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Ryman Acquires First Australian Site

Christchurch based aged care and retirement village operator Ryman Healthcare today announced the acquisition of a site for its first village in Australia.

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“We have been investigating the Melbourne market for almost two years,” advised chairman Dr David Kerr, “and we identified an emerging need for both aged care and retirement living in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne.”

“We are therefore delighted to report that we have purchased a site in Wheelers Hill, adjacent to the eastern suburbs of Glen Waverley and Mt Waverley.”

Ryman plans to develop a medium density village, along similar lines to the villages it has successfully developed in Auckland and Wellington, and plans to offer the full continuum of care – including independent apartments, serviced apartments, a village centre and an aged care centre.

“Our focus will be on successfully establishing this first village in Melbourne, and learning how to adapt our model to the Australian market, while maintaining our expansion in New Zealand,” said Dr Kerr.

The company recently reported a record underlying profit of $72 million for the last financial year, and lifted the annual dividend 18% to 7.2 cents per share. 

The Melbourne land purchase, which follows the purchase of sites in Howick and Waikanae earlier this year, has lifted the company’s landbank to over 2500 units and beds. 

This year the company announced a lift in its build rate to 550 units and beds per annum, and in the year ahead will open new villages in Gisborne, Tauranga and Christchurch.

Statistics NZ estimates the number of New Zealanders aged 75 plus will more than double from 250,000 to 516,000 over the next twenty years.  In Australia the outlook is similar, with the number aged 75 plus set to double to 2.8 million.  Ryman is well positioned to cater for the accommodation and care needs of this rapidly growing group.

Ryman currently owns 24 villages nationwide, which each offer a combination of retirement living and aged care, and serves over 5700 residents.

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