Liquidators appointed to Australian mining magnate's company

SYDNEY Mon Nov 19, 2012 6:58pm EST

SYDNEY Nov 20 (Reuters) - An Australian court appointed liquidators to a company owned by struggling mining magnate Nathan Tinkler on Tuesday, as junior coal miner Blackwood Resources attempts to recover a A$28.4 million ($29.6 million) debt.

The order from the New South Wales Supreme Court suspends Tinkler's powers as a director of the company, Mulsanne Resources, and allows liquidators to begin investigating its finances.

It is the first time one of the many companies controlled by Tinkler has been liquidated amid his current financial troubles.

A former coal mining electrician, Tinkler built up a mining, sports club and horse racing empire after turning a A$1 million bet on a coal deposit into a billion dollar fortune, but his wealth has plummeted amid cooling demand from Australia's major export market China.

Blackwood sought the court order to wind up Mulsanne after talks failed to reach a deal for the payment of outstanding funds.

Tinkler had agreed to purchase a one-third stake in Blackwood, but failed to make the payment. ($1 = 0.9608 Australian dollars) (Reporting By Jane Wardell; Editing by Richard Pullin)