[30 October/Stuff Business]

PGG Wrightson’s shareholders have voted 96.9% in favour of selling the Group’s seed division to Danish company, DLF Seeds. The sale will see the company receive around $413 million, of which $292 million will be paid out to shareholders. Company deputy chairman, Trevor Burt, said that the PGW will remain a sustainable business moving into the future and a leading player in New Zealand’s rural services sector with 94 stores and 2,000 staff. He did add the company would need to cut its cloth to match the business that is left, and a review is starting to look at the right structure and operating model for the business moving forward. The remaining business is expected to have an EBITDA of about $35 million. The company result comes as PGW chairman, Alan Lai, has recently announced that he is standing down as chairman of the company. Mr Burt thanked Mr Lai for his leadership of the company since 2009, noting that it was unlikely shareholders would be sitting in a meeting today if Agria had not made their initial $200 million investment, stabilised the company and returned it to solid, sustainable growth.