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Shuffling the deck at Hallmark

THINGS appear anything but peaceful at Hallmark Consolidated. Former chairman Alan van Noort was rolled as a director when he failed to get the numbers in a general meeting held last week behind closed doors.

Mr Van Noort resigned as chairman of the company in November last year and was replaced by John Barr. Earlier this week, Mr Van Noort’s company, Lomp Pty Ltd, withdrew a call to remove Neil Biddle, which was lodged on the same day that he was disposed.

However, a call by Lomp Pty Ltd to remove Adrian Corp stills stands, with a meeting scheduled for April 24. However, Mr Van Noort looks set to lose in his bid to dispose of Mr Corp with John Barr and fellow directors Neil Biddle and Gary Snow indicating in an explationary memorandum that they would be siding with Mr Corp.

Concurrently, there has been a flurry of share trading by the directors. Mr Van Noort has been whittling down his control, selling more than one million shares owned by his associated companies, Lomp Pty Ltd, Sterling Securities and Avanoor Pty Ltd since August 14, the time of reporting for the annual report.

Mr Corp increased his shareholding through associated companies Flea Pty Ltd and Claw Pty Ltd by almost two million shares during the same period. Mr Barr has increased his interest in the company from around 8 per cent to more than 14 per cent since he took on the chairmanship.

Born-again Whittakers comes good

VENTURE capitalist and former Portman Mining chief Brain Johnson struck a $4.6 million deal with the administrators of Kingstream Steel for the mining leases and licences covering the Tallering Peak iron deposit through Mount Gibson Iron Limited.

Mount Gibson Iron Limited, formed five years ago by Brian Johnson’s pooled development fund, Resource Equities, listed earlier this year through a $17.4 million scrip deal back-door listing involving troubled timber group Whittakers Limited.

As part of the deal, Mount Gibson also took ownership of Bunbury timber-supply company Wilsons, which for the moment is the company’s sole source of revenue.

Commissioning of hematite and magnetite deposits at Mt Gibson, Extension Hill and Iron Hill, 50 per cent owned by Mount Gibson Iron and 50 per cent owned by Resource Equities, is expected to begin later in the year.

The purchase from the Kingstream administrators meet a lukewarm response from investors and shareholders, dominated by the 38 per cent ownership by Resource Equites. Its shares remained unchanged earlier this week at below 30 cents giving the company a market capitalisation of $27.69 million.

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