Ryman Healthcare Ltd lifted its audited reported profit after tax for the March year by 8.8% to $388.2 million ($356.7 million the previous year) and the underlying profit 14.2% to $203.5 million ($178.3 million).
In line with profit growth, the retirement village developer & operator raised its year’s dividends by 14.6% to 20.4c/share. The final dividend is up 17.2% to 10.9c/share (9.3c).
The fair value movement of investment properties rose 8.2% to $351.5 million ($325 million).
Basic & diluted earnings/share rose 8.8% to 77.6c (71.3c). Net tangible assets/share, basic & diluted, rose 17.5% to 388.1c (330.4c).
Sales of occupation rights fell 2.7% to 1283 (1318) – new units down from 600 to 458, existing units up from 718 to 825.
But that would appear to be a hiccup in Ryman’s pattern of continuous growth. The company also said on Friday it had bought the site for its 8th village in Victoria, Australia. It has a total 16 villages in the development pipeline, and announced plans for new villages in Karori, Wellington, & Havelock North, Hawke’s Bay.
The company increased total assets to $5.8 billion ($4.94 billion).
It has 6414 (5968) retirement village units, 3367 (3281) residential care beds for a total 9781 (9249). In its land bank it has 4232 (4025) retirement village units & 1720 (1529) care bed units for a total 5952 (5554).
Ryman chair Dr David Kerr said the company ended the year with less than 1% of its portfolio available for resale, and 97% occupancy in care centres.
“Demand for what we do is needs-based & growing. Resale volumes at our existing villages grew by 15%, while sales numbers in the wider real estate market in New Zealand were down by 14%.”
Behind the financial numbers, chief executive Gordon MacLeod said:
- the biggest hit with residents during the year had been Ryman Delicious, which introduced new seasonal menus
- over 200 of the company’s leaders had taken part in the Ryman ‘LEAP’ leadership development programme, recognising Ryman’s commitment to grow its own people, and
- 25 villages were now live on the new myRyman Care app, and the rollout is due to be complete in New Zealand in July.
The company received planning consent for new villages in Hamilton and in Coburg, Melbourne, and consenting was well advanced for 2 new Victorian sites at Burwood East & Geelong. The 8th Victorian site is at Aberfeldie, 9km from the centre of Melbourne.
Completion of the current pipeline will take Ryman to 17,500 residents in 48 villages. The $100 million 6ha village on Te Aute Rd, Havelock North, will be Ryman’s 40th in New Zealand, offering a range of retirement living options plus resthome, hospital & specialist dementia care.
In a separate announcement on Friday, Ryman said co-founder Kevin Hickman was retiring after 34 years and Geoffrey Cumming would rejoin the board on 1 June.
Mr Hickman & John Ryder founded Ryman in 1984 with $10,000 in capital each and the intention of building a company that provided the best of care for older people. They listed Ryman on the NZX in 1999 with a market capitalisation of $135 million, raising $25 million in capital, and ran the company jointly until July 2002. Mr Hickman was managing director until July 2006 and has since been a non-executive director.
Mr Cumming has been a substantial long-term shareholder in Ryman. He was a director before the company listed, and stood down from the board in 2000.
Attribution: Company releases.