Finance

This week’s winners and losers

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WINNERS:

Bill Lewski

Lewski, founder of retirement village developer Prime Trust, sold out of the company this week for between $60 million and $80 million. He will stand down as managing director of the trust’s responsible entity, but he will work as a consultant to new owners, investment house Kidder Williams.

Coal seam methane gas companies

BG Group’s $13 billion takeover offer for Origin Energy has underlined the value energy companies are putting on coal seam methane. Origin has the biggest reserves of CSM in Australia and Santos and Queensland Gas, which also have CSM operations, can expect a lot more attention.

Gail Kelly

Kelly delivered her first result as chief executive of Westpac – a 9.6% increase in cash profit to $1.8 billion. Given the credit crunch and the poor results from ANZ last week, Westpac investors would have been nervous. But Westpac’s loan book appears to be in reasonable shape.

LOSERS:

Robert Agius

Agius, the former head of accounting firm FKP Vanuatu, was arrested in Perth as part of Australian Federal Police investigation into a $100 million offshore tax scam. A series of 30 raids were conducted across Australia, New Zealand and Vanuatu and the AFP says 400 individuals – including corporate high-flyers and small business operators – are caught up in the scam.

Terry Peabody

The founder, chief executive and major shareholder of Transpacific was dealt a blow this week when waste management minnow DoloMatrix rejected his takeover offer. The DoloMatrix board says Transpacific’s offer is too low, but Peabody says he won’t be raising it. Over to you, Terry.

Martin Kemp

Kemp’s run as the right-hand-man of ABC Learning Centres chief executive Eddy Groves ended last night when he stepped won. Kemp lost his board position last week, after losing the bulk of his shares in February when ABC’s share price crashed and Groves and Kemp received margin calls.

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