Green crops growing in a field in Western Australia, around a patch of trees

Excel Farms, a joint venture between Canadian asset manager Fiera Comox and a family farming business led by Nick Paterson, has acquired its first property in Western Australia with the purchase of Cherylton Farms for A$100 million ($69 million; €64 million).

The asset, located in the Great Southern Region around 23 km from Kojonup, covers 8,554 hectares and is a mixed-farming enterprise with operations including diversified cropping and livestock grazing. Its crop production has been focused on cereals such as barley, oats and wheat, as well as oilseeds such as canola.

The vendor was WA-based property developer Julian Walter. Selling agent LAWD said the sale price of A$100 million was a record for the region on a walk-in, walk-out basis.

In a statement, LAWD senior director Danny Thomas said: “We have seen both direct foreign investors and domestic institutions recognize the significant value offered in WA in comparison to east coast Australia and overseas land markets. We experienced exceptionally high levels of participation from institutional investors in the sale process for Cherylton Farms.

“Any Western Australian vendor looking to divest a high-quality, large-scale asset in the current market will see that asset met with very high demand, noting accepted district land values are likely to be eclipsed. LAWD expects to see this trend continue to strengthen through 2023.”

Fiera Comox’s Australian investments include the row-crop focused Excel Farms, as well as dairy producer Rangitata and cotton grower Eastern Agriculture Australia. The firm managed approximately C$3 billion ($2.2 billion; €2.1 billion) in assets as of September 30, 2022, across private equity, private credit and agriculture, with agriculture accounting for more than C$1.3 billion of that, per a statement in August 2022.

Excel Farms and Fiera Comox had not responded to requests for comment at the time of writing.