Contango's Bill Laister favours Mount Gibson's Koolan Island iron ore

Written on the 25 March 2017

Contango's Bill Laister favours Mount Gibson's Koolan Island iron ore

Bill Laister has been in funds management since 1989, getting a taste for investing in the most rambunctious environs of the analogue age.

The Contango Asset Management senior portfolio manager started out as an operator on the trading floor, or as he puts it, "one of the guys that was screaming at the chalkies". For the Liverpool-born, Townsville-raised son of an orthopaedic surgeon it was a dazzling initiation.

The standout was resources where higher commodity prices and lower costs combined. Contango has just bought back in to Mount Gibson Iron with an eye to its Koolan Island interests. Laister owned Mount Gibson until 2008 and had to sell it when the iron ore boom pushed it into the ASX top 100, a fortunate problem in hindsight.

With the latest rally, "it becomes economically viable for Mount Gibson to get back into Koolan Island. At this stage they haven't announced they're going to do it but we think the opportunity is there." At its earnings update, the company said it would conclude its evaluation in the March quarter.

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