Texas Pacific Land Trust (TPL) is a publicly traded stock quite unlike most others. The trust was created in 1888 when the Texas and Pacific Railway Company went into receivership and through a subsequent reorganization where bondholders received equity in the Texas Pacific Land Trust. Holders of Texas and Pacific Railway Company bonds received 3.5 million acres of land in Texas which had been earned by the railroad and pledged as security against bonds.
The mandate of the Trust was to manage and sell the land. The Trust has followed this mandate through its inception and regularly sold of land and returned the proceeds to shareholders through dividends and share buybacks. Nonetheless, after more than 130 years of following sales, the Trust is still one of the largest landowners in Texas with around 888,333 acres located in eighteen different countries across Western Texas.
Texas Pacific Land Trust does not derive revenue solely from land sales as the Trust generates revenue from all avenues of managing the land. Revenues from land management range from oil and gas royalties, grazing leases, easements, sundry and speciality leases. Thereof, the Trust has a perpetual oil and gas royalty interest in some 459,200 acres.