While starting from humble beginnings, the company gradually developed and today operates with over 900 square kilometers of forestry; although a variety of forestry is grown on this land the overwhelming majority are eucalyptus trees. This large portion of land functions to make Gunns Limited Tasmania’s largest private landholder. In terms of company size and corporate structure, the organization employees approximately 1200 employees and is the largest exporter of woodchip operations in the entire Southern Hemisphere. Recently, the organization has undergone a significant restructuring, focusing almost entirely on the construction of a $2.3 billion dollar Tamay Valley (Bell Bay Area) Pulp mill. This pulp mill will have significant affects on the investment viability of Gunns Limited.
Within the context of this corporate structure, this report constitutes a comprehensive analysis on the viability of investing in Gunns Limited. Particular attention is given to the Bell Bay Area Pulp mill as this constitutes the main are of organizational concern for current and future revenue. Specific elements of consideration are political and regulatory factors, economic considerations, demographic and socio-cultural issues, technological factors, and CSR issues. These areas of consideration are followed by a conclusion and finally a recommendation regarding the company’s investment potential.
Currently the organization is seeking to undergo a partnership both with government agencies and an outside profit sharing entity. While it remains uncertain recent financial forecasters have noted that financial announcement foreshadow a soon to be announcement of a financing partner for the organization’s recent expansion measures. In addition to political restructuring relevant from an investment perspective, Gunns Limited has established a side organization – Southern Star Corporation – as a means of further differentiating the organization for greater efficiency; ultimately Southern Star Corporation will constitute 49% equity in the upcoming Bell Bay Pulp mill, a percentage open to potential investors. In terms of the organization’s current major business venture, the Bay Area Pulp mill, there has emerged a considerable amount of regulatory objections from both political and environmental groups. One of the most prominent objections has been raised by the Wilderness Society who has conceivably objected to the construction of the mill based on the grounds that it will require significant destruction to Tasmanian forestry. Even while the organization is motivated by environmental concerns, their objections raise significant questions for potential Gunn’s investors as strong points have been raised regarding the project’s overall viability. The comprehensive objections of the Wilderness society have functioned through appealing directly to government agencies responsible for funding the pulp mill. The objections have constituted claims that in funding the pulp mill, the government will be contributing to inflation, as the enterprise will largely be unprofitable (Report questions pulp mill benefits, 2008). Ultimately, this battle between Green