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Path clear for olives

WA’S olive growing industry will have come of age when the management companies behind the plantations float on the stock exchange, says Australian Olives director Tim Myers.

Mr Myers said WA’s olive industry was currently in the set-up stage.

He said his own organisation, which operates on a 7,000 acre plantation west of Queensland’s Gold Coast, had gone through similar stages.

The company has been selling investors a share of the land which Australian Olives then manages for them.

All olives produced by the company are presold to Inglewood Olive Processors which produces the Viva Brand.

Mr Myers said, because investors were helping to develop the farm land, they received a 98 per cent tax deduction – most of which could be claimed in the first year.

The company is currently working with its third prospectus. It received Australian Tax Office product rulings on its first two prospectuses and considers the ruling on the third to be imminent.

Mr Myers said the olive plantation was the largest in Australia.

“We have the capacity to plant another 240,000 trees. We have 86,000 trees planted so far,” he said.

Currently, Australian Olives is in the process of floating its management company.

Mr Myers said 20 per cent of the company – worth about $17 million – would be listed.

“We want to emulate what happened with Great Southern Plantations and Timbercorp,” he said.

Mr Myers said the company would buy more land near its current property with the proceeds from the float.

He said it would be investing in its own processing plant and spending some money on its finance company.

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