Global law firm Norton Rose Fulbright has advised Hassad Food Group, the agricultural arm of Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund, on the merger of its Australian pastoral and cropping properties with Macquarie Group’s agricultural investment business, Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Asset (“MIRA”).
Hassad is a global investor and developer in the agriculture sector. In Australia, it operates a diversified portfolio of pastoral and cropping enterprises at properties located across New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia.
The deal will allow Hassad to transfer more than 100,000 hectares of Australian pastoral and cropping properties to Macquarie’s farming portfolio while broadening its agricultural investments across a larger and more diversified Australian portfolio through a simultaneous investment into Macquarie’s farming portfolio.
A cross-practice team from Norton Rose Fulbright, led by M&A partner Chris Mitchell and supported by lead real estate partners Peter Trevaskis and Justin Lucas, advised on all legal aspects of the transaction, including drafting and negotiating a large suite of interdependent and interconditional transaction documents, providing foreign investment regulatory advice and seeking relevant regulatory approvals, and undertaking legal due diligence and advising on Hassad’s investment into Macquarie’s farming portfolio.
Norton Rose Fulbright partner Chris Mitchell commented:
“This is the largest agriculture deal seen in Australia this year. Hassad is an established and sophisticated global player with a long standing commitment and strong links to Australia’s agriculture industry. We assisted Hassad with acquiring a number of assets within its portfolio and are delighted to be able to advise Hassad on this strategic repositioning of its investments in Australia.”
“It has been a pleasure to work with the professional team at Norton Rose Fulbright with a strong understanding of the industry”, commented Terrie Morgan, Chief Commercial Officer and Company Secretary of Hassad Australia.
The Norton Rose Fulbright team was led by Chris Mitchell and included lead real estate partners Peter Trevaskis and Justin Lucas; real estate partner Andrea Rezos; tax partner Andrew Spalding; special counsels Deanne Ogilvie, Rebecca Hall, Malerie Durham, Matthew Farnsworth and Adam Smith; senior associate Nicole Bury; and associates Chanel Mercurio, Jonathan Pham, Jennifer Naulu and Jacqueline Dowling.
The Norton Rose Fulbright team also assisted Hassad Food Group with the recent divestment of its 47,677 hectare Telopea Downs Station in Victoria and South Australia to the McBride family.