Council in high dudgeon at its treatment over which law should apply to its proposed purchase of the Woolworths NZ chain from Dairy Farm International of Hong Kong. But that course only deals with which Commerce Commission rules should apply, which means the actual takeover application should be some time away yet.

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Snapshot on local property, week to 11 May 2003

5 May 2003 2003

Boston investor Grantham Mayo van Otterloo & Co has sold its interest in Trans Tasman Properties Ltd down from 6.32% to 4.82%, at 25c/share.

The Warehouse Group Ltd said on Tuesday unaudited group sales rose 7% in the 3 months to 30 April to $438 million. Its Red Sheds improved 8.1% to $293 million, same-store 6%. The Warehouse NZ increased retail space 11.1% to 352,961m² in 79 stores and plans to open 2 new stores in the South Island this quarter. Weighted average sales fell 3.1%, from $3997/m² to $3872/m² for the 12 months to 30 April. Warehouse Stationery sales rose 24.1% to $39.2 million, and same-store 10.8% excluding business-to-business. The stationery chain increased retail space 13.6% to 45,918m² in 39 stores. Excluding B2B, weighted average sales for the 12 months were $3142/m². The Warehouse Australia increased sales (in local money) by 10.3% to $A97.2 million, but same-store they fell 4.3%. The Australian chain added 26.2% of retail space to 226,937m² in 129 stores. Weighted average sales for the 12 months fell $A14/m² to $A2160/m². The group expects full-year earnings to be in the $73-80 million range.

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Snapshot on local property, week to 23 December 2001

19 December 2001

Property developer Adrian Chisholm, now a hotel company operations manager, has lost his case against Auckland City Council over the alleged malicious dumping of sewage next to his resort development site in January 1998. Justice Chambers issued his judgment today, ruling against Mr Chisholm on all allegations. The parties will argue costs early next year.

18 December 2001

The National Property Trust has confirmed the sale & purchase agreement for Hornby Mall Ltd in Christchurch, with settlement on 1 March 2002. Trust executive chairman Paul Dallimore said the trust intended to apply the $23 million sale proceeds “to further acquisitions which are still being investigated.”

The Government has put in place tighter regulations on foreign ownership of farmland which were put through the legislative process in 1998 at NZ First’s instigation but didn’t have the supporting regulations brought in at that time. Under these regulations, the Overseas Investment Commission can’t approve any farmland for sale unless it’s first been offered on the open market to New Zealanders. Ministers can waive this requirement, but only if the purchase will, or is likely to, result in substantial & identifiable benefits to New Zealand or to a region, district, locality or other part of New Zealand. The third change is to halve the threshold for consent for areas of land adjoining or including the foreshore from 4000m² to 2000m².

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Snapshot on local property, week to 15 July 2001

Latest: Studio Metropolis in liquidation, Hartner Group faces liquidation, city blueprint for Shore, Axa raises Southern Capital stake, PFI expands Hurricane property and extends lease, Beverley joins PFI board, AMP Diversified delists in NZ.

15 July 2001

The Studio Metropolis Ltd (Graham Syder & Jocelyn Wilson) appointed Paul Sargison & Gerry Rea as liquidators on 9 July after clearing out the Studio shop on the High St frontage of Andrew Krukziener’s Metropolis apartment hotel tower. The Metropolis outlet was owned by a separate company from The Studio of Tableware Ltd in Mt Eden, but with the same owners. The Metropolis company had a two-year lease with a six-month rent holiday, but was troubled by street works during that period. Unsecured creditors are owed $845,000, including the capitalised lease.

John McPherson, of the Ministry of Economic Development’s commercial affairs/insolvency division, filed an application on 12 June to put Hartner Group Ltd into liquidation, joining Hartner Construction Ltd, which went into liquidation in March with the Official Assignee as liquidator. The application will be heard in the High Court on 26 July, 10.45am. Mr McPherson said the application was procedural, ensuring direct access, which he already had to Hartner Construction and which had been provided by Hartner receiver John Waller. The Securities Commission found last month there was no need for the companies to be placed in statutory management.

14 July 2001

North Shore City Council’s strategy & finance committee will consider a city blueprint next Wednesday, in a closed workshop or councillors before a decision in public meeting, with a press conference on Thursday to discuss it with media.

