AUSTRALIA: Wool groups agree to merge
Two of Australia's leading wool organisations are hoping to merge by the end of the year, and are now campaigning to get government and shareholder approval for such an action.
The boards of Australian Wool Innovation (AWI) and Australian Wool Services (AWS) say a merger would give manufacturers, retailers and designers a united voice and is an important step for the Australian wool industry.
AWI and AWS (which is the parent company of Woolmark) were formed in 2000 when the industry's research and marketing roles were split between the two companies.
One major issue is a $27m liability held by AWS, which is left over from a British superannuation fund for about 130 current and former employees.
But AWS chairman Barry Walker said the pension fund issue would be worked through co-operatively by AWI and AWS.
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