MONTREAL – Resolute Forest Products Inc. announced the appointment of Remi G. Lalonde as the company’s next president and CEO. He will succeed Yves Laflamme, who will retire effective March 1, 2021, ending a 39-year career with Resolute.
Lalonde, 44, currently serves as senior vice president and CFO for Resolute.
|Remi G. Lalonde|
"Remi represents the best of our Resolute culture; he works hard, welcomes collaboration and ideas of others, and believes in truly sustainable outcomes," said Laflamme. "Remi consistently delivers superior results. He grew rapidly within the Resolute ranks, taking on one challenge after another, and each and every time, he hit the ball out of the park. As we pass the baton, I am pleased for Remi and for the entire Resolute organization who will benefit from his capable stewardship and drive to succeed."
“In my capacity as CFO, I am fortunate to work in partnership with Yves, and I sincerely appreciate the trust he has placed in me with important projects and the leadership role he has had me play in our overall development,” Lalonde said. “I wholeheartedly believe that Resolute has a bright future. I am excited to lead this talented team of 7,000+ dedicated people as we accelerate the evolution of our business to generate long-term value for our shareholders and to drive sustainable economic activity in the communities where we operate.”
Strong third-quarter performance
On the same day that the leadership change was announced, Resolute reported net income for the quarter ended Sept. 30 of $57 million on sales of $730 million. In comparison, the company experienced a net loss of $43 million in the same period in 2019.
Resolute’s wood products segment reported operating income of $128 million in the quarter, an improvement of $113 million compared to the previous quarter. The company attributed this significant improvement to escalating price of lumber driven by the repair and remodeling market and U.S. housing starts. During the third quarter, Resolute said lumber reached $217 per thousand board feet, a 57% increase in average transaction price.
"We took advantage of the rally in lumber prices to further deleverage the balance sheet and drive shareholder value by opportunistically repurchasing 5% of outstanding shares," said Laflamme. "While the pulp and paper segments continue to suffer from pandemic economics, we used part of the cash we generated with our lumber business to fully repay all revolving borrowings under our credit facilities, except for the low-interest term loan used to finance the acquisition of the U.S. sawmills, which have generated $38 million of EBITDA under our ownership this year.”
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