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    New: Birkner 2015 International PaperWorld - Just published!    ( Company news )

    Company news Order now the new book and web editions of Birkner 2015 – International PaperWorld that just has been published.

    The new completely revised Birkner media provide a unique information network with company and trade datas as well as up-to-date news, which you may use for your business planning and implementation.

    More than 28.000 updated company profiles with more than 23.000 internet addresses are available for professional research. Apart from producers, converters and raw material suppliers also the company profiles of service companies, suppliers and merchants are presented.

    The professional access to the regularly updated internet database www.paper-world.com offers in an ideal way detailed multi-lingual research opportunities, data export function and current news service edition for maintenance of existing and new business contacts.
    The new book edition in 2 volumes of Birkner 2015 – International PaperWorld supports research in the structured company profiles in reliable and structured manner.

    We also gladly accept your orders under order form or at info@paper-world.com so you can receive your personal copies and database accesses soonest.
    (Birkner GmbH & Co. KG)
     
    27.03.2015   The forest industry in 2014: Situation in main European markets remains challenging - ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... forest-based sector announces substantial investments into Finland

    The eurozone's economic situation remained unstable in 2014. The decrease in demand for paper products slowed somewhat in the forest industry's main European markets. Demand for sawn timber and plywood increased. Aggregate forest industry exports remained almost level with the previous year.

    “We expect the next government to make decisions that strengthen the forest industry's operating environment. It is imperative that the new government makes a commitment to avoid any industrial cost increases and cuts unnecessary red tape. If this does not happen, the gap between Finland and our competitor countries will continue to grow,” says Timo Jaatinen (photo), Director General of the Finnish Forest Industries Federation.

    More needs to be spent on transport route maintenance and repairs. In addition to the basic route network, also the lower-tier roads must be kept drivable so that timber can be delivered efficiently from forests to factories.

    “Ensuring an adequate and steady supply of timber is an essential factor in the forest-based sector's investment considerations. Demand for timber is forecast to increase by ten million cubic metres. State subsidies should not steer processable timber into energy use because this competes with real and growing market-based demand,” Timo Jaatinen underlines.

    Flexibility at the workplace and modernised collective labour agreements are also required for the forest industry's regeneration.
    Paper demand continued to fall, pulp and paperboard production almost unchanged

    Some 10.4 million tonnes of paper and paperboard was produced in Finland last year, about 1.7% less than in 2013.

    Demand for printing and writing papers continued to decline in the developed markets. Finland produced almost 6.1 million tonnes of printing and writing papers in 2014. This is 3.4% less than in the previous year.

    Production of packaging paperboard increased somewhat in 2014, thanks to a rising market for packaging materials. An annual growth rate of 0.6% was recorded.

    Finnish pulp production decreased slightly compared to the previous year and came to some 7 million tonnes. The reduction from 2013 amounted to 0.9%.
    Sawn timber and plywood production increased from 2013

    There is still little sign of an upturn in construction activity on the domestic market, which is important for wood products. There was growth in exports of sawn timber to Europe's large destination markets the UK and Germany as well as to countries in North Africa and the Middle East in January-November.

    Almost 10.9 million cubic metres of sawn softwood timber was produced in 2014, up 4.6% from the previous year. Plywood production has grown an estimated 6% to almost 1.2 million cubic metres.
    Bioproduct factory being planned, world's first wood-consuming biorefinery completed

    The forest-based sector is planning or preparing for investments in Finland that are worth about €1.5 billion in total.

    A plan to build a bioproduct factory in Äänekoski worth some €1.1 billion was announced last spring – this was the largest such investment announced up to that date. A decision concerning the realisation of this investment is expected in spring 2015.

    The world's first biorefinery, which makes wood-based renewable diesel, was completed in Lappeenranta. It commenced commercial production operations in January 2015.

    A project to expand the Kymi pulp mill was launched in 2014 and it is scheduled for completion this year.

    A fine-paper machine in Varkaus is being adapted to manufacture raw materials for paperboard packaging. The conversion should be completed in 2015.

    A new €43-million investment into a wood construction module production line in Varkaus was announced in February 2015. The plan is for production to commence in the second quarter of 2016.
    (Metsateollisuus ry - Skogsindustrin rf / FFIF Finnish Forest Industries Federation)
     
    27.03.2015   FEEDER INNOVATION COMES FULL CIRCLE TO REVOLUTIONISE DIGITAL ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... BOX PRINTING SOLUTIONS

    Picture: Lead Edge Feeder

    The very first product launched by SUN Automation Group® 30 years ago, the Extend-O-Feed® Lead Edge Feeder, has come full circle - the latest state-of-the-art model plays an integral part in the Group’s unique new CorrStream® digital printing solutions.

