The history of Sonae Arauco
By now you‘re probably well acquainted with Sonae Arauco, our products and what we stand for in terms of sustainable practises and company ethos, but you may be wondering about the history behind our company and what led us to become who we are today. We thought we‘d give you a quick look at the history behind Sonae Arauco and what makes us one of the leading global suppliers of decorative wood-based panels.
Sonae Arauco, as you know it today, was established in 2016 through a partnership between two industry leaders – namely Sonae Indústria and Arauco. Sonae Arauco is a partnership that was created with the goal of being the number one supplier of sustainable wood-based panels, offering customers the best in industrial knowledge, functionality, quality, design and price.
Sonae Indústria was founded in 1959 in Maia in the North of Portugal, with the purpose of being a producer of high-quality decorative wood-based panels which were specially developed for use in furniture, building and decoration. As a producer of wood-based decorative panels, one of Sonae Indústria‘s primary focuses included using natural resources – in this case wood – in a sustainable way in order to minimise its environmental impact. Over the years, Sonae Indústria continued to expand throughout Portugal, becoming a leader in the particleboard sector and eventually expanding to the UK.
A producer and manager of renewable forestry resources, Arauco was founded in 1970 in Chile, with the goal of increasing and enhancing its forestry plantations through research and applying the best practices in terms of sustainability and the conservation of trees, soil and biodiversity. Arauco would go on to set a benchmark in terms of forestry and industrial plants, efficiency, production standards, innovation, environmental responsibility and social commitment.
By the time Sonae Indústria and Arauco formed the joint venture Sonae Arauco, Arauco was one of the largest forestry product suppliers in the world, while Sonae Indústria had a global presence which included the largest particleboard industrial plant in North America, as well as plants for high-pressure laminates in Germany.
Today, we are proud to say that Sonae Arauco is one of the largest decorative wood-based panel producers in the world and is considered an industry leader, with over 20 industrial and commercial units in 9 countries and 2 continents, including our brand-new factory in White River, South Africa. Our wood-based decorative panels can be found around the world in over 75 countries, as we continue to expand our reach and take wood further.