Forest Planning is an essential element in the process of achieving successful, long-term management solutions to meet the objectives of a landowner, as well as work with management constraints. ForesTech assists clients by fully evaluating all of these specific factors in the preparation of detailed, long-term sustainable management plans that accomplish all of their goals.
ForesTech developed and fully utilizes a suite of proprietary growth and yield and harvest planning software known as SiMS (Simulator for Managed Stands), which is widely recognized as an industry standard. Our software has been used by timber investment management organizations (TIMOs), real estate investment trusts (REITs) and sophisticated privately held land companies with over 10 million acres of timberland under management.
We have incorporated years of research and scientifically-based processes to provide the most advanced volumetric, growth and yield, and silvicultural and historical response models, which are unmatched by any other provider. We continually improve our modeling capabilities through new advancements from our research team, as well as the expansion of our modeling capabilities to areas outside the southern United States.
Timberland management decisions and investment valuations require highly accurate inventory data. Inventories are too expensive to conduct annually, so updates are necessary to estimate current tree sizes from inventories conducted one to several years prior to the current time. ForesTech’s inventory updates incorporate all of the detailed elements of the original inventory data and maximize the full benefit of the inventory to provide the most accurate representation of current stand dynamics, product yields and future potential product yields. Our methods result in significant savings over the traditional approach of conducting costly inventories across whole properties every 5 years by accurately projecting data forward in time to provide highly accurate stand dynamic information and product yields for any future point in time.
ForesTech utilizes all details of the inventory on an individual tree level basis to perform inventory updates, which include specifics such as multiple product stopper heights, future product potential and minimum product length requirements. As markets and product specifications change, these changes are incorporated to accurately project the inventory data forward to a current or future time period.
ForesTech’s proprietary, scientifically based inventory update methods provide significantly more accurate data on year to year product transfers than other approaches used in the industry. These approaches most often involve applying an average overall growth factor, or throw away valuable tree quality and diameter distribution information from the actual inventory. Future diameter distributions are estimated in these approaches from regional models, resulting in diameter distributions inconsistent with the distribution originally measured, and contain no tree quality information. Our technology not only reflects the growth of the individual tree, but also models product transfer from year to year based upon the individual tree characteristics and quality, as well as implementation of silvicultural treatments.
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ForesTech’s proprietary harvest scheduling system provides the same high levels of accuracy and sophistication as is characteristic of all other systems we have developed. Our systems leverage the stand level details down to individual tree level inputs from an inventory and incorporate this information throughout the harvest planning optimizations. This ensures accuracy and consistency throughout the entire process – from the initial cruise workup, then to the inventory update, and ultimately to the harvest scheduling optimization. Our software was developed to provide the most accurate, field-proven management planning tools in the industry.
The black box applications used by other firms make use of relatively little information, are inaccurate at the stand level and limited in the handling of terminal values, resulting in poor planning solutions and inferior investment performance. ForesTech’s solutions are flexible and maintain the highest possible levels of stand information to provide the most accurate harvest scheduling plan for our clients, as well as a means to maximize their investment performance on properties ranging from a few hundred acres to over 1 million acres. Our harvest scheduling plans include a schedule of management and harvest activities, a means of budgeting for those activities, and are synced with our geospatial database, providing clients with online access to our GIS mapping viewer for a visual display of the schedule of activities for their property.
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Discounted Cash Flow Analysis & Timber Volume Projections
Forest managers contemplating timber management actions need the ability to evaluate alternative activity decisions objectively. ForesTech’s proprietary, biologically consistent methodologies project volumes and product mixes from the current time into the future, year by year. These evaluations are customized to reflect results of any combination of management decisions, such as timing and volume of thinnings and silvicultural treatments.
ForesTech’s financial analysis tools are invaluable in the management decision making process due to the ability to evaluate the present value of the future value increases versus the cost of treatments to achieve those values. In addition to the superior results of our harvest scheduling, our cutting edge technology also provides unprecedented accuracy in appraisal valuation, due to the ability to evaluate timberland on a stand basis, rather than crude spreadsheet estimates of broad age and site class strata.
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Divestiture and Acquisition Analysis
ForesTech has extensive experience in conducting acquisition and divestiture analyses for investment organizations buying and selling large timberland properties. Our skilled, ready field staff who conduct our on the ground work, and our team of highly skilled forest analysts who perform data and mapping services, allow us to evaluate projects in a short time period, even those with very large acreage. Clients also receive the additional benefit of ForesTech’s advanced proprietary growth and yield and discounted cash flow analyses for their acquisition and divestiture analyses.
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