    SUN Automation has its roots in providing the corrugated industry with quality, efficiency and value. The company originally revolutionised feeding with increased speed, reduced feed roll crush and jam-free operation. With over 7,000 installs around the world, the SUN Automation Lead Edge Feeder laid the foundation for quality and consistency.

    Rob Dal Lago, SUN Automation General Manager, EMEA explained: “It’s a testimony to the strength, reliability and continuous improvement of our engineering that the feeder systems are so well respected, on both OEM equipment and as retrofits.”

    SUN Automation has applied the same level of innovation and attention to detail used in the development of the Lead Edge Feeder, to the refinement of its class leading range of CorrStream high output single pass, drop on demand inkjet print solutions. An in depth understanding of box makers’ needs enables the company to add significant value to the corrugated sector, reducing the cost of printing, for example, up to 4,000m2 batch runs, and putting plants back in control of production efficiency and profitability.

    Sean Moloney, Global Product Manager for Digital at SUN Automation, said: “We’ve utilised several years of development to present an industrial inkjet solution to the corrugated industry. Combining the latest inkjet technology with our expertise in corrugated sheet handling, CorrStream reduces cost by migrating low end runs from Flexo, while meeting new market demand and opportunity.”

    SUN Automation’s CorrStream is equipped with the trusted Lead Edge Feeder, pairing established equipment with innovative technology. Moloney continued: “SUN Automation’s Lead Edge Feeder is part of CorrStream’s eco system. CorrStream’s print engine has the ability to provide industry-changing up time, reliability, unprecedented print flexibility and control. We want to help box plants discern where digital corrugated fits within their plants and markets and are highly fortunate to have such a legacy in our product listings whilst we work to place inkjet technology into high output, wide format applications.”

    Well established technology supporting new innovation and value is positioning SUN Automation at the forefront of a new era in the corrugated industry.
    (Sun Automation Group)
     
    27.03.2015   Schumacher Packaging brings its first fanfold corrugator into service in Greven    ( Company news )

    Company news Multifunction corrugator produces sheets and fanfold in parallel operation

    The Schumacher Packaging Group has put a new multifunction corrugator into operation at its Greven plant. The official start date for production at this newly-constructed, ultra-modern plant near Münster-Osnabrück airport was in June 2014. Since then, the plant has been producing corrugated cardboard on its new 2.5m-wide, state-of-the-art equipment and converting it into packaging. This has provided the company with the capacity to produce all popular types of corrugated packaging on the doorstep of its customers in Northern and Western Germany and the Benelux area. A special feature of the equipment is its ability to produce fanfold corrugated. In addition to a conventional printing unit, the corrugator also has a sleeve printing unit for preprint which enables two-colour full-surface or continuous printing on all grades of corrugated board. The machine, which was custom-built for Schumacher Packaging, is also capable of producing laminated sheeting and corrugated board simultaneously.

    As Uwe Kihm, Works Manager at Greven, commented: “Our new corrugator represents a first for the Schumacher Packaging Group, because it is the first of all our corrugators to produce fanfold board.” This type of corrugated board is traditionally of great benefit for packaging items such as furniture and other large, bulky goods. “But we are also seeing a marked increase here particularly in e-commerce,” he continued. “Instead of having to despatch orders in oversized standard boxes, using continuous fanfold corrugated means goods can be individually packaged to suit the exact needs and size of the products. Not only does this make packed goods easier to handle, but bespoke packaging also offers better protection and greatly reduces the amount of filling and padding material required, which ultimately saves on both volume and costs.”

    This machine is also capable of producing conventional corrugated board and laminated sheeting in parallel operation. Laminated sheets are only closed on one face as the fluting on the reverse face remains open. This single-faced sheeting is used by litho-laminating packaging plants, where the offset printed outer liner is laminated and converted into packaging. The plant in Greven brings the number of high-performance corrugating plants currently operated by Schumacher Packaging to a total of four – two in Germany and two more in Poland.
    (Schumacher Packaging GmbH)
     
    27.03.2015   Letter of intent for the detailed engineering of Metsä Group's bioproduct mill has been signed    ( Company news )

    Company news On 20 March 2015, Metsä Fibre Oy signed a letter of intent for the detailed engineering of its planned bioproduct mill with Sweco Industry Oy and Sweco Rakennetekniikka Oy. Final delivery contracts will be signed if Metsä Fibre decides to build the mill. If the prerequisites for the investment are met, the decision on the construction of the bioproduct mill will be made this spring.

