Gladstone acquires 1,317 acres from RLH-backed Horizon Vineyards

Horizon is an affiliate of Denver-headquartered Resource Land Holdings that sold vineyards in Washington and Oregon to the Nasdaq-listed REIT in a $37m deal last month.

Gladstone Land acquired 1,317 vineyard acres in Washington and Oregon late last month in a $37.3 million deal with Resource Land Holdings-backed Horizon Vineyards.

Horizon is a collaboration between RLH and Sagemoor Vineyards, which is owned by Naches, Washington-headquartered fruit growing, packing and shipping company Allan Brothers.

As part of the transaction, Gladstone has entered into several long-term, triple-net vineyard leases with an unidentified grower.

In a statement, Nasdaq-listed Gladstone’s president and chief executive David Gladstone highlighted that the properties will contribute to diversifying the geographic regions and crop types within its farmland portfolio. The tenant is currently implementing a gradual replanting plan designed to keep grape varieties in line with customer demand, he added.

“We are very pleased to acquire these vineyards with strong water resources,” said Gladstone managing director Tony Marci in the statement.

Sagemoor supplies large and small wineries in the US northwest with wine grapes from five full-production vineyards totaling more than 1,100 acres. It currently grows 18 varietals that include Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Chardonnay and others.

RLH is a natural resources-focused real estate investment firm founded in 1998 that has carried out investments in agriculture, timber, mining and ecological offsets. The firm, which did not return messages seeking further detail, is headquartered in Denver and typically makes equity and debt investments of between $15 million and $100 million, according to its website.

The site shows the firm’s first investment vehicle, Resource Land Fund I, was capitalized with $20 million in December 2001, and was followed by $51 million for Fund II in 2003; $175 million in March 2006 for Fund III and $316 million for Fund IV in August 2010. According to a May filing, the firm currently advises only Resource Land Fund V and managed $309.8 million on behalf of high-net-worth individuals, pension plans, endowments and other investors as of December 2021.

Other vehicles affiliated with RLH include Citrus Land Holdings I and Alco Land Holdings, according to the May filing. The RLH website describes a recent investment with a Florida citrus operation beginning its estate-planning wherein RLH worked with a “discreet industry professional” to structure a sale/leaseback that included a split of profits with operating partners.

“RLH was able to acquire a premium property that was never presented to the market and structure an agreement that placed the previous owners and RLH on the same side of the table with compatible economic interests and objectives,” the firm wrote.

In March 2015, an RLH affiliate called Arkansas River Farms acquired 14,600 farmland acres in Colorado’s Arkansas Valley from Denver-headquartered water and wastewater services provider Pure Cycle for $53 million. In January 2016, RLH reportedly acquired 5,880 coffee and ranchland acres in Hawaii from Lehman Brothers Holdings for $10.4 million.

In the July statement announcing the vineyard sales, RLH founding partner Joe Leininger said the firm had worked with Gladstone on “multiple occasions within the past year.”