West Fraser acquires Alberta, Arkansas sawmills
April 4, 2014, Vancouver, B.C. - West Fraser continues to grow its lumber business in the U.S. South and in western Canada with the announcement that it has entered into an agreement to acquire the Bibler Brothers Lumber sawmill and lumber manufacturing operations located in Russellville, Arkansas. West Fraser also announced the successful completion of the acquisition of Buchanan Lumber sawmill located in High Prairie, Alberta from Gordon Buchanan Enterprises Ltd.
The Alberta-based Buchanan Lumber sawmill has an annual capacity of approximately 110 million board feet of lumber. West Fraser plans to invest additional capital in the mill to expand the annual production capacity to approximately 175 million board feet. The acquisition includes timber rights having an annual allowable harvest of approximately 430,000 cubic metres of coniferous timber and 21,000 cubic metres of deciduous timber. The Company expects that the Buchanan Lumber sawmill and related assets will be complementary to several of West Fraser's existing Alberta operations.
The Arkansas-based Bibler Brothers Lumber sawmill produced approximately 136 million board feet of lumber in 2013 and in excess of 160 million board feet in 2005. Russellville is located in western Arkansas and is approximately 80 miles from West Fraser's recently-acquired sawmill in Mansfield, Arkansas. Completion of the Bibler Brothers Lumber acquisition is subject to satisfaction of certain conditions that are expected to be satisfied before the end of April. Once completed, West Fraser will own four sawmills in Arkansas as well as sawmills in neighbouring Texas and Louisiana.
"We are pleased to be growing and welcoming new employees to West Fraser in the U.S. South and in western Canada," said West Fraser's President and CEO Ted Seraphim. "We expect that these acquisitions will enhance our current operations in Alberta and Arkansas and will further position West Fraser to take advantage of the expected strengthening of our lumber markets."
With respect to the acquisitions announced by West Fraser in 2014 to date, additional details will be provided in Management's Discussion and Analysis of its first quarter financial results as well as during the Company's regularly scheduled conference call to review those results.
April 4, 2014 By Andrew Macklin
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