U.K.'s largest sawmilling company BSW Timber to expand capacity at Fort William, Scotland, and Latvian mills, aims to increase total lumber output to more than 1.3 million m3/year

EARLSTON, Scotland , October 25, 2011 (press release) – BSW Timber has announced further investment plans to expand capacity at both its Fort William and Latvian Mills in a drive to produce more than 1.3million m3 of sawn timber per year across all mills.

The new plans are a major part of the company's £50million investment programme over a five year period ending in 2015. The expansion plans in the Fort William mill began three years ago , creating around 45 new jobs at the sawmill.

Since 2008, the site has benefited from 10 new Mahild kilns and a battery of pressure treatment vessels. Current projects nearing completion include two 5MW KIV biomass kiln heating plant and a high speed planing and grading line, provided by Ledinek and Springer.

To complete the current investment phase at the site, an order has been placed for the latest Hewsaw SL250 3.4 Trio line which has been extended to include an automated horizontal saw, allowing for maximum flexibility.

An agreement has been reached to purchase the equipment from the technically enhanced Finnforest, Kyroskoski sawmill, which was mothballed in 2009. The equipment will be used not only to create a world class mill at Fort William but also to double the capacity at the BSW Latvia operation. Work on the new sawmills will commence in November this year, and will be completed by early 2013.

Tony Hackney, CEO of BSW Timber said: "Going for growth is a theme that has driven the strategy for BSW Timber since the 1990s. The development of flexible and high capacity mills with the latest technology to provide first class home grown products is an essential part of the company plans."

"For sometime the development at BSW's colossal Fort William site, at the foot of Ben Nevis, have been postponed in favour of growth through the acquisition of Howie Forest Products in Dalbeattie - the largest sawmill in the UK and one of the largest in Europe. "

"Howie's has been a part of the BSW Group for more than two years now and, with an excellent Group financial performance in the last two financial years, the BSW shareholders have shown continued commitment to investment of the cash generated and have approved the next phase of the multi-million pound investment programme. "

"These strategic investments are a sign of confidence in the medium-term that we, at BSW, have in the UK market."

"We are committed to being a highly competitive manufacturer of sawn timber and associated products and are expanding our portfolio of products and capacity to better serve the demands of our customers, as well as strengthening our partnerships with our chosen key suppliers."

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