Kidman cattle sell-off

The West Australian

Australia's largest private landholders have put their cattle business up for sale amid strong overseas demand for local agriculture.

The Adelaide-based S Kidman & Co is one of the country's largest beef producers, with 200,000 cattle and pastoral leases covering 110,000sqkm in central Australia.

It is controlled by the Kidman family, who were ranked 37 on the 2014 BRW rich families list, worth $364 million.

The Kidmans are the descendants of company founder and pastoralist Sir Sidney Kidman, known as the cattle king, who once owned or controlled as much as 280,000sqkm of Australian land.

S Kidman & Co is Australia's largest private landholder, with 11 cattle stations and a feedlot covering more than 100,000sqkm across Western Australia, the Northern Territory, Queensland and South Australia.

Many of these properties have been held by the company for more than 100 years.

The company is headquartered in Adelaide and employs 170 staff.

The portfolio includes Anna Creek Station in South Australia, which, at 23,000sqkm, is the largest cattle property in the world. Other holdings are Ruby Plains in WA, Durham Downs; Durrie, Glengyle, Morney Plains, Naryilco and Rockybank in Queensland; Innamincka, Macumba and Tungali in South Australia; and Helen Springs in the Northern Territory.

The business turns off an average 15,000 tonnes of carcase beef each year, supplying 1.3 per cent of Australia's boxed beef exports.

Managing director Greg Campbell said the sale represented a decision by the Kidman family to capitalise on the present demand for Australian agricultural assets.

"Many of the family have other existing investments in Australian agriculture and elsewhere, and the sale will allow them to convert long-term capital gains into cash to support their other businesses and investments," he said.

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