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International Paper to Sell OSB Facilities

Press release from the issuing company

STAMFORD, Conn., Feb. 8, 2002 -- International Paper today announced that it has signed a letter of intent to sell its Oriented Strand Board (OSB) facilities to Nexfor Inc., one of North America's leading producers of OSB. The facilities, which are located in Jefferson and Nacogdoches, Texas, and Cordele, Ga., employ a total of 456 people. The plants are part of IP's Panels & Engineered Wood business, headquartered in Savannah, Ga. The proposed sale of the OSB facilities does not affect the remaining facilities in the company's Panels & Engineered Wood business. Completion of the transaction is subject to negotiation of a purchase and sale agreement that will be subject to a number of closing conditions, including regulatory approval. "These OSB facilities are very good, safe, efficient operations with outstanding, dedicated and hardworking people,'' said Bill Hoel, vice president, P&EW. "However, the decision is part of the company's divestiture program and strategy to focus on core businesses. Since the OSB segment is growing rapidly, International Paper believes that new ownership will provide an opportunity for the facilities to be aligned with a company that is strategically focused on growing with that sector.'' Hoel added, "We understand that this announcement will initially create some uncertainty for employees, their families and the communities, so we will do all we can to assist them with any questions or issues that arise during the discussion period and beyond.'' After the sale, IP's Panels & Engineered Wood business, which is part of the company's Forest Products group, will include five plywood mills, two utility pole plants, one laminated veneer lumber mill and two distribution centers. These sites manufacture and distribute high-quality wood products used for residential and commercial construction throughout North America and Europe.