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Ryman News

Thursday, 27 July 2017

Annual Meeting media release:

Ryman marches on in Melbourne

Ryman Healthcare has started work on its second Melbourne village and shareholders can expect more progress in the coming year as it ramps up its expansion plans in Victoria.

Dr David Kerr, Chairman of Ryman Healthcare, told shareholders at the company’s annual meeting in Charles Upham Retirement Village in Rangiora today that planning consents for new villages in Burwood East and Coburg had been lodged and work was under way at Brandon Park as the Melbourne expansion gathered pace.

Ryman’s design team was also busy developing plans for new villages at Mt Eliza on the Mornington Peninsula, and Geelong.

“Earthworks are under way at Brandon Park, and we had very positive public meetings there last week to launch the village - with pre-sales already much stronger than anticipated,’’ Ryman Chief Executive Gordon MacLeod said.

“We’ve found great acceptance of our terms in Australia since we opened at Wheelers Hill three years ago. Our unique Ryman-style villages, with a full range of care options, and our fair and simple to understand terms are key points of difference in Australia. Our aim is for residents to be delighted with the experience of living in a Ryman village.’’

“We’re also about to get started on new villages at Devonport and Lynfield in Auckland so we have a busy year ahead.’’

Dr Kerr told shareholders that demand at existing villages had been strong in the first quarter, occupancy at established care centres was running at 97% and trading was in line with expectations.

Development earnings would be heavily weighted towards the back end of the second half, in line with the timing of the construction programme at Ryman’s developing villages. Growth in the first half of the year would be limited as a result.

Ryman’s bank facility had been extended by $125 million to $1.125 billion, providing increased working capital to fund the expansion and landbank in Melbourne, along with the greater up-front investment required for apartment style villages.

Dr Kerr said Ryman’s care team was busy with the company-wide rollout of its new myRyman Care application. The app – which eliminates paperwork for nursing and care staff – would be operational in all villages by the end of 2018.

Ryman’s Chairman told shareholders that Immigration New Zealand’s proposed policy changes for skilled migrant workers had created uncertainty for many employees and Ryman had written to Ministers and met with them to express its concerns.

“We have a lot of immigrant nurses and caregivers who have been in New Zealand for several years, serving our residents well, and they’ve told us they are worried about the changes. We have asked the Government to grandparent their skills and to provide a clearer pathway to residency. We want their hard work and commitment to our residents recognised. They deserve it.’’

Dr Kerr said the aged care industry was expecting a sharp increase in demand as the population rapidly ages.

“We will do our level best to recruit staff locally as we grow, and the increased funding the Government has provided to increase pay rates in the sector will definitely help with local recruitment. That said, there is a skills gap which we need to fill each year and skilled migrants are likely to continue to be a critical part of our workforce.’’

Dr Kerr said demand in Auckland remained strong but resources remained tight because of the high level of construction activity.

“We have been building in Auckland for a long time so we have good momentum, which means we can move teams from site to site. We’re expecting our first residents at our new Greenlane village in the second half, new stages at Bert Sutcliffe in Birkenhead are progressing and we’re about to get under way at our two recently consented Auckland sites at Lynfield and Devonport.’’

Last month Ryman revealed it would be expanding in West Auckland after securing a 4.5-hectare site on Lincoln Rd.

Ryman has five villages under construction and another 11 in the pipeline as it gears up for a step-change in the growth of the population aged over 75 in New Zealand and Australia.

“Demand for the essential services we provide in care and support is about to escalate rapidly, and we are investing to meet that real need in the communities we serve.''

In May Ryman reported a 13% lift in underlying profit to $178 million in the year to March 31, 2017. Ryman’s medium term target is to growing underlying profit by 15%.

Ryman developments:

New villages under construction:

  • Greenlane, Auckland: Construction continuing.
  • Brandon Park, Melbourne: Earthworks under way.
  • Rangiora, North Canterbury: Village complete, expansion planned.
  • Pukekohe: Construction continuing.
  • Petone, Lower Hutt: Construction continuing.

New villages consented:

  • Devonport, Auckland: Site works due to begin.
  • Lynfield, Auckland: Site works due to begin.

