VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - May 12, 2011) - Ainsworth Lumber Co. Ltd. (TSX:ANS)(TSX:ANS.WT) -

Highlights

* Recorded adjusted EBITDA of $6.4 million, at an EBITDA margin of 9.0%
* Operated at above 90% capacity at its three operating mills
* Acquired remaining 50% joint venture interest in 860 mmsf High Level mill and recorded a $72.5 purchase gain on the transaction
* Sales in export markets increased 45% over Q1 2010
* Maintained strong cash position during the quarter

Ainsworth Lumber Co. Ltd. today reported its financial results for the first quarter of 2011.

Adjusted EBITDA for the first quarter of 2011 was $6.4 million compared to $16.2 million in the same quarter of 2010. The decline was the result of lower shipment volumes due to weather related transportation issues, weaker pricing and a stronger Canadian dollar. We achieved an adjusted EBITDA margin of 9.0% in the quarter despite these challenging conditions.

In the first quarter of 2011, the Company recorded positive net income from continuing operations of $77.7 million, a significant increase compared to $16.7 million in the same period of 2010. The increase was due primarily to a $72.5 million purchase gain on the acquisition of the remaining 50% interest in the High Level, Alberta mill from Grant Forest Products.

Ainsworth President and CEO Rick Huff said, "In the first quarter of 2011, we continued to execute on a strategic plan that advances our ability to deliver innovative, value-added products, increases the geographic diversity of our sales, and positions the Company for long term growth. Our ability to deliver sustainable value in what continues to be a challenging environment is directly related to the progress we are making against this plan."

"As part of this plan, we are targeting growth through increased penetration of key overseas markets, particularly Japan and China, the latter of which is one of the world's fastest growing markets for wood building products. It is too soon to gauge the full market potential in China, but I believe it is a promising opportunity for Ainsworth in 2011 and beyond," added Mr. Huff.

The North Central price for 7/16" oriented strand board ("OSB") was U.S. $199 per msf in the first quarter of 2011, a decrease of 7% from an average quarterly price of U.S. $214 per msf in the first quarter of 2010. The average Western Canadian published price for 7/16" OSB was U.S. $182 per msf in the first quarter of 2011, down 19% from U.S. $226 msf in the same period of 2010. OSB prices were unexpectedly high in the first quarter of 2010 due to weather related supply disruptions in the southern United States which did not occur in the first quarter of 2011.


Posted by Molly Keith

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