B&C sells more than 10,000 inland acres

sjones@thesunnews.comMay 10, 2013 

— Burroughs & Chapin Co. Inc. has sold more than 10,000 acres since the first of the year, all but 116 acres of it to an Atlanta-based investment company.

Records at the Horry County Register of Deeds office show that Timbervest LLC bought 9, 985.04 acres for $18.9 million, a transaction recorded on Jan. 8.

B&C wouldn’t talk about the sale. Bill Boden, chief investment officer for Timbervest, said B&C presented his company the package of properties that it purchased. Tracts ranging in size from 1,119 acres to 17.25 acres stretch roughly from north of the U.S. 701/S.C. 22 intersection to southeast of U.S. 378 near the Marion County line.

Formed in 1995, Timbervest manages about 525,000 acres of timberland, timber-related assets and investments nationwide with a market value of more than $1.3 billion, according to the company website.

“We like to find very high quality, well-managed properties that are capable of growing a lot of fiber,” Boden said.

Boden said the B&C land was very well-managed and that his company normally selectively logs the land for a period of 10 to 13 years before selling it.

He said that some of the property, if suitable, could be converted into an environmental mitigation bank, where Timbervest would sell environmental credits on the land. When all is sold, he said the company would give the land to a conservancy organization to hold in perpetuity.

The company will consider offers to purchase if they come along.

“None of these properties are candidates for tree farming in a pure sense,” Boden said.

None will be clear cut with new growth planted for future cutting.

Boden said that since Timbervest was founded, it has purchased 25,000 acres elsewhere in South Carolina. The Horry County land is its easternmost land in the state.

Horry County Councilman Gary Loftus, director of the Center for Economic and Community Development at Coastal Carolina University, said he had no idea why B&C was selling the land.

But he surmised it wasn’t because the company needs the money, judging by its recent purchase of Barefoot Landing in North Myrtle Beach. B&C paid $43 million for the shopping and entertainment complex in a deal that closed in April.

In addition to Timbervest, other purchases of B&C land since the first of the year were Christopher Verta, who bought 70.64 acres for $176,700, and Ricky Jordan, who paid $107,325 for 45.8 acres.

Timbervest paid an average per acre price of $1,894 for the land it purchased.

Boden said the company is happy to be in Horry County.

“We want to be good neighbors,” he said.

Contact STEVE JONES at 444-1765.

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