WestRock sells South Carolina sawmill to Interfor for $59 million in cash

WestRock sells South Carolina sawmill to Interfor for $59 million in cash

April 22, 2021

Summerville, SC –

British Columbia-based Interfor, one of North America's largest lumber producers, has bought WestRock's South Carolina sawmill for $59 million in cash.

 

The sawmill is located 65 miles southwest of Interfor's existing Georgetown, S.C. mill and 115 miles northeast of its Meldrim, Georgia mill. Interfor says this strategic positioning will allow for log sort optimization and procurement synergies across these three mills.

 

“This transaction is a logical tuck-in with our existing U.S. south platform and reiterates Interfor’s commitment to disciplined growth and investment in the U.S. south,” said Ian Fillinger, president and chief executive officer of Interfor. “We look forward to welcoming the Summerville employees to the Interfor team and partnering with them to operate and grow the business.”

 

As a result of this transaction, Interfor’s total annual lumber production capacity will increase to 3.2 billion board feet, of which 1.7 billion board feet or 55 per cent of the pro forma capacity will be located in the U.S. south.

 

WestRock says the sale will help reduce its debt.

 

“The sale of the Summerville sawmill better aligns our portfolio of assets with our fiber-based packaging strategy,” said Steve Voorhees, chief executive officer of WestRock. “Interfor’s focus on lumber production makes them an excellent owner of the sawmill going forward. We expect to use the proceeds for debt reduction."

 

Interfor says it has identified a number of ways to optimize and increase production at the plant.

 

The transaction is subject to customary conditions and is expected to close in the first quarter of 2021.

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