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    22.09.2017   Södra to invest in new CLT facility at Värö    ( Company news )

    Company news
    Södra is investing in a small facility for cross-laminated timber (CLT) adjacent to Södra’s sawmill at Värö. The plans include a future investment in a larger facility.

    “Södra is focused on increasing the use of sustainable timber construction and wants to take part, and to stake out a position, in this growing market. Production is scheduled to commence in early 2019. The facility will have an annual capacity of about 5,000 m³ per shift,” said Jörgen Lindquist, President of the Södra Wood business area.

    The investment is an important part of Södra’s strategic process of building long-term relationships across the value chain.

    “CLT will help us develop a new way of working, where we will be offering the most cost-effective material on the market for the construction of high-rise buildings. We are putting a complete customer offering together for CLT and will expand profitability as the market grows,” said Jörgen Lindquist.

    High-rise construction with timber is a growing market and demand is driven by both economics and sustainability. Demand is strong across all of northern Europe – in countries where Södra already holds a leading market position. CLT is a flexible material and particularly competitive in major cities, where the aim is to densify and construct high-rise buildings. Compared with other materials, CLT is transport-efficient, light and maintains high environmental integrity. These benefits are reflected not only in housing production, but also in the construction of sports facilities, warehouses, offices and schools.

    An extensive project has been ongoing for 12 months to improve and develop the profitability of Södra’s existing sawmills. At the same time, the best type of timber engineering for Södra’s structure, position and various markets has been under assessment.

    “Södra’s main mission is to strengthen family forestry by offering new and innovative products. We have identified CLT as an interesting product and want to take part, and to stake out a position, in a growing market. But we are also aware that this will require heavy investment, take time to position ourselves in the market and is associated with business risks. That is why we are starting out small,” said Lars Idermark, CEO of Södra.

    The location at Värö has been strategically chosen for its proximity to several Nordic high-growth regions, and the ease of shipping to both the UK and other international destinations. The facility will be co-located with Södra’s pulp mills and sawmills for access to green electricity and completed infrastructure. The investment is expected to require several new recruitments.
    (Södra Timber AB)
    21.09.2017   2017 INTERNATIONAL SOFTWOOD CONFERENCE 4TH-6TH OCTOBER 2017 HAMBURG    ( Company news )

    Company news
    After the great success of the previous editions, the 2017 INTERNATIONAL SOFTWOOD CONFERENCE will be organized this year on the 4TH-6TH OCTOBER 2017 in the fascinating city of Hamburg.

    Located on the River Elbe, Hamburg is one of the three city-states in Germany and the largest sea-port in Germany, third largest in Europe.

    As per tradition, the conference will be anticipated by a cocktail reception in the early evening on the 4th October, then will officially start at 9 o’clock the following morning with the market analysis from the perspective of top-class international speakers.

    The presentations will be focused on facts and figures showing softwood production as well as consumption in the most relevant timber markets such as North Africa, Egypt, Japan, Russia and USA, for mentioning just a few. An insight view of the Great Britain market after the BREXIT result will be one of the most interesting points of discussion of this year’s ISC. Moreover, a detailed insight view of the Canadian market and clarification on the softwood lumber agreement between USA and Canada will certainly contribute to enrich the debate between participants.

    The 2017 International Softwood conference is hosted by the German Timber Trade Federation (GD HOLZ), the European Timber Trade Federation (ETTF) and the European Organization of the Sawmill Industry (EOS).
    (EOS European Organisation of Sawmill Industry aisbl)
    20.09.2017   Theme Days at WEINIG DIMTER in Illertissen / 8 and 9 November 2017    ( Company news )

    Company news
    WEINIG DIMTER and HOLZ-HER are inviting you to WEINIG DIMTER Packaging Days in Illertissen.

    Thousands of valuable goods are transported around the world every day. To get them safely from A to B, packaging concepts are becoming increasingly important to the distributor. To produce packaging materials efficiently, suitable manufacturing machines and a precise production planning system is essential.

    WEINIG DIMTER is specialized in cross-cut saws and gluing presses for solid wood processing. HOLZ-HER is your competent specialist for stationary panel processing.

    During the WEINIG DIMTER Packaging Days we will present everything around the manufacturing of wooden packaging products and pallets. You will be able to listen to experts and you will see how lengths and widths are cut and how cutting processes are optimized – all for your perfect packaging.

    Exclusively for you, we are going to offer a guided visit to the running production of our customer Tricor Packaging & Logistics AG.

    We cordially invite you to join our Packaging Days on 8 and 9 November 2017 in Illertissen, where we would like to show you exciting new options on productive packaging manufacturing for your business.
    (Weinig Dimter GmbH & Co. KG)
    19.09.2017   At 18 storeys, Mjøsa Tower in Brumunddal to take title of world's tallest wooden building    ( Company news )

    Company news
    When completed in March 2019, Mjøsa Tower in the Norwegian town of Brumunddal will be the world’s tallest wooden building. The construction, which started in early April this year, is an example of how wood can be substituted for concrete, which is considerably heavier and less environmentally friendly. The building will stand over 80 metres tall, and its 18 storeys will house offices, a hotel and apartments.

    Wooden buildings are the solution to the high demand for new housing and offices, urban densification, and stringent environmental demands. Using wood as the main building material produces lightweight and cost-effective buildings that are quick to build and have minimal environmental impact. This also applies to load-bearing elements.

    Environmental concerns are perhaps key
    This high-rise is being built using glulam, CLT, and Metsä Wood’s Kerto® LVL (laminated veneer lumber). To ensure the required load-bearing capacity, cross-bonded veneer panels called Kerto-Q LVL will be used for the flooring between the storeys. The panels are extremely strong and durable.

    Wood is an environmentally friendly building material. As a raw material, it is renewable and abundantly available in the Nordic countries. The material absorbs more carbon dioxide as the tree grows than the quantities emitted in the manufacture of this construction material. The wood’s light weight means less transportation and lighter foundations of the kind required for concrete buildings.

    Construction time slashed by half
    Using wood as the main construction material, even in high-rises, is key to shortening the construction time and, consequentially, cost. Modern technology enables us to prefabricate all components in a factory with a very high degree of precision. Compared to cast-in-situ concrete, wood makes it possible for construction time to be slashed by half. In addition, it’s relatively easy to make adjustments or corrections on-site.

    “The floor structures, which consist of massive beams with Kerto panels on top, are assembled in our factory, just 15 kilometres from the construction site. Obviously, that’s a huge advantage if you have something that needs to be adjusted at the factory. The work is progressing at the rate of one storey a week, which has shortened our construction time by approximately 35 to 40 per cent compared to using cast-in-site concrete. And since the wooden components are so lightweight, we don’t need the machinery to be as heavy,” says Rune Abrahamsen, Managing Director of Moelven Limtre AS, a general subcontractor in the Mjøsa Tower project.

    Using wood means greater fire safety
    Fire safety is not a weak point in the wooden Mjøsa Tower. Untreated solid wood creates its own fire-resistant surface because the outermost layer chars when exposed to fire, protecting against further fire damage.

    In fact, wood is a fireproof material despite the commonly held belief that it isn’t. “Fire safety rules state that buildings must be able to withstand a full fire for at least two hours without collapsing. When you have a building made of steel and concrete, the steel melts and the building collapses,” says Erik Tveit, Project Manager at HENT AS, the general contractor for the site.

    Nevertheless, concrete will be used between the floors of the Tower’s top seven storeys. Using concrete has nothing to do with the load-bearing capacity. There's a simpler explanation: the swaying that increases the higher you get in a building built of wood or concrete. The weight of the concrete in the upper storeys makes the swaying slower and not as readily perceivable.

    Metsä Wood is supplying Kerto LVL to Moelven Limtre AS, which is constructing the wooden frame for the general contractor HENT.
    (Metsä Wood)
    18.09.2017   Norway: Agreement Signed for Forest Protection and Restoration in Ethiopia    ( Company news )

    Company news
    The Governments of Norway and Ethiopia have taken an important step towards supporting Ethiopia’s climate friendly economic development. The Government of Norway has allocated up to NOK 600 million for sustainable forest management and forest restoration in Ethiopia until 2020.

    Photo: Bale Forest, Ethiopia Photo: RNE

    Representatives of the two countries have signed an agreement for a NOK 600 million (approximately USD 80 million) investment aiming to protect Ethiopia’s remaining natural forests and for transforming the Ethiopian forest sector. The grant will be used for forest protection and restoration activities and for establishing innovative public-private partnerships in the forestry sector. The support will contribute to Ethiopia’s Climate Resilient Green Economy (CRGE) Strategy which aims for middle-income country status by 2025 while maintaining greenhouse gas emissions at 2010-level. To achieve this, Ethiopia plans to avoid greenhouse gas emissions of 255 Mt CO2e by 2025, compared to a business as usual emissions scenario. Half of these emissions will be avoided by protecting and restoring forests.

    The agreement constitutes the main element of Phase II of the Ethiopian-Norwegian partnership agreement on forests and climate.

    “Protection of Ethiopia's remaining natural forest as well as forest restoration at an unprecedented scale is needed to reach Ethiopia’s climate ambitions. Norwegian support focuses on innovation and new partnerships aiming to drive the costs of forest restoration down. Success in this area is important, not only to Ethiopia, but to all countries planning to undertake large scale forest restoration.”, said H.E. Mr. Andreas Gaarder, Norwegian Ambassador to Ethiopia.

    The majority of Ethiopians depend on rainfed agriculture for their livelihoods. The country is highly vulnerable to climate change and suffering from unpredictable rainfall, drought and extreme weather. Forests prevent soil erosion and can help raise the ground water level as well as provide food, fuel and building material. Forests are also a source of commodities such as honey, coffee and herbs and an important resource and security net for the poor. From a global climate perspective, forests have huge importance because of their ability to sequester carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. This multidimensional benefit of forests makes investment in the sector a worthy developmental pursuit and a strategic area for tackling challenges of climate change.
    (Royal Norwegian Embassy in Addis Ababa)
    15.09.2017   KPA Unicon to supply power plant to Grubišno Polje, Croatia    ( Company news )

    Company news
    Energostatik d.o.o and KPA Unicon have signed a contract on the supply of Unicon Altius 5 MWe biomass power plant to Grubišno Polje in Croatia. The plant will generate electricity to the local power grid and heat to the nearby wood processing plant. Wood biomass is used as fuel. The new power plant will be handed over to the customer in the fall of 2018. The developer of the project is a French company called Akuo Energy.

    KPA Unicon delivers the power plant on an EPC turn-key contract basis. The scope of supply includes design, civil engineering and foundation works, building, steel structures, all main and process equipment, installation work, commissioning and training of the personal. The contract also includes a high-tech PlantSys system which enables remote support, operation and monitoring of the plant. The parties have also agreed on a 14-year operation and maintenance contract.

    The plant design is based on KPA Unicon’s Biograte combustion technology. Unicon Biograte is a proven and reliable combustion technology with over 100 references.

    "KPA Unicon’s bioenergy solutions cover a wide range of combustion technologies and services. Akuo Energy opted for KPA Unicon’s customer-oriented approach and standardized combustion technology solution. Akuo Energy also wanted us to take responsibility for the operation and maintenance of the plant. We are very pleased about the trust demonstrated by Akuo Energy, and in this project we see a number of goals in line with our international strategy", says Kari Liukko, Energy Business Director of KPA Unicon.

    "As a project developer, it was crucial to Akuo Energy to choose an EPC partner who can support project development with economical technology, efficient plant performance and project delivery capabilities. We value KPA Unicon’s customer-oriented solution and way of working. In addition to the plant delivery, we wanted to ensure long term operation of the plant by using KPA Unicon´s operation and maintenance capabilities", says Emil Bakic, director of Akuo Energy MED.

    The power plant construction has been ongoing since December 2016. Laying of the foundation stone was celebrated in Grubišno Polje on May 19, 2017 in the presence of representatives of the central and local governments as well as the Finnish Embassy. At the ceremony, KPA Unicon was represented by Pekka Kovanen, Chairman of the Board, and Arttu Laitinen, Key Account Manager of KPA Unicon.
    (KPA Unicon Group Oy)
    14.09.2017   LEUCO airStream-System – Reduces noise and increases the chip caption degree    ( Company news )

    Company news
    LEUCO airStream-System” tools reduce noise and increase the chip caption degree up to 99 per cent on through-feed machines. This innovation is the result of mutual research and development activities of the tool manufacturers LEUCO (Horb/DE) and HOLZ-HER (Nürtingen/DE).

    The airStream-System is patented and exclusively available for HOLZ-HER machines.

    Advantages of the LEUCO airStream-System
    -Very quiet jointing and low-noise edge trimming
    -Excellent chip caption, almost no contamination of the machine
    -Significantly less double hogging, longer tool edge lives

    A complete range of tools with LEUCO airStream-Systemfor jointing cutting and edge trimming on HOLZ-HER machines is available from stock.
    (Leuco AG)
    13.09.2017   Håkan Larsson to become Director of Strategy for the Södra Group    ( Company news )

    Company news
    Håkan Larsson (photo), Director of Forestry and President of Södra Skog, assumes responsibility for strategic issues within the Södra Group. He will remain a member of Södra’s Group Senior Management and continue to report to the President, Lars Idermark.

    “After more than four very rewarding and stimulating years as President of Södra Skog and over 20 years of engagement in this business area, I feel that I’m ready for a change. I am very happy, therefore, for this opportunity to work with Södra’s more long-term issues,” said Håkan Larsson.

    “Rapid and major changes are taking place in our business environment. Increased globalisation and digitisation is changing companies’ business models. The role of forests as an active player in a more forest-based bioeconomy is subject to growing demand. Håkan Larsson is a driven and experienced person and will now be working with these strategic issues for the entire Group, which will generate major business value for Södra,” said Lars Idermark.

