Bell Gully has been and continues to be at the forefront of forestry investment and ownership in New Zealand.

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​​We provide legal advice on acquisitions and disposals of forestry assets, and forestry and wood processing investment generally. This means we understand the forestry industry in New Zealand – the opportunities, risks and challenges. 

Our outstanding track record of scoping and executing large scale acquisitions and sales of forestry assets in New Zealand means we have been involved in almost every major forestry transaction which has occurred in New Zealand in the last two decades. We use the insights gained from this extensive experience to deliver commercial, pragmatic advice to our clients.

As part of our agribusiness practice, we advise on the sale and purchase of forestry assets and sawmilling and wood processing assets, the establishment of joint ventures, planning and environmental applications, forestry management agreements and log and timber sales, and Crown forestry licences and other cutting rights. We also advise on related matters such as international​ investment approvals, licences and leases, emissions trading, roading and access agreements, corporate, securities, tax and resource management.

Sale of Carter Holt Harvey's pulp, paper and packaging business
Advised Rank Group on the sale of Carter Holt Harvey's pulp, paper and packaging business to Oji Holdings Corporation and Innovation Network Corporation of Japan for NZ$​ 1.037 billion.

Mangakahia forest sale
Acted for a fund advised by Global Forest Partners on the sale of its interest in the Mangakahia forest. 

Tenon sale of forestry estate
Advised Tenon (then Fletcher Challenge Forests) on the sale of its extensive North Island forestry estate to Kiwi Forests Group and a consortium of North American forestry investors including Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan and Hancock Natural Resources Group and on the sale of its structural sawmills to Carter Holt Harvey. 

Nelson Forests joint venture
Advised Nelson Forests on its acquisition of Weyerhauser Company's 51% interest in a Nelson Forest joint venture and the remaining 49% of the joint venture from RII New Zealand Forests.

Hancock Natural Resource Group sale
Advised Carter Holt Harvey on one of the largest and most complex forestry transactions ever carried out in New Zealand - the sale of essentially all of its forestry interests, including approximately 260,000 ha of forestry estate, to US-based forestry manager Hancock Natural Resource Group. 

Matariki Forests sale
Advised Carter Holt Harvey on the sale of 94,300 ​ha of forest estate and related assets in New Zealand to Matariki Forests, an incorporated joint venture between Rayonier and RREEF Infrastructure, the global infrastructure arm of Deutsche Asset Management. We subsequently acted for RREEF on the disposal of its joint venture interest.

Rayonier forest acquisitions
Advised on Rayonier's acquisition of a substantial forest estate from the New Zealand Government for approximately US$200 million during the privatisation of state-owned forests and on establishing various joint ventures with US institutional investors and others.

Kaingaroa Timberlands Partnership (KTP) investments
Acting for KTP on its ongoing investment in the Kaingaroa forest, in which New Zealand Superannuation Fund, PSP Investments and Māori interests are partners.

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  • Haydn Wong

    Partner Auckland
  • Andrew Petersen

    Partner Auckland
  • David Chisnall

    Partner Wellington
  • Simon Watt

    Partner Wellington