A New Forests-managed fund has acquired the Otiwhiti Farm Forest in the Turakina Valley near Hunterville, Rangitikei District, in New Zealand, for an undisclosed amount.

The Australian New Zealand Forest Fund 3’s (ANZFF3) acquisition of the 1,246ha estate, marks the final deployment for the A$866m (€519m) ANZFF3 fund.

Dan Bridgman, director of investments, Australia and New Zealand at New Forests, said: “We view New Zealand as a positive investment destination where the future harvest is likely to continue to benefit the country’s broader forestry and wood processing industry. What we really like about the Otiwhiti opportunity is being able to partner with Otiwhiti Land Based Training School to assist in their delivery of positive educational opportunities into the future.”

Joe Duncan, director of Otiwhiti Limited Partnership, said the subdivision and sale to New Forests followed a strategic land use review, which identified that the highly productive front [western] end of the farm offered the best potential to continue supporting the training school, which has been operating since 2007.”

Arotahi Agribusiness managing director Jeremy Keating, who led the sale process with colleague Wyatt Johnston on behalf of Otiwhiti Limited Partnership, said:  “We are delighted to have successfully negotiated an agreement with New Forests, a highly experienced global forestry investment manager which is ideally placed to establish a successful forestry enterprise at Otiwhiti and positively contribute to the training school”.

Charles Duncan, managing director of Otiwhiti School of Agriculture, said some of New Forests’ initial plans for partnering with the school include contributing towards capital project upgrades and communications infrastructure, installing a rooftop solar system to improve operational resilience and funding an annual scholarship.”

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