11 Feb 2011

Asset sales planned by GPG

1:00 pm on 11 February 2011

Guinness Peat Group has decided to sell assets and return the proceeds to shareholders.

The investment concern founded by Sir Ron Brierley has been in turmoil in recent times and has now decided the best option is to sell everything over time, except threadmaker Coats.

GPG's portfolio was worth $1.3 billion at the end of September.

Its New Zealand investments include shareholdings in fruit and vegetable wholesaler Turners and Growers and fund manager and insurer Tower.

The company, which also has investments in the UK and Australia, says it has been disappointed with its financial performance in recent years.

It says it has a very complex portfolio and has a number of liabilities hanging over it.

GPG plans to return more than $158 million to shareholders this year.