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Northland Port Corp [NZX: NTH], which owns half of the Whangarei port operating company, plans to buy the neighbouring marina and commercial complex for $6.95 million, which it intends to develop in stages.
The Ruakaka-based company reached a conditional agreement to buy the 230-berth Marsden Cove marina and 1.7 hectares of land and infrastructure from Hopper Developments, effective from July, it said in a statement. It anticipates the acquisition, which is next to its existing land holdings, will be funded by a mix of equity and bank debt.
"By promoting the growth of new marine service businesses at the marina we plan to stimulate new demand on our land from a range of potential downstream service and retail providers," chief executive Graham Wallace said. "The opportunity exists to make Whangarei Harbour in general and Marsden Cove Marina, in particular, the destination of choice for long-distance yachties arriving in and departing from New Zealand."
In February, Northland Port lifted first-half profit 3.7 percent to $3.8 million on growing cargo volumes at the port, which it expects to exceed 3.2 million tonnes in the full year.
Over the past 18 months the port company has increased storage capacity within the port terminal to more efficiently accommodate logs destined for export, and more development needed to accommodate anticipated future growth in cargo volumes. Initial designs are also being considered for construction of a fourth berth.
The shares, of which Northland Regional Council owns about 54 percent, last traded at $3.03, and have gained 7.8 percent this year.