The Thoroughbred world was rocked yesterday with the announcement that
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, ruler of Dubai and vice-president of
the United Arab Emirates has purchased renowned Woodlands Stud in Australia
for $415 (US) million.
"Darley came to us out of the blue and wanted to buy everything we
have," seller John Ingham told www.bloodhorse.com.
"They have a plan to be dominant in Australia and as money speaks all
languages, the decision was made to sell. Subject to government approval
which has to regulate foreign investments that are $5 million or more,
Darley should have the Ingham properties, most of the horses, our trainer
Peter Snowden and our stallions."
Darley operates stud farms in the United Kingdom, Ireland, the United
States, Japan and Australia. In 2007 the operation stood 52 stallions
around the world.
Woodlands Stud which is located in the Hunter Valley region of New South
Wales, was owned by Bob Ingham and his late brother Jack dating back to
1985. It included a second stud in the region plus training stables near
Sydney and Melbourne as well as two pre-training centres on the outskirts of
Sydney. The farm owned more than 500 horses and will stand 33 stallions
this coming southern hemisphere season.
Noted for it aggressive promotion and incentive plans, the farm could
easily cover 4,000 of Australia's 21,000 Thoroughbred mares.
The move further heightens the competition between Darley and Irish
based Coolmore Stud which stands 18 stallions in Australia.
(With files from www.bloodhorse.com)