2 Mar 2010

Asset sales triple profit at NZX

1:01 pm on 2 March 2010

NZX has tripled its full year profit due to asset sales. The stock exchange operator made $38.7 million in the year to December, compared with $10.2 million the previous year.

Last year, NZX sold its stake in the Bond Exchange of South Africa and its carbon registry business, with proceeds totalling than $36 million.

Revenue jumped a third to $43 million, which chief executive Mark Weldon says reflects its push into agriculture and energy, though it also contributed to a doubling in costs.

The company has declared a dividend of 6.5 cents per share.

Mr Weldon expects more listings and firms to use the NZX to raise money, a stronger earnings performance from its rural publications as the economy picks up, and to build up its presence in the grain exchange market in Australia.

It is also considering a joint venture with the Reserve Bank to create a single clearance and settlements system to serve the whole of New Zealand's market, and launch a derivatives market, including those for dairy products and energy.

Mark Weldon says returns have risen by a third every year over the last five years, and he expects that strong performance to continue.