Koch purchases Georgia-Pacific

Published 12:00 am Thursday, November 17, 2005

A national company with two local branches has been sold.

Georgia-Pacific, which has branches in Conway and Ahoskie, was sold to Koch Industries for $48 per share, according to a joint news release by the two companies.

The move will see Georgia-Pacific leave the New York Stock Exchange and become a privately held, wholly owned subsidiary of Koch Industries.

The transaction, subjection to completion, will be valued at $21 billion, including all of the debt owned by Georgia-Pacific.

&uot;We view this major acquisition not only as a key strategic investment for Koch, but as a platform for future growth,&uot; Koch President Joe W. Moeller said. &uot;We believe this transaction represents a unique opportunity in which each of our enterprises and employees will be able to prosper together.&uot;

According to the news release, little will change for the people and operation of Georgia-Pacific.

G-P will operate as a privately held, wholly owned subsidiary of Koch and will continue to do business worldwide under the name Georgia-Pacific. It will also continue to operate its business from its Atlanta headquarters as an independently managed company.

Koch Forest Products expects to launch a cash tender offer for all outstanding shares of Georgia-Pacific common stock no later than Friday, November 18, followed by a second step cash-out merger at the offer price.

The closing of the tender offer is expected to be completed promptly, subject to customary closing conditions, including antitrust clearances in various countries.

The transaction is not conditioned on financing. Debt financing has been secured by Koch through Citigroup.

&uot;This transaction is the most dramatic step yet in Georgia-Pacific’s history and its transformation,&uot; said A.D. &uot;Pete&uot; Correll, G-P chairman and chief executive officer. &uot;We are pleased it offers very significant, incremental value to our shareholders, as is warranted by our company’s tremendous assets and talented employees.

&uot;Koch’s acquisition of Georgia-Pacific will enable us to move into the future in an exciting fashion and continue achieving our financial and operating goals with committed new ownership that is exceptionally strong financially,&uot; he added.

Headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, G-P is one of the world’s leading manufacturers and marketers of tissues, packaging, paper, building products and related chemicals.

Koch Industries Inc. is based in Wichita, Kansas and owns a diverse group of companies engaged in trading, operations and investments worldwide.

There are about 100 employees at each of the two Roanoke-Chowan area G-P plants, according to a Georgia-Pacific spokesperson.