Victoria's Banongill Station sold

Victoria's Banongill Station sold
Victoria's Banongill Station sold

A 17,000 acre mixed farming station holding, one of the largest in Victoria’s Western District, has been sold for an undisclosed amount with the buyer emerging as Laguna Bay Agricultural Fund 1.

Reports suggest the sale was for around $20 million. Laguna Bay is a specialist small Australian agricultural assets fund manager which invests on behalf of US pension fund giant, the Washington State Investment Board and other investors.

The property, Banongill Station, is 8km from Skipton and 45 minutes drive from Ballarat includes 30,000 sheep, 2,400 Angus cattle, a full complement of station plant and equipment, and 3,700 acres (1,500ha) of winter cereal cropping land.  

The off market sale was managed through Colliers International’s national director of Rural & Agribusiness, Shane McIntyre on behalf of private owners Stewart and Sue Gull.

McIntyre said Laguna Bay secured Banongill Station as they recognised it to be a ‘best in class’ rural property,” he said.

Vendor Stewart Gull said when he bought Banongill, the wool market was very depressed, so we thought it was important to have diversity and in particular, a stronger focus on cropping.

 “In our first year here, the only revenue was the wool cheque, we have created a balance of wool, fat lambs, beef and cereals. We have continually tweaked each of the areas in search of improvements, including the genetics of our sheep and cattle," he said.

The Banongill Station homestead was established in 1853, when it was separated from Borriyalook station, owned by pastoralist and philanthropist Francis Ormond, the founder of the University of Melbourne's Ormond College.

The original 1853 bluestone cottage forms part of the kitchen in the more recent 1905-built homestead.

It is surrounded by 5 hectares of landscaped show gardens designed by William Guilfoyle, the designer of the Royal Botanic Gardens.

There were rumours in 2012 that the RIFA group were negotiating to buy Banongill Station, but these were denied by the former VFL footballer turned Ballarat property developer Stewart Gull.

Victoria Rural Sale

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