John Bond and Jody Fewster advised the world Alan Bond had passed away, June 5 2015. Alan's death was said "represent the end of an era. He is the last of the big players from the '80s to pass on. We've already said goodbye to Robert Holmes a Court, Laurie Connell, Kevin Parry and Peter Beckwith who were major players in the period up to the '87 stock market crash." Tim Treadgold said Alan "fell into that category of likeable rogue. When you met him, it was very hard to dislike him. When you looked at some of the deals he did, it was quite easy to dislike him. So it will be evenly split between a love/hate relationship, but the man has died and I think the hate should now dissipate." 

Alan Bond came to Australia as a 13-year-old British migrant in 1950. As a teenager, The Age reported in October 1970, "Bond – expected by business associates to soon become an international entrepreneur – became a signwriting apprentice and at 19, formed his first company, Nu-Signs...He was more than ready, at 21, to swing into land development with a revolutionary idea – to finance it with hire purchase. 

"With a partner and $200,000 of borrowed money, he formed Lesmurdle Heights Pty Ltd, bought 150 acres in the attractive hills behind Perth and promoted the venture with such success that he was able to repay his debt within 6 weeks. From this grew the Bond Corporation, controlling a kingdom of more than 30 companies and syndicates. Capitalized by Bond's enormous success in suburban and city real estate development, and by the backing of overseas investors, the corporation has diversified widely since the giddy climb of Perth land prices, which reached the peak of their 450% increase in values during the 1960s.

"Alan Bond no longer has to work for money. Now (in 1970) he responds to challenges. Less than 3 years ago (about 1968), looking down from his luxury Dalkeith home on to the broad blue waters of the Swan River – which has a greater sailing area than Sydney Harbor – he felt the challenge of yachting. Now (in 1970), it is the America's Cup for which Bond has typically lodged a 'get-in-first' personal challenge in the name of the Royal Perth Yacht Club, which, although delighted, has yet to make an official decision to back him. Meanwhile, Bond will hold a press conference this morning (back in October 1970) to tell the world about his plans." 

Under the headline "Alan Bond builds global conglomerate", Peg Masterson of the Milwaukee Sentinel reported in September 1987: "Bond Corp. Holdings Ltd of Australia is a company that, in many ways, resembles Turner Broadcasting Corp., a U.S. industry giant owned by Ted Turner. Like Turner, Alan Bond has an extensive investment in the communications industry. Both men are avid sailors, and Bond was the financial supporter for the Australian syndicate that won the America's Cup in 1983.

"In 1982, Bond put together Australia's first independent television network, now (in 1987) known as National Nine Network. It began with stations in Perth and Brisbane, then branched into other cities. The network now reaches into the outback through satellite transmission. Bond also owns a string of radio stations throughout Australia and has major interests in TV enterprises in New Guinea and the Fiji Islands. In 1986, his company bought an interest in EMI Screen Entertainment Corp. in England, and he owns companies involved in oil development, coal and gold mining, and blimp manufacturing. 

"In 1986, Bond acquired the Castlemaine and Toohy breweries for $1.2 billion in Australian money and Pittsburgh Brewing Co. for $28.5 million in cash, his first move into the U.S. beer market. In Hong Kong, his business has major holdings in residential properties, commercial properties, film production and television. Last month (in August 1987), a group of entities controlled by Bond agreed to purchase more than 90% of St. Joe Gold Corp., Clayton, Missouri, and other assets from Fluor Corp. and several of its subsidiaries for $500 million."

Alan Bond made the headlines in 1988 when on 'A Current Affair' he admitted to Jana Wendt of  impropriety in business dealings by negotiating a $400,000 settlement with Sir Joh Bjelke-Petersen (Premier of Queensland 1968-87). "Certainly, the Premier made it under no doubt that if we were going to continue to do business successfully in Queensland, then he expected the matter to be resolved," Alan told Jana. The Australian Broadcasting Tribunal declared new hearings in October 1988 to decide whether Alan  was "fit to hold a broadcasting license."

Back in August 1974, under the headline "It's up to Alan Bond now", the Sydney Morning Herald reported, "Mr Bond is currently in America preparing Australia's challenge for the America's Cup. He has a lot riding on the result of the race. If he wins the cup his club will be able to nominate the next venue for the America's Cup. This could well be his Yanchep Suncity estate, which he is developing in Western Australia. The holding of the America's Cup races there would give a boost to his property interests."

It was reported in 1988, "Laurie Connell was barred from racetracks in 1975 for 2 years after race stewards found him guilty of 'dishonorable conduct' for allegedly having placed a bet to win $2135. He placed the bet in Kalgoorlie on a Melbourne race. An inquiry found the bet had been placed after the race had been run, but before it was broadcast in Kalgoorlie." 

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