AP3 invests E38m in new forestry group

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SWEDEN – Tredje AP-fonden has bought a 4.9% stake in new Swedish forestry group Bergvik Skog for around 350 million crowns (38 million euros).

The 15.5 billion-euro AP3 said in a statement that it has bought shares and subordinated notes in the firm, whose holdings consist of Swedish forestry previously owned by Stora Enso and Korsnäs.

“This investment is a part of a strategy to diversify the fund’s holdings of real estate assets,” the fund said. “AP3’s real estate holdings previously consisted entirely of equity in AP Fastigheter.” It added that the target weighting for real estate in the fund’s reference portfolio is 8.5%.

“Our analysis shows that timberland is an attractive asset from a return and risk diversification perspective,” said AP3’s deputy chief executive Niklas Ekvall.

Bergvik Skog manages 1.8 million hectares of forestry and has a total of around 50 employees.

AP3 last week said it cut the size of its 24.7 billion-crown US mandate by 2.5% to boost its exposure to Asia.

Bergvik Skog will retain existing environmental certifications and sustainable forestry policies under its new ownership. All the group’s forest holdings are certified according to Forest Stewardship Council guidelines.

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