New villages in design/consenting phase:

  • Burwood East, Melbourne.
  • Coburg, Melbourne.
  • River Rd, Hamilton.
  • Mt Eliza, Victoria.
  • Highton, Geelong.
  • Hobsonville, Auckland.
  • Newtown, Wellington.
  • Lincoln Rd, Auckland.
  • Site A, New Zealand.

About Ryman Healthcare:
Ryman was founded in 1984 and has become one of New Zealand’s largest listed companies. The company owns 31 villages which are home to more than 10,000 residents in New Zealand and Australia. Each village offers a combination of retirement living and aged care.

Media advisory:
For further information, photos, interviews or comment please contact Corporate Affairs Manager David King on 03 366 4069 or 021 499 602.


Friday, 16 June 2017

MEDIA RELEASE: June 16, 2017

New retirement village planned in West Auckland

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Ryman Healthcare Group Development Manager Andrew Mitchell and Laidlaw College Foundation Chairman Graham Burt at the Laidlaw College site.

Ryman Healthcare is planning to build a new retirement village in fast-growing West Auckland.

New Zealand’s largest retirement village operator has secured a 4.5-hectare site on Lincoln Rd, close to the Lincoln Rd shopping precinct.

The land is currently part of Laidlaw College’s campus, but is surplus to the college’s needs.

“Ryman is an ideal organisation to become our new neighbour,’’ Graham Burt, chairman of The Laidlaw College Foundation said.

“We feel very much part of the Henderson area having been here for over 50 years and we’re keen to ensure a good fit for both ourselves and the community as a whole.’’

Ryman Healthcare Group Development Manager Andrew Mitchell said the company intended to redevelop the site as a resort-style retirement village which will be home to more than 400 residents.

As well as independent retirement housing, the new village would offer a full range of aged care services including serviced apartments, and resthome, hospital and dementia care. Ryman will be consulting closely with the local community as it developed its plans.

“We think there’s a real shortage of retirement living options housing in the area – and demand will only increase as the retired population grows,’’ Andrew Mitchell said.

There are more than 107,000 people in the immediate area, including more than 10,000 retirees.

“The village will mean that West Auckland people will no longer have to look elsewhere for somewhere to live in their retirement – they can stay in the place they love close to their families and friends,’’ he said.

The new development will free up a number of local homes for resale as people move into the village.

Amenities will include a café, gym, bowling green, hairdressing salon, reflection room, movie theatre, bar and an indoor swimming pool.

As well as providing construction work the village will create long-term jobs for the area. There will be roles for registered nurses, caregivers, housekeepers, activities co-ordinators and gardeners.

Ryman Group Sales and Community Relations Manager Debbie McClure said the village would be named in honour of a West Auckland local and suggestions were welcome.
“The best suggestions come from the people who know the area and its history well. We’d love to hear any suggestions.’’

Ryman is expanding to keep up with demand as the population ages. Statistics New Zealand estimates the number of New Zealanders aged 75 plus will almost triple to almost 700,000 over the next 30 years.

Once complete, the village will be Ryman’s 11th in greater Auckland. Ryman is developing other villages at Hobsonville, Greenlane, Lynfield and Devonport and has existing villages in St Heliers, Remuera, Howick, Pukekohe, Birkenhead and Orewa.

Note for investors/analysts: The site was listed in Ryman Healthcare’s annual results presentation land bank section as ‘Site B’.

About Ryman Healthcare: Ryman was founded in 1984 and has become one of New Zealand’s largest listed companies. The company owns 31 villages and serves over 10,000 residents in New Zealand and Australia. Each village offers a combination of retirement living and aged care.

Media advisory: For further information, photos, interviews or comment please contact Corporate Affairs Manager David King on 021 499 602.


Thursday, 01 June 2017

MEDIA RELEASE: June 1, 2017

Ryman residents and staff raise $330,000 for heart research

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Residents and staff at Ryman Healthcare’s retirement villages have raised a record $330,000 to fund a ground-breaking heart health research project.

