New Zealand’s largest forestry acquisition goes ahead
Australian sustainable forestry company, OneFortyOne Plantation’s (OFO) purchase of Nelson Forests completed this week, following approval by the Overseas Investment Office.
Nelson Forests, was owned by investment funds advised by Global Forest Partners LP (GFP), and is a vertically-integrated plantation and sawmill business in the Nelson Tasman and Marlborough regions of New Zealand. Nelson Forests employs 101 people fulltime and its business activity is further supported by approximately 350 contractors.
The acquisition adds more than 60,000 hectares of productive forests which produces 1.2 million cubic metres of logs and 55,000 cubic metres of timber annually, to OFO’s 80,000 hectares of plantation assets leased from the South Australian government.
MinterEllisonRuddWatts Partner Mark Forman advised OFO on the acquisition including negotiating the purchase agreement and obtaining approval from the Overseas Investment Office.
"OFO’s acquisition is an excellent endorsement of New Zealand’s sustainable forestry industry, and supports the continued growth of both forests and domestic processing in the Nelson region," says Mark Forman.
"The Overseas Investment Office’s decision is excellent as it provides certainty for the Nelson Forests team and its customers, as well as the region. It also sends a clear positive signal to the country’s broader forestry industry, which will lead to greater confidence for high quality forest managers looking to invest in New Zealand.
"We are delighted to have advised OFO on this significant deal for its business and the wider forestry industry."
The purchase agreement between OFO and the GFP entity was reached in December 2017.
The MinterEllisonRuddWatts team led by Mark Forman included partners Ross Pickmere, Bianca Tree, Tom Fail, and senior associates Jo Carrick-Anderson, Wendy Wang, Sarah Blackmore and Sam Gunson.
Campbell Global and Gresham Partners also advised OFO on the transaction.