The Austrian binderholz Group, based in Fügen, acquired all the assets of Klausner Lumber One LLC, based in Live Oak, Suwannee County, Florida, at the auction on August 21st. With the bid of 61 million US dollars received, the company was able to prevail over Mercer and Mayr-Melnhof. The transaction is expected to close in early October.
For the first time, binderholz will soon be producing outside of Europe. The location in the center of Florida is in one of the best growing areas for "Southern Yellow Pine", which is in great demand in the USA. As a result, there is a high availability of round timber at an extremely stable price level in recent years, as the company informs.
CEO Reinhard Binder explains the strategic motivation as follows: “We see the American solid wood market as a strategic target and growth market for the binderholz Group. The USA is by far the largest consumer of wood in the world - with increasing demand. After the founding of Binderholz Timber Inc., Atlanta, USA in 2019 and a consistent and successful market development, the USA will become one of the most important sales markets for binderholz in 2020 with over 450,000 m³ of planed products and a turnover of around € 170 million. Buying our own production facility in what is by far the largest world market for solid wood was therefore the next logical step. We want to further develop our successful business model in the USA too."
The acquired sawmill Klausner Lumber One LLC, based in Live Oak, has a cutting capacity of over 1 million m³ of round timber and a further processing capacity of over 500,000 m³ of sawn and planed timber. Production at the Florida location is scheduled to resume by the end of 2020 at the latest. With this takeover, almost 7 million cubic meters of round wood will be processed in the future of the binderholz Group's plants in the 8 sawmills in Austria, Germany, Finland and the USA. Of the approx. 4 million m³ of sawn timber are then produced, approximately 3 million m³ of solid wood products.
Through Binderholz Timber Inc. and its employees, the Binderholz Group already has a very good network and customer contacts in the USA. In recent years, binderholz has been able to complete numerous projects in the USA through Binderholz Bausysteme GmbH. Despite Corona, the binderholz Group was able to fully utilize production at all locations in 2020 in compliance with all hygiene and safety standards, and thus not only maintain but also increase the number of employees.