An exciting future for agriculture

Articles
By Ian McLean Earlier this year, Phil Holmes and I took a group of large Queensland producers we work with on a tour of southern NSW, to visit professionally managed grazing businesses. These businesses had excellent longer-term profitability, well within the top 25% of their region. This profitability was demonstrated by having good quality benchmarking data, with operating returns in the range of 4-8%, not just the managers claims. The purpose of the tour was to get inside the heads of the managers of the business, and those above the manager, and understand how they approached the management of these businesses, and what made them so profitable. The management model used could  be described as an effective adaptation of the Warren Buffett model to agriculture (see ‘A Good model’ article).…
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Due Diligence on Land Purchases critical for Long Term Returns

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By Ian McLean and Dr. Phil Holmes Historically, more wealth has been created in the beef industry through increases in the value of land than through beef production. There has also been considerable wealth destroyed when price driven optimism has not eventuated. We believe that for long term business returns to be dependent on future capital gains, and the eventual sale of the asset, is a risky proposition. It also has the potential to result in significant cash shortfalls in the meantime. It is possible to have businesses that generate reasonable returns during ownership, rather than only upon sale. Performing comprehensive due diligence on any land purchases is a key factor in achieving this for growing businesses. A critical component of due diligence is determining what the ‘value’ of the…
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A Good Model

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By Dr. Phil Holmes How good are you at recognising genius? If you have a genius standing in front of you, can you see it and feel it, or is the person so strange that she/he is just written off as being odd? How our brains work makes us human and there is no doubt that genius brains work differently; they just don’t work like ours! Arguably, one of the greatest and best known geniuses in human history was Albert Einstein. Out of the blue, as a young man in his twenties, he explained how the universe works and turned science, as we knew it then, on its head. There have been some like him since in various fields and there will be more to come; it is a product…
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Agribusiness: How much debt can my cattle operation afford?

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By Ian McLean, Bush Agribusiness* , 19 January 2017 “How much debt can I afford to take on with my property?” This is a critical question for all cattle producers to ask themselves, and the answer is unique to each business, suggests respected agribusiness management consultant, Ian McLean. https://www.beefcentral.com/news/agribusiness-how-much-debt-can-my-cattle-operation-afford/
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Big variation exists in producer financial performance, despite high cattle prices

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By Beef Central, 17 November 2016 Even with the current level of returns for livestock, considerable variation exists in financial performance between enterprises, business advisor Ian McLean told 170 people attending the annual Young Beef Producers Forum in Roma this morning. https://www.beefcentral.com/news/big-variation-exists-in-producer-financial-performance-despite-high-cattle-prices/
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