Wellspring was hired by Gatsby to analyse the feasibility of planted timber project development in the Madaba concession area in Southern Tanzania, and to develop the business case and compile an investor information pack. Through Gatsby’s work in the area, they identified industrialisation potential with opportunities for small/medium tree grower supply, job creation and downstream benefits.


The inception phase analysed whether and where the 40k hectare Madaba land area of interest as defined can be eligible for timber plantation development and to what extent it would be compliant with FSC and carbon criteria. We also provided strategic options and ideas for project development based on initial engagement with operators and investors also considering potential interest and key criteria.

We recommended a no-go decision based on the findings that the total available land eligible for forestation is small and scattered in places. It is 417 ha with no-go areas, agriculture and non-mineral soils excluded, or less than 100 ha when considering land eligible for afforestation in carbon or FSC-eligible projects. However, we recommended that Gatsby expand area of interest outside the original project scope that may result in potential viable opportunities (e.g. REDD+ and/or conservation based project on TFS land including small Ifinga block, and to evaluate other land opportunities outside of Madaba).

Based on the outcomes of the inception phase, phase II of the project cannot proceed to develop the business case, operational and financial aspects of the project.


Funders and clients

Gatsby Africa

Team members


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