Ryman Healthcare, the country's biggest retirement village operator, has bought a 4ha site in Auckland's Hobsonville for a $200 million development, marking its 10th village in New Zealand's largest city.
The new village would house more than 400 residents, including a rest home, and providing dementia and hospital-level care, adding to Ryman's Auckland portfolio of four existing villages, three under construction and two in the consenting phase, it said ahead of the company's annual meeting in Whangarei.
"We've invested in the Auckland region because there is an undersupply of housing for older people," said chairman David Kerr. "It is a fast-growing market and we're seeing strong demand. We have a lot of confidence in the market."
In May, Ryman marked yet another record profit as it benefited from an expansion across the Tasman and increased re-sales of occupation rights.
Ryman houses 10,000 residents at 30 villages and wants to accommodate a further 17,500 over the next five years. It has 13 more villages in the pipeline, of which four are expected to open this year.
It's also looking for another two sites in Melbourne with a view to having five villages up and running in Australia's second-biggest city by 2020.
The company said first-quarter trading was in line with expectations without providing more details, and that the development programme was weighted to the second half of the financial year.
We've invested in the Auckland region because there is an undersupply of housing for older people.
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Ryman shareholders will vote on approving a 9 per cent pay rise for the board today to reflect the expanding operations across the Tasman and match market-wide increases in directors' fees.
Other resolutions Ryman shareholders will vote on include re-electing Kerr, co-founder Kevin Hickman, and Australian-based George Savvides to the board.
The shares slipped 0.4 per cent during trading to $9.70, having gained 15 per cent this year.