JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Forest products company Rayonier is planning to split into two separate, publicly traded companies later this year. Its fourth-quarter results also beat Wall Street's expectations.
The stock surged in Monday premarket trading.
Rayonier said that it plans to separate its performance fibers business from its forest resources and real estate businesses.
"With an improving U.S. housing market, strong timber export markets, and the successful expansion of our cellulose specialties capacity, we concluded that now is the optimal time to pursue the separation of these two non-integrated businesses," Chairman, President and CEO Paul Boynton said in a statement.
The separation is expected to be finished in mid-2014, with each company anticipated to list on the New York Stock Exchange. The spinoff doesn't require a shareholder vote, but needs final approval from Rayonier's board. It also needs a favorable ruling from the Internal Revenue Service related to the tax-free status of the action.
Once the separation is complete, Rayonier Inc. will include the existing forest resources and real estate businesses. The company will keep its status as a real estate investment trust.
The performance fibers company has yet to be named. Boynton will serve as its chairman, president and CEO and will help look for a new Rayonier CEO.