Fortress Paper sells Lebel-sur-Quévillon mill
Nexolia Bioenergy Inc. is purchasing a non-operating pulp mill and sawmill located in Lebel-sur-Quévillon, Qué., from Fortress Paper.
The sale includes the buildings and equipment, as well as the energy generation, connection and transmission plant for an aggregate purchase price of $15.36 million.
Yvon Pelletier, president and CEO of Fortress Paper, commented: “The sale of the LSQ mill represents a divestiture of a non-core asset which will release the company from a number of future obligations and allow it to focus on other value enhancing transactions to grow its business.”
Fortress Paper had intended to re-open the LSQ mill, and signed an electricity supply agreement with Hydro Québec in 2012. Restarting the mill’s co-gen facility was intended to reduce production costs for specialty cellulose.
But in 2014, a duty on dissolving pulp imposed by China made the production of dissolving pulp at the mill not viable. In April 2014, Chadwick Wasilenkoff, then-CEO of Fortress Paper, told Business in Vancouver that the Lebel-sur-Quevillon mill would be economically unviable with this 23.7% duty. He added that an agreement with the previous owner prevented Fortress Paper from producing paper pulp for eight more years, so the company was exploring options such as energy production and wood pellet manufacture for the site.