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For Sale: 1.6 Percent Of Australia, Including World's Biggest Cattle Ranch

Workers from the Anna Creek cattle ranch take a break from work on the Oodnadatta Track.
William West
AFP/Getty Images
Workers from the Anna Creek cattle ranch take a break from work on the Oodnadatta Track.

If you're searching for a place that has a big backyard for the kids, look no further.

The largest cattle ranch in the world, Anna Creek, is on the market in Australia. For context, the ranch is about the size of New Hampshire, according to Time magazine.

This ranch is just one (big) part of an entire parcel that's for sale. The parcel consists of several cattle ranches scattered across South Australia, Queensland, the Northern Territory and Western Australia. Together, the ranches make up a total of 1.6 percent of the continent's total land area, according to the Australian Broadcasting Corp.

The 11 million hectare parcel is about the size of Tennessee.

The parcel, along with the company that owns it, is on the market for more than $300 million. To sweeten the deal, the buyer would also get about 160,000 head of cattle. The Independent newspaper says it will take bidders a week to inspect the parcel because it's so big.

The land is currently held by S. Kidman & Co., which was founded by Sir Sidney Kidman more than a century ago and is still family owned. The company's website says Kidman left home at age 13 to "work as a sheep drover." It adds:

"Being a man of vision, he formed a small business with his brother in droving and trading cattle and horses. ...

"Sir Sidney went on to become the greatest pastoral landholder in modern history, earning the nickname of 'The Cattle King.' "

ABC spoke with Managing Director Greg Campbell about the difficulty of selling such an iconic Australian company.

"I think it's been an issue for the family owners to grapple with. Certainly some of them passionately hold to that history," Campbell said. He added that there has been quite a bit of interest outside of Australia from potential bidders in the U.S., Switzerland and China.

As for the prospect of a foreign buyer, ABC notes that the Australian government would need to sign off on any deal of that size to an international bidder.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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