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Superfund buys first farm

Wednesday 2nd February 2011

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The New Zealand Superannuation Fund has bought its first farm under a new rural land strategy.

The fund was the 100% purchaser of the dairy property in west Otago, about 100km west of Dunedin, the fund guardians said today.

Under the globally-focused rural land strategy, they were aiming to own or part own a portfolio of farms in this country.

It is expected that between $300 million and $500 million of the fund would be invested in rural land over five years, with all activities up to the farm gate in major food-producing regions in the developed world considered.

Along with buying the west Otago property, the fund guardians announced today they had appointed dairy farming management and consultancy company FarmRight as an investment manager.

Guardians' general manager investments Matt Whineray said FarmRight had been appointed after an extensive due diligence process, because of its experience, track record, and its strengths in risk management and in adding investment value through making operational improvements to dairy farms.

FarmRight chief executive Jim Lee said the superfund's long term investment approach was well suited to dairy farming and to FarmRight's long term investment approach.

"The guardians' first purchase is a quality farm, it was acquired for a good price and we believe there is considerable potential for us to work together to add value," Lee said.



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