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CBH Members Vote No to Going Public

The 4,200 members of Australia’s Cooperative Bulk Handling Ltd. (CBH), the largest agribusiness in the country voted against the possibility of the company going public.

The vote comes months after CBH rejected a $2.2 billion deal that would have seen the cooperative taken over by a consortium led by GrainCorp and subsequently listed.

CBH is the dominant force in Western Australia’s grain sector, accounting for almost half of the total yearly wheat production. Geographically the co-op is well situated, selling its wheat to Indonesia, China, and Japan - however, Russia and Ukraine are cutting into these markets.

Although an IPO would benefit the co-op members’ balance sheets, many feel that going public would increase the grain handler’s fees. Meanwhile, other believe that an IPO would better position the business to deal with the challenges developing in an increasingly competitive market.

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