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First African greenfield MDF plant project for Dieffenbacher

Germany-headed wood processing technology provider Dieffenbacher GmbH has announced that it has received an order for a complete MDF plant including CPS+ from Algeria-based Panneaux d‘Algérie, a subsidiary of wood-based panel trader BIGSTAR. The project is the first greenfield project on African soil for Dieffenbacher.

Panneaux d‘Algérie’s visit to Eppingen, Germany to buy a complete MDF line (from left to right): Guelai Mohamed Chiheb, CEO, BIGSTAR; Christian Dieffenbacher, Member of the Board of Management, Dieffenbacher; Didier Goesaert, Sales Manager, Dieffenbacher; Volker Kitzelmann, Member of the Board of Management, Dieffenbacher; Guelai Belkacim, President, BIGSTAR; Li Jie, Sales Manager, Dieffenbacher SWPM photo courtesy Dieffenbacher).

The Algerian family-owned company Panneaux d‘Algérie has commissioned Dieffenbacher SWPM to deliver a complete system for producing MDF panels at its site in El Tarf in the far northeast of the country. The plant concept is designed specifically for smaller capacities.

According to Dieffenbacher, the CPS+ proves that it can also be the ideal entry-level system for newcomers to the wood-based panel market and an economic alternative for easily replacing older single- or multi-opening presses in existing small-capacity plants.

Panneaux d‘Algérie is just such a newcomer. Although the parent company BIGSTAR has been active in the wood-based panel trade for many years, it has never produced its own materials. That is now set to change.

There is a rising demand for MDF boards in Algeria, and imports from other countries are becoming increasingly costly. We have been considering producing our own materials for a long time for this reason, and Dieffenbacher SWPM has given us the perfect concept to do so, explained Guelai Mohamed Chiheb, CEO, BIGSTAR.

The 6 ft wide, 14.5 m long CPS+ for BIGSTAR will be supplied from Eppingen, Germany. Dieffenbacher SWPM is responsible for the remainder of the scope of supply and for project management. The complete order includes the entire material preparation process, the refiner, the dryer, the forming station and the forming line. The complete raw board handling, including the diagonal saw, the star cooler and billet stacking right through to the short-cycle laminating line, is also part of the delivery scope.

We’ve remained in contact since we first started thinking about having our own production line four years ago. We feel as if we’ve always received excellent advice. We’ve twice been able to visit the Dieffenbacher headquarters in Eppingen and get a first-hand experience of the outstanding work done there. We have great confidence in Dieffenbacher and Dieffenbacher SWPM, and we’re very pleased to have a working relationship with this long-standing family business, said Guelai Belkacimar, President of BIGSTAR.

The plant is designed to offer a production capacity of 250 m³ per day. Assembly will begin in the second quarter of 2018 with the first board will be produced in December of the same year. The value of the order has not been disclosed.

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