Over the past 12 months the Ryman family has been busy with knitting, barbecues, art shows, raffles and head shaves to raise as much as possible for the Heart Foundation.

Residents and staff in New Zealand raised $165,000 which Ryman Healthcare matches, taking the total to $330,000. Ryman’s Melbourne village has raised another $7,400, which will go to the Heart Foundation in Australia.

The $330,000 raised in New Zealand will fund the Heart Foundation Clinical Fellowship, a three-year study into cardio vascular disease run by the Christchurch Heart Institute, which is part of the University of Otago.

Ryman Managing Director Simon Challies said heart health had been a popular cause.

“We all know what a great job the Heart Foundation does and it has been a popular charity with residents. We’ve had a record year for fundraising with residents and staff participating in a whole lot of fundraisers. They’re big-hearted people – if you’ll excuse the pun – and we are delighted to match their fund-raising dollar-for-dollar. The $330,000 raised is a new record for Ryman.’’

The money is being used to fund a clinical research study, looking into the scope and make-up of cardiovascular disease in residents of Ryman Healthcare facilities.

Associate Professor, Chris Pemberton, of the Christchurch Heart Institute, based at the University of Otago, Christchurch, is behind the idea to run the study which will provide a clearer picture about the cardio-vascular disease (CVD) risk in New Zealand’s retirement healthcare sector.

“It is exciting to be working with the Heart Foundation, who have informed residents of Ryman Healthcare facilities about the study, laying the foundation for the project to proceed. Ryman residents who volunteer to take part in the study will benefit from increased awareness of their overall health and possible cardiovascular risk. The information we gather at the Christchurch villages and others around the country will be used to raise the standard of cardiovascular care in New Zealand,” he said.

The study will begin at Ryman retirement villages in Christchurch, and gradually roll-out across the country, which is something Pemberton is looking forward to.

“We want to get going in 2017, firstly putting systems in place, with a view to starting the first of the studies later this year.”

The Christchurch Heart Institute is renowned globally for its contribution to CVD research. The institute’s discoveries of blood hormones associated with heart disease have led to specific blood tests for heart issues, which are now being used routinely in clinics all around the world.

“This project is aimed at taking what we know in a hospital setting and applying that knowledge in the primary health sector. Leading to better management of cardiovascular disease, before hospital admission becomes necessary.”

Mr Challies said the clinical fellowship was an innovative approach to funding research.

Heart Foundation Medical Director Gerry Devlin said the charity was thrilled to receive Ryman Healthcare’s support.

“This is a really important study because there’s currently a concerning lack of information about the CVD burden in New Zealand’s elderly population.

“This is especially true for the setting of the aged care/retirement facility sector, which is under constant pressure given our ageing population.”

Ryman Chief Executive Designate Gordon MacLeod announced that Ryman Healthcare’s charity partner for the coming year is Alzheimer’s New Zealand.

There were more than 62,000 New Zealanders with dementia in 2016, and this is forecast to grow to 170,212 people by 2050.

Ryman villages include 710 dementia beds, and demand for care is growing all the time.

“We’re delighted to support Alzheimer’s New Zealand because many of us have seen first-hand what a great job the charity does. Alzheimer’s and dementia take a huge toll on our residents and their families, and we know it will be a popular cause with residents.’’

Ngaire Dixon, chair of Alzheimer’s New Zealand, said the charity was delighted to be Ryman’s charity partner for the coming year.

“Dementia is one of New Zealand’s growing and most significant healthcare challenges, and it’s important for more work to be done to improve the lives of those who are affected by dementia. These funds will go directly to supporting services provided by local Alzheimers organisations around New Zealand, and into research projects that are vital to further understand the impacts of dementia in New Zealand. We’re proud to have a partnership with Ryman Healthcare, and feel enthusiastic for what we can achieve together,” Ngaire Dixon said.

About Ryman Healthcare: Ryman was founded in 1984 and has become one of New Zealand’s largest listed companies. The company owns 31 villages and serves over 10,000 residents in New Zealand and Australia. Each village offers a combination of retirement living and aged care.

Media advisory: For further information, photos, interviews or comment please contact Corporate Affairs Manager David King on 03 366 4069 or 021 499 602.


