Prolam to Double Production to Meet Demand

Motueka based engineered structural product supplier, Prolam, is experiencing increased demand for its range of timber products both locally and overseas.

Prolam was established in 2002, at the time contract processing to a local supplier of trellis lath and balusters into the Australian and New Zealand markets. Since then, Prolam and its family of laminate timber products enjoys an 80 percent market share and has recently started exporting to Vietnam with more Asian markets to develop this year.

Prolam Managing Director John Woodman says with growing export markets and increased demand locally, the company would soon double its production.

“We are building a new laminate press at the moment which will double our production capabilities and allow us to not only supply our local merchants and builders here, but also meet the demand from our burgeoning export markets in Vietnam and developing ones in Asia,” says Woodman.

“Our aim is to dispatch 90 percent of orders within three days, this will give us the shortest lead time in North Island.”

Prowood has a 7300 sqm covered factory in Motueka and employees 35 people.

The company processes 837 cubic metres of raw timber a month, using a wide variety of locally sourced wood types such as Pine, Macrocarpa, Cedar, Aquila, Spruce and Douglas fir.

With the factory expanding, Woodman says the company will also be looking to establish a distribution facility in Auckland.

“Having a facility in Auckland will allow us to further streamline our distribution process and get products to customers faster and easier.”

Prolam has also been a pioneer with its ability to provide its customers with specifying information to speed up the design and build process.

What helps Prolam’s customer base is its online specifier tool 'Prolam Online’.

Prolam software is used by 1800 architects and specifiers nationwide to determine correct beam specification in domestic and commercial projects.

Recent improvements to ‘Prolam Online’ now provides specifiers with a range of added features including more specific parameters.

“Users can now allow for the extra high wind zones recently added to the Building Code and cater to variances in roof weight, caused by product type, snow, thickness of ceiling plasterboard or additions such as solar panels.”

“For even more accuracy in beam specification, Prolam software now includes deflection and capacity ratios. Users can shift a point load to exactly where it will be on the beam and the programme will adjust the results to suit.”