After acquiring Boral Timber last year, Pentarch Forestry is powering ahead.

Any name change is a gamble, but Pentarch Forestry has emerged as a strong and trusted brand in the timber and flooring market after acquiring the Boral Timber portfolio of building products and materials in 2021.

Pentarch’s established background in wood products and forestry has helped with the smooth transition, coupled with a series of investments across the whole business.

Leon Travis, Pentarch Forestry general manager sales and distribution, lists some of the changes underway: “We have a softwood joint venture with AKD, known as Highland Pine,” he says. “There’s significant investment about to take place on the Oberon sawmill site. Both parties are investing millions of dollars on upgrading facilities and technology to improve the capacity and capabilities. That will be starting in the next few months.

“On the hardwood side, we’ve moved a lot of our heat sources to gas-fired kilns, to gain a cleaner, more efficient drying process. Over the longer term, it’s a much better alternative to the old technology.

“We’re investing in finger jointing capabilities, with two more machines to add to our one at Murwillumbah. That’s about utilising the resource as best we can. We’re really trying to maximise recovery and yield. We’ve traditionally been known as a solid producer and wholesaler. So this is a little bit of a step change for us, but one that’s in line with the appetite for and acceptance of finger-jointed products in the market, which is growing. So this gives us optimisation and value add.

“There’s a lot more going on,” Travis adds. “We’re looking to automate our oiling machine so we can increase volumes and, on the Pentarch Forestry and Services side, there’s been significant investment at the Eden site with the recommissioning of the sawmill and building the pallet plant, plus the new briquette plant, which is again all about value-adding.”

As to how the acquisition has been received, Travis says: “I think our customers have seen that it’s been a positive step for our business and that the company’s willingness to reinvest is delivering an exciting future. So onward and upward!”

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