National Employment Savings Trust, London, is looking for timberland investment managers as it adds the asset class for participants, it said in an emailed statement Sept. 22.
Stephen O'Neill, head of private markets for NEST, said the £31.5 billion ($38.7 billion) defined contribution multiemployer master trust has been exploring ways to add natural capital investments as it diversifies its private markets allocation, work toward net zero targets and take advantage of complex opportunities.
"Timberland ticks all of these boxes," O'Neill said in the email. "The performance of timberland speaks for itself. It's offered stable total returns underpinned by strong cash yields and should play a complementary role in our portfolio alongside our other illiquid investments."
Bidders must have a strong focus on sustainable forest management, and enough scale for Nest to maintain a consistent portfolio allocation, he said.
A NEST spokesman said they hope to announce one or two successful bidders by next spring. The amount has not been confirmed but is likely to represent roughly 2% of total assets, and will depend on responses and best fits, he said.