Gentrack, eyeing listing, taps Takeovers Panel’s Coupe, accountant Shaw for board

James Docking, Gentrack Chief Executive
Gentrack Velocity
New Zealand Takeovers Panel deputy chair Andy Coupe
Graham Shaw

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Gentrack, which sells software for utilities and airports, has appointed New Zealand Takeovers Panel deputy chair Andy Coupe and accountant Graham Shaw as independent directors, swelling its board to five and signalling it is closer to going public.

Coupe had a three-decade-long career in investment banking at UBS New Zealand and Shaw's roles include being a director of Xero and chairman of Jeff Gray European, the Auckland-based company said in a statement. They bring the company's independent directors to three including Leigh Warren, while chairman John Clifford and executive director James Docking round out the board.

The company's two software products are Gentrack Velocity, a billing product for energy and water utilities, and airport management system Airport 20/20. The products had originally been developed by Talgentra, an Auckland-based company that was sold to Australian metering company Bayard and ANZ Capital in 2009.

Clifford and Docking, who has run the Gentrack business since 1995, teamed up to buy Talgentra in 2012. Fair value of the net assets acquired was $53.9 million, according to the company's 2013 annual report, including goodwill of $40 million, the bulk of which was allocated to the utilities business.

Clifford and Docking each hold 21 percent of the company, which has a total of 21 shareholdings and 19.2 million shares on issue.

Gentrack has 150 utility and airport customers in 20 countries, and employs 180 people in offices in Auckland, Melbourne and London, according to its statement. Sales in the 12 months ended Sept. 31, 2013, was $40 million, generating a profit of $6.6 million.

The company would probably raise capital in a listing to repay debt and finance its growth, and becoming a public company would also polish its credibility as a global player.

(BusinessDesk)


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