Random Impertinent Questions about the Lochinver sale

So another party has bought Lochinver station.

Lochinver Station, the 13,843 hectare sheep and beef station near Taupo that China’s Shanghai Pengxin was prevented from buying, has sold to a New Zealand farming group, Rimanui Farms.

No price was disclosed. Shanghai Pengxin had agreed to pay $88 million for the property, adding to an existing portfolio that includes the former Crafar farms.

That sale had been approved by the Overseas Investment Office only to be vetoed by the government.

Mike Bayley, managing director of Bayleys Real Estate, which handled the sale, said a combination of factors meant the property attracted local interest in the property “at a higher value than was the case early last year when we first marketed the station.”

Lochinver had a capital value of $70.6 million and the vendors, the Stevenson Group, had undertaken about $3.5 million of capital improvements, he said.   

“Since the original sales contract was signed over 14 months ago, prices for top quality sheep and beef farms have risen significantly, primarily on the back of a very strong beef sector,” Bayley said in a statement.

Stevenson chief executive Mark Franklin said proceeds from the Lochinver sale would be reinvested in the company’s core businesses of mining, quarrying, concrete and associated investments around these industries, including the development of a major new industrial subdivision around its large quarrying operations in Drury, South Auckland.

Last month, Shanghai Pengxin says it will seek a judicial review of the government’s decision to decline its purchase of Lochinver Station.

It also walked away from a farm purchase in Northland, citing the long wait for a response from the OIO.

Here are my Random Impertinent Questions:

  1. Is it more than Shanghai Pengxin offered?
  2. Is the farming group generating more “benefits to NZ” than Shanghai Pengxin?  
  3. How can you sell Lochinver while Shanghai Pengxin has placed their transaction under legal scrutiny?
  4. Did National scupper the Shanghai Pengxin offer as a ‘mates deal’ to the farming group so they could get it?   Get it for less, even?
  5. What if the court finds in favour of Shanghai Pengxin?  What will happen?  Who will pay the damages?
  6. What is Colin Craig going to do when it is revealed in court who supplied him with the story on Lochinver in the first place?
  7. How will he explain how he is now suing that person for ‘dirty politics’?


– 3News

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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story.  And when he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet.   Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet, and as a result he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist that takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him.  But you can’t ignore him.