    The change will take effect on 1 September and mean that Håkan Larsson will be stepping down from his position as President of Södra Skog. A process to recruit a successor to the Director of Forestry position will begin immediately. The Interim President of the Södra Skog business area will be Södra’s Wood Supply Manager, Olof Hansson.
    (Södra Timber AB)
    13.09.2017   Sep 20-21 & 26-27, WoodTECH Melbourne & Rotorua 2017    ( Company news )

    Company news
    WoodTECH 2017, will be attracting again scanning and sawing technology leaders, innovators and practitioners from around the world.

    Armin von Grebmer, CSO Microtec, will give a presentation on both WoodTECH venues in Melbourne and Rotorua with the title "Yield optimization: Volume vs. Quality. Case studies - improving lumber recoveries - from log breakdown to rip and cross cut optimization." This scientific presentation will contain data from real installations and best practice solutions for sawmills and planer mills.

    This events has the objective to showcase the very latest in wood scanning, sawmilling, and mill optimization technologies best suited to local sawmilling companies as well as providing a series of practical workshops for production and operational staff on how to extract the best performance out of their existing sawing operations. As a global leader in providing solutions for sawmills, planer mills and secondary wood processing industries, Microtec delivers custom designed mechanical, electrical and automation solutions. Our quality grading scanners are all of latest and most reliable technology.

    FIEA's WoodTECH conference series has earned great success two years ago. Over 350 delegates from all major wood processing companies in the region came to Melbourne and Rotorua.
    (Microtec s.r.l.)
    12.09.2017   Foundation stone of the Metsä Wood's birch plywood mill laid in Pärnu, Estonia     ( Company news )

    Company news
    The foundation stone of Metsä Wood’s new birch plywood mill was laid on August 23rd in Pärnu, Estonia. The greetings in the ceremony were delivered by the Minister of Public Administration of Estonia Mr. Jaak Aab and the President and CEO of Metsä Group Mr. Kari Jordan.

    “This is an important investment for Metsä Wood and the whole Metsä Group. It is done to better meet the globally growing plywood demand and to further improve Metsä Wood’s industrial efficiency. The new mill is a good example of Finnish-Estonian cooperation. Estonia has favourable business climate and it offers good logistical connections to our main markets.” said CEO of Metsä Group Kari Jordan in today’s ceremony.

    The annual birch plywood production capacity at the Pärnu mill will be 50 000 cubic metres and the total investment is approximately 55 million euros. The birch veneers will be produced in Äänekoski Finland and plywood will then be manufactured at the Pärnu mill. The new birch plywood mill will create approximately 200 jobs to Pärnu area.

    “I am very satisfied that Estonia remains an attractive investment destination, especially when it comes to new and advanced industrial production. The birch plywood factory in Pärnu is a good example of our large investor support scheme. The new mill will raise Estonia’s industrial competitiveness, supports the labour market around Pärnu and drives our exports,” said Minister Jaak Aab.

    The new mill will start production by end of year 2018. The construction agreement signed between Metsä Wood and Nordecon AS includes the construction of the production hall of 29 000 square metres and the non-work rooms and office premises.

    The construction of the birch plywood mill in Pärnu is part of the EUR 100 million investment programme Metsä Wood published in June 2016. The programme is carried out during 2017-2018.
    (Metsä Wood)
    12.09.2017   PulPaper looks to the future of the forest industry    ( Company news )

    Company news
    PulPaper is the leading international event in the forest industry’s calendar, and will be held at Messukeskus in Helsinki on 29–31 May 2018. The event acts as a global meeting place where visitors can get a comprehensive overview of the latest forestry technology. The previous event attracted visitors from a total of 70 different countries, and exhibitors from 30 countries are expected at PulPaper 2018.

    The event was last held in 2014. Preparations for the 2018 event are now in full swing with regard to both the programme and sales. New technologies and innovations from start-ups will also be on display at the event.

    Three other even ts will also be held at the same time as PulPaper: Wood, a new event in the field of mechanical wood processing; PacTec Helsinki, a packaging industry event; and the brand-new Bioenergy.

    In addition to comprehensive coverage of fields in the forest industry, the event programme as a whole also covers the packaging, energy and chemical industries to offer visitors and participating companies a chance to meet actors from many different industries.

    “Together, the events form a vast, synergetic programme in which each field supports the others. There is nothing comparable anywhere else in the world, and this new event programme supports integration within the forestry cluster. PulPaper offers a unique opportunity for uniting different fields in the forest industry,” says Messukeskus Sales Team Manager Marcus Bergström, who is in charge of the events.

    “PulPaper has received an enthusiastic reception. Almost all of the leading forest companies and equipment suppliers in the forest and packaging industries are attending, and their commitment has also encouraged other companies to reserve their exhibition spaces well ahead of the event,” says Hanna Koskela, Sales Manager.

    What does the future of the industry look like?
    The event’s theme – Visit tomorrow today – is clearly focused on the future. The programme includes both paid conferences and free lectures. Topics in PulPaper’s conference programme include the circular economy, 3D printing, the bioeconomy, climate change, digitalisation, and the opportunities afforded by the industrial internet. Practical examples from companies bring a concrete aspect to these visions of the future.

    Business Forum – a new seminar package targeted at company management – will be held on the opening day. Its speakers will be forefront opinion leaders from both Finland and abroad, and their topics will range from consumer habits to change management, and from innovation to sustainable development.

    The exhibition area’s Future Square stage will run a free programme focusing on the opportunities afforded by the bioeconomy and career outlooks for industry students. The programme will also be supplemented with visits to pioneering companies in the industry, such as the new bioproduct mill in Äänekoski.

    “Thanks to numerous new investments, the future looks bright for Finnish advancements in the bioforest industry. A lot of new things have been happening in the industry, and new products have come on the market. Expectations are high for the new event programme. PulPaper will have an extremely interesting and diverse conference programme reflecting the positive developments in the industry,” says Antti Lindqvist, CEO of Puunjalostusinsinöörit ry.

    The forest, packaging, energy and chemical industry events PulPaper, Wood, PacTec Helsinki and Bioenergy will be held at Messukeskus in Helsinki on 29–31 May 2018.
    (PulPaper Helsinki 2018)
    11.09.2017   Valutec seals major kiln deal with Keitele Timber    ( Company news )

    Company news
    Valutec has secured one of its largest deals of all time in the Finnish sawmill market. The Keitele Group chose to invest in six continuous kilns (photo) for their sawmill in Alajärvi. The higher drying capacity is a part of a major investment program comprising a total of EUR 32 million. With these investments, the Keitele Group’s total production capacity will increase to one million cubic meters per year (423 776 MBF).

    “We’re looking forward to helping Keitele Timber take the next step in its development,” says Robert Larsson, CEO at Valutec, and continues:
    “In a deal of this size, it’s about quality and capacity, as well as delivery reliability. We have a strong offering and extensive experience there, both in deliveries in Finland and elsewhere in Europe and Asia.”

    The total annual capacity of the timber kilns delivered to Keitele Timber amounts to 300,000 cubic meters (127 000 MBF), the equivalent of nearly 19,000 soccer fields with boards placed side by side. In terms of capacity, the deal is comparable to last year’s delivery to the Siberian Sawmill 25, which comprised five continuous kilns and 12 batch kilns.

    “It involves sawmills with completely different needs and conditions. Prior to investments, we always conduct a close dialog with the sawmills to get to the bottom of their product needs and inflow of raw materials to find the best possible solution,” explains Robert Larsson.

    The continuous kilns delivered to Keitele’s sawmill in Alajärvi are of the FB type where the drying takes place in two separate zones to enable a high and even quality. They also come equipped with Valutec’s Valmatics control system. In addition to this, extensive noise reduction and optical safety alarms will also be installed to ensure a good working environment.

    “Safety is an important part of our development work. It’s a part of the quality we deliver, just like the possibility of optimizing the drying process using the control system,” says Robert.

    Installation of the systems will begin early next year and they are scheduled to be in operation in autumn 2018.

    The Keitele Group is a family-owned company that owns three sawmills and employs around 450 people. The largest markets for the company’s products are in Europe, Asia and North Africa.
    (Valutec AB)
    08.09.2017   PONSSE'S INTERIM REPORT FOR 1 JANUARY – 30 JUNE 2017    ( Company news )

    Company news
    – Net sales amounted to EUR 258.7 (H1/2016 237.1) million.
    – Q2 net sales amounted to EUR 128.8 (Q2/2016 122.0) million.
    – Operating result totalled EUR 28.2 (H1/2016 26.2) million, equalling 10.9
    (11.1) per cent of net sales.
    – Q2 operating result totalled EUR 13.9 (Q2/2016 14.1) million, equalling 10.8
    (11.6) per cent of net sales.
    – Profit before taxes was EUR 22.6 (H1/2016 28.2) million.
    – Cash flow from business operations was EUR -0.7 (3.8) million.
    – Earnings per share were EUR 0.60 (0.82).
    – Equity ratio was 47.3 (45.0) per cent.
    – Order books stood at EUR 141.4 (166.1) million.

    In the second quarter, demand for PONSSE forest machines remained good. Order
    flow was strong, and the value of the order book at the end of the period under review was EUR 141.4 (166.1) million. The Russian market in particular is extremely brisk. The market situation in the Nordic countries and in Germany and France in Central Europe is also good.

    During the first half of the year, the company’s net sales was EUR 258.7
    (237.1) million, giving a growth in net sales of 9.1 percent. In the second quarter, the company’s net sales was EUR 128.8 (122.0) million, which is a growth in net sales of 5.5 percent compared to the reference period. Net sales for after sales services continued to increase strongly. The growth in the net sales of after sales services is affected by the significant global growth in machine stock, especially in areas where the annual usage rate of machinery is high. Growth in net sales for used machines picked up slightly in the past quarter. International business accounted for 74.5 (77.9) percent of net sales.

    The operating result for the first half of the year was EUR 28.2 (26.2)
    million, giving an operating margin of 10.9 (11.1) percent. The operating
    result for the past quarter was EUR 13.9 (14.1) million, giving an operating margin of 10.8 (11.6) percent. In the second quarter, expenses grew faster than in the first quarter, which reduced profitability slightly. Cash flow was EUR -0.7 (3.8) million. Our used machine inventory is still larger than planned.

    Our investments proceeded according to plan. New service centres were completed in Uruguay and France, and our UK subsidiary's new facilities are expected to be ready by the end of the year. The investment for the factory's expansion is on schedule. Construction work will be completed in the autumn of 2017, after which the equipment will be installed. The added benefits of the expansion will begin to be realised as planned, in the second half of 2018.
    (Ponsse Oyj)
    07.09.2017   Dome of Visions made from sustainable wood     ( Company news )

    Company news
    Aarhus in Denmark is the European Capital of Culture in 2017, and for this occasion, a huge transparent dome of glue-laminated timber will serve as the Aarhus municipal pavilion for building culture. The dome-shaped wooden building, Dome of Visions, is made from Metsä Wood's sustainable Kerto® LVL beams. It will throughout 2017 give inspiration for new ways of building and living. At the same time, the building will function as a modern community hall, which will make room for conferences and debates on the sustainable cities and buildings of the future.

    The dome is an improved version of two previous dome experiments. The first was placed in both Aarhus and Copenhagen, and the second in Stockholm. In this third version, the dome has grown to be 10.5 metres tall and with a cross section of 24 metres, which forms a room of 450 square metres. It is about 100 m2 larger than versions 1 and 2.

    Sustainable building material from solar powered factory
    The architect Kristoffer Tejlgaard focuses on sustainability, and to him the natural choice of building material is wood. For that reason as much of the Dome as possible has been built with wood. For example, this applies to the spectacular grid construction that forms the dome and where Kerto® LVL (laminated veneer lumber) proved to be the optimal building material.

    "Wood as a building material has obvious advantages giving sustainability for the building industry. In principle, wood is a material that comes from a solar-powered factory," says Tejlgaard, referring to the ability of trees to extract CO2 from the atmosphere and store it as carbon in their trunks, solely by means of solar energy.

    Kerto LVL ensures slim and elegant grid construction
    A new system of curved wooden beams, composed of 21 mm strips of Kerto LVL, made it possible to minimize the amount of steel while achieving both a sleek and elegant grid construction. Using curved wooden beams, the brackets for the dome's focal points were cut as stars in five-millimetre steel plate.

    "With the custom-made Kerto beams, it was possible to avoid complicated and costly welded brackets used in earlier versions of the Dome of Vision," says Tejlgaard.

    A successful carbon-bearing wooden building experiment
    The total construction is made with approximately 100 cubic metres of wood, and according to the architect, this stores 80 tonnes of CO2.

    "This will save the atmosphere from 100 tonnes of CO2 compared to a similar building in concrete, which would emit about 20 tonnes of CO2," says Tejlgaard.

    The finished dome is the result of a successful experiment with Kerto LVL, giving Aarhus and the European Capital of Culture a unique place for events in a spectacular wooden building. A building that undoubtedly will provide inspiration for a future with more sustainable and climate-friendly timber construction.
    (Metsä Wood)
    06.09.2017   International Hardwood Conference 2017 from 15 to 17 November in Venice    ( Company news )

    Company news
    After the success of the last edition, the International Hardwood Conference 2017 will be organized from 15 to 17 November in Venice, one of the most fascinating cities in the world.

    The International Hardwood Conference, which is jointly co-organized by the European Timber Trade Federation (ETTF) and the European Organization of the Sawmill Industry (EOS), is the only international event which provides a global and exclusive vision of the production and trade of hardwood lumber; the Conference attracts the industry's most significant key stakeholders, thus providing a unique opportunity to network with a vast and high-level audience.

    A large attendance of delegates from over 20 countries - representing businesses, NGOs, industry media and the most important international associations - is expected to participate in the Conference.

    On November 16, 2017, in the charming venue of the Molino Stucky Hilton Venice, several qualified speakers will provide in-depth analyses of the most relevant international trends in the hardwood sector. The Conference will be divided into two sessions: the first one will zoom in on sector figures, analyzing the market in detail, while the second one will give suggestions and food for thought to entrepreneurs who are confronted with the issues of sustainability, legality, technology and innovation.

