A rural property agent is adamant Chinese investors will buy the S. Kidman and Co cattle empire.
Last week, the Chinese-owned Dakang Australia withdrew its $370 million takeover offer after the Treasurer Scott Morrison said he felt the proposed investment was not in the public interest.
Ruralco national marketing manger, Andrew Adcock described the Treasurer’s intervention as a ‘political stunt’.
He said he expected a Chinese-consortium would buy the Kidman portfolio after the election.
“The Chinese will ultimately be the buyers, I would suggest,” Mr Adcock said.
“I think it has been a political stunt that it hasn’t gone ahead at this stage.
“I think they [the Government] has taken some competition out of the marketplace because of the election.”
“The Chinese have had the most money,” he said.
“If the people who made the decision in the first place had a property of their own to sell, I’m sure that they would be looking to sell it to the person or the entity with the most money.
“In this case the Chinese have the most money.”
‘Good move’ QIC buying 80 per cent share in NAPCo
Mr Adcock said the Queensland Investment Corporation’s decision to purchase an 80 per cent share of North Australian Pastoral Company (NAPCo) showed confidence in northern Australia’s beef industry.
“They have bought a good, major operation with good quality livestock and good assets so I think it is a major plus for the northern beef industry,” he said.
“The beef industry is an attractive place to have money, there is a good story around the Australian beef industry, the NAPCo asset are very good and if they wanted to go further into beef it is a wonderful platform that they have tacked onto already.
“I think it is always a good move when we see locals invest in local businesses.
“If the QIC have taken a long term view to the industry it will be a great thing for Queensland.”
NAPCo portfolio better country than S. Kidman and Co.
Mr Adcock said QIC has purchased better quality land than what is included in the S. Kidman property portfolio, which has been reflected in the price, buying an 80 per cent for upwards of $400 million.
“I think on the current market that is where it is placed,” he said.
“I think if you looked at the portfolio across the board, NAPCo acre for acre would have better country, so there would be a premium for some of that country.
“Also, It would be arguable but NAPCo’s composite cattle herd would have a premium price as well.
“Whereas Kidman operate a lot of arid zone properties so the Kidman operation is probably lesser quality country compared to the NAPCo operation.”