Scottish National Investment Bank backs forestry fund with £ 50million pledge

The Scottish National Investment Bank has become a major investor in the Gresham House Forest Growth & Sustainability Fund.

Its capital will support new plantations and could capture some 1.2 million tonnes of CO2 over the next 20 years.

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The fund will aim to generate stable returns through the sale of timber and capital growth of land and trees. All trees harvested by the fund will be replanted and wood products generated.

The capital of the Scottish National Investment Bank will support new large-scale plantations and is expected to capture 1.2 million tonnes of CO2 over 20 years.

It will also aim to generate carbon credits in the form of Forest Carbon Units (WCUs) which will create “added value” or serve to offset carbon emissions on a voluntary basis.

Eilidh Mactaggart, Managing Director of the Scottish National Investment Bank, which was launched last year, said: “The Bank is delighted to found this new sustainable forestry fund focused on new and diverse planting in Scotland.

“Gresham House is an experienced forestry fund manager, and we are very happy to support them in this new venture.

“The new plantation element and the ability to generate carbon credits represent a new investment proposition that traditional investors have not yet fully embraced.

“The bank’s core investment is designed to encourage other investors to follow us into this new type of forest fund. We therefore believe that this opportunity fits perfectly with the bank’s ambition to lead the way in terms of innovative investments aligned with its mission.

The investment will also support existing and new jobs in rural Scotland.

Managing some 140,000 hectares of forest worth over £ 1.8 billion, Gresham House is the UK’s largest commercial forest manager. The company is also managing a forestry mandate in Ireland and plans to complete another international forestry mandate in Australia, subject to regulatory approval.

Olly Hughes, Managing Director, Forestry, Gresham House, said: “This impressive first fence is a testament to Gresham House’s long experience in forestry and forestry. [Scottish National Investment Bank’s] a core investment will help catalyze new investment in this asset class from institutional and private investors.

“This flexible strategy allows investors to choose to use the carbon credits generated for offsetting or to sell the units to generate income.”

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