Coastal Plywood acquires CFP debt

Published 7:39 pm Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Coastal Plywood Company has purchased the debt from International Paper Company on Chapman Forest Products, according to records filed in the Butler County Courthouse.

“We did acquire the debt and our company is still in the process of evaluating that particular piece of property,” said Travis Bryant of Coastal Plywood.

Records show that Smith Family Companies, owner of Chapman Forest Products, entered into a loan agreement with IP on Dec. 31, 2007 for the amount of $9 million to purchase the plant and secured an additional $5 million loan for capital expenditures.

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Chapman Forest Products told employees of plans to close on June 15 with operations expected to cease in July.

“I don’t know how the closing is going to effect the debt,” said Bryant. “The ideal situation would be for the current owner to find someone to sell to and pay us off, which in the current climate may by unlikely.”

Foreclosing on the property would be a “long” process, said Bryant, but the company has not ruled out such action.

Bryant also said he didn’t want Coastal Plywood’s acquisition of the debt to be viewed as a “yellow brick road” that would end with the mill in Chapman re-opening.

Coastal Plywood is a North Carolina company with its sales office and manufacturing plant based in Havana, Fla.

Calls made to Smith Family Companies in Pelham were not returned on Tuesday.

The Advocate was unable to reach anyone at Chapman Forest Products.