Optifarm’s Jemalong Station tipped to fetch over $85M

Emma Alsop, March 1, 2023

Jemalong Station comes will ample irrigation infrastructure. Photo: LAWD

DUTCH investment firm Optifarm has listed its New South Wales 13,498ha mixed-farming property Jemalong Station, with the holding expected to make more than $85M.

Located in the Lachlan Valley downstream from Forbes, Jemalon has been developed to produce a variety of cash and fodder crops, beef cattle, wool and lamb.

The property is currently overseen by Moree-based rural asset management company, Customised Farm Management, and has a history of producing cotton, winter grains and oilseeds with consistent yields, including cotton at 12 bales per hectare, wheat at 6t/ha and canola at 2.5t/ha.

Optifarm purchased Jemalong Station and the adjoining Jemalong Citrus in 2018 from the Kahlbetzer family’s Twynam Agricultural Group.

The 360ha Jemalong Citrus holding is not part of this listing.

The orchard was offered for sale in March 2022 at a price point of more than $10M; however, it is not believed to have sold.

Modern irrigation improvements

LAWD senior director Danny Thomas and directors Erica Semmens and Ian Robertson are handling the listing.

Mr Thomas said Optifarm made several investments into Jemalong Station during its five-year ownership.

He said the irrigation infrastructure was a standout for the property and included 311ha under centre pivots, 805ha of linear-move irrigation and a further 524ha of flood/border-check irrigation.

“Jemalong has six new centre pivots and there is provision for six more,” Mr Thomas said.

Of the remaining land, 9995ha has been developed for dryland cropping and perennial pastures and 1562ha is suited to grazing livestock.

The irrigation infrastructure is complemented by access to 2580ML of Upper Lachlan Alluvial groundwater and 1134ML of Lachlan River General Security Water delivered via the Jemalong Irrigation Scheme.

Beyond irrigation, Mr Thomas said other additions include a 5500t grain-storage complex.

Improvements made by previous owners comprise machinery shedding, workshop, additional grain and fertiliser storage, six-stand woolshed and livestock yards.

Jemalong also features quality soil types from grey chocolate loams to red clay loams and sandy clay loams.

Perfect corporate investment

Mr Thomas said Jemalong Station would be an ideal investment for a corporate entity or a large family-0wned company.

He said Forbes and the wider Lachlan Valley region was already home to several well-known ASX listed and private companies, which saw the value of investing in cropping or mixed farming assets in the area.

Key examples are Duxton Farms, which owns a 22,882ha cropping aggregation near Forbes, and Paraway Pastoral Company’s Borambil Station, a sheep and cropping enterprise located north-west of Jemalong.

Optifarm invested in 5500t of grain storage for the property. Photo: LAWD

Latest listing for Optifarm

Jemalong Station is the latest Optifarm holding to come to market.

The Dutch company recently sold NSW irrigated farming operation, Gundaline Station, to Chinese clothing manufacturer, Zhejiang Sunrise Garment Group, for more than $120M.

The property was first listed in July 2020 but was pulled from the market soon after due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

It was relisted in October 2022.

Like Jemalong, Gundaline was owned by the Twynam Group before being sold in 2014 to investment fund Southern Agricultural Resources, which offloaded it to Optifarm four years later for a rumoured $75M.

Optifarm is still believed to own Darlington Point 4000ha mixed farming property, Uri Park.

The firm purchased the holding from the Shaw family in 2017.

Jemalong Station is being offered via expressions of interest closing on Wednesday, April 5.



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