The New Zealand Wine Company Limited saw its audited net surplus for the year ended June 2002 increase by 43.2% to NZ$1.004m on turnover of NZ$6.77m. Turnover was $1.4m ahead of the previous year's performance.

The chairman, Mark Peters, said: "This is a new record result for the company, formerly Grove Mill Wine Company Limited, and puts into better focus the flattening effect of the poor 2000 Marlborough harvest on last year's figures.

"The latest 1227 tonne harvest is over 48% ahead of that for 2001 which will in turn underpin our performance for 2003".

To recognise the record profit result for the Company's fifteenth year Peters said: "The Board is recommending an increased fully imputed final dividend of 4 cents per share followed by a one-for-ten fully imputed bonus issue both with record date of 13th September." The dividend will be paid on 27th September, the date of the Company's Annual Meeting.

"In addition, there will be a one-for-eight renounceable rights issue at $2 per share at a significant discount for shareholders on the present share price on the NZSE Secondary Market of about $3 per share". Peters also advised that the record date for the issue is proposed to be on 20th September and the rights issue to close on Friday 25th October, 2002. The issue will contribute towards financing the doubling of the existing Grove Mill winery capacity, providing for increased working capital requirements and for further development of the Company's new Marlborough vineyards.