SIL now has 74% of Blue Sky Meats

Scott O’Donnell
Scott O’Donnell
Southern Lamb Investments Ltd is the new majority shareholder of Blue Sky Meats.

In March, the company made a full takeover offer for all of the shares in the Southland-based meat processor.

The offer price was $3 a share, payable in cash, and conditional on the company — which is associated with the company’s chairman Scott O’Donnell and director Andrew Lowe — receiving more than 50% of shares.

A notice to the Unlisted market yesterday said the offer closed at 11.59pm on May 6 and valid acceptances were received for 74.87% of the shares.

The remaining shares were held by NZ Binxi (Oamaru) Foods Ltd (19.84%) and 5.29% by 72 other shareholders.

In the 12 months to June 30, 2021, the business generated a profit of $5.3 million before tax, an increase on the previous year’s $4.2 million.

Profitability has grown by 20% on 2020 (which was a 15-month year).

Cashflow has stayed strong at positive $10.7 million, borrowings had decreased by $6.4 million and total shareholders’ equity was up by $2.7 million (10%).

Mr O’Donnell, a prominent Invercargill businessman, has spearheaded the $160 million redevelopment of Invercargill’s CBD, a project which has been cited as having the potential to boost Southland’s real GDP by about $48 million a year. He is involved with H.W. Richardson Group, the family business of his wife Jocelyn.

Mr Lowe is also a well-known agribusinessman and managing director of Hawkes Bay-based Lowe Corporation.

In March 2017, NZ Binxi (Oamaru) Foods, a subsidiary of China-based Heilongjiang Binxi Cattle Industry Co, backed out of its $25.4 million takeover of Blue Sky.

Binxi had built its stake in Blue Sky (now known as Blue Sky Pastures) in 2016, becoming the third-largest shareholder behind Lowe Corp and H.W. Richardson Group.

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