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DNZ boss Duffy cashes in at share price peak with $1.65m sale

DNZ Property Fund chief executive Paul Duffy sold 9.9 percent of his stake in the property investor worth $1.65 million, cashing in as the share price tests record highs since listing two years ago.

Mr Duffy sold 964,150 shares at an average price of about $1.625 last week, netting him $1.57 million, having sold 50,000 shares for $79,250, or $1.585 a share, in November, according to disclosure statements lodged with the NZX.

DNZ shares have traded as high as $1.65 intraday, though the $1.625 price Mr Duffy sold at is its highest closing price. The stock has climbed 68 percent since switching its listing to the NZX from the Unlisted platform in August 2010.

The shares rose 0.3 percent to $1.625 today, a 7 percent premium to DNZ's net tangible asset value of $1.518. They are rated an average "hold" based on five analyst recommendations compiled by Reuters, with a median target price of $1.67.

The sale leaves Mr Duffy's interests with 9.2 million shares in DNZ, or 3.7 percent of the property investor, based on shareholder notices filed to the Companies Office. That is worth almost $15 million at the current price.

The property investor had to abort its first attempt to list on the stock exchange after activist shareholders led by NZ Funds blocked the proposed buyout of the management contract with Mr Duffy and Alastair Hassell.

Shareholders eventually agreed to a deal that gave Messrs Duffy and Hassell $35 million in cash and shares.

Mr Duffy took just eight months to get the DNZ share price above three targets that granted him 2.7 million options for bonus shares, which have since been exercised.

In the 2012 financial year, he drew total remuneration of $829,285, made up of his $650,000 salary, $46,035 in KiwiSaver and benefits and $133,250 from his accrued bonus.

(BusinessDesk)