Saudi investor buys more than 200,000 hectares in WA with Clayton Utz's help

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Clayton has advised a Saudi investor in its acquisition of more than 200,000 hectares of farmland in Western Australia.

The Saudi Agricultural Livestock Investment Company (SALIC), which is owned by the public investment fund of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, bought the land from John Nicoletti, WA’s largest grain farmer. It is SALIC’s first Australian acquisition.

Financial details of the deal were not disclosed, but ABC reported that the deal is estimated to be worth $60m. The network said that the property is one of the largest single parcels of broadacre land to be sold in the country, and thus required approval from the Foreign Investment Review Board.

The Clayton Utz team was headed by corporate partner Mark Paganin and special counsel Scott Girdler. They were supported by lawyers Benjamin Depiazzi, Amy Watson, and Nic Rawlinson.

The land, spread across the state’s wheat belt, is made up of 76,000 hectares of freehold land and 134,000 hectares of leasehold land. The purchase comes with a herd of 40,000 Merino sheep.