As the ranching industry evolves, so too do the opportunities for investors. In this episode of the Ranch Investor podcast, Chris Rawley from Harvest Returns, Jesse Nelson from Southern Idaho’s American Beef Ranch, and Colter DeVries, General Partner and Owner of Ranch Investor, discuss the changing dynamics of ranch investments and how companies like Harvest Returns and Ranch Investor are paving the way for a new era of ranching.
The Harvest Returns Model
Chris Rawley is the owner of Harvest Returns, an equity crowdfunding platform that offers investors an opportunity to invest in ranching. At its core, Harvest Returns seeks to bridge the gap between ranchers in need of capital and investors looking to put money in the agricultural sector. Depending on the rancher’s needs and the specific project, Harvest Returns can either lend the capital raised from its investors or purchase an equity stake in a ranch.
Chris said that Harvest Returns has a rigorous vetting progress. Of the many who approach them for funding, only about 3% make it onto their platform. This ensures that investors are presented with only the most viable and promising opportunities. Once a rancher is onboarded, there’s a 70% chance they’ll successfully navigate through due diligence and secure funding.
Furthermore, Chris emphasized the alignment of values between the platform’s investors and the ranching projects. Despite the rise of plant-based food movements, Harvest Returns’ investors have shown a clear preference for traditional ranching.
“Our investors, they like cattle. They want to invest in ranchers that are producing cattle and sheep and ruminant animals,” Chris proudly stated.
Jesse Nelson’s Journey
Jesse Nelson’s story is a testament to the potential of innovative ranch investment platforms. Having purchased a ranch property from his grandparents, Jesse faced challenges in securing traditional bank financing due to the extended timeline of grass-fed and finished beef production.
“Grass-fed and finished beef takes that extra year on them,” Jesse explained. “Cattle, you know, 20 to 24 months to be butcherable. The bank doesn’t want to wait.”
Through Harvest Returns, Jesse was able to secure the necessary funding, allowing him to continue his family’s legacy and expand his operations.
Ranch Investor’s DPP Program
While Harvest Returns offers a unique model, Ranch Investor’s DPP program provides another avenue for investors.
Ranch management comes with many nuances, and Ranch Investor’s team of experts backed by Colter DeVries’ ranch experience, are prepared to ensure the successful management of all syndicated ranches.
Ranch Investor focuses on ensuring that ranches are not only managed by those skilled in the day-to-day operations but also by competent business managers who can drive profitability.
With the burden of management taken care of, Limited Partners are free to passively earn and enjoy the ranch as they please.
Takeaways for Investors
- Diverse Investment Opportunities: From cattle and sheep to wineries and mushroom farms, platforms like Harvest Returns offer a wide range of investment opportunities. Meanwhile, Ranch Investor offers investors the opportunity to earn and experience the cowboy lifestyle and breathtaking landscapes without the responsibilities.
- Higher Margins with Direct-to-Consumer Models: As Chris Rawley pointed out, selling direct to consumers, whether online or via farmer’s markets, can yield higher margins compared to commoditized cattle
- Expert Ranch Management: Both Harvest Returns and Ranch Investor emphasize the importance of competent business management in ranching, ensuring that operations are not only sustainable but also profitable.
Platforms like Harvest Returns and Ranch Investor are leading the way with innovative investment opportunities. For investors looking to tap into the lucrative world of ranching, these companies offer a unique blend of tradition and innovation. Whether you’re a seasoned investor or new to the world of ranching, there’s never been a better time to explore the opportunities that lie ahead.