Rayonier Presents At Bank Of America/Merrill Lynch 2011 Industrials Conference - Conference Call Transcript

Call End:

Rayonier, Inc. ( RYN)

Bank of America/Merrill Lynch 2011 Industrials Conference

December 6, 2011 01:00 pm ET


Carl Kraus – Senior Vice President of Finance

Helen Rowan – Vice President, Strategic Planning and Communications

Andy Fricke – Manager, Investor Relations



Thanks for joining us. We’re very happy to have Rayonier here with us this afternoon. Representing the company is Carl Kraus, Senior Vice President of Finance. As you know, Carl has been with Rayonier since 2005. We’re also pleased to have Helen Rowan in the audience with us who heads Strategic Development, and Andy Fricke who assists Carl in the IR function. Without any further ado, Carl, please take it away.

Carl Krause

Good afternoon, thanks Mike. We’ll start off with a company profile that based on yesterday’s closing price we’re a $5 billion global forest products company with core operations in forest resources, real estate, and performance fibers. Annually we generate revenues of $1.4 billion and about half of our sales are outside the US to 40 different countries around the globe.

At our current dividend rate of $1.60 per annum we’re yielding approximately 4%. We are structured as a highly efficient real estate investment trust and we enjoy high investment-grade ratings from both Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s.

On the next page, looking at our company structure, you can see on the left-hand side of the chart that our timber assets are in the REIT and our performance fibers and certain of our real estate assets are in our taxable REIT subsidiary. And because of the strong financial dynamics of our TRS we’re able to house the majority of our debt in that entity.

On the next slide, looking at the cash contributions from the business units you’ll see a steady and growing EBIDTA contribution over time. However, when we look for example at the reddish bar, you’ll see that the forest resources is generating only about two-thirds of the EBIDTA that it did back in 2006 before the housing collapse. However the top line in our performance fibers segment, we’re experiencing over a doubling of EBIDTA since 2006.

Taking a look on the next slide at the dividend and the cash flow supporting that, we’ve had six dividend increases over the last seven years including an 11% dividend increase in September. The payout ratio this year on a full-year basis will be about 65%.

On the next slide, looking at our credit metrics, we have very conservative leverage and on a GAAP basis our debt to total capitalization is about 35%, 36%. Our debt to EBIDTA ratio is 1.7x and we have a very strong 10.8 interest coverage.

Reviewing our strategy on the next slide with respect to forest resources, the primary use of our strategic capital will be to grow our timberland portfolio over time in a very disciplined manner. We also have a continuous review of our timberland ownership to identify land that has higher and better use, or to identify land which is non-strategic which we will divest. From an operational point of view, our focus is to enhance the yield of every acre through advanced [silvocultral] practices.

Moving to our real estate segment, here we’re focused on monetizing our rural, higher and better–use land through sale of conservation and recreational land. And we’ll show you on a map in a few minutes there where we have land on the I-95 coastal corridor from Savannah down to Daytona, and here, while continuing to keep this land under active timber management we have gone through a land use change or entitlement process to enhance the future value of the property.

And in performance fibers, our focus is to maintain our global leadership in the cellulose specialty space and we do this through continued differentiation and with a focus on purity, consistency and reliability. We also in our Jessup Facility have a major capital improvement underway and we’re focused on an on-time and on-budget completion of that by 2013 – and we’ll get into more details about that project in a few minutes.

Moving on to the little bit deeper dive into the timberland segment, there are various desirable attributes including the fact that timberland assets have appreciated at a faster pace than inflation historically. Also there’s great flexibility with this asset class. If the markets are relatively soft you can defer harvest and continue to have biological growth; so biological growth while waiting for price improvement.

As I mentioned, one of our strategic focuses is to grow our timberland base over time and in 2011 we have completed the acquisition of approximately 300,000 acres of timberland. Looking at the map on the next page and then reviewing where we have our timberland ownership, in the Atlantic region which is Florida and Georgia, we control 1.1 million acres and this is primarily pine plantations. In our Gulf region we have approximately 750,000 acres and again, it’s mostly pine plantations. Moving to the Pacific Northwest, in Washington State we have nearly 400,000 acres of timberland and this is primarily hemlock and Doug Fir and then in Washington State have 128,000 acres, and this is mostly mixed hardwoods. We are also the managing partner and have a 26% equity interest in a New Zealand venture that controls 327,000 acres of [Radiata] pine plantations.

On the next slide, the main point here as I mentioned is that we have grown our timberland portfolio over time and will continue to grow in a disciplined manner; however it will be lumpy through the cycle. For example, in 2011 we will be adding to our timberland assets while in the prior several years we were a net seller. But importantly, if you take a look back to 2004 we had approximately 2.2 million acres under ownership and management and today we have about 2.7 million acres.

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