    According to the letter of intent, Sweco Industry Oy and Sweco Rakennetekniikka Oy will be responsible for layout, mechanical and piping engineering as well as civil engineering. In the project, Neste Jacobs Oy will be the partner for Sweco. The detailed engineering work will have an employment impact of about 200 person years of which 100 per cent will be of Finnish origin.
    (Metsä Fibre Oy)
     
    27.03.2015   Speedmaster XL 75 Anicolor from Heidelberg now also available as a perfecting press with ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ...UV technology

    -Anicolor as a long perfecting press – extremely flexible
    -Anicolor and UV printing – versatile finishing effects and fast, cost-effective manufacturing
    -Anicolor in general – cost-effective production of short runs



    Visitors to the Heidelberg Info Days “Profitable and efficient production of short runs” at the Wiesloch-Walldorf site enjoyed not one, but two world premieres. Held at the beginning of March, the event in Hall 6 showcased an eight-color Speedmaster XL 75 Anicolor perfector and a five-color Speedmaster XL 75 Anicolor with coating unit and UV technology. In doing so, Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG (Heidelberg) demonstrated two further configuration levels of its Anicolor technology for the cost-effective production of short runs. The Speedmaster SX 52 Anicolor has been available as a perfecting press since 2008 and as a UV press since 2010.

    The Speedmaster XL 75 Anicolor celebrated its premiere at drupa 2012 and, since then, has proved its worth to commercial and, in particular, packaging printers. In small and medium formats, the zoneless Anicolor technology impresses with rapid inking-up that produces saleable sheets from the 20th print sheet onward. Users say it reduces waste by up to 90 percent and supports very short make-ready times.
    (Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG)
     
    27.03.2015   The State of the Art    ( Company news )

    Company news Picture: The latest innovations and product improvements from Pallmann at LIGNA 2015. (Photo: PALLMANN Group, PLMPR032)

    Pallmann, one of the world's leading manufacturers of machines and wood yard systems, will be at LIGNA 2015, the world's leading trade fair for the forestry and woodworking industry, where it will present innovative developments and product improvements.

    Pallmann can be visited at Stand E 35 in Hall 27.

    It will be highlighting various products, including its new state-of-the-art PZSC Knife Ring Flaker. Measured across the available cutting length of the knives in the knife ring, it is the world’s biggest ring flaker. In its knife ring and impeller, the PZSC uses the tried and tested counter-rotating principle to convert wood chips into high grade flakes of uniform size and consistent quality. The counter-rotating principle also ensures that equal use is made of all wearing parts. The flakes can then be used to manufacture particleboard, pellets and briquettes.

    Pallmann will also be showing off a number of other machines at LIGNA, including its new Disc Chipper, type PHS 30H12, which is the most efficient machine of its kind in the Pallmann range. This chipper makes high quality chips from round wood, which can be used for a variety of purposes, such as the manufacture of fibres for the MDF- or paper industry. The ability to change the knives more quickly reduces downtime when wearing parts are replaced – which means less time wasted. The machine was specially developed for the MDF and paper industry, which requires high and consistent material throughputs.

    For the MDF sector, Pallmann will also be showing off a new maintenance-friendly bearing concept for the feed unit used in its Pressurized Refiner, type PR. This concept makes it possible to replace individual components without having to take the whole unit apart.

    Pallmann is looking forward to this year’s fair and welcoming both new and returning customers to its stand.
    (Pallmann Maschinenfabrik GmbH & Co KG)
     
    27.03.2015   Pro-Fibre - Transforming paper pulp    ( Company news )

    Company news Using prototype technology, we are trialling a new process that creates pulp from contaminated domestic paper for use in the construction, packaging and moulded fibre industries.

    According to the latest available data, the UK recycles approximately 8 million tonnes of waste paper. This represents around 70% of the paper we throw away, but what happens to the rest?

    Many different types of paper are rejected from recycling facilities because they have been contaminated with glass, sand, plastic, metal or, most frequently, food or grease. This could be due to the intrinsic nature of the paper, such as pizza boxes or takeaway lids. Or it could be that the paper has been discarded with general household waste. This contaminated paper is then sent to landfill or energy recovery facilities. But although it requires more processing to remove these contaminants, the high fibre content of the paper means it can still have a commercial value.

    Our solution extracts the value from this paper source while reducing its environmental impact. Pro-Fibre is paper pulp produced from contaminated paper. The five-step process we have developed enables us to remove contaminants and create a pulp that can replace virgin materials currently used in the construction and packaging industry, including insulation materials and biodegradable pots.

    We are working closely with a partner specialising in the fibre industry, to analyse the properties of our pulp so we can better understand the product’s commercial potential. We are also investigating potential uses for the pulp such as cellulose wadding for insulation and biodegradable pots. The first batch of pulp will be launched to market early 2015.
    (Veolia Environmental Services (UK) Plc)
     
    27.03.2015   Schur is building Europe's most modern folding box plant    ( Company news )

    Company news Schur Pack Germany is currently building Europe's most modern high-tech folding box facility and is massively investing in a new location. A 28,000 square metres plant is presently being constructed, the likes of which cannot be found anywhere else in Europe to date. Thanks to this investment of almost 70 million euros, Schur would like to extend its competitive edge and sets a clear example for folding boxes "Made in Germany".

