Investment company aims to raise £230m for farm purchases

A new farmland investment company is aiming to raise $300m (£230m) on the London Stock Exchange to acquire farm assets around the world.

The Global Sustainable Farmland Income Trust is targeting farms in the US, Europe, New Zealand, Australia and Latin American countries.

A spokesman for the trust said the company would diversify its asset portfolio by geography, crop type, property and tenant.

See also: Call to halt county farm sales and invest in their future

Farmland will only be acquired in major agricultural markets, which benefit from strong land titles and a stable political and legal environment, the spokesman said.

Acquisitions will be made using the funds generated by the issue of 300m shares offered at $1 each.

If the share offer succeeds, the funds will initially be used to purchase 18 parcels of farmland within the first nine months.

These cover a wide range of farm types including blueberry producing farms in southern Europe to nut growing farms on America’s west coast.

The aim is to provide investors with medium to long-term returns of 7 to 8%, from the leases and appreciation in the land’s value.

Trust chairman David Gray, said: “The Global Sustainable Farmland Income Trust opens the door into a new asset class for UK-listed investment company investors.

“Farmland has a historical track record of delivering superior risk-adjusted returns and is underpinned by macro-economic and demographic fundamentals such as a growing population, rising household income and changing diets.”

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