Wealth: $585 million
BRW Rich 200 ranking: 73
The lure of the resources sector is strong for many investors. While most people are forced to turn to the stockmarket to gain access to the mining boom, the rich are able to go one step better and develop mines themselves.
And it is not always the most obvious suspects who are acquiring tenements and investing in their development. Other wealthy investors, particularly in resource-rich states, are also seeking direct access to new mines.
Take Kevin Seymour. He made his fortune in property and through a diverse range of investments, including Tatts Group shares.
Seymour is known to have traded mining-related stocks for some time, including Ausenco and Macarthur Coal. But in recent months he has gone one better and set up Seymour Energy, which has acquired mining exploration rights over areas in Queensland’s Galilee and Adavale basins.
Seymour is optimistic about his move into prospecting. He is focusing on coal and coal seam gas and is confident that one of his tenements, in particular, will provide access to large quantities of coal.
Mine development is an inordinately expensive activity these days. Few good tenements are still available and the costs involved in determining the feasibility of a mine prevent most investors from being able to do it.
Rich 200 members have access to large pools of capital and are among the few individuals who can start mines while retaining majority ownership in them.
For someone like Seymour, the creation of an energy division assists in the diversification of his wealth while providing huge opportunities for further wealth creation if the exploration uncovers large quantities of reserves.