Woolmark's division of international wool operations has become the first victim of the company's privatisation.

Manager Barry White, who has worked with Woolmark and its predecessors for 33 years, said he was advised late last week that the division's services would not be progressed under the restructure of AWRAP to a commercialised Woolmark company and new Australian Wool Innovation company.

He said the division's three staff members, including Robert Wong who has been responsible for Woolmark's China programme, were likely to wind up their project work in February and leave the company.

The move had caught them by surprise because the division had undertaken important market development and growth opportunity research work in Australia's key wool consuming markets of China, India, and more recently, Eastern Europe.