April 20, 2007
April 20, 2007--Six years after they split, the wool industry's two peak bodies are to again join forces. Australian Wool Services (AWS), which deals with marketing, and Australian Wool Innovation (AWI), which handles research, have been in merger talks for more than two years, trying to reach an agreement on a multi-million dollar debt owed by AWS.
The Australian government will now contribute $15 million towards the debt, to allow the merger to go ahead. It will allow AWI to purchase AWS's key wool assets, including The Woolmark Company, wool-product technologies and a market-intelligence business.
AWI will assume a marketing role while remaining the designated research and development body for the wool industry, receiving woolgrower levies and matching government research and development funding.
The new company should be in place by July.