July 22, 2015, Vancouver, British Columbia: Offsetters Climate Solutions Inc. (“OCS” or the “Company”) (TSX-V: COO) is pleased to report that it has completed the previously announced acquisition (the “Acquisition”) of certain assets of Forest Finance Service GmbH of Germany (“Forest Finance”) as detailed in the press release dated June 23, 2015. The Acquisition received final TSX Venture Exchange approval July 6, 2015 and all customary closing documents were completed July 21, 2015.
The Acquisition includes 100% of the equity of Forest Finest Consulting GmbH (“Forest Finest”) of Germany, which includes 100% of the CO2OL Natural Carbon Collection (“CO2OL”) brand and advisory business, and 15% of the equity of Forest Finance France SAS (“Forest France”). The integrated company combines two international leaders in sustainability consultancy and project development, creating a company focused on a suite of natural capital commodities and sectors including carbon, cocoa and timber. The Acquisition is expected to add approximately $1 million per year in revenues to the Company.
The amalgamated company will be an international advisory services provider, project developer and project investor, focused on a suite of agroforestry and carbon opportunities that produce high quality, sustainable commodities for the marketplace. The company will respond to the rapid growth in demand for sustainable commodities such as certified cocoa, a market which has grown by more than 700% over the last three years. Forest Finest’s specialty services and expertise in agroforestry are being integrated into Offsetters existing ecosystem services group, presently operating under the Era Ecosystem Services banner. The CO2OL business will complement Offsetters current carbon business, creating an international advisory and consultancy helping hundreds of clients understand, measure and reduce their carbon impact. The company will launch a new brand and consolidated services within the next two months.
Building on a twenty-year track record of sustainable agroforestry investment, the Company has identified a significant pipeline of approximately $100M of investable agroforestry projects in cocoa, timber, carbon and related sustainable commodities. Offsetters will endeavour to complete due diligence on these project opportunities and make initial investment decisions by the end of 2015.
Harry Assenmacher, CEO of Forest Finance Service GmbH, and Dirk Walterspacher, CEO of Forest Finest have joined the Board of Directors of the Company.
Forest Finest Consulting GmbH
Forest Finest is a leading land-use consultancy group with offices in Germany, Panama and Vietnam, advising project developers in the planning and successful management of sustainable forestry and agricultural projects worldwide. The team at Forest Finance specializes in the following key areas:
• Arid Areas
• Geographic Information Systems
The Forest Finest team is comprised of highly experienced experts possessing unique technical knowledge in their field of specialty. This team is further augmented by an international network of local experts and advisors in each jurisdiction where Forest Finest operates. The team is led by Dirk Walterspacher, who brings more than 10 years of experience in the development of varied land-use projects and voluntary carbon markets. In Latin American, Forest Finest is represented by German Rodriguez who brings 15 years of experience in strategic planning, clustering processes, micro finance and project management throughout Latin America, Europe and Africa. Notable team experts also include internationally respected cocoa scientist, Dr. Silke Elwers, the Senior Consultant for Cocoa & Agroforestry, Andreas Schnall, the Senior Consultant for Forestry & Land Use, and Julian Ekelhof, the Senior Carbon Management Consultant. Detailed biographies and accomplishments of the Forest Finance team can be found here: www.forestfinance.de/en/home/.
CO2OL Natural Carbon Collection
For nearly 20 years, CO2OL has offered companies solutions for effective realization of climate protection strategies. Their services include the calculation of carbon footprints, strategy development for carbon reduction, sale of carbon credits for compensation as well as marketing and communications for clients. Using CO2OL offsets, companies have been enabled to offer climate neutral goods and services. To date, the emissions of more than 500 events and conferences have been offset through CO2OL; amongst these events being the World Ice Hockey championships, Frankfurt Marathon, the Commerzbank General Assembly and more than 1 million carbon neutral concert visits. More information about the services and customers of CO2OL can be found here: www.co2ol.de/en/home/.
Forest Finance France SAS
Established in 2013, Forest Finance France SAS was modeled upon the same framework as Forest Finance Service GmbH, operating and servicing the French marketplace. Headquartered in Favars, France, Forest Finance France provides direct investment opportunities into forest and agro-forestry projects internationally. Leveraging the Forest Finance model and suite of investment opportunities, Forest Finance France has endeavoured to drive millions of euros into sustainable, profitable, land based assets which produce valuable, market-ready commodities.
“Closing this acquisition and bringing our teams together is a big milestone for the Company,” commented James Tansey, CEO of Offsetters. “We have assembled a vast team of international experts who expand our Company into new commodity classes, while further strengthening our current carbon and ecosystem expertise. Together, we provide the market with a very compelling service offering and the opportunity to access a variety of sustainable investment options that deliver both environmental benefit and profit for shareholders.”
James Tansey, Ph.D.
President and CEO
Offsetters Climate Solutions Inc.
