*adds extra information and comment from Sitra, the Finnish Innovation Fund.
Dasos Timberland Fund II, a Finnish fund providing exposure to global forestry assets, held its final close on €234 million in July – more than double the size of its €100 million predecessor.
It held a €73 million first close in January 2013 and had several interim closes since.
The 12-year fund was originally targeting €300 million, according to documents from the European Investment Bank, which committed €30 million. Other European investors included Sitra, the €665 million Finnish Innovation Fund.
Alongside Fund II, Dasos also signed a “sizeable co-investment” agreement with one investor, according to Johanna Lindross, partner at Dasos Capital, the fund manager.
“The Fund II prospectus allows co-investments for all investors,” said Lindross. “Some investors seem to be more interested in co-investments than others.”
Sitra’s €4 million commitment in early 2013 was its first allocation to timber and agri and the fund has not invested further in the asset classes since, according to Sami Tuhkanen, director at Sitra.
Sitra invested in the fund in an effort to find investment opportunities relating to its ‘Landmarks’ programme – investing with ‘meaning’.
“Sustainable forestry is an example of a new business model that creates value for rural areas in Finland and elsewhere,” Tuhkanen told Agri Investor.
The investment was also way to help diversify the institution’s private equity portfolio – where Dasos II was allocated – that is mostly made up of early stage private equity investments and venture capital funds, added Tuhkanen.
Dasos raised the majority of the funds in-house but did use an undisclosed placement agent during the final negotiation with one investor, according to Lindross. The GP commitment equates to 2 percent of the total fund size.
The 12-year fund has a four year deployment period which started after the first close, and will invest 70 percent of the portfolio into European timberland assets and the remainder outside of Europe in regions such as Southeast Asia; Dasos has a presence in Singapore where Lindross is based. The fund has two, one-year extensions and plans to make six to 10 investments, according to the EIB filing. Lindross would not disclose the fee structure.
Dasos recently hired Pedro Ochoa as senior advisor, an international consultant with 27 years’ experience in the forestry and agricultural sector. Ochoa most recently worked at the European Investment Bank as technical advisor, according to LinkedIn.