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Wed March 03 2021

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Timber sector consolidation begins

16 Feb 18 Thornbridge, a Scottish timber processing and distribution company, has merged with timber merchant North Yorkshire Timber.

Thornbridge Sawmills in Grangemouth
Thornbridge Sawmills in Grangemouth

The companies have come together under the ownership of Cairngorm Capital Partners, which is looking to consolidate the UK timber distribution sector.

Cairngorm Capital, a private investment firm, bought Thornbridge in November 2017 and has now bought North Yorkshire Timber.

Following the merger, the enlarged group has a distribution network across Scotland and the north of England, served by a central manufacturing hub in each region. The enlarged group has 15 branches, more than 360 employees and annual revenue of more than £50m.

Both businesses will continue to trade under their existing brands.

Thornbridge Sawmills, based in Grangemouth, was established in 1992. It imports timber and sheet wood for processing and distribution.

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Established in 1979, North Yorkshire Timber (NYTimber) offers a range of timber, sheet and joinery products. It also has a specialist roof division which designs and fabricates roof trusses, spandrel panels, insulated roof cassettes and the NYTROOF Rapid Fit System.

It is based in Northallerton, with a 120,000 sq ft design, manufacturing and distribution centre in Brompton-on-Swale and seven branch outlets. In 2017, NYTimber had revenues of more than £18m and employed more than 200 staff.

NYTimber’s senior management team will continue to run the NYTimber business and its managing director Nick Kershaw will join the group board. David Cook, the founder of NYTimber and now aged 70, is retiring.

Thornbridge managing director Bruce Muirhead said: “We are delighted to see such a well-respected company with significant market presence joining the group, bringing together the leading timber merchants in Scotland and the northeast of England. There is a clear fit between the two businesses and the combination creates exciting opportunities. We have much in common in terms of our heritage and commitment to outstanding product quality and customer service. Our product ranges are highly complementary. Together, we will be well equipped to pursue new opportunities for innovation and growth, to the benefit of our customers and employees.”

Nick Kershaw, managing director of NYTimber, added: “We welcome the investment from Cairngorm Capital – this deal will support the growth ambition of NYTimber’s management team. Combining with Thornbridge is the perfect partnership for two businesses which share a commitment to innovation and the highest standards of customer service. There are great opportunities across the sector and the alignment of our goals, values and vision, offers significant strategic benefits for both organisations.”

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