About Forest Finance Service GmbH
The Forest Finance group is the leading forest direct investment provider in Europe with a forest and agro-forest area of over 16,000 hectares, more than 15,000 customers, investments amounting to roughly 100 million USD, and more than 20 years of experience in the development of ecological forest and agro-forest investments. In 2003, Forest Finance established The Tree Savings Plan, which allows investors to make sustainable investments in ecologically renewable raw materials, combined with financial returns. More than 6,000 TreeSavers save forests on a regular basis through this program. Additionally, Forest Finance offers other innovative programs such as CacaoInvest, GreenAcacia and WoodstockInvest. Forest Finance has planted ecologically mixed forests in Panama since the 1990’s, and has expanded development to Colombia, Peru and Vietnam, converting the value of these certified and sustainably managed forests into economic and ecological investment products. For more information, please visit www.forestfinance.de/en/home/.
About Forest Finest Consulting GmbH
Forest Finest Consulting is a leading consultancy service provider for sustainable land use projects. With a highly qualified core team and a wide network of leading experts, we assist companies, impact investors, non-governmental and public organizations in the development, implementation, management and certification of forestry, agroforestry and carbon forestry projects worldwide. As a partner of the Forest Finance Group, Forest Finest Consulting has a substantial track-record not only in feasibility studies and research, but in real projects, improving the compatibility of economic success and positive social and ecological impacts. For more information, please visit www.forestfinestconsulting.com.
Corporate climate protection is a process – and CO2OL is your partner, showing you the first steps and a successful strategy. Since 1998, CO2OL has offered concrete solutions and products for an effective realisation of climate protection strategies to companies and individuals. In accordance with the CO2OL principle, we offer a service portfolio ranging from the determination of carbon footprints to carbon reduction and compensation measures to green communication. All of these measures complement each other and are designed to form a comprehensive climate protection strategy. This is a big challenge, but also a great opportunity for the successful future of your company. For more information, please visit www.co2ol.de/en/home/.
About Offsetters Climate Solutions Inc.
Offsetters is Canada’s largest and most diversified carbon management solutions company. Its team of industry leaders specializes in the origination, development and commercialization of high-quality carbon offset projects, and through a comprehensive offering of sustainability consultancy services Offsetters helps organizations understand, reduce and offset their climate impact. A merger of ERA Carbon Offsets and Offsetters, Offsetters is based in Vancouver, Canada and has worked with over 150 of the world’s most prestigious organizations including Aimia, Vancity, lululemon athletica, Catalyst Paper, Harbour Air, HSE – Entega, and Shell Canada Limited. Offsetters is publicly listed company on the TSX Venture Exchange (TSX-V:COO) and in Frankfurt:9EA. For more information, please visit us at www.offsetters.ca.
For further information, please contact:
Offsetters Climate Solutions Inc.
Suite 1000 – 675 West Hastings Street,
Vancouver BC, V6B 1N2
FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS AND DISCLAIMERS
This news release contains certain forward-looking statements and information (collectively, “forward-looking statements”) within the meaning of applicable Canadian securities laws, including, without limitation, the planned acquisition by the Company of the assets described above and the timing thereof; the effect of the acquisition on the Company including the expected strengthening of the Company’s position in the carbon management solutions and global agroforestry industry providing the Company with an expanded footprint; the nature of expected synergies; the expected market; the anticipated accretive nature of the transaction; and the amount and nature of the final consideration. Forward-looking statements, which may be identified by words including, without limitation, “will”, “anticipated”, “expected”, “to create”, “to make”, “to join”, “look forward”, and other similar expressions, are intended to provide information about management’s current plans and expectations regarding the Acquisition.
Although the Company believes that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are reasonable, such statements involve risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results or events to differ materially from those anticipated and no assurance can be given that these expectations will be realized, and undue reliance should not be placed on such statements. Risk factors that could cause actual results or events to differ materially from the forward-looking statements include, without limitation, that the Company’s assumptions in making forward-looking statements may prove to be incorrect; the Acquisition may not close as anticipated or at all; that required regulatory approvals may not be obtained; risks relating to the satisfaction of the conditions to closing the Acquisition; that future results may vary from historical results; and that market competition may affect the outcome of the Acquisition and the business, results and financial condition of the Company post-Acquisition.
Certain material factors or assumptions are applied in making the forward-looking statements, including, without limitation, the assumption that future results, including without limitation, sales and financial results, will be similar to past results; the expectation related to future general economic and market conditions; the assumption that no adverse material changes will occur in the business to be acquired or the markets in general; the assumption that all required regulatory approvals will be obtained; and the assumption that the timing of events will occur as anticipated. Forward-looking statements and information are based on the beliefs, assumptions and expectations of the Company’s management on the date of this news release, and the Company does not assume any obligation to update any forward-looking statement or information should those beliefs, assumptions or expectations, or other circumstances change, except as required by securities law.
Any websites referenced or linked in this press release are for convenience only and the Company does not endorse such websites nor assume any liability for the information contained therein. The information contained in this press release regarding Forest Finance Service GmbH, ForestFinest Consulting GmbH, Forest Finance France SAS and the business of CO₂OL and their boards, investors and management team has been provided solely by Forest Finance and the Company disclaims any liability with respect to such information.
NEITHER TSX VENTURE EXCHANGE NOR ITS REGULATION SERVICES PROVIDER (AS THAT TERM IS DEFINED IN THE POLICIES OF THE TSX VENTURE EXCHANGE) ACCEPTS RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE ADEQUACY OR ACCURACY OF THIS RELEASE.