01/03/2005 - 21:00

Young’s $32.5m haul

01/03/2005 - 21:00

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Great Southern Plantations Limited managing director John Young has reaped $32.5 million from the sale of seven million shares in the managed investment scheme player.

Young’s $32.5m haul

Great Southern Plantations Limited managing director John Young has reaped $32.5 million from the sale of seven million shares in the managed investment scheme player.

The on-market sale marks the first divestment of Great Southern shares that Mr Young has made.

Mr Young has held the shares since the company he founded was floated in 1999. His holding in the plantation company has grown through various dividend reinvestment programs it has run.

Great Southern spokesman David Ikin stressed Mr Young’s share sale was being made for private portfolio diversification reasons.

News of the sale came just before the company made its first ever shipment of wood from one its plantations. The shipment left Albany port last week bound for Japan.

Mr Ikin said Mr Young remained the largest shareholder at Great Southern with a holding of more than 47 million shares worth about $220 million.

“He is by no means starting another business,” he said. “Mr Young recently signed a three-year contract to remain as managing director.”

Mr Ikin said Great Southern was also embarking on further portfolio diversification itself.

The company has already launched a grape growing project supplying the fruit to a winery and has announced plans to go into olive growing. Those olives are to be sold to the Kailis Group.

Great Southern recently made two acquisitions, buying Sylva-tech, which holds considerable land assets, and the cattle assets of Environinvest.

Mr Ikin said the Environinvest purchase would allow the company to move into a cattle project.

He said Great Southern had also started on the first-ever harvest of its timber plantations.

“Cheques will be flowing to investors over the next few months,” Mr Ikin said.

 

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