    Courtesy of this outstanding programme, Venice will become for some days the capital of wood, emphasizing the strong connection between the city and this precious material.
    (European Organisation of the Sawmill Industry EOS)
    05.09.2017   Moelven Group chooses again HEINOLAs Chamber Kilns!    ( Company news )

    Company news
    Swedish Moelven Notnäs AB invests again in HEINOLAs high-class Chamber Kilns. This kiln order is already second from Moelven to HEINOLA within one year. These six new Chamber Kilns type HCH from Heinola Sawmill Machinery Inc. have annual capacity of ca. 40 000 m3. The drying kilns can be used for drying of pine and spruce timber with thicknesses of 32–75 mm from sawn green timber to the final moisture of 8–18 %. The new Chamber Kilns will be taken into production in the first half of year 2018.

    Heinola Sawmill Machinery Inc. expresses its thanks to Moelven for their confidence to us!
    (Heinola Sawmill Machinery Inc.)
    04.09.2017   New Kerto® LVL line at Lohja mill starts up    ( Company news )

    Company news
    Production at Metsä Wood's new Kerto® LVL line in Lohja has started. The construction project has progressed according to plan and in schedule. The investment is part of Metsä Wood's EUR 100 million investment program for Kerto® LVL and plywood, and it supports the company’s industrial efficiency strategy.

    At the Lohja mill, three Kerto LVL production lines were operating until the end of last year. With the investment, one of the old lines has been dismantled and another old line is being run down by the end of 2017.

    The new Kerto LVL line increases the mill’s production capacity by 20,000 m3 per year. The mill has a total capacity of 120,000 m3. The new line will reach full capacity within one year.
    (Metsä Wood)
    01.09.2017   Westag & Getalit: Group sales revenues and earnings below prior year in H1 2017    ( Company news )

    Company news
    Westag & Getalit AG generated consolidated sales revenues of € 117.8 million in the first half of 2017. This means that revenues were down by a moderate -0.9% on the previous year (€ 118.8 million), reflecting the decline in domestic business. Exports showed a positive trend during this period, with revenues in the Group’s foreign markets rising by 4.7% to € 26.5 million (previous year: EUR 25.3 million). Consequently, the export share climbed from 21.3% to 22.5%.

    This business performance translated into consolidated earnings before taxes of € 4.5 million, which was clearly below the previous year’s € 5.4 million. Apart from the unsatisfactory trend in top line revenues, earnings were impacted by price increases for a wide variety of raw materials as well as higher budgets allocated to sales activities. As a result, net profit for the period declined to € 3.1 million (previous year: € 3.8 million). Net profit per share amounted to € 0.56 for the ordinary shares (previous year: € 0.67) and to € 0.62 for the preference shares (previous year: € 0.73).

    The Management Board is not satisfied with the business performance during the first half of 2017. Apart from the subdued sales revenues for the first six months, current trends in the commodities markets are one of the key factors in the Group’s profitability. Specifically, Westag & Getalit AG is faced with clearly higher raw materials prices. The result for the full year 2017 will be determined in great measure by the company’s ability to pass on these price increases by raising the prices of its own products.

    The management is optimistic that the enhanced sales activities will have a positive impact on sales revenues during the remaining months of the financial year 2017. Against this background, the Management Board continues to assume that both divisions will achieve a slight increase in sales revenues for the full year. Taking into account the factors weighing on profitability as discussed above, consolidated earnings for the full year are expected to come in below the previous year’s level.

    Given that a Russian distribution company was established at the end of 2016, Westag & Getalit AG publishes its figures on a consolidated basis. The prior year figures have been adjusted accordingly.
    (Westag & Getalit AG)
    31.08.2017   Kronospan orders additional OSB plant core package from Dieffenbacher    ( Company news )

    Company news
    New order is part of expansion and modernization project at Sanem site in Luxembourg

    Kronospan plans on investing 330 million euros at its Sanem site in Luxembourg over the next four years. Before the planned new construction of a particleboard plant in the second project phase, the existing OSB plant will be partially refurbished and modernized.

    The multi-opening plant, in operation since 1996, was one of the first OSB production plants in Western Europe. After more than 20 years of operation, it will be replaced by a continuous production line with CPS+. In addition to the press, the order also covers the forming station, the forming line, the finishing line (comprising a diagonal saw, large stack formation and large stack storage) as well as the conveyor technology, the filter systems and the press exhaust air treatment. The execution and supervision of the assembly are also included in the Dieffenbacher scope of supply.

    This cutting-edge plant was planned entirely using 3D design tools. This allowed Dieffenbacher to fine-tune the plant structure to the conditions at the site, largely avoiding additional preparatory work for Kronospan. The contract was signed at the end of May, and commissioning is set for autumn 2018.

    The project continues the long-standing collaboration between Dieffenbacher and Kronospan, especially in the area of OSB. Sanem will be the sixth OSB project completed by Dieffenbacher for Kronospan in less than 15 years. Kronospan also produces OSB panels using Dieffenbacher plants in Jihlava (Czech Republic), Riga (Latvia), Brasov (Romania), Mogilev (Belarus) and Strzelce Opolskie (Poland).
    (Dieffenbacher GmbH)
    30.08.2017   Tarkett: Good operating results in H1 2017    ( Company news )

    Company news
    Organic growth at 3.0%
    Adjusted EBITDA margin stable at 11.8%

    -Net sales up 5.1% year-on-year at €1,364m, including organic growth of 3.0%(1)
    -Good organic growth in the CIS, APAC & Latin America (+7.2%), Sports (+5.3%) and EMEA (+4.2%) segments
    -Adjusted EBITDA(2) up 5.9% at €160m and EBITDA margin at 11.8% (versus 11.7% in H1 2016)
    -Net profit(3) of -€98m, penalized by a €150m provision in relation to the proceedings in progress with the French Competition Authority
    -Significant improvement in the net debt/adjusted EBITDA ratio: 1.3x versus 1.8x at end-June 2016

    Net sales at constant scope of consolidation and exchange rates moved up 3.0% in H1 2017. The CIS, APAC & Latin America segment delivered robust growth (+7.2%), led mainly by an increase in volumes and an improved mix in CIS countries. The Sports segment also put in a good H1 performance (+5.3%), while the EMEA segment posted a 4.2% rise in sales. Only North America segment (-1.6%) continued to suffer from a high year-on-year comparison basis. All segments helped drive the acceleration in organic growth in Q2 (up 3.2%) versus Q1 (+2.8%) with the exception of EMEA, hit by a negative calendar effect of around -4.0% in Q2.

    Reported sales were up 5.1% on H1 2016. Exchange rates accounted for a positive 2.0% impact, thanks to gains in the US dollar and Russian ruble against the euro that offset the fall in pound sterling. The acquisition of the assets of AlternaScapes, a Florida-based landscape turf distributor and installer, had a minor scope impact (+0.1%).

    Adjusted EBITDA was €160m versus €151m in H1 2016, while the adjusted EBITDA margin came in at 11.8% compared to 11.7% in the six months to June 30, 2016. The CIS, APAC & Latin America segment posted strong adjusted EBITDA growth, driven by a good performance in the CIS segment in terms of selling prices, volumes and productivity. Adjusted EBITDA for the Sports segment benefited from a US$ 12m one-off settlement payment in connection with a favorable ruling enforced against AstroTurf. In contrast, adjusted EBITDA for EMEA and for North America was down, owing mainly to the rise in raw material costs and the negative impact of certain currencies in the EMEA region. The rise in raw material prices had an adverse impact of €13m for the Group as a whole. Productivity gains represented €18m.

    Net profit attributable to owners of the Company was -€98m, reflecting a €150m provision in relation to the proceedings in progress with the French Competition Authority. On July 25, 2017, the Group signed minutes of a settlement agreement with the investigation services. This settlement, along with the final amount of the fine, will be subject to a final decision by the “Collège” of the French Competition Authority.

    Commenting on these results, Michel Giannuzzi (photo), CEO, stated:
    “After a solid start to the year, the increase in sales picked up pace in Q2. We were able to capitalize on the economic recovery in CIS countries, where growth gained traction and profitability improved sharply. High raw material prices weighed on our H1 results. We are confident that our markets will hold firm over the rest of the year.”
    (Tarkett SAS)
    29.08.2017   Low-noise milling and hogging with the LEUCO airFace design    ( Company news )

    Company news
    An "owl wing" smoothes the air flow by means of the serrated edge and scatters noise, which allows nearly noiseless flight characteristics without having a negative effect on the aerodynamics. LEUCO has used this concept of learning from nature to make sizing tools even more aerodynamic and to achieve further effects in noise reduction! LEUCO has filed a patent for this aerodynamic design named "airFace".

    Quiet, quieter, aerodynamic!
    "Innovative design of sizing tools – one wing beat ahead!"
    Bionics is the technical term for analyzing examples from nature and using them to develop new technical approaches. The owl is an animal that has much to offer in this regard. Their sophisticated feather structures allow them a nearly noiseless flight so that prey animals are not startled. Most of the noise is generated by turbulences at the rear edge of the wing. The "owl wing" concept smoothes the air flow by means of the serrated edge and scatters noise, which allows nearly noiseless flight characteristics without having a negative effect on the aerodynamics.

    Nature as a model
    LEUCO has used this concept of learning from nature to make sizing tools even more aerodynamic and to achieve further effects in noise reduction!

    The rotation of tools generates air turbulences, in particular on projecting edges and in the gullet of the jointing cutter. This is where the air flow is strongest and most uncontrolled. Both at idling speed and during operation, these air flows generate noise that affects the working environment around the machine.

    With the slogan "always one wing beat ahead" and thanks to the completely new design approach, the tools have been designed for the first time without studs behind the cutting edge and with a special surface!

    This kind of design has never been used in the field of woodworking and therefore represents a milestone in the jointing cutter evolution.

    The owl wing is the role model for the new "LEUCO airFace design"
    LEUCO has recognized the advantages of the owl wing structure and implemented this concept in the design of the new generation of jointing cutters. The aim was to systematically guide the air flow around the diamond-tipped DP cutting edges and to reduce turbulences. The so-called "LEUCO airFace" surface on the entire steel body of the jointing cutters is the result of intense research and development work of experienced engineers. The principal effect of the gullet with the "owl wing edge" is to canalize the air at this point.

    Consistently aerodynamic design
    The aerodynamic design principle of the body has been consistently implemented. To avoid the negative influence of balancing bores on the airFace surface, LEUCO has decided to manufacture the body with defined threads for balancing screws. They allow process-safe tool production while ensuring the tools' highly precise concentricity tolerance.

    New seat for the diamond-tipped cutting edges
    In order to achieve a continuous "airFace" surface, the new jointing cutters have been designed for the first time without studs behind the edges. Instead of a stud, the diamond-tipped edge is provided with a strong tungsten carbide supporting plate. A more dominant DP plate ensures the stability of the DP cutting edge.

    Noise reduction by up to 2 dB(A) through airFace
    airFace has been developed for the operators at the machines. With the new LEUCO DIAMAX airFace, a noise reduction of up to 1 dB can be achieved at idle speed. Its "big brother", the LEUCO DIAREX airFace, actually features a noise reduction of up to 2 dB(A) at idle speed – compared to the already quiet predecessor model. This means a clear noise reduction for this industry segment. These cutters are the quietest jointing cutters with steel body.

    LEUCO presented the new generation of airFace jointing cutters for the first time at LIGNA 2017. The new concept for noise reduction received excellent feedback from the professional world.

    In addition to the new DIAMAX and DIAREX jointing cutters, LEUCO is going to apply the patent-pending airFace design to other tools as well.

    Best performance at a fair price
    The new LEUCO DIAREX airFace will be additionally provided with a larger shear angle. It is therefore excellently suited for machining novel materials such as anti-fingerprint panels, for example. DIAMAX, DIAREX and SmartJointer keep their proven resharpening areas: 1.5 mm for LEUCO DIAMAX airFace and SmartJointer airFace, and 3.0 mm for LEUCO DIAREX airFace.

    These diamond-tipped jointing cutters have a very good price-performance ratio, which makes them the ideal option for sophisticated craftsmanship and industrial applications with high performance requirements!
    (Leuco AG)
    28.08.2017   Republic of Congo joins PEFC as a national member    ( Company news )

    Company news
    “The forests in the Congo Basin are home to more than 10,000 species. They provide food, water and shelter to more than 75 million people, and are of significant economic importance,” said Ben Gunneberg, CEO of PEFC International PEFC International.

    “With PAFC-Congo becoming a member of PEFC and their work on developing a national forest certification system, we are taking a huge step towards safeguarding the benefits the forests in the region provide. We are thrilled to welcome PAFC-Congo into the PEFC alliance.”

    “We have been working in the Congo Basin for several years, and the addition of the Republic of Congo marks an important move forward for the development of certification in the basin,” Mr. Gunneberg concluded.

    PEFC the right choice
    “There have been strong evolutions in the way forests are managed in the Republic of Congo, but certification is struggling to develop and become widespread,” explained Mr. Brice Séverin Pongui, Chairman of PAFC-Congo.

    “PAFC is set to help promote sustainable forest management, making it more accessible and inclusive, thanks to its development respecting the local context.”

    “With its careful balance of the environmental, social and economic benefits forests provide to the local forest owners and communities as well as society at large, we are convinced that PEFC certification is the right choice for our country.”

    Certification in Republic of Congo moves closer
    “We are currently strengthening the capacity of PAFC Congo, mapping all respective stakeholders and developing and validating our national sustainable forest management standard,” said Mr. Brice Séverin Pongui.

    “This will all be done through a transparent and inclusive process, involving everyone interested, through departmental and national workshops.”

    “We will also study and analyze the international PEFC requirements, as well as the PAFC standards in Gabon and Cameroon, in order to best develop our national certification system,” Mr. Brice Séverin Pongui concluded.

