Ag Growth’s gone corporate

Grain handling equipment maker Ag Growth has wrapped up its conversion from an income trust to a publicly traded corporation under a new handle: “Ag Growth International Inc.”

The Winnipeg-based firm said Wednesday that trust unitholders meeting that day voted 96 per cent in favour of the conversion. The Ontario Superior Court of Justice that day also granted the final order required for the conversion.

Ag Growth Income Fund’s units will continue trading until about Monday, June 8, when the new corporation’s common shares begin trading on the TSX under the symbol “AFN.”

Effective on the closing of the conversion, Ag Growth International now directly and indirectly owns and operates the businesses of the income fund and its subsidiaries. Trustees and management of the fund are the Ag Growth International board and management, the company said.

The company’s businesses include portable and stationary grain handling, storage and conditioning equipment such as augers, belt conveyors, grain storage bins, grain handling accessories and grain aeration equipment, distributed through about 1,400 dealers in nine provinces, 48 U.S. states and overseas.

Ag Growth’s Canadian holdings include grain auger makers Westfield and Wheatheart; conveyor belt maker Batco; grain bin manufacturer Twister Pipe; and the Edwards Group, a grain dryer company.

The company in April reached a deal to assume the tax losses of a defunct Toronto-based dimaond mining company, Benachee Resources, to take on the mining firm’s corporate status. The move follows the federal government’s decision to tax income trusts starting in June 2007.

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