Axa Asia Pacific Holdings Ltd has increased its stake in Southern Capital Ltd from 9.85% to 10.87%.

11 July 2001

Property For Industry Ltd will spend $560,000 extending its property at 18 Cryers Rd, East Tamaki, by 1225m², adding a canopy and upgrading the yard for its tenant, Hurricane Wire Products Ltd. As part of the agreement, Hurricane’s leases on that property and the adjoining 8 Stonedon Drive will be extended by about four years to 12 years on completion of the works in October. PFI bought the properties in 1997 under a 12-year sale/leaseback agreement.

Anthony Beverley, head of property in New Zealand for AMP Henderson Global Investors, has replaced James Darkins on the board of Property For Industry Ltd. Mr Darkins moved to London in April as the group’s head of global property. AMP Henderson Global Investors manages PFI’s $217 million portfolio of 50 properties, the $770 million AMP Property Fund and $535 million AMP NZ Office Trust.

AMP Diversified Property Trust delisted its securities from the New Zealand stock exchange from the close of business on Monday for lack of transactions. Its $A1.47 billion of assets are mostly in New South Wales (62%), the rest in the other four mainland states, 45% office, 45% retail 10% industrial. Gearing at March 2001 was down to 25.1%, Standard & Poor’s upgraded both its short-term and long-term debt ratings during the year, its occupancy rates were 96% office, 99% retail and 97% industrial (up from 90% a year earlier). Operating profit rose 2.4% to $A83.2 million, asset backing A4c to $A2.35, which means its units spent most of the year trading at a premium. The listing’s gone but the website hasn’t: AMP Diversified Property Trust

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Snapshot on local property, week to 14 April 2002

11 April 2002

Auckland’s Imax cinema, in the Force Entertainment Centre, has closed. Force Corp Ltd, now controlled by Sky Entertainment Group Ltd, said today its subsidiary, Cine-Force Ltd had ceased operating the cinema, but this wouldn’t affect the day-to-day operations of the rest of the centre — 12 Village Force Hoyts cinemas, Planet Hollywood, 12 bars & restaurants, and 11 retail outlets. Force Corp company secretary Peter Holdaway said the closure was the result of the business not being a viable commercial enterprise. The company was investigating alternative uses for the space, including the potential to convert it into a theatre facility for large events.

Taradale Developments Ltd (Tim Manning) officially opens its $15 million 63-unit Greenstone Terrace development in Queenstown tomorrow. Landscaping on the Frankton Rd frontage will be completed when Transit NZ finishes the road’s upgrade. The development was completely presold after emphasis in the investment market on the need for housing for Queenstown’s service industry.

9 April 2002

Auckland City Council has introduced property information details to its website, covering capital, rateable & land values, land area & current rates. Customer centres manager Raewyn Bennet said the information had always been publicly available and was put on the website because of high demand. “Our call centre already deals with a large number of calls from solicitors, estate agents & ratepayers who want information about a particular property that they might be selling or buying. Having that information on the web simply makes it easier & more convenient to access.”

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Snapshot on local property, week to 7 September 2003

6 September 2003

Residential building work put in place in the June quarter was worth $1.5 billion, 36% more than in that quarter last year. Non-residential building fell 1% to $757.7 million, pulling the overall increase back to 21%. Billion-dollar quarters have occurred in the residential sector in recent boom periods, but the last 5 quarters have set new highs: $1.1 billion in the June 2002 quarter, $1.358 billion in September, $1.422 billion in December, $1.295 billion in March and $1.515 billion in June. Figures are actual, not trend or seasonally adjusted.

Tourism Asset Holdings Ltd, the Australian company which holds Accor’s portfolio of hotels in Australia & New Zealand, has put the 111-room 3½-star Mercure Hotel in Wellington on the market through Sonnenblick-Goldman (Australia) Pty Ltd, in conjunction with Managed Properties Ltd (David Keys, until recently managing director of the Newmarket Property Trust) and hotel consultants Horwath Asia Pacific. Sonnenblick-Goldman managing director John Smith said recent increases in transtasman airline capacity & reduced airline pricing, both into & within New Zealand, made purchase timing ideal. “The recent arrival of Emirates, the creation by Air New Zealand last month of discount brand Tasman Express, plans by Virgin Blue to commence services later this year and the current expansion of the Qantas subsidiary in New Zealand, Jet Connect, all promise the potential for a strong surge in inbound hotel demand during the next few years,” he said. The hotel’s profit margins exceeded 37% over the past 3 years. The sale will be conducted by way of a private invitation-to-bid process to pre-qualified prospective buyers.