    The new facility and the associated massive investments in the new plant at the future Business Park A24 location, has the purpose of providing a positive and, most importantly, sustainable corporate development for Schur Pack Germany within Europe. With the decision for a new company location and the corresponding enormous investment volume in new buildings and machines, the packaging specialist also sends out a clear signal for the production and business location Germany.

    "The outstanding efficiency and the new quality standards that are offered by our plant are simply unique. Most notably, for our customers this means: outstanding quality, highest hygiene standards and shortest delivery times. With this, we come even closer to our customers," says Klaus Madsen, Managing Director at Schur Pack Germany.

    Schur Pack Germany has been very well received at the new Business Park A24 location. The cooperation with the local communities and the responsible authorities and institutes, which work in a highly structured and professional manner, is very much appreciated by Schur. The assistance offered by all of them and the rapid response times are important prerequisites for the success of the whole project.

    Customers and Markets in Focus
    To satisfy the growing customer requirements regarding quality and reduced delivery times, a majority of the entire investment goes into new production equipment. "Our new plant has the highest possible degree of automation available on the market. We are particularly proud of our fully-automated high-bay warehouse," says Andreas Lührs, Plant Manager at Schur Pack Germany.

    Due to the high investments in state-of-the-art printing and processing machines, the packaging specialist Schur is also extending its portfolio of products. Apart from the printing quality, which is once again increased, innovative finishing technology, like hot and cold foil is now also available for the customers.

    In addition to this, AGV's (Automated Guided Vehicles) ensure efficient flow and production processes. "We completely utilise the possibilities offered by cutting edge intra logistics in the new plant and guarantee optimised work processes for our customers to realize shortest delivery times,“ explains Jan Bollweg, Operations Manager at Schur Pack Germany. Here, many of the complex intra logistics challenges are solved in cooperation with the affiliated company Schur Packaging Systems AB in Sweden.
    Energy Efficiency
    The new high-tech plant also sets entirely new standards with regard to energy efficiency. Here, the complete construction is supplied entirely with regenerative sources of energy and no fossil fuels are required in the entire building.
    (Schur Pack Germany GmbH)
     
    26.03.2015   Lenzing Group: Operating Results in 2014 Exceed Expectations, Higher Cost-Saving Targets ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... Achieved

    -Dividend proposal: EUR 1.00 per share
    -Record sales volumes against the backdrop of declining fiber selling prices
    -Countermeasures have a positive impact and improve operating results

    Photo: Robert van de Kerkhof, Chief Commercial Officer of the Lenzing Group

    Ongoing strong demand enabled Lenzing to achieve a new record sales volume of 960,000 tons (+ 8%) in the 2014 financial year against the backdrop of a further drop in fiber selling prices and a very challenging market environment once again. Operating results could be substantially improved thanks to the implementation of the excelLENZ program and its subsequent intensification. The Management Board will propose to the Annual Shareholders’ Meeting that a dividend of EUR 1.00 per share (2013: EUR 1.75 per share) be distributed to shareholders for the 2014 financial year.
    In the 2014 financial year, consolidated revenue fell slightly by 2.3% to EUR 1.86 bn from EUR 1.91 bn in the previous year. The main reasons for this development were the sale of the Business Unit Plastics in the course of 2013 as well as the average fiber selling prices of the Lenzing Group, which once again fell by about 8% during the year under review to EUR 1.57 per kilogram. On a like-for-like basis of continuing operations, consolidated revenue remained at a constant level (up 0.3% from EUR 1,859.0 mn in 2013 to EUR 1,864.2 in 2014).

    Countermeasures have a positive impact
    In spite of the low prevailing selling prices, Lenzing generated a significant improvement in its operating results. EBITDA¹ (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) of the Lenzing Group rose by 24.0% from the challenging 2013 financial year from EUR 193.9 mn to EUR 240.3 mn. The EBITDA margin² climbed to 12.9% (2013: 10.4%). This substantial rise in earnings can be attributed to massive cost savings achieved within the context of the excelLENZ progam, improvements in the product mix and the new TENCEL® fiber production plant in Lenzing accompanied by an overall leaner organizational structure.
    “Our cost reduction program led to savings far in excess of EUR 100 mn in 2014“, says Peter Untersperger, Chief Executive Officer of the Lenzing Group. “We will generate structural and sustainable savings of about EUR 160 mn p.a. by 2016, about double the amount as originally budgeted. The operating results in 2014 show that Lenzing is well on track to assume cost leadership in the man-made cellulose fiber industry again”.
    About one quarter of the cost reductions involved personnel expenses, with remaining cost decreases equally relating to reductions in material costs and operating efficiency improvements as well as cost reductions in general administrative expenses.

