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Australia: Woman Becomes Major Investor in Toll Road for $21,700
Woman becomes second largest shareholder in an Australian toll road company for just $21,700.

Brisbane trafficAn Australian woman on Thursday became the second largest shareholder in the BrisConnections toll road firm for mere A$32,300 (US $21,700). After the stock price for the BrisConnections Unit Trusts had plunged to just A$.001 per share, Mrs Fang He snapped up 32.3 million shares. This gave the housewife from Victoria an 8.3 percent stake and significant voting power in shareholder decisions second only to Queensland Investment Corporation which holds a ten percent stake.

BrisConnections operates Australia's largest road infrastructure project and the A$4.8 billion Airport Link toll road in Brisbane. The company debuted on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) at the end of July at a price of 41 cents per share. Since then, the security has tumbled.

"There has been a significant deterioration in world equity and financial markets," a BrisConnections press release explained. "For example, since September 3, 2008, the BrisConnections' security price has suffered a dramatic decline and the ASX All Ordinaries has decreased by approximately 27 percent."

The cheap initial purchase price of the shares, however, comes with a catch. The stock is in the form of a "partly paid security" that requires a A$1 per share payment on April 29, 2009 and a second A$1 payment on January 29, 2010 for the shares to become fully paid. It is unclear whether Fang He has the resources to cover the A$64.6 million (US $43.4 million) in installment payments.

Any investor who fails to pay the installment will be charged daily interest until the full sum is paid. If the company determines this amount will never be paid, it can retake and sell the shares.

A copy of the share purchase notification is available in a 100k PDF file at the source link below.

Source: Becoming a Substantial Shareholder (Australian Securities Exchange, 11/6/2008)

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