As a result of the acquisition, the HOMAG product range covers a good 70% of the process chain in the production of glued laminated timber elements. “As a system supplier, we want to offer as many technologies for timber construction as possible from a single source. Due to the boom in the timber house market, the production of building elements is becoming increasingly industrialized and automated. HOMAG is the right partner for that. We are developing the solid wood business into a second pillar alongside our activities with the furniture industry,” said Ralf W. Dieter, CEO of HOMAG Group AG and Dürr AG.
HOMAG has pooled all activities in the solid wood sector in the Solid Wood Processing business unit. A central role is played by its subsidiary Weinmann, which offers production facilities for timber construction, such as framework and wall stations. A further addition is the mechanical engineering company System TM, which was acquired in the previous year, is also based in Denmark and offers systems for the sorting, optimizing and finger-jointing of solid wood boards. The acquisition of Kallesoe provides HOMAG with a further key technology. In the press lines of Kallesoe, glue is applied to solid wood boards. After that, the boards are pressed on top of each other to form panels. For additional strength, the boards are laid crosswise; then it is called cross laminated timber.
The solid wood market, and with it the demand for wood presses, is expected to achieve double-digit growth rates in the coming years. Kallesoe is one of the few suppliers of high-frequency presses. They work with high-frequency waves that accelerate the curing of the adhesive. Wood processing plants are able to produce faster and more flexibly with this technology. At the same time, operating costs are reduced because the adhesive is cheaper than with alternative bonding processes.
Kallesoe was founded in 1969 and has installed around 500 presses worldwide, approximately 60 of which use high-frequency technology. Within the HOMAG Group, the company will benefit from synergy effects and the global presence of the parent company. With around 70 employees, Kallesoe generates a turnover of around €20 million and has already cooperated with System TM on several projects in the past. HOMAG is acquiring a good 70% of the shares in Kallesoe Machinery A/S from the Christensen family, with the residual approximately 30% remaining with the Kallesoe family. The purchase price is in the low double-digit million-euro range.
Sustainable material of the future
Building with timber is climate-friendly. According to experts, a wooden house binds about 80,000 kg of CO2. Timber has very good insulating properties, and the use of wooden components accelerates the construction of houses. In terms of fire protection, modern timber houses are almost comparable to reinforced concrete constructions. Building heights of 100 meters are also possible with wood. In the US, wooden buildings with up to 18 stories are allowed as of 2021. In France, half of public buildings must be built using timber construction starting from 2022.