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The Kind Of Investment That Really Does Grow

15 August 2002

Barkworth Group - The Kind Of Investment That Really Does Grow

New Zealand investors are lapping up the opportunity to watch their investment grow, literally, with Australian olive company The Barkworth Group.

Initially each investor received a fully managed olive grove for their investment and from there witnessed the production of their olives from farming, through to processing, and finally onto the supermarket shelf.

Approximately 700 New Zealand investors have been attracted to the offer through the issue of seven propectuses since 1997, resulting in nearly $12 million raised. From Australia and New Zealand jointly around $125 million of capital has been raised for the venture.

Managing director Douglas Pollard is in New Zealand this week to launch the last part of the investment chain.

The olive-oil product VIVA is now available in New Zealand and will initially be stocked through the Progressive Group. It is currently stocked throughout Australia in over 1,000 Woolworths, Coles and Bi-Lo Supermarkets.

"We are extremely proud of this product. Firstly because it is of excellent quality and secondly because our investors in New Zealand will literally see how far their investment has come - all the way to their local supermarket shelf," said Mr Pollard.

"The nod of approval from New Zealand investors has been significant and we are grateful for this support. And we know this is a unique investment opportunity which will yield a return on year two for initial shareholders," said Mr Pollard.

In addition to the olive investment opportunity, The Barkworth Group has issued two prospectuses for its debenture issue, and has raised in excess of $8 million dollars in the process.

Capital raised was used to finance investors' farms in NSW and South Australia and to plant 350,000 olive trees. The VIVA Olives operation was also acquired and a world-class olive line was established within the Loxton (South Australian) plant. Phase one of a four stage development at the Inglewood (Queensland) plant was also completed.

The current debenture has been issued at 9% per annum fixed return for three years, and 8.5% per annum fixed return for a two year term.

The Barkworth Group was established in 1997.

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