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Ryman’s record net profits
Ryman’s net profit before revaluations hit a record $84 million in the year to 31 March, with unrealised valuation gains lifting the reported profit after tax to $121 million. This is up 20.6 per cent on the last year’s results.
As a result, Ryman’s shares have soared to their highest point in the last year, reaching $3.42, a jump of 5.2 per cent. A 4.5c per share dividend was announced, taking the total dividend for the year to 8.4c, which is up 17 per cent on last year.
The results reflect Ryman’s rapid growth. In spite of challenges presented by the Christchurch earthquakes, the company has built 710 retirement units and aged care beds during the year – up 24 per cent on the previous year – and is well ahead of its target build rate of 550 units and beds per year. New villages were opened in Gisborne and Tauranga, and the operator is now looking to expand into Australia.
“The lift in build rate reflected the significant investment we made in hospital and dementia facilities this year, and our decision to fast-track new Christchurch facilities post-earthquake,” said chairman David Kerr in a recent statement.
Ryman is not the only player in the village industry experiencing growth. Metlifecare’s $216 million announcement to buy Private Life Care Holdings and Vision Senior Living indicates a bold move to challenge Ryman’s position in the market.
The other village going from strength to strength is Summerset, which listed on the stock exchange just last year. Shares debuted at $1.45 per share. The company, like its bigger cousins on the NZX, is also reporting rapid growth and development. It has won best retirement village operator in Australasia for two years running.
Is there room for another village operator on the stock exchange? Some investment banking sources say ‘no’, claiming that Ryman, Metlifecare, and Summerset fulfil investors’ needs, as collectively, they will be developing enough units to satisfy the current levels of demand.
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