    Value adjustments negatively affect EBIT and annual result
    Due to the changed medium-term viscose fiber selling price expectations, write-offs in the valuation of goodwill, property, plant and equipment and other intangible assets was carried out for the subsidiaries PT. South Pacific Viscose (Indonesia) and Lenzing Nanjing Fibers (China) to the amount of EUR 94.0 mn. Accordingly, earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) fell to EUR 21.9 mn from the prior-year EBIT of EUR 58.6 mn. As a result of these non-recurring non-cash effects, the Lenzing Group reported a net loss of EUR 14.2 mn in 2014.

    Market environment requires further countermeasures
    “We also do not anticipate any far-reaching price recovery in 2015“, says Robert van de Kerkhof, Chief Commercial Officer of the Lenzing Group. “The massive drop in oil prices put downward pressure on polyester prices, which in turn additionally burdened viscose fiber prices. This was accompanied by cotton inventories bursting at the seams and ongoing surplus production capacities of China’s viscose fiber industry. In addition to cost optimization measures, we will focus more intensively on promoting our high quality specialty fibers, in particular TENCEL® and Lenzing Modal®,” he adds.
    By leveraging the price premiums of TENCEL® and Lenzing Modal® compared to standard viscose fibers and due to currency effects, Lenzing fiber selling prices rose once again in the fourth quarter of 2014 for the first time compared to previous quarterly periods. The successful ramp-up of the TENCEL® jumbo fiber production plant at the Lenzing site in Upper Austria in the second half of 2014 made a major contribution to this development. The new TENCEL® fiber plant with an annual capacity of 67,000 tons is the world‘s largest and most technologically advanced of its kind, and secures 140 top quality jobs at the Lenzing site.

    Reduction in net financial debt
    “On the basis of active cash management, we succeeded in reducing the net financial debt in 2014 to EUR 449.5 mn from EUR 504.7 mn at the end of 2013. Lenzing can point to a very healthy balance sheet, featuring a net gearing of 42.2% and an adjusted equity ratio of 44.9%“, says Chief Financial Officer Thomas Riegler, commenting on the consolidated financial statements for 2014.
    Investments in intangible assets, property, plant and equipment (cash CAPEX) were significantly cut back in the 2014 financial year to EUR 104.3 mn (2013: EUR 248.7 mn incl. Business Unit Plastics). The focal point of the investment activity was completion of the TENCEL® fiber production plant at the Lenzing site as well as efficiency and modernization investments in the fields of energy and fiber production.

    Outlook for 2015
    The difficult economic environment affecting the fiber industry hardly changed in the first weeks of 2015 compared to the third and fourth quarters of the year under review. The difficult market environment on the market for standard viscose fibers is expected to continue in 2015.
    From an operational perspective, a further improvement of the product mix in the textile segment, especially increasing specialty sales such as Lenzing Modal® and TENCEL® fibers will be at the heart of Lenzing’s efforts. The company started the new financial year registering dynamic demand for TENCEL®.
    The Lenzing Group is striving to further consolidate its global competitive positioning by strengthening the commercial organization, resolutely continuing its excelLENZ program in 2015 and by restructuring the technical areas.
    (Lenzing AG)
     
    26.03.2015   Petri Helsky starts as the CEO of Metsä Tissue on 16 April    ( Company news )

    Company news Petri Helsky, M.Sc (Chem. Eng.), M.Sc (Econ), 48, will start as the CEO of Metsä Tissue Corporation and as a member of Metsä Group’s Executive Management Team as of 16 April 2015.

    Metsä Group published a stock exchange release concerning Helsky’s appointment on 12 January 2015.
    (Metsä Tissue Corporation)
     
    26.03.2015   Lessebo Paper AB delivers a solid 2014 result    ( Company news )

    Company news Lessebo Paper AB had a solid 2014 translating in a turnover of 320 million SEK and a 14.8 million SEK profit.
    This strong performance has been the result of a continued focus on efficiency and high quality products.
    In addition, the continuous improvement program has lead to a number of upgrades being realised in the second half of 2014.
    The mill’s loyal customer base, and the above improvements have lead to a positive development in the sales of the two main product areas in all markets.
    Managing Director Terje Haglund comments: “Our focus on Lessebo’s core products of premium offset and coloured papers has been paying off.
    2015 has started well and the outlook for the full-year is very favourable with Lessebo’s products entering into new markets”.
    (Lessebo Paper AB)
     
    26.03.2015   The 2014 business year: CPH posts black-ink result    ( Company news )

    Company news CPH Chemie + Papier Holding AG increased its net sales by 2.3% to CHF 492.5 million in 2014, and achieved earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) of CHF 16.0 million for the year.
    The 2015 Ordinary General Meeting will be asked to approve an unchanged capital repayment from the capital contribution reserve of CHF 13.00 per share, along with a 20-for-1 stock split. With lower paper prices and the abolition of the minimum euro exchange rate, CPH expects to post a negative operating result for 2015.

