Business Irish

Sunday 24 March 2019

Timber firms merge for €50m operation

Colm Kelpie

TWO timber processing firms have merged to form a new company with a capital value in excess of €25m.

Cork's Grainger Group and Palfab Group will trade as GP Wood and is being billed as becoming one of Ireland's largest and most diversified timber operations.

Both companies have been in business for 35 years and employ 151 staff directly and a further 242 indirectly through forestry operations.

The merger is not expected to affect staff numbers. GP Wood will have a turnover of €49m with exports of €24m.

GP Wood's managing director Niall Grainger said the benefits of the amalgamation would include an enhanced product range.

"Over the past 30 years, both companies have proven themselves to be highly innovative and our shared skills and expertise will drive GP Wood towards growth and development," Mr Grainger said.

Timber manufacturing is focused on the construction, fencing, garden leisure and packaging markets.

The Grainger Group, based in Enniskeane, operates one of Ireland's largest and most technologically advanced sawmills with state-of-the-art facilities for kiln drying, machining and timber treatment.

In 2005, the group built Ireland's first large-scale commercial biomass CHP plant, which was designed around the sawmill's requirements.

The plant produces 2.5MW of electricity which is sold to the national grid, and 6MW of thermal energy.

Among its other activities, Palfab, of Lissarda, imports part-processed timber from Scandinavia, Russia, the Baltic states and mainland Europe.

GP Wood director Donal O'Callaghan said the merger of the two management teams would create a diversified knowledge base.

Irish Independent

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