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RoyOMartin announces $30M modernization of timber manufacturing facility

Martco, LLC, parent company for timber sourcing and manufacturing company RoyOMartin, announced it will invest more than $30 million to install technologically advanced production equipment at its Allen Parish plant that produces oriented strand board (OSB) for the housing industry.

The RoyOMartin OSB plant is one of the parish’s largest employers, and as a result of this expansion, the company will retain its 232 full-time employees who earn an annual average salary of $75,000. Louisiana Economic Development estimates the project will also result in nearly 600 indirectly supported jobs in the state, for a total of 831 retained and indirectly supported jobs.

“RoyOMartin is a third-generation family-owned business doing business in Louisiana for more than 100 years, and I am thrilled to see this company positioning itself to thrive for many more,” LED Secretary Susan B. Bourgeois said. “Louisiana timber has long supported the national housing industry, and so has our skilled manufacturing workforce, which continues to meet the challenge of modernization with the talent and training companies need to compete.”

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OSB, an engineered wood that uses a combination of wood strands and adhesives to create strong, dimensionally-stable panels, is commonly used in commercial and residential construction for wall sheathing, floor underlays, roof cover and I-joints, and is molded together using a Dieffenbacher hydraulic press. By arming its hydraulic press with new components, including a new press hood, and completing other planned maintenance in the eight-building facility, the Oakdale plant aims to improve both its product and efficiency, while replacing aging equipment.

“Our Oakdale OSB facility has been a cornerstone of RoyOMartin since it produced the first panel in January 2007,” said Terry Secrest, executive vice president of manufacturing and product sales. “Throughout the years, the facility has consistently been the safest and highest-producing OSB manufacturer in North America. With the high production rates, the press needed replacement to meet the growing market demands. Given the strong workforce, timber availability, proximity to the fastest-growing housing markets, and Louisiana’s improved economic development climate, this $30 million investment secures the Oakdale mill’s status as a world-class manufacturing facility in Allen Parish for many years to come.”

“The Allen Parish Police Jury wishes to commend RoyOMartin on its decision to continue to invest in its Allen Parish facility,” said Allen Parish Police Jury Parish Administrator Jacob Dillehay. “Their facility has proven to be a vital economic asset to Allen Parish families. We hope to continue to see the wood products industry grow and thrive in our area.”

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RoyOMartin has its headquarters in Alexandria and additional plants in Chopin, LA, and Corrigan, TX. To win the Oakdale project, Louisiana Economic Development offered a competitive incentive package that includes a performance-based Retention and Modernization Tax Credit valued at $455,400.

“RoyOMartin’s modernization project is proof that our region’s wood basket is resilient and strong,” said Jonathan Dean, vice president of economic development for the Southwest Louisiana Economic Development Alliance. “This investment in the company’s Oakdale facility is a testament to the world-class workforce that we have in Allen Parish and in southwest Louisiana. We want to thank RoyOMartin for its investment and its commitment to the region.”

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