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In brief: Gunn holds first close on Aussie farmland fund

The firm has previously said it will link the fund's fees to sustainability goals.

Gunn Agri Partners has reached a A$100 million ($71 million; €63 million) first close for its Transforming Farming Platform, the fund manager’s second investment vehicle.

The firm secured a commitment of A$50 million from the Australian government’s Clean Energy Finance Corporation as well as another A$50 million commitment from the open-ended SDG Kempen Farmland Fund.

Affiliate title Agri Investor has confirmed that Gunn Agri Partners also held a first close on the platform following confirmation of the two commitments.

The vehicle, formerly known as the Sustainable Cropland Transformation Strategy, launched in 2019. Gunn Agri Partners declined to comment on further fundraising targets or timelines, although managing partner Bradley Wheaton told Agri Investor in September 2020 that the firm was targeting A$250 million to A$350 million for the vehicle.

The strategy focuses on making capital investment in underperforming small-to-medium-sized farms across Australia’s east and west coasts to lift productivity and optimise land use by integrating row crops, grazing, carbon sequestration, biodiversity conservation and other natural capital assets at an institutional investment scale.

Gunn Agri Partners has said it will tie performance fees to the sustainability performance of its assets, including potential elements such as soil carbon levels and carbon emissions.