(UPM, Helsinki, 12 December 2014 at 15:30 EET) – UPM has today executed a transaction to sell all of its forest land in the UK to The Church Commissioners for England. There are 14 forests in Scotland and two in Wales extending to approximately 7,100 hectares in total. The execution of the transaction regarding one of the forests is subject to third party approval and this transaction is expected to be executed at a later date.
UPM Tilhill will continue to provide forest management and timber harvesting services to ensure sustainable management of these forests. The transaction does not have an effect on the employees of UPM Tilhill. The transaction price is £ 50.6 million (approximately EUR 64 million). UPM will recognise a capital gain of approximately EUR 46 million as a special item for Q4 2014.
The Church Commissioners for England manage a well-diversified investment portfolio which includes stock market and property investments, which are used to support the Church of England's work across the country.
“The Church Commissioners for England are already a significant forest owner and an existing client of UPM Tilhill. The agreement consolidates the Church’s forest holdings in the UK and ensures continuity of professional forestry practice for these forests” says George McRobbie, Managing Director, UPM Tilhill. “For UPM Tilhill, it means we have a new owner for these forests and we continue to utilise of our forestry professionals’ expertise to serve the new owner”.
Also in Finland, UPM has a sales program for some of its forest assets as part of its land use management rationalisation. The parties interested in investing in forestry land in Finland are private persons and investors who value a reliable, long term source of return. In many cases the real estate deal includes a long term wood purchase, and forest management agreement is signed to ensure professional forestry practices and a steady income from wood sales for the investor. At the present time UPM owns about 800,000 hectares of forestry land in Finland.
For further information please contact:
The Church Commissioners of England