AS reported in a separate story on Beef Central tonight, prominent Northern Territory cattleman Tim Edmunds has offloaded the historic Kadlunga aggregation in South Australia after just two years ownership, as he prepares to expand his pastoral footprint in Central Australia.
In January 2016, Mr Edmunds and his wife Emily decided to leave the tightly held Alice Springs region after after a lengthy period, selling their Hale River Pastoral Co assets.
Those properties – 300,000ha Ambalindum Station, 135km north-east of Alice Springs and the adjoining 202,200ha Numery Station – were sold to the Canadian pension fund, Hewitt Cattle Australia for $50 million including 13,000 head of cattle.
After the sale, Mr Edmunds admitted it was difficult to leave Central Australia, but the time was right to move on. Two years ago, the couple secured a 4000ha aggregation of five mixed farming properties centred on Kadlunga in South Australia’s picturesque Clare Valley, considered some as the state’s finest farmland.
The $22m sale included 4900 Merinos, more than 100 Charolais cattle and 60ha of vineyards – negotiated on a walk-in, walk-out basis, with all stock and plant intact.
As reported separately tonight, the Edmunds have sold Kadlunga for an undisclosed price to George and Sophie Millington who own and operate the Collinsville Merino Stud near Hallett.
What has become clear is that Tim and Emily Edmunds are not done with Central Australia, and the Kadlunga sale evidently provided the cash reserve to further re-invest in the region.
In October 2017, the Edmunds made a return to the Territory, outlaying $20 million (walk-in walk-out) for the 5500sq km Napperby Station, 175km north-west of Alice Springs.
Mr Edmunds is also believed to have purchased a portion of the adjacent 2170sq km Coniston Station, which sold to neighbour Steven Fogarty of Anninjie for $13 million in July 2017.
Earlier this year, he offered to buy three adjoining Alice Springs cattle stations from well-known Central Australian, Tony Davis.
He has entered into a long-term contract with Mr Davis to purchase the 259,000ha Narwietooma and the 308,000ha The Derwent and Glen Helen Stations. However, the deal is subject to Mr Edmunds securing overseas finance by December.
As reported in this earlier Beef Central article, Central Australian cattle producers Tony and Pam Davis purchased Narwietooma Station for $8.75m in November 2015. The same year they paid $11.5m (including 8000 head of cattle) for The Derwent and Glen Helen.
The property purchases gave them a continuous run of country stretching more than 200km from Alice Springs along the West MacDonnell Ranges.
It is country made famous by Albert Namatjira, whose paintings of white-trunked ghost gums set against red and purple mountain ranges and sandy creek beds capture the rugged natural beauty of the unique MacDonnell Range landscape.
The Davis family has focused heavily on improving each property they have bought with significant investments in new yards, fencing, bores, tanks and troughs and solar pumps.
Mr Davis said if the deal is successful, he will retain Hamilton Downs (his grandfather’s former property), which borders the western edge of Alice Springs, as well as the neighbouring Amburla.
As well as attempting to secure a deal with Tony Davis, Mr Edmunds is reportedly in the process of securing a further two (separately owned) neighbouring NT stations, as well as a grass block in Queensland.