Louisiana-Pacific (LP), a leading U.S. wood products giant, has acquired Ainsworth Lumber in a $1.1-billion deal.
Vancouver-based Ainsworth runs an oriented strand board (OSB) mill in Barwick, near Fort Frances in northwestern Ontario.
Ainsworth is a manufacturer of OSB with plants in Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia. The mills have a combined annual capacity of 2.5 billion square feet with the potential to boost capacity to 3.1 billion square feet with an expansion at Ainsworth's mill in Grande Prairie, Alberta.
Curt Stevens, Louisiana-Pacific's CEO, said the Ainsworth acquisition provides his company with access to key growth markets in Asia and provides added capacity in North America. U.S. housing starts are projected to top out at 957,000 by year's end, a 23 per cent increase from 2012.
“We believe the acquisition of Ainsworth provides LP with greater flexibility and exposure to this recovery.”
Ainsworth's Barwick plant is located near the U.S. border and is 440 kilometres north of Minneapolis. It produces a variety of OSB products including premium floor underlayment, rimboard and webstock, plus commodity structural sheathing panels.