Cowra's K-Line Ag sold with future expansion on the cards

Brandon Stannett, CNH Industrial Managing Director Agriculture, Australia and New Zealand (centre) with Bill Larsen, James Larsen and David Larsen of K-Line Ag and Dave Long who is global product manager for Case IH.
Brandon Stannett, CNH Industrial Managing Director Agriculture, Australia and New Zealand (centre) with Bill Larsen, James Larsen and David Larsen of K-Line Ag and Dave Long who is global product manager for Case IH.

One of Cowra's most progressive enterprises, K-Line Ag has been sold with future expansion on the cards according to the purchaser.

Australian ag equipment business CNH Industrial and K-Line announced the purchase on Tuesday.

CNH Industrial says the acquisition enhances the global crop production portfolio of CNHI's agriculture brands Case IH and New Holland. and expansion of the Cowra operation is "quite likely".

Founded in 1993 by Richard Larsen K-Line Ag is a leader in the agricultural implement business, employing just over 50 people from its Cowra site.

"The overwhelming rationale of acquisition was supporting the expansion of the product into North America," CNH Industrial managing director Brendon Stannett said.

Mr Stannett said this would involve a three to four fold increase in production.

Mr Larsen founded the business after he saw an opening in the market for a broader, more efficient range of tillage machinery.

Since then K-Line Ag has pioneered the production of high-performance tillage and residue management equipment such as the company's revolutionary Speedtiller® a dual-purpose disc-tillage machine praised for its soil conditioning capabilities with superior penetration.

Mr Stannett described the purchase of the business as "an exciting opportunity for our Australian and New Zealand customers".

Mr Stannett said K-Line Ag is known for innovative soil management solutions that result in high productivity in a variety of growing regions and conditions.

"As a company, we're increasingly focused on tillage and seeding methods that promote sustainability and soil protection, and the suite of products that K-Line Ag has developed fits perfectly with this direction.

"Their commitment to innovation, reliability and efficiency also aligns with the qualities that underpin Case IH and New Holland, providing a synergy that can only mean important opportunities for us and our customers."

Mr Stannett said K-Line Ag products would continue to be sold under that name in Australia and New Zealand through existing Case IH, New Holland and selected independent dealers, and will be re-branded as Case IH in the North American market, where K-Line Ag equipment has been sold since 2013.

The manufacturing of K-Line Ag products like the Speedtiller® will remain in Cowra, with plans to ramp up production and increase the number of units produced each month, which may mean the need for more staff in the future.

The Larsen family will also remain heavily involved in strategy and day to day management of the business.

The Speedtiller® came to the attention of CNH Industrial because - while many products get the job done on the surface - it proved to be the only high-speed tillage tool designed for deep and shallow settings that delivered uniform results to depth, giving producers ideal seedbed preparation without agronomic compromise.

"As a global company we're excited to be making this level of investment in an Australian company whose reputation for excellence and results is known around the world," Mr Stannett said.

"We're proud to bring K-Line Ag into the CNH Industrial agriculture stable and know that together we can continue to raise the bar with equipment that satisfies the needs of farmers looking for sustainable farming solutions that don't compromise on efficiency and productivity."