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ANZ is serious about agribusiness says Graham Turley, Managing Director Commercial and Agri business for ANZ group New Zealand.
He says being a strategic partner with Field Days shows the Agricultural community ANZ is serious about agricultural and using their resources to help their customers grow.
ANZ sees growth in the agricultural sector key to growing it’s own business in New Zealand
Graham says ANZ can bring help with better financial management to their customers and work with them to make more from their farms and their capital.
“Financial literacy is an issue and it is not just a rural issue, its a commercial issue,” Graham says.
“It takes a while for people to understand what value you get out of increased profitability,” and what a farm will get out of it by writing a business plan, objectives and a measuring performance and production against that he says.
Graham says ANZ’s super regional strategy has a big benefit for farmers and helps connect farmers with export markets in Asia.
Recently ANZ merged their commercial and agribusinesses together to gain a better business aspect of their over all business, which Graham says reflects the way the bank looks at the big picture.
Graham says the merge is a sign of how ANZ sees agri-business moving in the future.
ANZ’s Super Regional strategy has to look at all the evidence from farm day all the way through to the customer or vice-versa, he says.
It is important for producers to know where their products end up and ANZ is helping farmers to better understand their markets so they can produce more focused products, Graham says.
Strategies in agri-business have some common themes, and issues around productivity.
Graham says the networking aspect of field days helps with the sharing of ideas and finding solutions.
He says the New Zealand economy has spent many years trying to diversify and get away from relying on agriculture as the backbone of the economy and the global financial crisis has forced many business to pull back and focus on their core industries.
Debt will be used to grow in the future, but equity is needed to help too as the debt levels are still probably too high and will continue to come down, He says.
Graham said foreign investments will be an important part of equity driven growth in New Zealand’s future as New Zealand.
“We shouldn’t underestimate how much foreign investment is already here in our agribusiness, for example ANZ is foreign owned and so are many other banks and we’ve got billions of dollars tied up in agri-business and we want to grow that and grow that with the industry.”
He says market volatility won’t go away as there are so many variables and balances between industries need to change with the market and the likes of wool can benefit from that.
Technology and knowledge are also in demand around the world he says.
“We are seeing a lot of New Zealand companies being very successful exporting their products … and a lot more goes on than we give ourselves credit for.”
He says examples from the NZTE programme “Better By Design”, which looks at designing products for the consumer, could be of furhter help for many producers and manufacturers in New Zealand.
Graham says, the links ANZ has in Asia are significant for customers looking to grow their businesses in the region and for facilitating relationships for their customers.
He stressed the ANZ group and National Bank are serious about the agricultural sector, despite some mis-conceptions.
“I have never seen anybody shrink to success, we are about growing to success,” and he says ANZ want to show thought leadership in the industry.
There are some real worthwhile benefits to farmers using financial planning to help capture profits for farmers.
He says there are some farmers doing very well and if others can learn off them it could help close the productivity gap with Australia, and benefit the economy in other ways too.
ANZ is represented in 32 countries and has 40% of the New Zealand market at farm gate and 35% of commercial business.
ANZ Commercial and Agri business covers customers businesses with turnover of $2 million up to $250 million.