AMERICAN TIMBERLANDS COMPANY, is a vertically integrated holistic land investment management firm organized for the purpose of originating and managing forestland investments with diverse attributes and value-adding opportunities. ATC’s clients, partners, and investors recognize that, with the right management expertise, low risk land investments can yield higher returns than ordinary timberland investments.
The firm was founded in 2004, when the current principals, Thomas Rowland and Doug McMillan formed American Timberlands Company, LLC to acquire and manage 1.3 million acres of International Paper Company land located in the Southeastern US. At that time, Tom Rowland was owner/manager of Palmetto Land Investment Company, Inc. (“PLIC”). Mr. Rowland formed PLIC to identify, develop, and manage forestland investments. PLIC’s investment strategy was to acquire forestland with other value components that could be managed simultaneously and in addition to timber thereby providing additional return without increasing risk. Doug McMillan was the owner/manager of The McMillan Firm that provided financial and business administration advisory services to private equity backed early stage companies. In 2005, the co-founders of ATC merged their individual businesses to form the current company.
ATC’s original office was opened in 2005 in Columbia, SC, where the company’s corporate business continues to be conducted. In 2007, the company’s Operations office was opened in Pawleys Island, SC. The Pawleys Island location provides an efficient location for managing the company’s field operations. In 2011, ATC opened an office in Buckhead, near Atlanta, GA, where one of the company’s larger investors and several of the largest institutional forestland owners in the Southeastern US are headquartered.
To complement its value-adding investment strategy, ATC has built asset management and land services businesses which perform most of the forestry and land improvement activities required to execute ATC’s strategy. These businesses allow ATC to develop proprietary best practices, train analysts and operators to the highest performance standards, ensure alignment of interests with investors at every level of the management process, lower management costs, and strictly manage quality control to produce outcomes that generate higher investment returns.
The ATC platform has been built methodically through targeting more sophisticated investors and larger, more diversified investment portfolios. ATC’s assets under management have grown every year since the firm was founded. Since the firm’s strategy was originally developed through PLIC, ATC principals have invested more than $130 million.