Top end stations could fetch $150m plus

Top end stations could fetch $150m plus

North Star Pastoral has offered its premium Northern Territory stations, Maryfield and Limbunya, for sale, measuring 670,000 hectares. Photo: Nutrien Harcourts.

North Star Pastoral has offered its premium Northern Territory stations, Maryfield and Limbunya, for sale, measuring 670,000 hectares. Photo: Nutrien Harcourts.


The offerings span 670,000 hectares, with 60,000 head of cattle


TWO Northern Territory pastoral offerings are expected to draw the attention of national and international investors and corporate farmers.

CBRE Agribusiness regional director Danny Thomas and Nutrien Harcourts sales specialist Olivia Thompson anticipate the stations will fetch in excess of $150 million.

North Star Pastoral's Maryfield and Limbunya stations are regarded as highly productive cattle breeding, backgrounding and finishing facilities.

Together, the offerings span 670,000 hectares of grazing land, with 60,000 head of cattle run.

They provide the amalgamation of highly developed Brahman genetics with the rapid weight and margin growth provided through downstream backgrounding and finishing.

North Star Pastoral has been producing export beef for Asian markets for more than 15 years.

Owned by Colin Ross, the company began with the acquisition of Venture Downs in Queensland in 2004 and nowadays its holdings covers more than 800,000ha across Queensland and the NT.

Mr Thomas said the presentation of Maryfield and Limbunya exceeded anything he had seen in the NT before.

"Unique is an overused word in real estate, but it is most apt in relation to this offering," Mr Thomas said.

"There are many high quality stations in the Northern Territory, but none that I have observed have had this level of capital expenditure, executed with fastidious attention-to-detail, operating a meticulous and well thought-out production system which seeks to maximise returns at all levels.

"Maryfield and Limbunya are testament to Colin Ross's vision and drive to develop a best-in-class beef business that can operate year-round."

North Star Pastoral has invested heavily in both the properties and the cattle.

Both properties have had significant investment in infrastructure over the past decade, including solar-powered, low-maintenance bores, hundreds of kilometres of new fences and aerial seeding of pastures which has created a low-cost, highly productive and turn-key beef production operation capable of operating and growing for the next 100 years.

With core genetic improvements of the breeding herd at Limbunya, the team introduced high-quality Brahman stud bulls to support the meticulous management of herd age profiles, weaning practices and their highly effective rumen development program, which accelerates the development and stabilisation of weaner rumen prior to their entering the backgrounding process at Maryfield.

This program concurrently allows early weaning and increased breeder cycling to maximise production efficiency.

Pasture development is another key feature of the stations, with the company's spending regarded as one of the largest investments in pasture improvement ever done by a private landholder in the NT.

Establishment of hardy, drought tolerant legumes and grasses has enabled additional carrying capacity and consistency over the dry season, improved calving rates through breeder condition and increased average animal weights.

Given the rich soil conditions and flat terrain at Maryfield, North Star Pastoral has begun work on the first of its six, planned centre-pivots which will supply fodder directly into the nearby finishing facility, adding to the business's vertical integration and reducing production costs even further.

The 10,000 head capacity finishing facility has been designed to minimise animal stress, reduce labour requirements and increase safety for both humans and animals alike.

Large storage silos and sheds provide ample capacity, flexibility and accuracy to supply corn, soybean, legume, hay, molasses and other ingredients into the purpose-built feed mixes according to expert-designed rations, therefore driving ideal animal nutrition and optimised weight gain.

Both properties have a full complement of modern and comfortable manager and employee accommodation and are well serviced with workshops, storage sheds, machinery sheds, a mobile fleet and equipment to remain self-sufficient in mustering, droving, drafting, processing and feeding.

"The offering of the Maryfield and Limbunya aggregation provides the astute investor with a rare opportunity to acquire a large scale, turnkey cattle breeding, backgrounding and finishing business which captures increased profitability by marketing into premium markets all year round," Ms Thompson said.

The stations are being offered via expressions of interest, closing Thursday, January 14, 2021.

The story Top end stations could fetch $150m plus first appeared on Farm Weekly.


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