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  • Timber and building products manufacturer and distributor Big River Industries (BRI) has received $10 million in funding from the NSW Government under its Bushfire Industry Recovery Package
  • Despite the positive news, BRI is set close its Wagga Wagga site which was severely impacted by bushfires during the 2019/2020 summer
  • Big River says its Grafton site will recover (from bushfire damages) and aims to expand the capacity at the factory
  • However, the Tumut area which supplies the Wagga Wagga site has been much more severely impacted
  • Due to this, the company plans on closing its Wagga site, which will see at least 50 people left unemployed
  • Funds from the Government will support manufacturing operations at its Grafton site and will be used to expand the capacity and capability of Plywood manufacturing at the site
  • On the market this morning, Big River is in the grey and trading for $1.48 per share

Big River Industries (BRI) has received $10 million in funding under the NSW Governments Bushfire Industry Recovery Package.

Despite the positive news, BRI is set close its Wagga Wagga site which was severely impacted by bushfires during the 2019/2020 summer. Big River says its Grafton site will remain operational and recover (from bushfire damages) with aims to expand the capacity at the factory.

However, the Tumut area which supplies the Wagga Wagga site has been much more severely impacted. The fires impacted around 40 per cent of the regions high-quality sawlog inventory, leaving the Wagga Wagga factory without a sustainable log resource for the long term.

The decision to close its Wagga site will see at least 50 people left unemployed.

The $10 million in funding will support manufacturing operations at the Grafton site and will help facilitate a new significant investment to expand the capacity and capability of manufacturing the plywood product range. This includes high-quality products which are used in the placement of concrete and structural plywood.

While the company focuses on this new expansion, it, unfortunately, means the gradual winding down of Wagga Wagga’s manufacturing capability. While some employees are set to be left without work, Big River says there could be some opportunities at the Wagga site.

“Our eventual exit from manufacturing at Wagga Wagga will also free up log resources to help sustain several other timber processors in that region,” the company added.

The exact timing on when operations will come to an end at Wagga Wagga remains unclear with the company set to update the market once further decisions are made.

On the market this morning, Big River is in the grey and trading for $1.48 per share at 10:00 am AEDT.

BRI by the numbers
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