Gunns assets on the market

29 October 2012

Gunns Timber Products’ mills and other assets are on the market after it filed for bankruptcy three weeks ago.

The long-troubled leading Australian hardwood and softwood producer collapsed after sale to a Chinese investor fell through last month and banks refused to extend A$500m in loans (TTJ 29 September/6 October).

Now KordaMentha, the receiver for the Tasmania-based company, which processed 750,000m3 of logs a year, has announced it is "seeking expressions of interest in an asset sale".

On offer are two sawmills, woodchip operations and a national distribution network. Also up for sale is Gunns' controversial Tamar Valley pulp project, which was strongly opposed by environmentalists. The company invested A$250m in the project, but it has since been written down to A$38m.

In 2006 Gunns made profits of A$600m but in June reported a loss of A$1bn. It cited the strong Australian dollar and cheap competition from South-east Asia for its financial problems.