LIC completes purchase of dairy cow heat detection aid business
03 Feb 2016
LIC completed its acquisition of the Australian-based Beacon Heat Detectors Pty Ltd this week, effective 1 February 2016.
The farmer-owned co-operative, which supplies dairy genetics to breed approximately three-quarters of the national herd, purchased 75 per cent of Beacon – a manufacturer of heat patches to help farmers identify cows that are in oestrous and ready for artificial insemination.
LIC is a long-standing customer of Beacon, as a supplier of its heat patches to farmers in New Zealand, including one that was specifically developed for the co-op’s in-shed automated heat detection camera and drafting system (Protrack EZ Heat).
Chief executive Wayne McNee said the acquisition supports LIC’s core business of artificial breeding and its strategy to deliver genetics and information to create superior livestock.
“Accurate heat detection is a vital part of a farm’s mating plan; it’s a key driver of production for the following season.
“As herd sizes have grown, we have seen heat detection products become increasingly popular to help take pressure off staff during the busy mating season and allow more informed decisions to be made around the timing of insemination.
“This acquisition will help ensure an ongoing supply of the products for our farmers. It also provides international growth opportunities for LIC, and we will be looking at where we can market the products overseas to deliver a good return to shareholders in New Zealand.”
LIC Automation, a wholly owned subsidiary of LIC, will now oversee the Beacon business and its nine staff. Manufacturing and distribution will continue from Beacon’s current New South Wales location.
The former owner and managing director, Jock Roberts, retains a 25 per cent share and will continue working in the business alongside LIC Automation.