Prestigious station expected to set farm property record

HANK SCHOUTEN
Last updated 05:00 09/12/2013

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One of New Zealand's biggest and most valuable farms is up for sale.

The 13,800 hectare (34,300 acre) Lochinver Station near Taupo, valued at over $70 million, has been put up for tender by the privately owned Stevenson Group, which has owned the property for more than 50 years. Tenders close on February 27.

The biggest rural property to come on the market in the North Island is expected to set a record price for a farm sale in New Zealand, Bayleys managing director Mike Bayley says.

The property has a rating value of $70.6m. This is well over what other major farms have realised in the past five years: St James Station in Canterbury sold for $45m, a Dipton property in Southland went for $33m, and Mt Pember Station in North Canterbury recently sold for close to $30m.

Situated on the Rangitaiki Plains, 32 kilometres from Taupo and 92km from Napier, Lochinver is a sheep and beef breeding and finishing, and dairy support station.

It has three airstrips, a lake, a recreational hunting block, 22 houses which accommodate the families of 20 permanent staff, a staff recreation centre, and a school.

Bayley said that with a carrying capacity of more than 100,000 stock units, it was the most productive freehold rural property to be put up for sale.

"Lochinver is widely recognised as one of the most prestigious stations in the country because it has been meticulously developed and superbly maintained and managed."

Stevenson Group chief executive Mark Franklin said the company was rebalancing its investment portfolio and Lochinver Station was being sold as part of that process.

"Lochinver Station no longer fits with Stevenson's future strategic direction, which will be focused on the core businesses of mining, quarrying, concrete and associated investments around these industries."

This year the farm wintered approximately 60,000 sheep, 3500 beef cattle, and 2300 dairy support cattle.

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- Fairfax Media

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