    PAFC: the journey so far
    Since 2011, we have been engaged in a number of initiatives to promote uptake of forest certification in Africa, with a particular focus on Central Africa.

    Working under the common name PAFC – Pan-African Forest Certification, there are now three PEFC members in the region: PAFC Cameroon, PAFC Congo and PAFC Gabon.

    The PEFC alliance grows!
    PAFC-Congo is also joined by the Council for Sustainable Forest Management and Certification in Bulgaria and the South African Forestry Assurance Scheme (SAFAS) as the latest members of the PEFC alliance. This means there are now 49 PEFC national members around the world!
    (PEFC International)
    25.08.2017   First Continuous Press in North Africa    ( Company news )

    Company news
    BIGSTAR subsidiary Panneaux d‘Algérie orders a complete MDF plant including CPS+

    Dieffenbacher's first greenfield project on African soil provides an outstanding example of the extremely versatile applications of the CPS+: The Algerian family-owned company Panneaux d‘Algérie has commissioned Dieffenbacher SWPM to deliver a complete system for producing MDF panels at its site in El Tarf in the far northeast of the country.

    Image: inside view of the under-construction production hall in El Tarf, Algeria.

    The plant concept is designed specifically for smaller capacities. Here, the CPS+ proves that it can also be the ideal entry-level system for newcomers to the wood-based panel market and an economic alternative for easily replacing older single- or multi-opening presses in existing small-capacity plants.

    Panneaux d‘Algérie is just such a newcomer. Although the parent company BIGSTAR has been active in the wood-based panel trade for many years, it has never produced its own materials. That is now set to change. “There is a rising demand for MDF boards in Algeria, and imports from other countries are becoming increasingly costly. We have been considering producing our own materials for a long time for this reason, and Dieffenbacher SWPM has given us the perfect concept to do so," explained Guelai Mohamed Chiheb, BIGSTAR CEO. BIGSTAR President Guelai Belkacimar added: "We've remained in contact since we first started thinking about having our own production line four years ago. We feel as if we've always received excellent advice. We've twice been able to visit the Dieffenbacher headquarters in Eppingen and get a first-hand experience of the outstanding work done there. We have great confidence in Dieffenbacher and Dieffenbacher SWPM, and we’re very pleased to have a working relationship with this long-standing family business."

    The 6 ft wide, 14.5 m long CPS+ for BIGSTAR will be supplied from Eppingen. Dieffenbacher SWPM is responsible for the remainder of the scope of supply and for project management. The complete order includes the entire material preparation process, the refiner, the dryer, the forming station and the forming line. The complete raw board handling, including the diagonal saw, the star cooler and billet stacking right through to the short-cycle laminating line, is also part of the delivery scope.

    The plant is designed to offer a production capacity of 250 m³ per day. Assembly will begin in the second quarter of 2018. The first board will be produced in December of the same year.
    (Dieffenbacher GmbH)
    24.08.2017   Raute Corporation - Half-year report January 1 - June 30, 2017    ( Company news )

    Company news
    - The Group’s net sales, EUR 71.8 million (MEUR 53.7), increased 34% on the comparison period. Order intake was EUR 52 million (MEUR 28).
    - Operating profit was EUR 4.1 million (MEUR 2.9), showing growth of 41% on the comparison period. The result before taxes was EUR 4.2 million (MEUR 2.8).
    - Earnings per share were EUR 0.71 (EUR 0.51).
    - Net sales for the second quarter were EUR 35.2 million and operating profit was EUR 1.4 million positive. Order intake was EUR 29 million. The order book at the end of the reporting period stood at EUR 86 million (MEUR 32).
    - Raute revised its guidance for the full year 2017 on July 27, 2017. Raute’s 2017 net sales are expected to clearly grow and operating profit is forecast to clearly improve from 2016.

    We can continue to be pleased with our performance throughout the first half of the year, in terms of both net sales growth and improving our operating profit. Both were in line with our expectations.

    Our order intake, at EUR 29 million in the second quarter, was at a good level, bearing in mind that it did not include any major individual projects. Following a quieter period, demand for modernizations also picked up. In terms of new orders, the European market is still exceptionally strong, but projects are also being actively negotiated in North America, Asia and Russia, to name a few. I estimate that in the near future, other market areas will complement the demand in Europe.

    Our deliveries proceeded according to plan in the second quarter. Our relative profitability was influenced by the start-up of the Metriguard business that was acquired in early April, additional investments aimed at the Chinese market, and investments in sales and marketing. Our focus on product development and digital services, in particular, also continued.

    Our order book has remained strong, which means we will retain our good momentum and our resources will be used at a high capacity also in the second half of the year. Our aim is to deliver the high number of orders scheduled for the latter half of the year on time, successfully and in keeping with the budgeted costs, which will, in turn, improve our relative profitability for the second half of the year. Our recent past serves as proof of our success in such situations. Success also partly comes down to our customers, and we need them to be successful as well.

    Thanks to a good start to the year, a strong order book and continued active demand, I am confident that our net sales will clearly grow and our operating profit will clearly improve from the previous year.

    Order intake and order book
    The total order intake in the second quarter, EUR 29 million (MEUR 16), was at a good level, bearing in mind that it did not include major individual projects. The biggest single new orders were for peeling lines in France and Italy.

    Technology services accounted for more than half of new orders and amounted to EUR 15 million (MEUR 9). Growth compared to the first quarter of the year was mainly due to orders resulting from lengthy negotiations on modernization deals.

    The order book declined during the second quarter by EUR 7 million, but nevertheless ended the period at a strong EUR 86 million (MEUR 32).

    Net sales
    Second-quarter net sales amounted to EUR 35.2 million (MEUR 27.3). Technology services accounted for 33 percent (37%) of the total net sales and amounted to EUR 12 million (MEUR 10).

    Result and profitability
    Operating profit in the second quarter was EUR 1.4 million positive (MEUR 1.5 positive) and accounted for 4,0 percent (5.6%) of net sales. The result was EUR 0.9 million positive (MEUR 1.2 positive), and earnings per share were EUR +0.21 (EUR +0.29). Second-quarter profitability was influenced by investments in the start-up of the new Metriguard business, additional investments aimed at the Chinese market, and investments in sales and marketing.

    Market situation in customer industries
    The situation in the global economy and the financial markets in the first half of 2017 did not change considerably with respect to Raute or Raute’s customer base.

    Although construction activity has increased in many market areas, it is still at a fairly low level in all market areas, including North America. Thanks to a brighter market situation, investment activity among Raute’s customers has gradually improved, and projects that were in the negotiating phase have materialized into orders. Demand remained brisk throughout the first half of the year.

    Demand for wood products technology and technology services
    Invitations to tender for both creating new capacity and even smaller project-type undertakings were at a good level, and trade negotiations took place at a brisk pace. Projects encompassing individual machine lines were started up to a greater extent than in the recent past.

    Demand for modernizations also picked up in the second quarter following a quieter period. Demand for maintenance and spare parts services remained good. This indicates that the utilization rates of Raute’s customers’ production facilities continued to remain, for the most part, at a good level.

    Raute serves the wood products industry with a full-service concept based on service that encompasses the entire life cycle of the delivered equipment. Raute’s business consists of project deliveries and technology services. Project deliveries encompass projects from individual machine or production line deliveries to deliveries of all the machines and equipment belonging to a mill’s production process. Additionally, Raute’s full-service concept includes comprehensive technology services ranging from spare parts deliveries to regular maintenance and equipment modernizations, as well as consulting, training and reconditioned machinery.

    The order intake during the review period was at a good level and amounted to EUR 52 million (MEUR 28). A significant proportion of new orders was again received from European customers.

    Of new orders, 56 percent came from Europe (39%), 17 percent from North America (21%), 17 percent from Russia (29%), 9 percent from South America (7%) and 1 percent from Asia-Pacific (4%). The second quarter accounted for EUR 29 million of the order intake. Sometimes even strong fluctuations in the distribution of new orders between the various market areas and over time are typical for project-focused business.

    Order intake in technology services amounted to EUR 25 million (MEUR 19), increasing 33 percent on the comparison period. Growth came equally from all areas of technology services.

    The order book declined during the second quarter by EUR 7 million. The order book at the end of the reporting period amounted to a strong EUR 86 million (MEUR 32). Part of the order book is scheduled for 2018.

    Raute’s competitive position has remained unchanged and is good. Raute’s solutions help customers in securing their delivery and service capabilities throughout the life cycle of the production process or a part thereof. In such investments, the supplier’s overall expertise and extensive and diverse technology offering play a key role. The competitive edge provided by Raute plays a major role when customers select their cooperation partners. Raute’s strong financial position and long-term dedication to serving selected customer industries also enhance its credibility and improve its competitive position as a company that carries out long-term investment projects.

    The Metriguard products acquired in April complement Raute’s product range. Metriguard’s equipment has been integrated into dozens of Raute’s deliveries over the years. The active installed equipment base extends from North and South America to Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia and New Zealand.

    Net sales for the reporting period, EUR 71.8 million (MEUR 53.7), were up 34 percent on the comparison period.

    Of the total net sales for the reporting period, Europe accounted for 49 percent (63%), Russia for 33 percent (15%), North America for 12 percent (15%), South America for 4 percent (3%), and Asia-Pacific for 2 percent (5%).

    Net sales for technology services grew during the reporting period by 19 per cent and amounted to EUR 22 million (MEUR 19). Technology services’ share of the Group’s total net sales declined to 31 per cent (35%) due to the strong 41 per cent growth in project deliveries.

    During the period under review, operating profit was EUR 4.1 million positive (MEUR 2.9 positive) and accounted for 5.7 percent of net sales (5.4%). Operating profit grew 41 percent on the comparison period.

    The result before taxes for the reporting period was EUR 4.2 million positive (MEUR 2.8 positive). The result for the reporting period was EUR 3.0 million positive (MEUR 2.1 positive). Earnings per share (undiluted) were EUR 0.71 (EUR 0.51).

    The Group’s financial position remained good, despite the growing need for working capital in the second quarter. At the end of the reporting period, gearing was 9 percent (17%) and the equity ratio was 58 percent (59%). Fluctuations in balance sheet working capital items and the key figures based on them are due to differences in the timing of customer payments and the cost accumulation from project deliveries, which is typical of the project business.

    The Group’s cash and cash equivalents amounted to EUR 3.1 million (MEUR 1.6) at the end of the reporting period. Operating cash flow was EUR 15.1 million negative (MEUR 5.4 negative). Cash flow from investment activities was EUR 4.5 million negative (MEUR 1.6 negative), including the cash consideration of EUR 2.9 million on the purchase price and costs of EUR 0.5 million related to the acquisition of the Metriguard business. Cash flow from financing activities was EUR 1.1 million negative (MEUR 2.1 positive), including a dividend payment of EUR 4.2 million and a short-term drawdown of EUR 3.0 million.

    Interest-bearing liabilities amounted to EUR 6.0 million (MEUR 6.4) at the end of the reporting period.

    The parent company Raute Corporation has a EUR 10 million commercial paper program, which allows the company to issue commercial papers maturing in less than one year.

    The parent company Raute Corporation is prepared for future working capital needs and has long-term credit facility agreements with three Nordic banks totaling EUR 23.0 million. The main covenants for the credit facility are an equity ratio of >30% and gearing of <100%. Of the credit facilities, EUR 18.6 million remained unused at the end of the reporting period.

    Raute Corporation published stock exchange releases on the following events:
    January 2, 2017 Market-making for Raute Corporation transferred to Nordea Bank AB (publ)
    January 11, 2017 Raute Corporation's trading and issuer codes to change as from January 16, 2017
    February 15, 2017 A new performance- and share-value-based long-term incentive program established for Raute’s top management
    March 6, 2017 Disposal of Raute Corporation’s own shares
    March 28, 2017 Decisions of Raute’s Annual General Meeting
    March 31, 2017 Raute Corporation strengthens its offering in veneer and lumber grading technology by acquiring the business of Metriguard Inc.

    Raute is a leading technology supplier for the plywood and LVL industries and focuses strongly on the development of increasingly efficient, productive and environmentally friendly manufacturing technology and supporting measurement and machine vision applications. Opportunities provided by digitalization are also an essential part of R&D activities.

    Research and development costs in the reporting period amounted to EUR 1.8 million (MEUR 1.6), representing 2.4 percent of net sales (2.9%).

    Capital expenditure during the period came to EUR 4.8 million (MEUR 1.7) and accounted for 6.6 percent (3.1%) of net sales. The acquisition of the Metriguard business accounted for EUR 3.4 million of the Group’s capital expenditure, including an estimate of the earn-out share to be paid in 2018.

    During the reporting period, the Group’s personnel grew by 62 people, numbering 705 (650) at the end of the reporting period. The higher number of personnel includes the transfer of 24 employees to Raute in connection with the acquisition of Metriguard Inc. Group companies outside Finland accounted for 29 percent (29%) of employees.

    Converted to full-time employees (“effective headcount”), the average number of employees was 652 (632) during the reporting period.

    Raute Corporation established a new subsidiary, Metriguard Technologies, Inc., in the United States. The new subsidiary was a party to the acquisition agreement realized with Metriguard Inc. and has continued Metriguard Inc.’s business as of April 3, 2017.

    Metriguard is a market leader in grading technology for lumber and veneer manufactured in an industrial production process. Metriguard sells and maintains measuring equipment for the veneer and plywood industry and for sawmills on a global scale. The subsidiary is located in Pullman, Washington.

    The Metriguard business’s financial information will be reported as part of Raute’s wood products technology segment. The full consideration for the business was EUR 4.0 million, of which EUR 2.9 million was paid in the form of a cash consideration. The value of the acquired net assets amounted to EUR 3.0 million and goodwill generated was EUR 1.0 million. Expenses of EUR 0.5 million related to the acquisition were entered as a cost item.

