15 Aug 2013

DNZ concentrates on Auckland; capital on hold

8:49 am on 15 August 2013

DNZ Property Fund has put redevelopment plans for a shopping centre in Johnsonville, Wellington, on hold as it focusses on Auckland properties, where the economy is stronger.

Shareholders at DNZ's annual meeting in Auckland on Tuesday were told plans to develop the Johnsonville Shopping Centre were on hold for at least 18 months, due to the capital's weak economy.

The company was also selling properties in the South Island and Tauranga.

DNZ chairman Tim Storey said the timing was not right to invest in redeveloping the 60-store Johnsonville centre.

However, development of newly acquired land at Westgate Town Centre in Auckland was expected to be completed by the end of next year.

DNZ was looking for other opportunities in Auckland that met its strategy for building a diverse property portfolio.

"The company's focus is on looking at its shareholder value and shareholder wealth, and that means buying assets in the right locations that will give rise to that," Mr Storey said.

"For the moment we see opportunities in the Auckland region, for example, because of population growth and the like, and that we see as probably the better place to invest."

DNZ was confident of matching this year's dividend payout of 9 cents per share.