116 Farms and 68,000 Acres: Farmland Partners Grows Portfolio

May 6, 2015 12:00 PM
116 Farms and 68,000 Acres: Farmland Partners Grows Portfolio

Farmland Partners, the ag-focused public real estate company, is adding acres left and right.

According to its latest financial figures, the Denver-based company now controls 116 farms totaling 68,439 acres in 10 states. (Those figures include nine farms (and more than 15,000 acres) currently under contract as of May 5.)

It represents quite a growth curve for Farmland Partners, which went public in April 2014 with a $53.2 million IPO. At the time, the company had just four tenants in two states.

Barely a year later, the firm reaches from the Corn Belt into the Mississippi Delta, Southeast U.S. and the High Plains. The net value of its real estate assets? $179 million as of March 31, when the first quarter ended.

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As Farmland Partners’ portfolio has grown, so has its rental income. While same-property rent only inched up $1 year-over-year in the first quarter (to $361 per acre), total rental income jumped 219% to $2 million.

Overall, Farmland reported $199.5 million in assets and $116 million in liabilities in the first quarter. It also posted a dividend of $.116 per share.

Company executives are also starting to explore potential economies of scale for Farmland and its business partners. CEO Paul Pittman said that the firm has “started to actively recruit vendors and tenants to participate in our volume purchasing program, which will reduce costs for our farmers in the 2016 crop year."

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Spell Check

Columbia, MO
5/7/2015 08:04 AM

  There is also a Farmland LP , not publicly traded yet that has 6750 acres, $50 million in assets. They are buying traditional farmland and converting it to land that can be used for organic production - this one appears to be creating much more Wall Street buzz.

Palm Beach Gardens, FL
7/20/2015 10:25 AM

  Interesting article. I look forward to seeing what happens with this company. Do I believe they got the best deals possible on the land they bought? Not really....I guess depending on the location of the land. Buying land is super easy as long as you know what to look for and what to consider. I have found some great deals over the years and have a goal to own one piece of land in all 50 states, no matter the size. For great deals and always changing inventory look at http://www.cheaplands.com

Jeff Farnik
New Raymer, CO
5/9/2015 04:22 PM

  My grandmother told me they left "the old country" (Croatia, circa 1911) because there was no hope of acquiring additional land, as the aristocratic landowners had it all tied up in their large estates. It seems as though, after over 100 years, we've come full circle: Small farmers don't have a snowball's chance in hell of adding to their land base. It seems that farmland ownership has become the exclusive purview of the "landed aristocracy", investor groups, pension funds, or the Mormon Church. As an example, I recently attended a dryland farm ground auction for land located on the opposite side of the county from where I farm. While I didn't really expect to be able to buy any of that land for what I could pay for it, I thought at least I wouldn't be competing against any of the "greedy grabbers" from my area. During a break between the bidding rounds, I went out and who did I see but two of the "greedy grabbers" who already each control around 10,000 acres in my area. If I went 60 miles away, would they still be there? Maybe not, but then you'd have the GG's from that area to contend with. Most of the big-acre farm families are purportedly "God-fearing and church going", although I often think it is more to be socially acceptable than to foster true spirituality. I wonder how many of them have ever read Isaiah 5:8: "Woe unto them that join house to house, that lay field to field, till there be no place, that they may be placed alone in the midst of the earth!" Think about that the next time you relieve yourself on your small-acre neighbor and take away a quarter from him that would really help him be financially viable, just to satisfy your own voracious and insatiable greed. Do you secretly worship at the alter of Gordon Gecko ("Greed is good")? Remember these two simple truths: 1. He who dies with the most land still dies, and 2. You can't take it with you. Make an investment in Eternity, and give the small guy a chance. It pays BIG dividends.


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