With seven MDF and particleboard mills in Canada and across the US, Canadian-based Flakeboard has an annual panel production capacity of 2.3 million m3/year.

Santiago-based Arauco’s latest move comes just six months after the lumber to pulp, plywood and MDF manufacturer announced an initial foray into US panel production. In December 2011 it revealed a US$62m deal to purchase Pfleiderer’s 600,000m3/year Uniboard MDF and particleboard mill in Moncure, North Carolina.

Arauco announced it has agreed to pay US$242.5m for a 100% stake in Flakeboard. Its latest acquisition, which will make it the globe’s third ranked wood panel manufacturer in volume terms, should be completed in the second half of 2012.

The Flakeboard takeover will swell Arauco’s North American production capacity to over 2.9 million m3/year.

The group’s latest acquisition is expected to result in a 74% volume rise in its panels business during 2012 against the 2011 figure, Arauco said.

"This transaction reflects the significant internationalisation process that Arauco is undertaking," commented the company’s executive vice president Matías Domeyko.