    The number of Raute Corporation’s shares at the end of the reporting period totaled 4,225,311, of which 991,161 were series K shares (ordinary share, 20 votes/share) and 3,234,150 were series A shares (1 vote/share). Series K and A shares confer equal rights to dividends and company assets.

    Series K shares can be converted to series A shares under the terms set out in section 3 of the Articles of Association. If an ordinary share is transferred to a new owner who has not previously held series K shares, the new owner must notify the Board of Directors of this in writing and without delay. Other holders of series K shares have the right to redeem the share under the terms specified in Article 4 of the Articles of Association.

    Raute Corporation’s series A shares are listed on Nasdaq Helsinki Ltd. The trading code is RAUTE. Raute Corporation has signed a market making agreement with Nordea Bank Ab in compliance with the Liquidity Providing (LP) requirements issued by Nasdaq Helsinki Ltd.

    The company’s market capitalization at the end of the reporting period was EUR 96.8 million (MEUR 54.5), with series K shares valued at the closing price of series A shares on June 30, 2017, i.e. EUR 22.92 (EUR 13.10).

    At the end of the reporting period, altogether 28,845 of the company’s series C 2010 stock options were unexercised. The subscription period for Raute Corporation’s series B stock options ended on March 31, 2017.

    Raute Corporation’s series C 2010 stock options are listed on Nasdaq Helsinki Ltd under the trading code RAUTEEW310. The subscription period for series C stock options is March 1, 2015–March 31, 2018. The subscription price at the end of the reporting period was EUR 5.00 and the closing price was EUR 15.00.

    The Group has remuneration systems in place that cover the entire personnel.

    Share-based incentive plans
    The Group has valid long-term share-based incentive plans based on performance.

    The company presented its latest performance- and share-based long-term incentive plan to the top management on February 15, 2017.

    The terms and conditions of the incentive plans are available on the company’s website.

    The number of shareholders stood at 3,625 at the beginning of the year and at 4,093 at the end of the reporting period. Series K shares were held by 55 private individuals (50) at the end of the reporting period. Nominee-registered shares accounted for 2.7 percent (2.7%) of shares. The company did not receive any flagging notifications during the reporting period.

    The Board of Directors, the President and CEO as well as the Executive Board held altogether 249,973 company shares, equaling 5.9 percent (5.7%) of the company shares and 11.2 percent (11.2%) of the votes at the end of the reporting period.

    Raute Corporation complies with the Finnish Corporate Governance Code 2015 for listed companies issued by the Securities Market Association on October 1, 2015.

    Raute Group’s Executive Board and the members’ areas of responsibility:
    Tapani Kiiski, President and CEO, Chairman – Sales
    Arja Hakala, Group Vice President, Finance, CFO – Finance and administration
    Marko Hjelt, Group Vice President, Human Resources – Human resources and competence development
    Mika Hyysti, Group Vice President, Technology – Technology, products and R&D
    Timo Kangas, Group Vice President, EMEA – Market area EMEA
    Antti Laulainen, Group Vice President, Technology Services and Sales Management – Technology services and sales management
    Petri Strengell, Group Vice President, Supply Chain – Sourcing and production.

    Raute Corporation’s Annual General Meeting was held on March 28, 2017. More detailed information on the decisions of the Annual General Meeting can be found in the stock exchange release issued on March 28, 2017.

    The Annual General Meeting held on March 28, 2017 decided to pay a dividend of EUR 1.00 per share for the financial year 2016. The total amount of dividends is EUR 4.2 million, with series A shares accounting for EUR 3,228,550.00 and series K shares for EUR 991,161.00. The dividend payment date was April 6, 2017.

    At the General Meeting on March 28, 2017, Mr. Erkki Pehu-Lehtonen was elected Chairman of the Board, Mr. Mika Mustakallio was elected Vice-Chair, and Mr. Joni Bask, Ms. Laura Raitio, Mr. Pekka Suominen, and Mr. Patrick von Essen were elected as Board members. The Board of Directors’ term of office will continue until the 2018 Annual General Meeting.

    Based on the evaluation of independence, Chairman Mr. Erkki Pehu-Lehtonen and members Mr. Joni Bask, Mr. Patrick von Essen, Ms. Laura Raitio, and Mr. Pekka Suominen are independent of the company. The Chairman of the Board (Mr. Erkki Pehu-Lehtonen) and two Board members (Mr. Patrick von Essen and Ms. Laura Raitio) are independent of major shareholders.
    Raute Corporation’s Board of Directors has an Appointments Committee. The Appointments Committee is chaired by Mr. Erkki Pehu-Lehtonen and its members are Mr. Mika Mustakallio and Mr. Pekka Suominen. The Audit and Working Committees’ tasks are handled by the Board of Directors.

    Raute Corporation published stock exchange releases on the following events after the reporting period:
    July 27, 2017 Raute revises its guidance for 2017 net sales and operating profit: Net sales will grow clearly and operating profit will improve clearly
    July 31, 2017 Raute receives an order worth over EUR 11 million to USA

    Risks in the near term continue to be driven by the uncertainty relating to the global economic situation and the development of the financial markets, as well as by international political instability. During the reporting period, there were no essential changes in the business risks described in the 2016 Board of Directors’ Report and Financial Statements.

    The most significant risks for Raute in the near term are related to the implementation of major mill-scale projects included in the order book in accordance with the contract terms.

    OUTLOOK FOR 2017
    On July 27, 2017, Raute revised its guidance for the full year 2017 concerning net sales and operating profit. Based on a strong order book, order intake and continued active demand, Raute’s net sales in 2017 are expected to clearly grow and operating profit to clearly improve from 2016.
    (Raute Oyj)
    23.08.2017   EGGER announces plans for a Greenfield project in the USA    ( Company news )

    Company news
    During an official meeting with the Governor of North Carolina, Roy Cooper, and representatives of local authorities, which took place on 24.07.2017, Michael Egger and Walter Schiegl, EGGER Group Management Technology/Production, announced plans to build a wood-based materials plant in Lexington, North Carolina.

    The project implementation is scheduled to take place in several stages, the first being the construction of a chipboard plant with coating capacities. The first project phase involves an investment volume of approximately EUR 260 million and will create 400 direct jobs over the next six years. Assuming all agreed framework conditions are fulfilled and the relevant permits are obtained, construction should start by the end of 2018. Production should start in 2020.

    The North Carolina plant will have ultramodern facilities for producing laminated chipboard, and will allow EGGER to better serve its customers in North-America. EGGER’s previous sales activities in the USA and Canada have already clearly shown that the range of products, the quality, and the price structure of the product portfolio are very attractive for architects, designers, distributors, and industry customers. The planned production location in Lexington, North Carolina, will play a decisive role for EGGER’s increasing presence on the North-American market for wood-based materials, as well as ensure product availability and delivery speed for our customers.
    (FRITZ EGGER GmbH & Co)
    22.08.2017   Successful first half-year for Dieffenbacher    ( Company news )

    Company news
    Dieffenbacher increases its sales while showing at the LIGNA trade fair how the production of wood-based panels can be even more efficient

    The first half of 2017 was eventful and extremely successful for Dieffenbacher. Orders for six wood-based panel plants already ensured well-filled order books before the LIGNA trade fair in May. By the end of the second quarter, three additional projects were booked.

    Image: Signing ceremony with Thien Lam Dat JSC. From the left: Christian Dieffenbacher (member of the management board, Dieffenbacher) and Dang Quoc Lich (Chairman of the Board, Thien Lam Dat JSC).

    On the second day of LIGNA, Vietnamese company Thien Lam Dat JSC signed a contract for a complete MDF plant with CPS+. The Algerian company BIGSTAR, via its subsidiary Panneaux d'Algérie, also entrusted Dieffenbacher with the delivery of a complete MDF plant with CPS+. It will be the first continuous press operating in North Africa. In addition, Kronospan ordered for its Sanem site in Luxembourg the core package of an OSB plant. A CPS+ will replace the multi-opening press, which has operated since 1996. The new projects demonstrate how CPS+ has reached the global market and become the gold standard for efficient continuous press systems.

    Dieffenbacher’s new stand at LIGNA reflected the company’s early 2017 success and its commitment to helping customers reach "the next level of plant efficiency." Dieffenbacher presented numerous new developments and solutions for complete production plants and plant modernization.

    At the conclusion of LIGNA, Christian Dieffenbacher, member of the management board, said that Dieffenbacher's pledge to produce the most efficient overall plant solutions hit the mark with customers. "We had a lot of good discussions and were pleased by the exceptionally high level of enthusiasm for our message and our products.” With a view to the successful first half-year, he added: "We are extremely satisfied with our progress and look confidently ahead to the future. We expect a significant increase in sales for the whole of 2017."
    (Dieffenbacher GmbH)
    21.08.2017   Ponsse introduces new technology for productivity and ergonomics    ( Company news )

    Company news
    Ponsse offers the broadest range of products in the market for cut-to-length logging. Solutions that focus especially on improving the operator's performance and comfort supplement the new model series.

    Photo: Another innovation to improve operator ergonomics is the new PONSSE Seat.

    The PONSSE Scorpion harvester, the flagship of the new PONSSE model series, was launched at the 2013 Elmia Wood exhibition. The launch gave start to a complete modernisation of the model series, focusing specifically on improved productivity and ergonomics alongside higher serviceability. So far, more than 500 Scorpions have been sold in 20 different countries, and more than 100 have been sold in Sweden.

    PONSSE ActiveFrame, the most comfortable suspension system in the market, is now also available for harvesters
    PONSSE ActiveFrame is a whole new cabin suspension system for eight-wheel
    machines. ­It levels out any roughness of the terrain and keeps the cabin
    horizontal at all times. This makes working more effective as the cabin is
    always horizontal when using the crane. In addition to forwarders, the
    ActiveFrame solution is now also available for the PONSSE Ergo 8w harvester, Ponsse's most popular harvester model.

    ActiveFrame has a simple and functional structure, effectively suspending any sideways movement directed at the operator allowing e.g. higher driving speeds for forwarders. As a result, any stress on the body is much smaller than before. The operator's comfort is a central factor in terms of productivity and quality. When operators do not tire from the roughness of the terrain, they remain more alert and can focus on work, even through a long shift.

    The suspension system actively keeps the cabin horizontal, following the shape of the ground surface at all times. Thanks to the dual frame structure, the pivot point of the suspension system is very low at the level of the bogie axle, which efficiently eliminates any swaying directed at the operator. The solution is technologically close to the PONSSE Scorpion levelling system, in which separate sensors have been replaced by reliable components built in the control module. The maximum angle of levelling in Ergo is fourteen degrees, seven on both sides.

    Another innovation to improve operator ergonomics is the new PONSSE Seat. It is the first seat designed exclusively for forest machines. The adjustments and extra strong base structure of PONSSE Seat provide forest machine operators with the best possible comfort. Combined with the strong structure, the new seat better suspends any swings and impacts directed at the operator.

    The first VR training simulator
    Ponsse is the first forest machine manufacturer to launch a virtual reality (VR) training simulator. VR headsets can be added to all PONSSE Full simulator models as optional equipment. VR headsets raise the simulator experience to a whole new level: they help the operator to perceive the environment and machine functions much better than in conventional simulators. The solution uses HTC Vive headsets and sensors to display images correctly. As a result, operators feel like they are actually in the forest and the driving experience feels more real – the environment can be explored by simply turning the head. By better perceiving distances and dimensions, it is also easier to train with the crane.
    The Full simulator can also be used without any headsets as before by simply switching it to the regular simulator mode through the user interface.

    PONSSE Manager for managing the functions of forest machine companies
    PONSSE Manager is a tool for the real-time management of the operations of
    forest machine companies. It provides real-time, comprehensive information
    about the machine fleet – both on its performance and sites. Detailed
    information about the productivity of the machine fleet supports the profitable operations of companies and keeps entrepreneurs up to date about matters affecting profitability.

    The Manager system guides companies in the productive use of their machines, maximising the efficiency and productivity of the fleet and minimising its downtime. The informative and easy-to-use tool with clear graphics helps companies to maintain their harvester fleet and improves the efficiency of work planning and reporting.

    Communication between operators and the company is also easier. Data is
    transferred automatically from the machine without the operator having to send files during harvesting. The machine operator can monitor and guide the daily operations of the company on a smartphone, tablet or computer, regardless of location.

    Fleet Management is a PONSSE Manager component for managing and monitoring
    field operations and the progress of harvesting in real time. Fleet Management displays the condition of the machine and the production volume of the machines by ­stand in real time. The application displays the cut total volume, breakdown of assortments and the average size of trees for each on-going stand.
    The map view and information about the progress of stands also make efficient planning of machine transfers possible. Machines are in the right place at the right time, with less time spent waiting for transfers, and their maintenance can be timed correctly.

    PONSSE Manager's Ecodrive function is a system that instructs the operator and gives measured feedback, for example, on the impact of maintenance on machine productivity. The function makes it possible to monitor the productivity and work phases of an individual machine in detail. Work phase-specific indicators serve to develop working methods to be more productive and economical and ensure the functionality of the adjustments of the machine.

    Major investments in quality and the future
    In addition to R&D investments, Ponsse invests heavily in the development of its production and network. A record number of forest machines was produced at Ponsse's Vieremä factory last year. Currently, the factory is undergoing a significant expansion, as a result of which the factory area will expand from 2.7 hectares to four hectares. The aim of this expansion and machine investments is to improve quality and flexibility alongside increased productivity and occupational safety. However, Ponsse invests in more than just its production. This year, new service centres have been opened in Uruguay and in the south of France and, by the end of the year, the UK service centre will move to new modern facilities. Last year, Ponsse expanded its Iisalmi central warehouse which serves Ponsse's international network. At the same time, new service facilities were opened in the United States and in Russia.
    (Ponsse Oyj)
    18.08.2017   Incoming orders increase by 33 percent in the first six months    ( Company news )

    Company news
    The HOMAG Group, the world's leading manufacturer of machinery and systems for the woodworking industry and trade, has continued to grow, recording strong demand for its products and solutions in the first half of 2017.

