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Weyerhaeuser reportedly seeks buyer


November 20, 2007
By Pulp & Paper Canada

Los Angeles, CA – Weyerhaeuser has started discussions on the sale of its containerboard and building materials bus…

Los Angeles, CA – Weyerhaeuser has started discussions on the sale of its containerboard and building materials businesses and has sent books out to prospective buyers, according to a report from dealReporter. Five to seven parties have signed confidentiality agreements to see the books, interested either in one or both businesses, but there were no ongoing auctions or set deadlines yet.

Smurfit-Stone Container Corp and Georgia Pacific were interested, dealReporter said the transaction could be worth between $5.3 billion and $5.5 billion. An unnamed industry banker said he doubted there was a “mandate to sell” as he believed Weyerhaeuser was responding to shareholder pressure.

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One source noted that Weyerhaeuser’s containerboard business has seen more interest than its building products division, due to the current U.S. housing slump. According to dealReporter, Smurfit would not be interested in building products, while Georgia-Pacific could be. However, a sale was unlikely to take place in the near future, as the company was in no hurry to sell.

Weyerhaeuser’s board would likely prefer to wait for a better housing market or until the U.S. Congress passes the Timber Act, which would give the company an immediate tax relief compared to a REIT conversion, reported the news agency.

Source of this article are dealReporter, New York, and Forestweb.


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