Forestland to sell for $137 million
International Paper has signed
a definitive agreement with The Lyme Timber Company for the benefit
of the Lyme Forest Fund L.P. to sell approximately 275,000 acres
of forestland in New York’s Adirondack Park for approximately
$137 million. The sale of forestlands is part of International
Paper’s previously announced transformation plan to focus
on uncoated papers and industrial and consumer packaging globally.
The Lyme Timber Company is a New Hampshire Limited Partnership
organized in 1976 to invest in forestland and rural real estate
for its own account and in partnership with other investors.
This agreement substantially
completes International Paper’s sales of its United States
forestlands identified as part of the company’s transformation
Anticipated proceeds from this
and other recently announced sale agreements, totaling about 5.7
million acres, are approximately $6.6 billion. International Paper
is retaining approximately 830,000 acres, some of which may be
later sold to maximize the value of the land.
Lyme Timber will continue to
provide wood fiber to International Paper’s Ticonderoga,
New York paper mill for 20 years. The forestlands will continue
to be sustainably managed and third-party certified under the
requirements of the Sustainable Forestry Initiative® Standard.
In conjunction with the sale
agreement, Lyme Timber will assume a 257,000-acre conservation
easement agreement IP negotiated with the State of New York and
The Conservation Fund in 2004. The first phase of the easement,
comprising about 40,000 acres, closed late last year. The remaining
phases of the easement are expected to close throughout 2006 as
funds become available.