We announced this morning that we have completed the merger of equals of Abitibi-Consolidated Inc. and Bowater Incorporated. With pro forma revenues of approximately US$8 billion in 2006 AbitibiBowater is the third largest publicly traded paper and forest products company in North America and the eighth largest in the world.
Starting today the common stock of AbitibiBowater will trade on the New York Stock Exchange and Toronto Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol “ABH”.
The Company expects to achieve annualized synergies of at least US$250 million within two years from improved efficiencies in such areas as production selling general and administrative (SG&A) costs distribution and procurement.
According to John Weaver Executive Chairman of AbitibiBowater “By combining Abitibi-Consolidated and Bowater we have created a global leader that is well positioned to compete in an increasingly challenging global market. We look forward to drawing on the best practices from both organizations and on the strengths of a proven management team to deliver greater value to our stockholders customers employees and other stakeholders.”
“This transaction marks a new and important chapter in our collective history ” said Dave Paterson President and Chief Executive Officer of AbitibiBowater. “Through this combination AbitibiBowater will be a more dynamic and competitive organization that will create long-term value for our stockholders and the communities in which we operate. Our plan to achieve US$250 million in annual synergies is just the first step toward this goal.”