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Kerr too busy to attend Pyne Gould AGM, focuses on Perpetual sale

Pyne Gould Corp says managing director and controlling shareholder George Kerr is too busy closing the sale of wealth manager Perpetual Group to attend the company's annual meeting in Auckland this afternoon.

Mr Kerr's Australasian Equity Partners Fund No 1 owns 76% of Pyne Gould, having failed this year to take the company private. He is currently overseas closing the deal, the company says in an update to the NZX today.

"Unfortunately, I am unable to attend as we are working to a tight timeline to achieve a quality exit from Perpetual by calendar year's end," he is quoted as saying in the statement. "This is a major priority to preserve value for shareholders."

The shares last traded at 26 cents and have declined18% this year. Mr Kerr paid 37 cents a share to take control of the company, while warning that the difficult process of selling assets meant Pyne Gould was no longer a generator of dividend income.

Selling Perpetual will leave Pyne Gould with no direct operating businesses in New Zealand. Its Torchlight Investment Group owns 19.7% of investor Torchlight Fund 1, which runs until 2019, and Torchlight Fund 2, which holds the remaining bad loans carved off when Marac Finance was sold into Heartland New Zealand.

Pyne Gould's Torchlight Securities owns 27% of Equity Partners Infrastructure Company No 1, which in turn owns 17% of UK motorway services company Moto International Holdings


Comments and questions

Too busy to attend an AGM. For goodness sake, how gullible does this guy think NZ Investment markets are. This just shows how he values or doesnt value as the case maybe minority shareholders.

For a start, he arranged to hold it sheepishly in Auckland. I assume the bulk of the remaining shareholders are longer term holders, which probably means their predominantly Canterbury based... Then he fails to front at all?

This is a guy who quotes Warren Buffet. I certainly hope he doesn't compare himself to Buffett as I fail to see any comparison myself - or a comparative investment performance.

How soft from such a "hard man". Front up, George - you do when things are going well.

Doesn't the fact that as MD Kerr can't even be arsed to show up at the AGM show how much contempt he has for the shareholders?

Pathetic. Maybe someone read him the Miranda Rights and he chose to remain silent

Give Georgie a break.

It has been a bad decade for him and he has little to show for it.

But thanks, George, for buying all those lovely PGC shares at 37 cents.

Cheers and please leave NZ for good.