Blue Wolf Capital and Atlas Holdings’ shared venture, Northern Pulp Nova Scotia, spent $82 billion to buy Canadian forestland from Neenah Paper Inc.
The provincial government there is supporting the deal with a $75 million loan; the deal is expected to close by late March.
Blue Wolf managing partner Adam Blumenthal worked on the deal, along with Atlas managing partner Timothy Fazio.
Neenah Paper Inc. sold assets in 2008 that were used to form Northern Pulp; today, the company employs more than 200 people and maintains Nova Scotia operations. It is expected the company will remain acquisitive in the paper, pulp and forestry space. Neenah Paper, which is based in Georgia and listed on the NYSE, saw its shares trade up more than six percent in mid-Monday trading. The company’s shares have yet to fully rebound from the decline in value they suffered in 2007 and 2008.
Private equity plays into natural resources spaces have emerged over the last 12 months.
MetalMark Capital paired with Northeastern Natural Energy to pursue natural gas drilling and exploration opportunities in the Northeast; MetalMark has also partnered with US Infrastructure to seek opportunities in Texas. Additionally, North Coast Minerals, a mining and natural resources platform company, was developed with the backing of Resilience Capital Partners, a Cleveland, Ohio-based PE firm. PE shops not seeking to dig deep to strike it rich are content working in the data space that supports it; GTCR launched ReSurge Ltd., a seismic data licensing company, that will become acquisitive.
Calls seeking comment were not acknowledged by press time.