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Date 03/26/2009

Lafarge Launches Improved Rapid Deco L5 Gypsum Board

Herndon, VA

Lafarge North America Inc.


Lafarge announces that it is launching a new and improved version of its revolutionary Rapid Deco® L5® Gypsum Board.


The product features an improvement to Lafarge's patented factory applied Level 5 skim coat technology. Perfected in Europe, this new technology provides a smoother, slicker surface coating which is pre-applied to the gypsum board during the manufacturing process and prior to arriving on the jobsite. This coating more accurately replicates the field applied process while removing the extra time, and additional labor required to achieve a high quality level of finish.


This new coating also provides an enhanced level of abrasion resistance to resist jobsite damage and eliminate virtually any fiber raising during sanding, which leads to joint photographing on regular gypsum boards. The product is targeted at more discriminating owners and consumers looking for a seamless substrate for painting and decorating that performs better than traditional gypsum board in critical lighting conditions.


The Rapid Deco Level 5 system includes a matching joint compound which provides a consistent texture and absorption to match the board surface. When properly applied, it provides a superior solution to a field applied skim coat and an equivalent substitute to meet an ASTM C840 specification.


This cost effective system will allow applicators and designers to utilize Level 5 finishes more often due to the predictability of the results. The factory applied finish is consistent board after board, project after project. It also eliminates the uneven results often experienced with jobsite applied spray Level 5 alternatives, without the additional preparation, application and clean-up time.


"Millions of square feet of Rapid Deco L5 gypsum board have been installed successfully since the original product launch in 2004" said Terry O'Brien, Manager of Product Development and Innovation for Lafarge Gypsum. "Now with a new, more consistent quality surface and enhanced cost effectiveness, the appeal of Rapid Deco will spread from typical Level 5 applications to a broader group of projects desiring an enhanced level of finish."


In addition, the new Rapid Deco will be manufactured at Lafarge's state-of-the-art plants in Silver Grove, KY and Palatka, FL, which utilize 100% synthetic gypsum, and at the Buchanan, NY plant beginning in 2010. This allows the product to contribute to the attainment of LEED® credits for both the Recycled Materials credit (MR 4.1 & 4.2) and the Regional Materials credit (MR 5.1 & 5.2).


"We are very excited about this enhancement" said Stephen DeMay, Vice-president of Sales. "The Rapid Deco system, now sold in 6 other countries, has shown Lafarge's ability to utilize our international technical expertise and develop innovative products which can bring value to our customers around the world."


Samples of the new version of the Rapid Deco L5 gypsum board will be on display at the INTEX Show, the premier interior/exterior commercial construction show, being held on March 27 & 28 at the Nashville Convention Center in Nashville, TN.


For more information on the Rapid Deco Level 5 system, please visit


Lafarge offers a full line of quality wallboard and finishing products for commercial and residential construction. Lafarge wallboard plants are located in Silver Grove KY, Palatka, FL. and Buchanan, NY with joint compound plants located in Chambly, Quebec and Silver Grove, KY.


Louise Muth,

Director of External Communications



The Lafarge Group is the world leader in building materials, with top-ranking positions in all of its businesses: Cement, Aggregates & Concrete and Gypsum. With 83,000 employees in 78 countries, the Group posted sales of 19.0 billion Euros in 2008. Lafarge North America Inc. ("Lafarge North America" or "Lafarge"), a Lafarge Group company, is the largest diversified supplier of construction materials in the United States and Canada.

In 2009 and for the fifth year in a row, the Lafarge Group was listed in the "Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World". With the world's leading building materials research facility, the Lafarge Group places innovation at the heart of its priorities, working for sustainable construction and architectural creativity.

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