    In the first six months of 2017, the world market leader's incoming orders increased by 33 percent to € 734 million (previous year: € 552 million). By June 30, 2017, the order backlog had reached € 542 million (June 30, 2016: € 354 million) and sales were up 13 percent to € 597 million (previous year: € 527 million). Operating EBIT rose by 47 percent to € 46.9 million (previous year: € 31.9 million). As at June 30, 2017, the HOMAG Group had 6,149 employees (previous year: 5,983 employees).

    "Our encouraging start to 2017 continued in the second quarter, which means we had an excellent first half", highlights CEO Pekka Paasivaara. "We recorded strong growth in all regions. In China we increased our incoming orders by over 100 percent." CFO Franz Peter Matheis adds: "The disproportionately high rise in our earnings also shows that our numerous measures for enhancing efficiency and for standardizing our processes and systems are paying off."

    Paasivaara is also pleased with the outcome of the LIGNA trade fair, which took place in Hanover at the end of May: "It was clear that our customers are increasingly tending toward digitization and automation, where we can already offer end-to-end solutions from a single source. And thanks to 'tapio', the open digital industry platform that we presented at LIGNA, we are all set to lead the entire woodworking industry securely into the digital future. In addition, customers have already confirmed that our concept to ensure digital data continuity from point of sale through the entire production process, based on our comprehensive software suite, is unique in this industry." With this in mind, the HOMAG Group is also optimistic about the future and expects 2017 to be a successful year as a whole.
    (Homag Holzbearbeitungssysteme GmbH)
    17.08.2017   Sawlog prices in Brazil have gone up over the past 12 months after five years in decline and ...    ( Company news )

    Company news
    ... the expectations are that the recent upward trend will continue for the remainder of the year, reports the Wood Resource Quarterly

    Stronger wood product exports from Brazil have resulted in higher demand for logs and increasing sawlog prices during 2016 and early 2017, reports the Wood Resource Quarterly. Despite the recent price increases, current prices are below the long-term trend lines in the local currency.

    In the 1Q/17, pine sawlog prices in Brazil increased in both US dollars and in the Brazilian Real quarter-over-quarter. Over the last 12 months, sawlog prices have gone up by 26%, according to the Wood Resource Quarterly. Most of the rise in prices has been the result of a stronger Real, but there have also been smaller upward price adjustments in the local currency because of higher labor and energy costs. The recent price increases follow a downward price trend that lasted for much of 2011-2015.

    There are expectations that sawlog prices may continue to go up in the coming months because of improved opportunities for Brazilian exporters of lumber, plywood and valueadded products such as doors and mouldings to increase shipments overseas. During the first quarter of 2017, pine lumber exports reached an all-time high and were equal to the annual export volume just five years ago. The countries that have increased imports of Brazilian lumber the most in the past year are, in descending order, the US, Mexico, China and Saudi Arabia.

    An analysis of long-term timber price trends, volatility, and a point-in-time assessment of current timber prices relative to historical trends was recently undertaken by the timberland investment consultancy firm ForestEdge LLC (
    Sixteen products were tracked, generally representing plantation roundwood products in Brazil, Chile, South Africa and New Zealand, in addition to conifer sawlogs in Sweden and hardwood pulpwood in the US South. Only pulpwood in Brazil (both pine and Eucalyptus) and conifer products in South Africa (pulpwood, small and large sawlogs) registered increasing prices over the 1995-2016 period in inflation adjusted US dollars.

    With respect to current delivered timber prices in local currency, it is interesting to note that with few exceptions, most timber prices in the local currencies in the 4Q/16 were not far from their trend-line values. Prices in both Brazil and Chile remained below their local currency trend lines, reflecting somewhat depressed timber markets.
    (Wood Resources International LLC)
    16.08.2017   EPAL Euro pallets continue their road to success: 10% growth in the second quarter of 2017    ( Company news )

    Company news
    The production of EPAL Euro pallets increased by 10% in the first two quarters of 2017 compared to the previous year. In the first six months of this year, 42.5 million EPAL Euro pallets were produced worldwide.

    There was also an increase in the number of repairs: +11.5%, with 13.7 million repaired EPAL pallets in the first six months of 2017.

    The constantly increasing production over the last four years, since the “EPAL in oval” mark has been branded on all four blocks, is the unique success story of the EPAL Euro pallet, which represents quality, safety and sustainability. In 2015 for the first time, the 100 million mark was achieved for EPAL pallets produced and repaired worldwide and in the following year even exceeded with 105.5 million EPAL pallets in total.

    Martin Leibrandt, CEO of EPAL, “I would never have thought that EPAL could top the historic result of 2015, but the users of EPAL pallets’ trust is unwavering, growing all the time. At EPAL we are very proud of this and would like to sincerely thank all users of EPAL Euro pallets.”
    (EPAL European Pallet Association e.V.)
    15.08.2017   Milestone in Södra's investment in Långasjö    ( Company news )

    Company news
    Södra is investing just over SEK 100 million in the Långasjö sawmill and mid-July marks a milestone in the major investment project. This is when the old sawmill from 1982 will be demolished to make way for a new profiling line. A total of 25 people are working with dismantling operations. The sawmill will return to full production by the end of October.

    Photo: Dismantling operations of the old small-diameter timber saw line.

    The investment will increase capacity at the sawmill from 280,000 m³ to 360,000 m³. A capacity increase equivalent to 15 more timber trucks per day. To achieve this, the old small-diameter timber saw line will be replaced with a new profiling curve sawing line. This means throughput at the saw will be simplified and streamlined. In addition, a stacker and binding stick stacker is being built, a brand new wood dryer and a new 8,000-square-metre warehouse.

    The sawmill is the heart of the operation and the last log was sawn in the old saw line on Thursday, 20 July. Work then began demolishing the old small-diameter timber saw line.

    "25 people are working during the week with dismantling operations. It is demanding work, where each person removes two tonnes of scrap metal per hour. On 31 July, the premises will be ready to begin moving in the new profiling line. The premises are also being extended to manage the boards and planks from the new line," said Markus Förster, project manager for the profiling line.

    The sawmill currently consists of one line for large dimensions and one for small-diameter timber, where the large-dimension line will be retained. The small-diameter line will be replaced with a fully optimised profiling line with a maximum speed of 150 metres per minute, compared with the current speed of 88 metres per minute. The supplier is AriVislanda. The production line will be adjusted between 11 September and 15 October. From November, it will be in full production.

    The sub-projects for the new wood dryer and new warehouse are already complete and the new stacker is scheduled for takeover by mid-November.

    The investment also means 25 new jobs in Långasjö. Employees at the Torsås sawmill, which will close down this autumn, have been able to apply for these jobs.
    (Södra Timber AB)
    14.08.2017   The EGGER Group is growing: Stable results for the business year 2016/2017, ...    ( Company news )

    Company news
    ...big plans for the future

    The wood-based material manufacturer recorded EUR 2.38 billion sales and EUR 363.7 million EBITDA for the business year 2016/2017.

    The EGGER Group again set new records in its annual results for 2016/2017. The sales increased during the business year 2016/2017 by +1.7% to reach EUR 2,384.8 million. The EBITDA increased by +4.0 % to reach EUR 363.7 million. The EBITDA margin exceeded previous years’ levels by 15.3 %. The family business continues to enjoy a good credit rating thanks to a high equity ratio of 37.5 %. The quantity of rawboards, incl. timber, increased to 7.9 million m3 (+3 %), which means the full utilisation of all primary production capacities. On average last year, EGGER employed 8,145 employees group-wide.

    Positive sales developments were achieved and the market share was developed in almost all regions across the world. Despite uncertainties following the Brexit vote, the overall development in Great Britain over the past twelve months was positive. Diminished sales and earnings are due exclusively to a weaker British Pound. The tense political and economic situation in Turkey led to lower local sales of edging, which, however, was largely compensated through exports.
    Under the EGGER motto “Sustainable international growth”, investments in property and intangible assets as well as acquisitions of EUR 259.2 million were posted during the business year 2016/2017 (previous year: EUR 302.7 million). Out of this amount, EUR 64.3 million was spent on maintenance investments and EUR 194.9 million on growth investments.

    Large upcoming investments

    EGGER will be busy taking big steps towards further growth during the current business year 2017/2018 and beyond. On the 17th of July, the EGGER Group announced it is taking over the plant Concordia, Argentina, from the Chilean Masisa S.A. This will be the first time EGGER is represented with a production site outside Europe.

    The already announced new construction of a chipboard plant in Biskupiec, in the north of Poland, is due to start on the 85 ha site in the next few weeks. The new wood-based materials plant will use the latest technology and will be equipped with a raw chip capacity of 650,000 m³, lamination and impregnation units.

    Another greenfield project is currently in the early planning stages. Together with the Governor and representatives of local authorities, EGGER has recently announced its intention to build a wood-based materials plant in Lexington, North Carolina. The project implementation is scheduled to take place in several stages, the first being the construction of a chipboard plant with coating capacities.
    (FRITZ EGGER GmbH & Co)
    11.08.2017   Wood raw-material costs for European pulpmills continued to slide in early 2017 ...    ( Company news )

    Company news
    ... to reach their lowest levels in over five years, reports the
    Wood Resource Quarterly

    The European pulp industry has become much more competitive in the international pulp and paper market the past five years with wood fiber costs, which account for 55-65% of the production costs, having fallen more than in most other regions of the world, reports the Wood Resource Quarterly. Some of the biggest price declines have been for hardwood pulplogs in the Nordic countries.

    Wood costs for the pulp industry in Europe were generally lower in the 1Q/17 than in the previous quarter, continuing a downward trend that, depending on the country, has lasted for 4-6 years. The biggest price declines for pulplogs and sawmill residues in early 2017 occurred in Germany and France, according to the Wood Resource Quarterly (WRQ). The price reductions occurred mainly because of an oversupply of pulplogs, unchanged demand for wood fiber from the pulp industry, and reduced usage of raw-material by the competing wood pellet sector.

    In neighboring Austria, conifer pulplog prices have been very stable during most of 2015 and 2016 (in Euro terms) and prices did not change much in the 1Q/17. However, the weakening of the Euro against the US dollar has resulted in Austrian pulplog prices falling seven percent in two years.

    In the Nordic countries, wood fiber costs in the 1Q/17 were at their lowest levels since 2006 (in US dollars). This was mostly thanks to the weakening of the local currencies in both Sweden and Finland. The wood fiber costs currently account for about 60% of the manufacturing cost when manufacturing pulp in the region, according to Fisher International, so a reduction in prices for pulplogs and wood chips has a major impact in improving the competitiveness of the pulp and paper industry when competing in the global market place.

    The pulp sectors in Portugal and Spain, which are the third and fourth largest consumers of hardwood logs in Europe, have also enjoyed a period of declining wood costs with the price levels in early 2017 being 20-25% below the fiber costs five years ago.

    Hardwood fiber costs for pulpmill in Europe have fallen more rapidly than in other parts of the world from 2012 to 2017, and the industry has become much more competitive with competitors in North America, Latin America and Asia, according to the WRQ. For example, the price discrepancy for hardwood pulplogs between Sweden and the US South has fallen from US$62/odmt in the 1Q/12 to only US$9/odmt in the 1Q/17.
    (WRI Wood Resources International LLC)
    10.08.2017   Predictive maintenance thanks to spindle temperature monitoring    ( Company news )

    Company news
    Have you ever experienced this scenario? Your order books are full, the machines are running, the production is booming. Suddenly, there is a problem on one of your machines. One spindle of the moulder is standing still - and the complete production line, too. Now, time is money! You need to get spare parts and a replacement of the spindle as quickly as possible.

    Don't worry, thanks to the new WEINIG solution this nightmare scenario is a thing of the past!

    Photo: Warning in the WEINIG Service App and in PowerCom

    Using the spindle temperature monitoring you already know in advance, if there is some damage to foreshadow and you can counteract at the right time.

    The PowerCom machine control permanently monitors the spindle temperature. As soon as the first boundary temperature is exceeded, the control unit gives a warning. If the second boundary temperature is exceeded, the machine is automatically stopped in order to prevent any damage. These reports can be tracked for each spindle in PowerCom and in the WEINIG Service App.

    This way, it is possible to detect critical conditions at an early stage and damage is avoided. Instead, maintenance intervals can be planned specifically, unscheduled downtime is eliminated and cost of repairs are reduced.

    Especially machines for industrial applications benefit from the spindle monitoring. This feature implies an added value by increasing production safety, machine availability and profitability.
    (Michael Weinig Aktiengesellschaft)
    10.08.2017   The fiber costs for pellet plants in North America have trended downward the past year ...    ( Company news )

    Company news
    ... with the US and Canadian Pellet Feedstock Price Indices reaching their lowest levels in over four years in the 2Q/17, according to the North American Wood Fiber Review

    With the feed stock shifting towards lower cost fiber, including industry and forest residues, total wood costs for pellet manufacturers fell during 2016 and early 2017, according to the North American Wood Fiber Review. The PFPI price indices for the US and Canada have fallen 16% and 26%, respectively since 2013.

    Wood pellet manufacturers in North America consume wood fiber from a variety of sources with different price levels, trends and cost drivers. The WRI pellet feedstock price indices for Canada and the US (PFPI-US and PFPI-CA), which were launched in 2013, show a quarterly volume-weighted price for the fiber consumed by each country’s pellet sector. Each individual facility’s estimated mix of fiber (roundwood, sawdust, shavings, microchips, etc.) are calculated using local fiber pricing to determine a weighted price, which is further combined with production capacity and operating rate to calculate the final regional index price.

    The price indices for both the US and Canada have trended downward the past few years and reached record lows in both countries in the 2Q/17. The PFPI-US has fallen 15% from its peak in the 3Q/13 to the 2Q/17. Slightly declining roundwood prices, plummeting sawdust costs, and a change in the feedstock mix towards lower cost residuals in both the Gulf States and the Atlantic States were the major reasons behind the decline in the PFPI-US Index the past year.

