SYDNEY, 12 February 2019 – New Forests is pleased to announce that it has agreed to acquire Hikurangi Forest Farms (HFF), based in Gisborne, New Zealand, on behalf of its investment clients.
New Forests anticipates that the purchase, from current owner Samling Group, will be complete by mid-2019, subject to consent from the Overseas Investment Office, with the intention to launch a rebranded business at that time.
HFF is one of the largest forestry estates in the Gisborne region and includes around 25,000 hectares of radiata pine plantation on 35,000 hectares of freehold, forest rights, and leasehold land. Significant investment has been carried out since the assets were acquired in 1997, building a high yielding and sustainable forest estate that is a significant contributor to the regional economy.
New Forests is currently working through an ownership transition plan incorporating continuity of operations and New Forests’ forward-looking management plans, and will be undertaking engagement with key stakeholders, including local businesses, Tangata Whenua representatives, councils, and community groups.
New Forests’ objective is to manage investments to ensure long-term sustainability. “New Forests looks forward to engaging with stakeholders during the ownership transition to chart the future for this business and ensure the long-term sustainability of this regionally significant forestry asset,” New Forests’ CEO David Brand said.
Brand continued, “The HFF acquisition secures a cornerstone asset for New Forests’ Australia New Zealand Forest Fund 3, complementing the fund’s existing New Zealand forestry portfolio in the North and South Island”.
Mark Rogers, Managing Director for New Forests’ Australia-New Zealand business said, “We are proud of our track record and commitment to sustainable forest management, and this estate has significant potential to be a preferred provider of sustainable wood products.”
“New Forests and our clients represent long-term, stable, institutional ownership that we believe will be a key enabler for the future growth of New Zealand’s forest industry,” said Rogers.
About New Forests
New Forests is an Australian-based international sustainable forestry investment manager that has been operating in New Zealand since 2005. New Forests has a New Zealand office in Tauranga and manages investments on the North and South Island, including the Timberlink sawmill business in Blenheim. Globally, New Forests Pty Ltd and its subsidiaries manage investments in around 550,000 net hectares of forests and timberlands across a global portfolio of nearly 1 million hectares of forestry and conservation investments. The firm is committed to investment strategies at the leading edge of forestry, land management, and conservation.
As global demand for resources grows, there is a need to increase productivity while ensuring the conservation of the world’s remaining natural forests. New Forests seeks to create investment strategies that provide lasting solutions to this challenge. Through responsible management of forests and other real assets, we create shared benefit for investors and local communities alike. New Forests has international reach, with offices and assets in Australia, New Zealand, Southeast Asia, and the US. This gives us a global perspective combined with local expertise that allows us to understand and manage our assets more effectively.