Western Forest Products Inc.

Western Forest Products Inc.

March 13, 2008 19:34 ET

Western Forest Products Inc. Refinances Term-Debt

DUNCAN, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - March 13, 2008) - Western Forest Products Inc. (TSX:WEF) ("Western" or "the Company") today announced an agreement for a new Cdn$175 million term loan facility, comprising a Cdn$75 million revolver due in three years and Cdn$100 million term loan repayable within 18 months.

The financing is being provided by GE Corporate Lending, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce and The Bank of Nova Scotia. Proceeds will retire the Company's existing term debt facilities of US$72.9 million and Cdn$101.8 million provided by the Brookfield Bridge Lending Fund, a lender related to Tricap Management Ltd., the Company's largest shareholder. The new financing will have a lower overall interest cost albeit with additional financial covenants when compared to the previous facilities. The transaction is expected to close shortly.

Western Forest Products

Western is an integrated Canadian forest products company and the largest coastal British Columbia woodland operator and lumber producer with an annual available harvest of approximately 7.5 million cubic metres of timber of which 7.3 million cubic metres is from Crown lands and lumber capacity in excess of 1.5 billion board feet from eight sawmills and four remanufacturing plants. Principal activities conducted by the Company include timber harvesting, reforestation, sawmilling logs into lumber and wood chips and value-added remanufacturing. Substantially all of Western's operations, employees and corporate facilities are located in the coastal region of British Columbia while its products are sold in over 30 countries worldwide.

Forward Looking Statements and Information

This press release contains forward-looking statements and forward-looking information within the meaning of applicable securities law. Those statements and information include statements or information regarding the intent, belief or current expectations of Western. Such statements or information may be indicated by words such as "approximately", "achieving", "estimated", "expect", "anticipate", "plan", "intend", "believe", "will", "should", "may" and similar words and phrases. Readers are cautioned that any such forward-looking statements or information are not guarantees and may involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties, and that the actual results may differ from those expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements or information as a result of various factors. Such risks and uncertainties include, among others: general economic conditions, competition and selling prices, changes in foreign currency exchange rates, labour disruptions, natural disasters, relations with First Nations groups, changes in laws, regulations or public policy and misjudgments in the course of preparing forward-looking statements or information. The information contained under the "Risk Factors" section of Western's Annual Information Form and under the "Risks and Uncertainties" section of Western's Management's Discussion and Analysis identifies important factors that could cause such differences. All written and oral forward-looking statements or information attributable to Western or persons acting on behalf of Western are expressly qualified in their entirety by the foregoing cautionary statements. Except as required by law Western does not expect to update forward-looking statements or information as conditions change.

Contact Information

  • Western Forest Products Inc.
    Reynold Hert
    President & CEO
    (250) 715-2207
    Western Forest Products Inc.
    Murray Johnston
    Vice President & CFO
    (250) 715-2209