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SYDNEY-Lend Lease Corporation Ltd. has received the first of two payments related to the sale of its interest in IBM Global Services Australia Ltd. to IBM Australia Ltd.

Lend Lease is selling its 23% interest for $102 million, half of which was paid on Friday, plus repayment of a $10.2-million shareholder loan to IBM GSA. The other half of the $102 million is due in 12 months.

IBM Australia also acquired Telstra’s interest in IBM Global Services Australia Ltd., paying the Australia-based telecommunications company $98.7 million for its 22.6% stake.

The combined $210-million acquisition will will give IBM full ownership of its Australian IT and consulting services business while Lend Lease receives a premium price for what it considered a non-core investment. Lend Lease says the sale price compares to a book value of its investment in IBM GSA of approximately $27.4 million.

Given the timing of the sale, Lend Lease says it will report a significantly lower level of earnings from the IBM GSA investment in the 2004 financial year than its recent operating earnings guidance announcement.

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