Members force AWEX backdown

27 Jul, 2006 07:00 PM
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THE Australian Wool Exchange (AWEX) has backed down on a decision to move away from providing auction rooms in the eastern states after consulting with its members.

In May, AWEX decided to cut its ties as landlord for the Yennora and Brooklyn wool auction rooms in Sydney and Melbourne by December.

The move was said to be the result of board and member requests for AWEX to concentrate more on its core services, which included administration of wool selling and clip standards.

AWEX chief executive officer Mark Grave has confirmed to Farm Weekly the company would still act as a landlord for auction rooms at Yennora and Brooklyn.

"The board has made the decision to continue on with salerooms," Mr Grave said.

"That is a direct response for members who still want us to provide that service to them."

AWEX has a lease agreement at the Yennora site to June 2007.

The landlord arrangement at the Brooklyn site would remain as it had done in past years, Mr Grave said.

Landlord rates were included in the AWEX 2006-07 fee schedule released last week.

The move will not affect WA auction rooms, which are owned by their respective wool brokering companies, not AWEX.

Mr Grave said the decision to keep AWEX's landlord status would not lead to a downscale in the company's new core services direction announced in May.

"It won't impact on how we operate on show floors with appraisal, clip inspection and woolclassers," he said.

AWEX's Eclipse electronic wool offer board would still shut down next month, Mr Grave said.

"We've actually had a couple of interested parties who are seeing if there is any value for them to re-license it," he said.

"Particularly from those who have used it in the past.

"But that is a commercial decision they will have to make."

AWEX directors have agreed to continue the process of consultation with members, with a view to arriving at an acceptable reduction in board composition.

Fee schedules have been distributed to members and are available on the AWEX website.

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