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Harvey Norman Moves To Flog Assets

Harvey Norman has moved to offload a loss making dairy farm in Victoria, an acquisition that has angered investors in the consumer electronics, appliances and home furniture market retailer.

Driven primarily by Chairman Gerry Harvey the disastrous none retail related acquisition has cost shareholder millions with Elders now appointed to sell the entire Coomboona dairies operation in Victoria.

The dairy business made a $793,000 loss in its first year of operation and was placed into receivership and administration in March this year.

Harvey Norman owns the $73.15 million debt in the dairy operation after also taking on Coomboona’s debt to NAB of $36.06 million in May.

According to the Financial Review the farm’s administrators, Ferrier Hodgson’s Stewart McCallum and Ryan Eagle, have now appointed Elders’ Nick Myer and Anthony Stevens to sell the property.

Mr Stevens said, “astute investors will immediately recognise key features differentiating

from any other available assets in the current market”.

Currently milking in the vicinity of 2500 Holstein cows, the dairy boasts annual milk production in excess of 30 million litres. The dairy also has a portfolio of 3461-megalitre water entitlements in addition to 650-megalitre dam storage and frontage to the Goulburn River.

A statement by the Elders agents said: “Significant capital investments have been made, resulting in the dairy boasting state of the art technology combined with modern, purpose-built infrastructure. Given recent levels of investment, the dairy is ideally positioned to capitalise on further expansion and feed lotting opportunities.”

“It is very rare for an asset of this scale and quality to be offered for sale,” Mr Myer said. “The existing owners have implemented a vision which positions an incoming purchaser to fully realise the potential of this unique asset.”

Elders’ expression of interest campaign on the assets closes on August 16.