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Wrightson finally gets $25m Crafar Farms loan repaid

PGG Wrightson, New Zealand's largest rural services company, has finally received repayment of loans over the Crafar Farms of about $25 million following the sale of the properties to China's Shanghai Pengxin Group.

The repayment is slightly above expectations, Wrightson says. Crafar Farms was placed into receivership in 2009 to a syndicate of lenders, including PGG Wrightson.

The sale process became bogged in intrigue as the first buyers ended up facing fraud charges in Hong Kong and the successful bidder had to await a politicised decision from the Overseas Investment Office.

"Following a protracted sale process the receivers have now concluded the sale of the Crafar Farms assets and have distributed proceeds to the syndicate of lenders," Wrightson says.

The Crafar Farms loans made up the bulk of the $29 million of outstanding loans Wrightson retained in its PGW Rural Capital unit after the sale of PGG Wrightson Finance to Heartland Building Society last year.

Shares of Wrightson last traded at 36 cents and have fallen 5.3% this year.

(BusinessDesk)