Friday, 19 May 2017

MEDIA RELEASE: May 19, 2017

Ryman Managing Director stands down for health reasons

Simon Challies

Ryman Healthcare Managing Director Simon Challies announced at today’s annual results briefing that he would be standing down on June 30 for health reasons.

Simon joined the company as CFO in 1999, and took over as Chief Executive in 2006 from Ryman co-founder Kevin Hickman.

During his tenure Ryman Healthcare’s portfolio of villages has grown from 12 to 31. He led the company through the Global Financial Crisis, the Christchurch earthquakes and oversaw its expansion into Melbourne.

Gordon MacLeod, Ryman’s Deputy Chief Executive and CFO, will take over as Chief Executive on June 30. Gordon joined Ryman as CFO 10 years ago, and was promoted to Deputy Chief Executive in 2014.

Simon will continue as an advisor to the board until December 2018.

Simon was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease in 2011 but has continued in the role since then with the full support of the board.

“I first noticed the symptoms about a decade ago, but it was still a huge shock to get my diagnosis in 2011,’’ Simon said. “I’ve been determined not to let it beat me.’’

“This is a demanding job, and I’ve realised this year that my health was deteriorating and it was taking too great a toll on me personally, and on my family.’’

“I’m a great optimist and I think having Parkinson’s has made me a better MD of a healthcare company than I otherwise might have been. It has given certainly me a degree of empathy and insight into the challenges our residents face, and it has taught me to make every day count. I’m sad to be leaving Ryman, but I’m looking forward to spending more time with my family and being able to contribute to the community in other ways.’’

“I’ve had an incredible 18 years at Ryman and I am really proud of what the team has achieved together. The time is right to hand over to Gordy who I know has the same passion as I have for looking after our staff and residents. We have a very strong and loyal management team and the company is in great shape for the huge growth we see ahead.’’

He thanked the board and his colleagues for their support.

“I’d also like to thank all our residents, families, shareholders, staff, and all our suppliers and contractors for your support and trust over the years. I know I’m leaving the company in safe hands.’’

Ryman Chairman Dr David Kerr thanked Simon for his leadership and the enormous contribution he had made to the success of Ryman.

“It’s a sentinel moment for everyone at Ryman. Simon has been a wonderful colleague. He’s professional, hard-working, creative, passionate and highly energised.’’

“He has been a Managing Director who has never hesitated to walk the floor in the villages, and is widely known as ‘Simon from Ryman’. This title conveys the fact that he is deeply interested in what this company does, the people it cares for, and the people it employs. Not only is he interested, but he is approachable in a way that is unusual in such a large company.’’

He said Simon had hit every stretch target the board had set for him, except for taking any extended leave. Ryman’s growth had been extraordinary under his leadership, which had been recognised by his success in a number of awards, including being named Deloitte Top 200 Executive of the Year in 2014.

“These moments or transitions are never easy, but this has been made much easier by the attention to succession planning that has been given by Simon.’’

He said the board was delighted that Gordon MacLeod was stepping into the role.

“Gordy has shown a deep understanding and appreciation of the business and what we do as a company. He has that great balance of both the right cultural fit for the role and the right skill set to lead this growing company and I know the Board look forward to working with him in the future.’’

Gordon MacLeod said David Bennett, who joined Ryman four years ago as Financial Controller, would be his successor as CFO.

David is a Chartered Accountant who previously worked at a big four accounting firm and trained as an auditor.

“Since he joined Ryman in 2013 David’s made a great impression. His family has had a long involvement in the industry and so he has a great understanding of aged care. He’s enormously well respected by his colleagues and is a great asset to Ryman,’’ Gordon said.

About Ryman Healthcare- Ryman was founded in 1984 and has become one of New Zealand’s largest listed companies. The company owns 31 villages and serves 10,000 residents in New Zealand and Australia. Each village offers a combination of retirement living and aged care.

Media advisory- For further information, photos, interviews or comment please contact Ryman Healthcare Corporate Affairs Manager David King on 021 499 602 (0064 21 499 602).


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