    The economy in Europe, the most important sales market for the CPH Group, showed sideways trends in 2014. CPH was able to slightly increase its net sales for the year and substantially improve its earnings result, thanks largely to the performance of its Paper Division.
    “The annual efficiency enhancements of CHF 20 to 30 million that we have achieved over the past few years are reflected for the first time in our 2014 earnings results,” says Peter Schildknecht, CEO of the CPH Group.
    This is due to the fact that paper prices and the relevant currency exchange rates remained largely stable throughout the year.

    Group sales slightly up
    Total net sales for the CPH Group amounted to CHF 492.5 million in 2014, a 2.3% increase on the previous year. “All three of our business divisions contributed to this growth,” Peter Schildknecht points out. “Our Paper Division was particularly successful here,” he continues, “and achieved a notable first in using its PM 4 machine to produce higher-margin magazine paper throughout the year.” With production volumes also increased on the PM 7 machine and paper prices remaining largely stable, the division was able to raise its net sales for the year. The Packaging and Chemistry divisions also recorded slight increases in their annual net sales.

    Operating results substantially improved
    Consolidated earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) were improved 64.5% to CHF 50.8 million. Consolidated earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) for 2013 had been substantially influenced by the year’s impairments to tangible fixed assets. But even compared to its prior-year equivalent before such impairments, the 2014 consolidated EBIT of CHF 16.0 million represents a CHF 42.7 million year-on-year improvement. EBIT margin stood at 3.3%.

    Net result clearly in the black
    The net result for the year was also positive at CHF 10.5 million. It was also achieved without any major non-operating income, as no substantial real-estate assets were disposed of during the year.

    Capital repayment from capital contribution reserve of CHF 13.00 per share proposed
    The Board of Directors will recommend to the Ordinary General Meeting of 1 April 2015 that, as a further confirmation of the CPH Group’s consistent dividend policy, an unchanged dividend of CHF 13.00 per share be distributed for the 2014 business year, in the form of a corresponding capital repayment from the capital contribution reserve.

    20-for-1 stock split
    The Board of Directors will further recommend a 20-for-1 split of the CPH Chemie + Papier Holding AG share. One current share of CHF 100 nominal value would thus be split into 20 shares of CHF 5 nominal value.

    Construction of a manufacturing facility in China
    CPH generates two-thirds of its sales in the paper segment. And 84% of the CPH Group’s total sales derive from the saturated European markets. The Group earns only 14% of its sales in Switzerland, but incurs some 70% of its costs in Swiss francs.
    The present overvaluation of the Swiss franc, which has persisted for several years now, has a correspondingly adverse impact on CPH’s earnings results. To reduce the Group’s dependence on the paper market and its exposure to currency movements, CPH now plans to invest in developing new production capacities beyond the paper segment and outside Switzerland, and to intensify its endeavours to tap new markets in Asia and Latin America. In accordance with these strategic guidelines, CPH resolved in the course of 2014 to expand the operations of its Packaging Division to China.
    Under these plans, land has been acquired on a leasehold basis in Suzhou, near Shanghai, on which work will begin to construct a new PVC film manufacturing plant in the first quarter of 2015.
    The additional capacity, which will be available from 2016, will be used to serve the rapidly-growing Asian pharmaceuticals markets.

    Changes on the Board of Directors
    CPH will propose the election of two new members to the Board of Directors to the Ordinary General Meeting of 1 April 2015. Kaspar W. Kelterborn will be proposed to succeed Hanspeter Balmer, who stepped down from the Board for health reasons on 30 June 2014; and Manuel Werder will be proposed as the successor to Max Walter, who will not be standing for re-election having reached the statutory age limit for Board service.

    Outlook for 2015
    Following the Swiss National Bank’s unexpected abolition of the minimum euro exchange rate in January 2015, key foreign currencies have suffered double-digit percentage declines against the Swiss franc. “Since the CPH Group has most of its production in Switzerland and exports the vast majority of its products, the movements of our key foreign currencies - the euro and the US dollar – against the Swiss franc have a direct impact on our sales and earnings,” explains Peter Schildknecht.
    Foreign currencies are likely to remain weak against the franc in 2015, making any projections of business trends only tentative at best. The operational success of the CPH Group is heavily contingent on developments in its Paper Division. With the present market overcapacities, paper prices will be under pressure in 2015 – a pressure that cannot be entirely offset through additional production volumes. The Chemistry and Packaging divisions will continue to expand their higher-value-product businesses and tap new markets in the growth regions.
    The Chemistry Division’s Uetikon production site is currently being considered by Canton Zurich as the possible location for a new cantonal high school. CPH is in talks on this with the cantonal authorities.
    “We will continue undiminished in 2015 with all our efficiency enhancement efforts in all our business divisions,” emphasizes Peter Schildknecht. “CPH will also be striving to further increase its market shares. But we are likely to see a tangible decline in our sales in Swiss-franc terms, and we must expect a negative operating result for the year.”
    (CPH Chemie + Papier Holding AG)
     