    A snapshot of the various feedstocks currently being used by the US export pellet sector shows 50 percent was roundwood in the 2Q/17, followed by significant volumes of sawdust and shavings, and an increasing supply of forest microchips.

    The Canadian price index, PFPI-CA, which ccombines the larger Western export pellet sector primarily in BC with the smaller Eastern sector found in Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, has fallen more than the US index (in US dollar terms), mostly because of the weaker Canadian dollar. However, wood fiber costs for pellet manufacturers have also fallen slightly in Canadian dollar terms because of lower costs for logs the past few years. From its record high in early 2013 to the 2Q/17, the PFPI-CA declined 26%. The lower indexed price in the 2Q/17 primarily reflected the falling costs of sawdust and shavings and incremental increases in the usage of these feedstock forms over higher cost roundwood.
    (Wood Resources International LLC)
    09.08.2017   Bookings Open for Mumbaiwood     ( Company news )

    Company news
    We are glad to inform you that BOOKINGS ARE NOW OPEN for the 3rd edition of MUMBAIWOOD, the International Trade Fair for Furniture Production Technologies, Woodworking Machinery, Tools, Fittings, Accessories, Raw Materials and Products scheduled to be held from 12 to 14 October, 2017 at the Bombay Exhibition Centre, Goregaon (E), Mumbai.

    MUMBAIWOOD 2017, ramps up to be an international 3 DAY event and will be once again the Asia's largest sourcing platform for furniture manufacturers, wood based handicraft manufacturers, saw millers, craftsmen, woodworking professionals, builders, architects and interior designers in the region and will attract audience from pan India and neighbouring countries. The show floor of MUMBAIWOOD will span over 10,000 square meters of woodworking solutions, machineries, materials and components.
    (Pradeep Deviah & Associates Pvt. Ltd)
    08.08.2017   Glen Morrison succeeds Michel Giannuzzi as CEO of Tarkett    ( Company news )

    Company news
    Tarkett’s Supervisory Board has appointed Glen Morrison (photo), currently President of Tarkett North America, to be the new Group CEO, effective as of September 1st 2017. Glen will succeed Michel Giannuzzi, who will take over a new CEO position outside Tarkett after ten years of successful accomplishments.

    Glen Morrison, a British and American citizen, joined Tarkett in May 2015 as President of North America. During his tenure, Glen oversaw a rapid and efficient integration of Tarkett North America’s brands and organizations, helping to accelerate the Group’s organic growth and significantly improve its profitability. Previously, Glen had gained extensive experience in General Management through his five-year role as President of Building and Construction Systems at Alcoa (a global lightweight metals leader), a business segment that he successfully developed. Glen has also held various Sales & Marketing positions in the construction industry in Europe (UK, Belgium, and Switzerland).

    Michel Giannuzzi has been CEO of Tarkett since September 2007. Since the global recession in 2009 and in spite of macroeconomics headwinds in Russia, he has delivered a profitable growth strategy, including 21 acquisitions, that has led to a 7% compound annual growth rate increase in both Sales and EBITDA. In 2013, he successfully oversaw Tarkett’s IPO on Euronext Paris, and over the past ten years the Group’s capitalization has more than tripled under his leadership. He has built a talented organization, entrenching strong company values in Tarkett’s DNA, thus reinforcing the Group’s leadership worldwide.

    Didier Deconinck, Chairman of Tarkett’s Supervisory Board declared: “On behalf of my family and the Board of Directors, I am delighted to welcome Glen Morrison as the next CEO of Tarkett. His proven leadership qualities and his excellent track record will ensure the continued success of Tarkett’s entrepreneurial story. We know he will uphold our company’s values and we are confident that his leadership will embark Tarkett on a new era of growth. I would like to thank Michel Giannuzzi for his considerable achievements over the last decade, in strengthening Tarkett’s profitable growth, increasing its geographical presence and products’ portfolio as well as positioning Tarkett as a recognized innovative and sustainable leader.”

    Glen Morrison said: “I am very pleased to have been asked by the Board of Directors to become Chief Executive Officer of Tarkett. I am excited about my new responsibilities and the opportunity to lead Tarkett into the next phase of its strategic development. I have great ambitions for our company to continue our winning strategy, and I will endeavour to promote innovation and development worldwide for the benefit of our clients, employees and shareholders.”

    Michel Giannuzzi declared: “It has been a pleasure and an honour for me to lead the great teams of Tarkett, and to drive this fantastic entrepreneurial journey. I wish Glen every success for the future.”
    (Tarkett SAS)
    07.08.2017   HOMAG Group invests in Schopfloch site    ( Company news )

    Company news
    The HOMAG Group is investing in its Schopfloch site. Investments for the extension of a building to further increase the production area and for new parking spaces will reach around € 2.5 million this year. Further investments are due to follow.

    The ground-breaking ceremony to mark the 1,800 m2 extension of the production area took place recently, attended by the HOMAG Group's CEO, Pekka Paasivaara, the Freudenstadt district administrator, Dr. Klaus Michael Rückert, and Schopfloch's mayor, Klaas Klaasen. The extension, due to be completed by early 2018, will cost around € 2 million.

    Pekka Paasivaara: "With our complex high-tech products, our domestic sites remain important to the HOMAG Group. This is why we continue to invest in their sustainability, just as we are doing now in Schopfloch. The excellent business climate has prompted us to expand our production capacities in order to serve our customers as quickly as possible."

    Carmen Hettich-Günter, chair of the works council in Schopfloch and chair of the HOMAG Group works council, adds: "The staff are looking forward to the extension and regard the investment as a strong commitment to the Schopfloch site. We also see it as an appreciation of the great dedication demonstrated by the employees."

    New parking spaces for the workforce will also be created. Further investments in the machinery will follow.
    (Homag Holzbearbeitungssysteme GmbH)
    04.08.2017   Stora Enso's CLT wall and floor panels now available as BIM objects    ( Company news )

    Company news
    A key element in Stora Enso’s strategy is to increase the use of wood as a building material. To make this happen, Stora Enso’s Wood Products division promotes cost efficient multi-storey building systems based on wood components such Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) and Laminated Veneer Lumber (LVL). Now the Building System manuals are available as digital objects from the Building Information Modelling (BIM) library.

    Stora Enso collaborates with ProdLib, a product library for designers, to bring the Building System manuals and building components to every architect and engineer's desktops. Designers can find the CLT wall and floor components as well as the wall and floor structures as BIM objects (currently only for Revit), and many structural details in DWG and PDF format. The structure types and construction details are easy to find with a customised interface by clicking a specific part in the example building.

    “This is just the first step in the development of a digital toolbox to make our building components and systems easily available for designers in a form that is also usable for our production planning team”, says Petri Perttula, SVP, Building Solutions at Stora Enso’s Wood Products division.

    “The real benefits of BIM will become visible only when the common rules, roles and definitions for BIM in wood construction industry have been defined throughout the design and construction process. There is still much work to do, and Stora Enso wants to take an active role in making this happen”, Perttula continues.

    New ProdLib users need to download the product library first and after that the Stora Enso’s building components and systems are easily available and continuously updated. Revit users get the BIM objects directly in their own software by clicking the Stora Enso icon.
    (Stora Enso Timber)
    04.08.2017   ANDRITZ GROUP: Results for the first half of 2017    ( Company news )

    Company news
    International technology Group ANDRITZ saw satisfactory business development in the first half of 2017. The key financial figures developed as follows:
    -Sales amounted to 2,779.0 MEUR in the first half of 2017 and were thus at practically the same level as in the previous year's reference period (+0.6% compared to H1 2016: 2,761.2 MEUR). Sales in the second quarter of 2017 dropped by 5.6% compared to the previous year to 1,392.8 MEUR (Q2 2016: 1,475.6 MEUR).
    -The order intake increased – due to the very strong first quarter – in the first half of 2017 to 2,771.3 MEUR and was thus 8.0% higher than in the previous year’s reference period (H1 2016: 2,566.4 MEUR).

    Photo: Wolfgang Leitner, President & CEO of ANDRITZ AG

    The PULP & PAPER business area, in particular, achieved a substantial increase in order intake that more than compensated the decline in order intake in the HYDRO business area. In the second quarter of 2017, the order intake of 1,211.3 MEUR was 8.2% below the level of the previous year’s reference period (Q2 2016: 1,319.0 MEUR). The reason for this decrease was the lower order intake due to market conditions in the HYDRO business area and a decline in the metal forming sector, which achieved an extraordinarily high order intake in the previous year’s reference period.
    -The order backlog as of June 30, 2017, amounted to 6,849.1 MEUR (+0.9% compared to December 31, 2016: 6,789.2 MEUR).
    -The EBITA in the first half of 2017 was positively impacted by a one-off effect in the amount of around 25 MEUR, which resulted mainly from the sale of Schuler’s technical center in Tianjin, China; it reached 207.3 MEUR and was thus significantly higher than the figure for the previous year’s reference period (+13.3% compared to H1 2016: 183.0 MEUR). As a result, profitability (EBITA margin) increased to 7.5% (H1 2016: 6.6%). Excluding this one-off effect, profitability would have remained unchanged compared to the previous year at 6.6%. In the second quarter of 2017, the EBITA amounted to 109.9 MEUR (+10.9% compared to Q2 2016: 99.1 MEUR).
    -The net income (without non-controlling interests) increased in the first half of 2017 to 130.8 MEUR (H1 2016: 120.2 MEUR).

    Wolfgang Leitner, President & CEO of ANDRITZ AG: “We are satisfied overall with developments in the first half of the year, even though we were not able to reach all our targets in our business areas. As far as the markets we serve are concerned, we do not expect any substantial changes in project and investment activity for the remainder of the year.”

    For the 2017 business year, ANDRITZ has revised its sales forecast slightly and now expects a marginal decline in sales compared to 2016. From today’s perspective, profitability (EBITA margin) should at least reach the solid level of the previous year.
    (Andritz AG)
    03.08.2017   Sonae Arauco ordered a new Siempelkamp production line for MDF/HDF for ...     ( Company news )

    Company news
    ... its Mangualde, Portugal, location

    To expand production capacities at its Portugese Mangualde location, Sonae Arauco decided to order a MDF/HDF plant from Siempelkamp. The scope of supply includes a forming and press line with a complex handling system for different board lengths and widths and an interface to the existing storage system and the sanding and packing lines.

    Sonae Arauco S.A. is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of wood-based materials and operates in Europe, Canada, South America, and South Africa. The company’s portfolio includes products from all areas of the wood-based materials industry, such as particleboard, MDF or OSB, if desired with melamine finish, as well as various special products.

    The new production line for Mangualde will replace a multi-daylight press and will allow Sonae Arauco material and energy efficient production of MDF and HDF with a wide thickness range. The order comprises of the forming and press line with all pneumatic and mechanical conveyors including the automation technology. The press line with a ContiRoll® press of the latest design will be equipped with cutting-edge and energy-efficient synchronous motor drive technology. The press will be 28.8 m long and 8’ wide. It will produce MDF and HDF with a thickness ranging from 2 – 37.8 mm.

    The concept of sequential thickness changeovers will allow the operator to change the production automatically to new order-specific parameters and thus make the production of smaller batches possible. In this way product and quality variations as well as material losses will be minimized.
    (Siempelkamp Maschinen- und Anlagenbau GmbH)
    02.08.2017   Serbia ratified EFI Convention    ( Company news )

    Company news
    The Republic of Serbia has ratified the Convention on the European Forest Institute and the entry into force will take place on 2 September 2017.

    The Convention on EFI has now been ratified by a total of 28 European countries. The ratifying countries are Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and the UK.

    These countries are the Members of the Institute. The highest decision making body of the Institute, the Council, consists of representatives of the Members, and meets in ordinary session every three years. Ireland holds the Chairmanship of the Council for the period 2017–2020.
    (EFI European Forest Institute Headquarters)
    01.08.2017   Bulgaria joins the PEFC alliance    ( Company news )

    Company news
    “The benefit of PEFC is that we are responsible for the development of our own national forest certification system,” said Antony Stefanov, from the Council for Sustainable Forest Management and Certification in Bulgaria.

    “This means we can ensure that our specific needs are taken into account, which is particularly important for our many small- and family-forest owners.”

    “We are delighted to have been accepted into the PEFC alliance,” Mr. Stefanov continued, following the acceptance of Bulgaria as a PEFC national member.

    A nationally developed system
    The acceptance of the Council for Sustainable Forest Management and Certification in Bulgaria as a PEFC member is an important step towards preparing their national system for PEFC endorsement.

    A national sustainable forest management standard is currently being developed by a multi-stakeholder process. It is expected to undergo pilot testing and public consultation in 2017.

    It is important to highlight that the work of the Council goes beyond technical work: “The Bulgarian council will not only be responsible for managing the certification system, but also for providing comprehensive support to the country’s forest owners,” emphasized Mr. Stefanov.

    Regional progress
    “We have seen fantastic progress in Southeast Europe over the last year,” said Ben Gunneberg, CEO of PEFC International. “Both Macedonia and Romania joined the PEFC alliance last year, and now we are delighted to welcome Bulgaria to the family.”

    Forests play an important societal and economic role in this region. More than half the population lives in rural areas and forests are a significant source of income, jobs and resources.

    We have been actively supporting projects within the Balkans since the first Collaboration Fund back in 2011. Thanks to our International Stakeholder member Connecting Natural Values and People Foundation (CNVP), from 2016 we moved to a regional approach to increase forest certification throughout the Balkans.

    The PEFC alliance grows!
    The Council for Sustainable Forest Management and Certification in Bulgaria is also joined by PAFC-Congo and the South African Forestry Assurance Scheme (SAFAS) as the latest members of the PEFC alliance. This means there are now 49 PEFC national members around the world!
    (PEFC International)
    31.07.2017   Swedish wood increasingly global    ( Company news )

    Company news
    Global demand for Swedish wood is constantly rising. In the first half of 2017, Södra delivered sawn timber to 38 counties, representing more than a 100-percent increase in geographic markets since 2005.

