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Michael Hill International has announced it is restructuring. Image courtesy: <a href="" target="_blank">Michael Hill</a>
Michael Hill International has announced it is restructuring. Image courtesy: Michael Hill

Michael Hill restructures for ASX transfer

Michael Hill International is moving ahead with plans to shift its primary stock exchange listing to Australia, which will involve the establishment of a new parent company.

As previously reported by Jeweller, Michael Hill International (MHI) confirmed its intention to list on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) in April 2016.

The wheels are now in motion after 99 per cent of shareholders voted on 23 June in favour of the decision.

The next steps will be to formalise the move via a Scheme of Arrangement that will result in a new, incorporated parent company (MHJ) established in Australia. This company will acquire all MHI shares through a one-to-one exchange.

Emma Hill, Michael Hill International chair
Emma Hill, Michael Hill International chair

According to MHI, the High Court has indicated that final orders for approval would be granted. Approvals from the ASX and New Zealand Stock Exchange (NZX) are pending.

If all goes to plan, the ASX listing will be effective from 7 July 2016.

Speaking in April, MHI chair Emma Hill explained that the company would maintain its current presence on the NZX but would have its primary listing on the ASX.

“Over time this will provide the company with direct access to a wider group of investors than we currently enjoy and we believe this will be to the benefit of all of our shareholders,” she said at the time.

“On a day-to-day basis, we will have all of our governance, executive and business operations operating in one jurisdiction and this will considerably simplify our structure.”

MHI was founded in 1979 in Whangarei, New Zealand, and relocated its headquarters to Brisbane, Australia, in 2005.

There will be further restructuring within the company as the Hill family’s new succession plan was also approved during the shareholder meeting.

Mike Parsell, Michael Hill International CEO
Mike Parsell, Michael Hill International CEO

It will mean shares in MHI owned by the Boxer Hill Trust, which represents the Hill family, will reduce from 52.89 per cent to 42.89 per cent, with 5 per cent each going to Mark and Emma Hill, the children of founder Sir Michael and wife Lady Christine Hill.

In related news, MHI has announced it will expand its Emma & Roe (E&R) business following a successful trial.

The venture, launched in 2014, has achieved a same store sales revenue increase of 35 per cent for the 11 months ended May 2016. The result seemingly indicates that consumers are responding to the offering of mix-and-match charms, bracelets, necklaces, earrings and stackable rings.

There are currently 15 stores in Queensland, Australia, and one in Auckland, New Zealand, and based on the success of the trial, the opening of 12 stores in Queensland and NSW, Australia, are planned for the 2016-2017 financial year.

“Emma & Roe will deliver strong, profitable growth from consumer segments that complement our existing Michael Hill brand,” CEO Mike Parsell said.

“The board is confident that Emma & Roe will play an important and ongoing role in the company’s growth and profitability.”

According to the company, average revenue of approximately $1 million per store is forecast for the 2016-2017 financial year and its long-term goal is to reach 300 E&R stores – a similar number to its Michael Hill business, which, as of June 2016, comprised 168 stores across Australia, 52 in New Zealand, 67 in Canada and 10 in America.

More reading
Michael Hill confirms ASX intentions
Michael Hill sales lift across all markets
Michael Hill, Pandora increase sales in 2015
Michael Hill enters new market

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