Pet food, chocolate magnate buys Southport car yard

This Southport car yard has been sold. Picture: Richard Gosling

Tony Quinn, who was naive to Australian ways when he arrived from Scotland but went on to make a couple of fortunes, has had a wee dabble on some Southport property.

A Quinn company quietly has bought a car yard site at the eastern high point of the high-traffic Ferry Rd, along with an adjoining office building.

The deals are the latest Gold Coast ‘spend’ by the Aberdeen-born Tony, best known as the man who made a mint out of two somewhat contrasting foods — pet food and chocolate — and is hoping to do the same with beef jerky.

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In May he settled the $5.6 million purchase of a beachfront apartment in brand-new luxury building SEA at Main Beach.

One of the Meaty Quinn’s Southport buys is on the corner of Winchester St and long has been home to various used-car dealerships.

Tony Quinn. Picture: Jerad Williams

His other buy, downhill, is tenanted by the Cushman & Wakefield real estate group.

The two properties, believed to have cost around $4 million, are directly opposite a glamorous showroom just completed to house new Bentleys and Maseratis.

Tony’s ambitions for his near 1600sq m holding aren’t known but he’s shown in the past that he can smell a good property deal.

Back in 2011 the Quinn name was put on the title, for a payment of $11.75 million, on a cold-storage warehouse at Yatala.

This Southport car yard has been sold. Photo by Richard Gosling.

Last year the property was sold for $22 million.

The Tony Quinn story is a colourful one — he grew up in a wooden caravan built by his dad and at five was helping weigh and bag minced meat in the family pet food business.

He turned sign-writer before moving to Perth — the Australian one, that is — and tried, but failed, running a rustproofing business and a video game machine operation.

At that point he had heard nothing of the term “due diligence”.

He was a quick learner and moved to New Zealand, set up a pet food business, returned to Australia to establish VIP Petfoods, and sold out for $410 million in 2015.

Tony Quinn

Millionaire Tony Quinn.

It’s at Highland that he’s based two prized possessions — a Michael Schumacher Formula One car and a $3.8 million Aston Martin supercar.

Who knows, maybe he’ll build a display showroom for them on the Ferry Rd land.

AN agent has been appointed to sell the Fiji holiday home of the founder of the Gold Coast’s failed LM funds management group, Peter Drake.

The move’s the culmination of a long journey by the bankruptcy trustees for Peter, who came out of bankruptcy in January, to gain control of the Savusavu house.

The property, which has a tennis court, is on short-term lease to a Fijian company as part of a deal which has required it to make repairs.

This article from the Gold Coast Bulletin originally appeared as “A vacant Ferry Road used car site has a new owner”.