    More and more global markets are acknowledging Swedish wood as a building material for both interior purposes and residential construction. Södra delivered to 17 countries in 2005 and the figure has increased to 38 countries to date this year, ranging from the US in the west to Japan in the east.

    "This is a very positive trend that we can also see on a global scale. Timber construction is by far the most environmentally friendly alternative and a condition for the global change to a more sustainable society," said Andreas Jonasson, Marketing Manager at Södra Wood. 

    Higher demand in Asia
    Sweden is experiencing a strong trend in construction timber and Södra has increased its sales for three consecutive years. Demand from Asia, where most new markets are located, is also rising in parallel with this trend. Södra’s core markets for sawn timber are the UK, the Netherlands and Sweden, but it is China – where Södra has been making deliveries since 2010 – that is the fastest growing market. Sales have risen every year and in 2016 were up 32 percent year-on-year.

    "Swedish wood is becoming increasingly sought-after in Asia. Drivers include high delivery reliability and high product quality, as well as Swedish raw materials coming from certified and sustainable forests with extensive consideration of nature conservation," said Andreas Jonasson.
    (Södra Timber AB)
    28.07.2017   Wood adds warmth to interior design    ( Company news )

    Company news
    Renovation of one summer cottage in the archipelago had two major objectives; the new interior surfaces needed to blend seamlessly into the old, and the interior had to fit in with the gorgeous view beyond the large windows. Birch plywood provided the means for bringing this specific vision to life.

    Interior stylist and designer Minna Jones has been working as an entrepreneur for over a decade. Her educational background in clothing provided a great basis for combining aesthetics, practicality and different types of material in her work. “Furniture is not that different from clothing,” says Jones. Her interest in her job could be described as a mission: In addition to customer projects, Jones also loves to design, decorate and renovate in her spare time.

    A few years ago, Jones and her family bought a log cottage in Nauvo. Built in 1973, the 46-square-metre cottage required some renovation and an extension so that the family of five could spend their spare time there all year round. Minna Jones designed a modern two-storey extension for the cottage.

    “I wanted the surfaces of the old thin log structures of the cottage and the interior surfaces of the newly constructed wing to have a unified look. In addition, the atmosphere of the interior had to be harmonious with the view from the large windows. “I like surfaces that retain the look and feel of wood. That’s why I chose birch plywood as the material. When used indoors, untreated plywood wears well against the weather conditions and moisture of the archipelago. It also acquires a beautiful patina as it ages,” Jones explains. The size of the cottage today is approximately 80 square metres, and the interior walls and ceiling are lined with birch plywood. The old boarded floor of the cottage was too slanted to be repaired, so a new floor was built using pine boards that were treated with lye and waxed to give them a brightened look.

    “Birch plywood adds more warmth to modern decor. For example, if the interiors are designed using a lot of white, plywood softens the overall impression,” Jones says. “I love the surface of birch plywood. It is vivid and looks beautiful even without treatment. Plywood is also a traditional Finnish material. For example, Alvar Aalto used a lot of plywood in his designs, which has undoubtedly had an impact on my own taste over the years. I had such a strong vision concerning the use of wood in the interior design of the cottage that I didn’t even consider using other alternatives.”

    Increasing interest in plywood
    Along with the walls and ceiling of the cottage, Jones used birch plywood in the floating countertops and some of the fittings and furniture. The plywood was measured and installed by a carpenter she already knew. “In an old building, the walls may not be completely straight, so having a good carpenter is extremely important,” Jones explains. She has documented the progress of her cottage renovation project in her blog and received many questions about building with wood and using plywood, some of which even came from abroad. “Wood is considered more exotic elsewhere in Europe. In Finland, we see wood as a familiar material that we may sometimes even take for granted.”

    However, Jones has observed that trends in interior design are starting to move away from hard and clinical interiors towards wood and natural materials. “Even in Finland, wooden furniture has regained some of its popularity in the last ten years. Untreated wooden surfaces have also become a more common feature in interior design, and log walls are no longer being covered. Painting, waxing or using other surface treatments on wood has decreased in popularity as well,” Jones notes.

    Sustainable decor — even for summer cottages
    Jones and her family renovated their cottage on a small budget but without making any compromises on quality. Minna Jones explains that she purchased a lot of the furniture and furnishing textiles second-hand.

    “In my design projects, I want to consider also the ecological viewpoint. In rural areas, it is not that easy to get rid of purchases that turn out to be a mistake: We only have a small bin for household waste, and hazardous waste presents quite a problem! The Artek catchphrase ‘buy now, keep forever’ really hits home in the countryside.”

    Jones sees room for improvement in the typical Finnish summer cottage decor.
    “Many people in Finland basically use rubbish to decorate the interior of their summer cottage. They drive an expensive car, and yet they use it to bring all of their old or broken things that they don’t have the heart to throw away or that no longer fit in with their decor at home to their cottage. Finnish people could use some lessons in decorating their summer cottage! The whole idea of the cottage is to have a place to rest your soul. We have a wonderful, well-functioning recycling system in Finland: You can sell or give away almost anything you no longer like. I don’t understand the logic behind using your summer cottage as a kind of recycling centre for your life,” Jones muses. She promotes sustainable and functional purchases. “Life gets much easier when you don’t constantly have to go around objects, move things out of the way, or clean cobwebs from souvenirs.”

    Minna Jones loves traditional and timeless objects. “The plywood surface will still look good 10 years from now. Although the decoration may change, the walls will remain the same. They will darken with age, but that’s just life.”

    Building a new sauna hut and improving the shore are the next projects on the horizon for Jones. “My list of projects is endless, but the cottage is already in a very good shape!” she concludes.
    (UPM Timber)
    27.07.2017   The new SECTOR series - Sophisticated cutting precision in minimum space    ( Company news )

    Company news
    The new upright panel saws from the SECTOR series combine proven technology from over 50 years of experience with a basic, solid design offering you a unique price-performance ratio.

    The completely welded frame with extremely high rigidity is your guarantee for precise cutting quality. A finished cut that is ready for immediate edgebanding goes without saying for HOLZ-HER. With their extreme capacity, the powerful sawing motors ensure perfect cutting results and are at the same time easy to adjust, guaranteeing ergonomic operation.

    On the SECTOR 1260 automatic, you have the option of choosing between manual and automatic operation. Automatic operation allows automatic plunge cutting, through cutting and retraction, along with return to the starting point, therefore making the cutting of panels significantly easier and ensuring higher cutting power.

    The professional OptiBase V-Cut cutting optimization is available for all SECTOR models. This enables you to optimize your cutting and labeling in a professional way. You can choose to carry out the optimization on the machine or also in the office with a network connection.
    (HOLZ-HER GmbH)
    26.07.2017   Strong second quarter result for Södra    ( Company news )

    Company news
    Södra´s operating profit totalled SEK 464 million (50) for the second quarter. The trend was boosted by favourable demand for Södra’s products, higher prices and internal operational improvements.

    "The overall forest economy remains strong, which is to Södra’s advantage. Higher prices for both market pulp and sawn timber contributed to a strong quarter for Södra. A firmer customer and market orientation is also yielding results. In addition, the expansion investments at our pulp mills and the restructuring process in the sawmill operations had a positive impact on operating profit", said Lars Idermark (photo), President and CEO.

    "All business areas reported higher year-on-year operating profit. Efforts to increase our strength and focus, based on Södra’s new strategic direction, will continue unabated", said Lars Idermark.

    Consolidated net sales amounted to SEK 5,244 million (4,953) for the second quarter, up 6 percent, and the operating margin increased to 9 percent (1).

    Södra Skog’s operating profit for the quarter totalled SEK 37 million (36), reflecting volume growth of 4 percent.

    Södra Wood’s operating profit for the second quarter totalled SEK 50 million (loss: 204). The sharply increased result was mainly due to improved earnings for sawn timber. In addition, the second quarter of 2016 was impacted by a non-recurring cost of SEK 204 million related to the restructuring of Södra Wood’s sawmill operations.

    Södra Cell’s operating profit for the second quarter totalled SEK 418 million (253), an improvement of 65 percent. The earnings trend was mainly due to higher volumes. Following the extensive expansion investments of recent years, the pulp mill at Värö is now fully operational and capacity is increasing according to plan, resulting in higher production and delivery volumes.

    Sales for the first half-year amounted to SEK 10,342 million (9,498), the operating profit totalled SEK 915 M (299) and the operating margin was 9 percent (3). Return on capital employed was 11 percent (4) and equity ratio was 55 percent (52).
    (Södra Cell AB)
    25.07.2017   The total value of logs exported from New Zealand in the 1Q/17 was almost three times as high ...    ( Company news )

    Company news
    ... as the value of exported lumber, reports the Wood Resource Quarterly

    Over 50% of the timber harvest in New Zealand is being exported in log form. However, some sawmills in the country have taken advantage of the growing demand for softwood lumber in the US the past few years, with the total export value having gone 37% from 2012 to 2016, reports the Wood Resource Quarterly.

    New Zealand’s log exports have fallen for two consecutive quarters and were at 3.8 million m3 in the 1Q/17, down 12% from the two-year high in the 3Q/16. China continues to be the major destination for the radiata pine logs, accounting for 70% of the shipments during the first three months of 2017, followed by South Korea (16%), India (9%) and Japan (4%), as reported in the latest issue of the Wood Resource Quarterly (WRQ).

    No country in the world exports a higher percentage of its harvested conifer timber in unprocessed form than New Zealand. Although the share has declined over the past three years, the log export volume accounted for 52% of the total harvest in 2016. There has long been a debate about how the country could expand domestic processing of forest products and increase exports of lumber and other further processed forest products. The good news is that lumber production has gone up by about ten percent over the past three years. The “less good” news is that there has not yet been any major progress in the expansion of lumber sales to the international arena. Quite to the contrary, New Zealand lumber export volumes were 15% lower in 2016 than in 2013.

    The exported logs from New Zealand value was just over 1.6 billion US dollars in 2016, which was almost three times as much as the price for softwood lumber. The total export value for lumber fluctuated within a fairly narrow range over the past seven years, ranging between 570 million US dollars and 660 million dollars, reports the WRQ. The biggest shift in market export sales in the past few years (by value) has been that the US has overtaken Australia as the number one destination for pine lumber produced in New Zealand. In terms of value, New Zealand is the second largest overseas lumber supplier to the US, behind Chile, but ahead of lumber exporters from Europe. Shipments from New Zealand have gone up 37% over just the past four years and during the first five months of 2017, the upward trends continued with another 16% increase from the same period in 2016. With lumber demand expected to continue to improve in the US market, there continue to be opportunities for overseas lumber producers to expand their sales to North America in the coming years.
    (WRI Wood Resources International LLC)
    24.07.2017   Kurekss first in the Baltic region with TC continuous kiln    ( Company news )

    Company news
    The Latvian sawmill Kurekss has invested in a TC continuous kiln from Valutec. This will be the first continuous kiln of this model to be built in the Baltic countries.

    “Kurekss has clear ideas for how they want to develop their business. At the same time, they are open to innovative thinking, and when we presented the TC continuous kiln, they quickly realised that it was ideally suited to meet their specific needs,” comments Stefan Sundqvist, Export Sales Manager at Valutec.

    Kurrekss is a privately-owned sawmill in western Latvia that was founded in 1995. A large part of the company’s production is customer-specific and in various dimensions, which means flexible drying options are an obvious requirement.

    “A classic continuous kiln was not the optimal choice, as they are most efficient for sawmills that dry large volumes in similar dimensions. The TC continuous kiln is an option that gives sawmills a high capacity while also allowing the running of packets of different dimensions,” says Stefan.

    TC is the abbreviation of the Swedish for “cross circulation”. The principle is based on the lumber package being fed lengthways through zones in which the air circulates laterally across the drying channel. This enables the separate regulation of the climate in different zones according to a schedule that comes very close to the ideal schedule of a batch kiln. The kiln model is part of the latest generation of continuous kilns from Valutec. They have rapidly become popular in both Sweden and Central Europe.

    Kurekss will mainly use the kiln to dry planks of between 19 millimetres and 25 millimetres. The kiln, which is made from stainless steel, will have six zones and a capacity of over 50,000 cubic metres for mixed dimensions. The delivery also includes a heat recovery system, pressure frames and the Valmatics control system. The equipment will be delivered over the course of the autumn and will be operational towards the end of the year.
    (Valutec AB)
    21.07.2017   Kuhmo Oy selects HEINOLA's new fully automatic high capacity HTC Progressive Kiln    ( Company news )

    Company news
    Kuhmo Oy has ordered a fully automatic high capacity 2-zone progressive kiln type HTC with an annual capacity of ca. 65 000 m3 from Heinola Sawmill Machinery Inc.. The drying kiln can be used for drying of pine and spruce timber with thicknesses of 16 – 50 mm from sawn green timber to the final moisture of 12 – 18 %. The turnkey delivery consists also energy measuring system, high capacity heat recovery unit, pressure frames and HEINOLA’s advanced Dry Kiln Control System. The new progressive kiln will be taken into production early 2018. This investment eliminates the bottleneck in Kuhmo Oy’s process and thereby enables increase in production.

    “We compared different suppliers,but ended up choosing HEINOLA as they provided the best technical and economical solution”, explains Kuhmo Oy’s MD Tommi Ruha.“HEINOLA offered the highest capacity connected to our load transfer tracks. HEINOLA’s fully automatic kiln was also a major selection argument. Based on earlier drying kiln and other projects, we trust HEINOLA’s project management, technical support and maintenance services!”

    Heinola Sawmill Machinery Inc. expresses its thanks to Kuhmo Oy for their confidence to us!
    (Heinola Sawmill Machinery Inc.)

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