3 September 2003

The Bluewater consortium and Melview Developments Ltd have submitted their final proposals to Auckland City Council for redeveloping the Britomart heritage precinct. Mayor John Banks said both contenders’ proposals would go through an evaluation process, which could result in a final decision being made by the full council at the end of October.

All very well changing your name, but to get it up in lights in Auckland you have to get past the very close scrutiny of Cllr Juliet Yates and the regulatory & fixtures sub-committee of Auckland City Council. Insurance company Royal SunAlliance (parent company Promina Ltd now) got approval on Tuesday to change the rooftop signs on the Royal SunAlliance Centre to Vero. The committee found the signs wouldn’t alter the dimensional outline of the building because they’d be read against the rooftop structure rather than the sky, they’ll cover less area than the existing signs, they won’t be illuminated to the same level (but the illuminated signage will still have positive effects to the amenity value of the central area nightscape) and the scale is appropriate.

Simes Real Estate has sold the largest industrial offering in Christchurch for more than 10 years — the Southpark development on the corner of Lunns and Curletts Rds, sold for almost $14 million. It consists of existing industrial buildings, offices & land for development. Commercial agent Andrew Mason said more than 20 tenders were received. “There is a real shortage of good quality investment property in the Christchurch market, which has been exacerbated in recent times by high numbers of owner occupiers buying their own properties. This has in turn led to a reduction in the supply of good quality leased investments being available for arm’s-length investors to purchase,” he said.

The NZ Property Institute has opened a Central Otago branch, chaired by Doug Reid, a valuer at Macpherson Valuation in Queenstown. Last year the institute set up a branch in London. Queenstown will host the institute’s national conference next July.

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Snapshot on local property, week to 23 June 2002

17 June 2002

Transit NZ has advertised for statements of interest & ability from prospective tenderers for the design & construction of the new Upper Harbour Bridge & causeway widening. Submissions close on Thursday 18 July at Transit in Auckland.

Manukau City Council’s differential rating special order is to be confirmed at a council meeting on Wednesday 26 June.

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Snapshot on local property, week to 10 June 2001

Latest: Princes Wharf Hilton opens, Chisholm gets evidence into trial, Kiwi Development pays dividend, Kiwi Income raises net operating profit 11.3%, court approves Trans Tasman bonds.

11 June 2001

The Hilton Auckland hotel on Princes Wharf began counting everything officially from Friday, when it was opened by the Prime Minister, Helen Clark. For the previous month the hotel had gone through a soft opening, with occupancy about 40%, not all rooms available and not all services available.

Waiheke Island resort battler Adrian Chisholm got his wish for previously solicitor-client-confidential notes on a meeting concerning the dumping of sludge on the island into the record of the trial where is pitted against Auckland City Council. The trial had ended last December, but High Court trial judge Robert Chambers accepted the new evidence, including cross-examination, on Friday after Mr Chisholm had pursued the issue through various avenues. After that, it seems the trial may be reopened yet again to introduce evidence arising from an internal council inquiry into Gulf island affairs later in 1998.

Former Kiwi Development Trust unitholders who accepted the Kiwi Income Property Trust takeover offer or had their units compulsorily acquired will receive a 7c/unit dividend, with no imputation credits, payable early in July when Kiwi Income distributes its annual report.

Kiwi Income Property Trust reported a March-year $35.38 million net operating profit on Friday, up 11.3%, on revenue up 9.1% to $54 million. Net operating profit before tax, including equity accounted earnings from Kiwi Development Trust, rose 7.7% to $38.82 million. Net unrealised revaluation gains were $15.2 million and another $8.84 million of revaluation gain was achieved as a result of the Kiwi Development Trust acquisition.

6 June 2001

The High Court has approved Trans Tasman Properties Ltd’s proposal to switch convertible capital notes to the new 10% six-year bonds, which noteholders had approved at a special meeting on 21 May. Bonds will be issued from Thursday 28 June. Shareholders rejected a switch of their stock into a separate bond issue.

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