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Harvard Endowment Restructuring Sends Cows Packing


Harvard is milking all its assets to compensate for a dismal performance over the last few years. Harvard Management Co., the university’s development arm, is close to making a $70M deal to sell 8,500 acres of dairy farms and 5,500 cows it owns in New Zealand, the Wall Street Journal reports

Earlier this year, HMC announced it was spinning off its real estate investment team and was looking to sell $2.5B in assets. Cogent Partners was expected to market $1.6B of the endowment’s real estate and nearly $1B of venture capital and private equity investments. 

Harvard’s endowment has a $4B natural resources portfolio that includes vineyards in California and soybean and maize farms in Brazil. It spent nearly $40M over a decade to buy the New Zealand dairy farms and millions more on improvements. The sale is not expected to close for several months.