Renaissance shareholders approve school sale

MICHAEL FOREMAN
Last updated 14:51 29/01/2014

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Troubled computer retailer and training company Renaissance Corporation has received shareholder approval to sell Yoobee School of Design to Auckland-based Academic Colleges Group for $14 million.

Under the sale agreement, ACG will pay an extra $1m if the school meets its earnings target in the year to September 2014.

The sale will leave Renaissance with its chain of Yoobee stores which chairman Colin Giffney admitted in a letter to shareholders earlier this month, had had "another terrible year in 2013".

"Ideally the board would be able to sell retail, wind Renaissance up and distribute funds to shareholders," he said.

Giffney said the retail division, which sold Apple products, had struggled to compete against vendors such as The Warehouse, Noel Leeming and Dick Smith, who often sold Apple product below the price at which Renaissance could buy them.

At a special meeting of shareholders this morning, Giffney said the company continued to look for solutions but a return to profit seemed hard under the existing structure.

"Our preference would be to fix retail first - whatever that may entail," Giffney said, adding that "yet another" potential buyer was looking at acquiring the retail operations.

"That would be the best outcome ... we do not believe we can turn the retail operations to profit as a public listed company."

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