By Jack Stubbs
Following its acquisition of 36,900 acres of of forest land in Southwest Oregon and Western Washington for a total of $113.9 million at the beginning of 2018, Poulsbo, Washington-based Pope Resources recently purchased more land in the Puget Sound region.
On Wednesday, October 24th, the company, through its private equity timber fund, ORM Timber Fund IV(REIT) Inc., purchased twenty-five parcels of vacant land in Pierce County, Washington, for $30.5 million, or approximately $1,220,000 per parcel, Pierce County records show. The seller of the parcels was Hancock Natural Resource Group Inc., a manager of timberland properties based in Charlotte, North Carolina.
The buyer did not respond to requests for comment about the transaction in time for the publishing of this story.
The sale was for twenty-five individual parcels of forest land designated as “land and improvements,” according to public documents. Public records do not indicate specific addresses for the parcels in Pierce County.
A publicly traded limited partnership, Pope Resources and its subsidiaries Olympic Resource Management and Olympic Property Group, own or manage 245,000 acres of timberland and development property in Washington, Oregon, and California, according to the company’s web site. Some of the company’s properties in the Puget Sound region include Harbor Hill, a residential community in Gig Harbor; Wright Creek, a 270-acre master-planned community in Bremerton which is zoned for industrial, office, retail, medical; and the Port Gamble property in Kitsap County.
Preceding the recent acquisition of twenty-five acres in Pierce County, Pope Resources has been present in the Puget Sound region market over the last few months. In early February, the company announced that its private equity timber fund, ORM Timber Fund IV, completed two acquisitions—for 20,000 acres of land in southwest Oregon and 16,900 acres in western Washington—totaling $113.9 million from Hancock Timber Resource Group Inc.
Hancock Forest Management is the property management subsidiary of the Hancock Timber Resource Group (HTRG) and is one of the world’s largest timberland investment managers for institutional investors, according to the company’s web site. The company combines forest management techniques with environmental stewardship in its client services and focuses on the day-to-day timberland management services for HTRG’s investors on approximately three million acres across the United States and New Zealand.
In mid-February, Hancock Forest Management sold 56 parcels of vacant land near Rimrock County Park in Pierce County for $73 million to Beutler Exchange Group LLC, a 1031 exchange company based in Lake Oswego, Oregon.