Maori Party congratulates Ngai Tahu on Entrepreneurial Courage (Rahui Katene)

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The Maori Party has today commended Ngai Tahu Holdings in its decision to take an equity stake in Agrias holding company.

[Agria is the vehicle that launched the partial takeover for PGG Wrightson, New Zealands largest rural services company].

Iwi frequently remind us that they are the natural partner for Government they are one group that we know will never leave New Zealand and it therefore makes great sense to value their investment potential said Rahui Katene.

Ngai Tahu Holdings has earnt a distinguished investment profile through its achievements in a range of South Island commercial, tourism, seafood, property and rural ventures. This profile makes them an ideal business partner which the Agria Singapore Group and the Chinese multi-billion dollar company, New Hope, have recognised.

It is really exciting to see our iwi developing global relationships with such confidence said Mrs Katene. “And the Maori Party wants to both encourage and recognise the leadership that iwi are demonstrating in investing in New Zealand’.

“I am so proud to see the way in which the Ngai Tahu spirit continues to impress, despite the obvious challenges of the Canterbury Earthquake impacting significantly on their business” said Mrs Katene.

Despite great adversity Ngai Tahu has demonstrated entrepreneurial courage in taking up an investment opportunity that will benefit their stakeholders as well, of course, as the greater rural sector in New Zealand and logically therefore the national economy said Rahui Katene.

It is also commendable that Ngai Tahu Holdings is conducting commercial negotiations within the context of its kaupapa seeking to achieve an environmental sustainable rural business model as part of its rural strategy said Mrs Katene.

There will be all eyes on Ngai Tahu Holdings as we watch the impact of their emerging growth strategy for the rural sector.

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  1. Ngai Tahu investment arm to acquire Agria stake

    South Island tribe Ngai Tahu's investment arm is buying a 7 per cent stake in the Chinese company taking over PGG Wrightson.

    That was revealed in a shareholders' agreement document posted on the NZX last week and confirmed later by the company.

    It is part of Ngai Tahu Holdings' diversification of investments.

    The purchase will cost Ngai Tahu Holdings $15 million for the 7.09 per cent stake – 7,271,658 shares at about $2.06 each.

    The takeover company is to be 87.8 per cent owned by small Chinese entrepreneur Agria Group and 12.12 per cent by Chinese agribusiness giant New Hope.

    Ngai Tahu Holdings will buy a 7.09 per cent holding in this company subject to PGG Wrightson shareholders approval following the completion of the takeover offer.

    The shareholder approval is a formality because after the takeover is completed Agria and New Hope will have a majority stake to carry the vote.

    The vote is expected to be taken in about six to eight weeks and is required under the Takeovers Code.

    Agria has announced it had received Overseas Investment Office approval for its partial takeover of PGG Wrightson. It is still waiting on Chinese regulatory approvals. The takeover offer for PGG Wrightson at 60c a share has a week to run. It expires on April 23.

    Agria has secured acceptances to take its holding to 50.52 per cent, just past the partial takeover target of 50.01 per cent.

    Agria is borrowing $53m from ANZ to fund the takeover. ANZ has first priority over all asset security.

    Hamilton agricultural company Livestock Improvement Corporation is lending Agria $10 million, with second ranking asset security.

    The chairman of Ngai Tahu Holdings, Trevor Burt, said the proposition made good commercial sense and was a further opportunity for the company to diversify its portfolio of investments and grow and build global relationships.

    "Ngai Tahu Holdings believes this proposition further supports the company's emerging rural strategy which is in its early and trial stage.

    "Ngai Tahu Holdings is working on the development of an environmentally sustainable rural business model that reflects the values of the Ngai Tahu culture operating under the strictest of environmental practices and philosophies."

    Ngai Tahu Holdings had full confidence in the board and management of PGG Wrightson under the stewardship of new managing director George Gould and supported its strategy for growth.

    Ngai Tahu Holdings chief executive Greg Campbell says the stake is less than 2 per cent of Ngai Tahu's portfolio and creates a number of significant long-term opportunities and relationships, particularly in the Chinese market. Ngai Tahu already had exposure through its tourism and seafood businesses and this investment would enhance that strategy.

    "This is an extremely valuable proposition from a strategic and relationship perspective and it is great to be able to announce this joint venture, particularly given the recent tragic events in Christchurch," Mr Campbell said.

    – BusinessDay.co.nz http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industries/489870

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