Gina Rinehart secures Kidman cattle empire for $380 million

Gina Rinehart secures Kidman cattle empire for $380 million
Gina Rinehart secures Kidman cattle empire for $380 million

The sale of Australian agricultural land, including cattle stations, hobby and commercial farms hit $16.79 billion in the year to August.

The Federal Treasurer Scott Morrison has now approved another big sale - the Kidman cattle empire for around $380 million to the syndicate of mining magnate Gina Rinehart and a Chinese company.

The sales process too around 20 months.

"I have decided that the acquisition of Kidman as proposed would not be contrary to the national interest and will be permitted to proceed," his statement advised.

It is the third attempt by Chinese interests to buy into Australia's largest private landholder with Mrs Rinehart's Hancock Prospecting to own 67 per cent of S Kidman and Co with partner Shanghai CRED .

Their joint-venture company Australian Outback Beef (AOB) acquistion will not include the defence-sensitive Anna Creek Station or The Peake which will be sold to a local South Australian grazier family.

The 117-year-old family company, founded by Sir Sidney Kidman, has pastoral leases covering 101,000 square kilometres across Western Australia, the Northern Territory, Queensland and South Australia.

In a video released by Hancock Prospecting, Mrs Rinehart said it was an "exciting day" as she had long wanted to diversify.

"Right now all our eggs are in the iron ore basket," she said.

"Now to become the third largest producer of cattle in Australia I think it's just great.

"I see an ongoing need for meat particularly in the Asina region and most of our cattle from Australia, three quarters, we export.

"And of course the value of the land over decades is going to keep increasing and increasing."

Hancock Prospecting CEO Gary Korte said the herd size will be increased from the current 150,000 head to its full carrying capacity of 185,000.

Agricultural property sales in NSW totalled $8.2 billion over the period, an increase of 3.8 per cent according to the Landmark Harcourts' quarterly Benchmark Report with some 12,519 agricultural property sales.

One of the biggest deals included the Deltroit Station in the Gundagai district of NSW when MH Premium Farms, the Australian agricultural operation of global fund manager Sir Michael Hintze, bought the 2573 hectare holding.

In Victoria the total value of agricultural property sales came in at $3.7 billion over the year, down 13.3 per cent on the total value of sales achieved in the 12 months to August last year.

In Queensland, agricultural property sales totalled $1.7 billion over the year with lower volumes, though the value of sales was 3 per cent higher than the prior year.

Queensland has has spring sales including cattleman Peter Hughes buying Tumbar station south of Jericho in central Queensland for about $57 million.

In SA, the total value of agricultural sales was $964 million over the 12 months to August 2016, 14.5 per cent higher than the 12 months to August. 

In WA, the total value of the agricultural sales was $1.7 billion, 2.9 per cent  above the previous year.

In Tasmania, agricultural property sales totalled $526 million over the year, 9.5 per cent lower than the previous year.

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor is one of our authors. Jonathan has been writing about property since the early 1980s and is editor-at-large of Property Observer.

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Chinese Buyers Gina Rinehart

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