Insights into the Global Cross-Laminated Timber Industry

Lech Muszynski, Eric Hansen, Shanuka Fernando, Gabriel Schwarzmann, Jasmin Rainer

Abstract


Cross laminated timber (CLT) has, in recent years, grown from an invention to a much celebrated product and
building technology revolutionizing the use of massive timber in construction. The CLT industry is concentrated
in Alpine Europe, where the technology was originally developed and where most CLT is still produced. Despite
great interest, the rate of adoption of CLT technology in the US is slow, reflecting uncertainty with regard to
whether the European models can be successfully transplanted to the business environment of the USA. The
goal of this project was to assist development of the CLT industry by providing insights into the global sector’s
structure, output potential, production profile, internal diversity, competitiveness, innovativeness, and perceived
barriers to further expansion. Survey data collected from 21 CLT manufacturers was supplemented with
information obtained from other sources. The primary finding is that the CLT manufacturing industry is unique
in the commodity-oriented forest sector in that most of its production is custom-made for specific projects. While
much of the hype surrounding CLT is focused on tall buildings, most of the CLT is produced for small to mediumsize
multi-family housing, public, and industrial structures. There is a high level of collaboration along the CLT
supply chain, including vertical integration. Nearly one-third of respondents are involved in building construction.
This first of its kind comprehensive review of the global CLT industry provides insights for potential entrants into
the CLT manufacturing sector including businesses along its extensive supply chain.


Keywords


Cross-Laminated Timber, innovativeness, manufacturing firms

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References


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