    26.03.2015   Verso Introduces New Coated Web Product Lineup    ( Company news )

    Company news Verso Corporation (NYSE: VRS), a leading North American producer of printing papers, specialty papers and pulp, introduced its new coated web product lineup, unmatched by any other North American supplier. Verso offers a breadth of quality coated web brands, including No. 2, No. 3 and No. 4 grades in coated freesheet and coated groundwood, as well as supercalendered SCA+ and SCA grades. Verso's lineup includes some of the most distinguished paper brands in the industry, such as Sterling® Ultra, ArborWeb Plus®, Influence®, ArborWeb® and Liberty®, as well as two new brands, Focus™ and Balance™.

    Verso's two new brands, Focus™ and Balance™, will be produced to the same high standards as its other distinguished brands. Focus™, a No. 3 coated groundwood paper, is one of the best values in its category, offering cost savings without compromising performance, brightness or image reproduction. It delivers great appearance and value for quality-conscious commercial printing, catalog and magazine applications. Balance™, a No. 4 coated groundwood product, is a highly versatile and refined paper, striking the optimal combination of brightness, printability and cost. It is the perfect choice for special edition publications and is a brighter, whiter alternative to a typical No. 5 product.

    "Verso's coated web product offering is an important component of our overall printing papers, specialty papers and pulp product portfolio," says Mike Weinhold, Verso's Senior Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Product Development. "We have the know-how to offer world-class products and the experience to offer world-class service. Our new coated web offering provides a unique combination of quality, consistency, reliability and flexibility that is very appealing to customers."

    Verso demands that its mills meet strict quality standards to ensure delivery of consistent products day in and day out. All Verso facilities are located in the United States and its mills and warehouses are strategically located near large print markets. "Verso's strategic locations and large manufacturing base ensure our customers are reliably supplied," Weinhold says. "We have the flexibility to manufacture the same products on multiple machines, which means customers can get the paper they want when they need it. We are committed to going the extra mile to earn and keep our customers' loyalty."

    Coated web papers are used primarily in commercial printing applications, including magazines, catalogs, books, direct mail and retail inserts.
    (Verso Corporation)
     
    26.03.2015   AVERY DENNISON EXPANDS FILM MATRIX RECYCLING OFFER TO CUSTOMERS    ( Company news )

    Company news Avery Dennison and Belgian-based Seliplast AG (acronym for Second Life for Plastics) have launched a first-of-its-kind recycling option for label matrix waste made of polypropylene and polyethylene. The programme is now available to converters in Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg, Germany and France.

    This new offering builds on a 2014 pilot established by the two companies in which more than 1,000 tons of plastic laminate and matrix waste in Avery Dennison’s plant in Turnhout, Belgium were converted into new granulate for industrial and household products. The solution eliminates the need for waste material to be shipped outside of the region for manual sorting and recycling, which had previously been required due to the sticky nature of the residue.

    Avery Dennison’s global sustainability director, Xander van der Vlies, said that the agreement with Seliplast AG is a great fit with the company’s wider environmental objectives: “Our vision is to make use of local recycling solutions where possible, and to reduce all aspects of our environmental footprint, from energy use all the way through to the level of waste. We are excited to promote Seliplast AG’s label matrix waste recycling options to our customers.”

    Christian Horn, managing director of Seliplast AG notes that the filmic matrix and laminate waste must comply with certain quality standards to be accepted. “For recycling to be practical, the waste matrix material has to be collected separately, avoiding paper contamination.”

    When the required conditions are met, Avery Dennison and Seliplast AG can offer converters a viable local alternative to landfill or incineration, with consequential reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. According to van der Vlies, “This type of programme is an excellent example of collaboration that creates a positive impact on the environment by turning product waste into source material for other products.”
    (Avery Dennison Label and Packaging Materials Europe)
     
    26.03.2015   The 2014 business year: CPH posts black-ink result    ( Company news )

    Company news CPH Chemie + Papier Holding AG increased its net sales by 2.3% to CHF 492.5 million in 2014, and achieved earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) of CHF 16.0 million for the year.
    The 2015 Ordinary General Meeting will be asked to approve an unchanged capital repayment from the capital contribution reserve of CHF 13.00 per share, along with a 20-for-1 stock split. With lower paper prices and the abolition of the minimum euro exchange rate, CPH expects to post a negative operating result for 2015.

    The economy in Europe, the most important sales market for the CPH Group, showed sideways trends in 2014. CPH was able to slightly increase its net sales for the year and substantially improve its earnings result, thanks largely to the performance of its Paper Division.
    “The annual efficiency enhancements of CHF 20 to 30 million that we have achieved over the past few years are reflected for the first time in our 2014 earnings results,” says Peter Schildknecht, CEO of the CPH Group.
    This is due to the fact that paper prices and the relevant currency exchange rates remained largely stable throughout the year.

