by Larry Schlesinger
Fortescue Metals mining billionaire Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest is betting big on a strong recovery in the WA economy and property market after backing Perth’s largest new industrial estate through his private family investment vehicle Minderoo Group.
The new $500 million estate, called Roe Highway Logistics Park, officially launched on Wednesday. Covering 56 hectares of rezoned former rural lands, it lies about 13 kilometres east of the Perth city centre on the Roe Highway in Wattle Grove.
Minderoo Group has come on board as the project’s capital partner in a 50-50 joint venture with the estate’s developers Linc Property, East Coast-based Gibb Group and Fini Group, the private investment company of Perth developer Adrian Fini.
The planned development budget is between $350 million and $400 million on top of about $120 million already spent by developer Linc Group to acquire the amalgamated site from more than two dozen landowners in 2017.
John Hartman, Minderoo Group chief investment officer, said the investment in the new estate was part of broader plans by the Forrests to diversify beyond mining with property development a big part of this strategy alongside agriculture and energy.