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Foreign investors offered an intensive course in forestland investment

Foreign investors offered an intensive course in forestland investment

Athens, Ga. – Foreign investors looking for a better place to invest their money can learn how trees grow both jobs and returns at an upcoming conference in London. The Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources’ Center for Forest Business has scheduled “International Forest Investment: An Executive Education Conference” in London on Nov. 10-11 to highlight global investment opportunities in forestland.

Bob Izlar, director of the Center for Forest Business, said the conference could be considered “Forest Investment 101.” “It’s the nuts and bolts on why forestland is an alternative investment class that’s worth a look,” Izlar said.

Forestland is considered an alternative investment, and forestland returns are not correlated to typical stock investments. They are also not subject to as much volatility as equity and commodity markets.

The Center for Forest Business focuses on the business and operational aspects as well as investment possibilities of forestry, according to Izlar. That is a message Warnell’s Center for Forest Business hopes to spread internationally. The center held a similar conference this past February in Munich, and more extensive conferences at Chateau Elán in 2004 in Northeast Georgia and again in 2007 at the Ritz-Carlton at Lake Oconee.

The London conference has a capacity of 120 people. It will be held at The Berkeley in London. The cost is $2,400 if registered by Nov. 3. After that, the cost to attend the two-day conference is $2,900. The Center for Forest Business plans to expand its offerings by holding other international conferences in Brazil, the Middle East and Eastern Europe.

“We’re not trying to tell investors they have to invest in timberland for their portfolio,” Izlar said. “We just want to give them the upside and downside of this alternative investment.”

The upside right now, Izlar explained, is “they can get a lot of bang for their Euro by buying timber in the U.S. and elsewhere.”

Another stateside conference has been set for March 18-20, at the Ritz-Carlton Lodge, Lake Oconee.

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