International Paper to Explore Strategic Options for its Stake in New Zealand-based Carter Holt Harvey
Monday, June 27, 2005
STAMFORD, Conn., June 26 -- International Paper announced today that it will explore strategic alternatives for its 50.5 percent stake in Carter Holt Harvey (CHH). "Carter Holt has a great business position in Australasia. We have confidence in the management of CHH and their strategy to improve and grow the business. However, many aspects of our original plans for investment in CHH have changed, and we've decided to reassess the role of CHH in IP's global portfolio," said John Faraci, chairman and chief executive officer of International Paper. IP acquired its stake in CHH in a series of transactions beginning with 16 percent in 1991 as partners with a local New Zealand investment group. IP increased its stake to 26 percent in 1994 and acquired a controlling interest in 1995, which has remained in the range of 50.5 percent. IP will consult with the board of directors and management of CHH to facilitate a process to explore strategic alternatives for selling its shares. "CHH has a solid plan to continually improve the business, and we will work closely with them during our evaluation process," said Faraci. "We hope to identify acceptable strategic alternatives for our shares before the end of the year."