UPM plywood division in record 2017 performance

2 February 2018

UPM’s plywood business achieved a record high performance in 2017, the Finland-based forest products giant said in its annual results.

The division’s production facilities located in Finland, Estonia and Russia experienced higher volumes and sales prices, more than offsetting increased variable costs. Delivery volumes were up to 811,000m3, (2016: 764,000m3).

The division’s sales were €484m in 2017, up from €444m in 2016, with operating profit of €62m (2016: €58m).

UPM said the market environment was favourable in Europe during 2017, with spruce plywood demand growth driven by increased activity in the building and construction industry. Demand in birch plywood-related industrial applications such as vehicle floors and LNG carrier insulation material was also good.

During the year UPM Plywood introduced new fire retardant WISA-SpruceFR structural plywood for building and construction and announced a new growth project at the UPM Chudovo plywood mill in Russia.

Group-wide UPM recorded an overall pre-tax profit €1.186bn and sales of €10bn.

Its timber business is part of UPM’s Biorefining division, which also includes pulp and biofuels businesses. Sawn timber demand was “good” and market prices increased in the fourth quarter.