    Group sales slightly up
    Total net sales for the CPH Group amounted to CHF 492.5 million in 2014, a 2.3% increase on the previous year. “All three of our business divisions contributed to this growth,” Peter Schildknecht points out. “Our Paper Division was particularly successful here,” he continues, “and achieved a notable first in using its PM 4 machine to produce higher-margin magazine paper throughout the year.” With production volumes also increased on the PM 7 machine and paper prices remaining largely stable, the division was able to raise its net sales for the year. The Packaging and Chemistry divisions also recorded slight increases in their annual net sales.

    Operating results substantially improved
    Consolidated earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) were improved 64.5% to CHF 50.8 million. Consolidated earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) for 2013 had been substantially influenced by the year’s impairments to tangible fixed assets. But even compared to its prior-year equivalent before such impairments, the 2014 consolidated EBIT of CHF 16.0 million represents a CHF 42.7 million year-on-year improvement. EBIT margin stood at 3.3%.

    Net result clearly in the black
    The net result for the year was also positive at CHF 10.5 million. It was also achieved without any major non-operating income, as no substantial real-estate assets were disposed of during the year.

    Capital repayment from capital contribution reserve of CHF 13.00 per share proposed
    The Board of Directors will recommend to the Ordinary General Meeting of 1 April 2015 that, as a further confirmation of the CPH Group’s consistent dividend policy, an unchanged dividend of CHF 13.00 per share be distributed for the 2014 business year, in the form of a corresponding capital repayment from the capital contribution reserve.

    20-for-1 stock split
    The Board of Directors will further recommend a 20-for-1 split of the CPH Chemie + Papier Holding AG share. One current share of CHF 100 nominal value would thus be split into 20 shares of CHF 5 nominal value.

    Construction of a manufacturing facility in China
    CPH generates two-thirds of its sales in the paper segment. And 84% of the CPH Group’s total sales derive from the saturated European markets. The Group earns only 14% of its sales in Switzerland, but incurs some 70% of its costs in Swiss francs.
    The present overvaluation of the Swiss franc, which has persisted for several years now, has a correspondingly adverse impact on CPH’s earnings results. To reduce the Group’s dependence on the paper market and its exposure to currency movements, CPH now plans to invest in developing new production capacities beyond the paper segment and outside Switzerland, and to intensify its endeavours to tap new markets in Asia and Latin America. In accordance with these strategic guidelines, CPH resolved in the course of 2014 to expand the operations of its Packaging Division to China.
    Under these plans, land has been acquired on a leasehold basis in Suzhou, near Shanghai, on which work will begin to construct a new PVC film manufacturing plant in the first quarter of 2015.
    The additional capacity, which will be available from 2016, will be used to serve the rapidly-growing Asian pharmaceuticals markets.

    Changes on the Board of Directors
    CPH will propose the election of two new members to the Board of Directors to the Ordinary General Meeting of 1 April 2015. Kaspar W. Kelterborn will be proposed to succeed Hanspeter Balmer, who stepped down from the Board for health reasons on 30 June 2014; and Manuel Werder will be proposed as the successor to Max Walter, who will not be standing for re-election having reached the statutory age limit for Board service.

    Outlook for 2015
    Following the Swiss National Bank’s unexpected abolition of the minimum euro exchange rate in January 2015, key foreign currencies have suffered double-digit percentage declines against the Swiss franc. “Since the CPH Group has most of its production in Switzerland and exports the vast majority of its products, the movements of our key foreign currencies - the euro and the US dollar – against the Swiss franc have a direct impact on our sales and earnings,” explains Peter Schildknecht.
    Foreign currencies are likely to remain weak against the franc in 2015, making any projections of business trends only tentative at best. The operational success of the CPH Group is heavily contingent on developments in its Paper Division. With the present market overcapacities, paper prices will be under pressure in 2015 – a pressure that cannot be entirely offset through additional production volumes. The Chemistry and Packaging divisions will continue to expand their higher-value-product businesses and tap new markets in the growth regions.
    The Chemistry Division’s Uetikon production site is currently being considered by Canton Zurich as the possible location for a new cantonal high school. CPH is in talks on this with the cantonal authorities.
    “We will continue undiminished in 2015 with all our efficiency enhancement efforts in all our business divisions,” emphasizes Peter Schildknecht. “CPH will also be striving to further increase its market shares. But we are likely to see a tangible decline in our sales in Swiss-franc terms, and we must expect a negative operating result for the year.”
    (CPH Chemie + Papier Holding AG)
     
    26.03.2015   Meerssen Papier in administration    ( Company news )

    Company news All operations at the Dutch specialty paper manufacturer suspended until further notice.

    Dutch specialty paper manufacturer Meerssen Papier is bankrupt. The company was declared insolvent by the relevant court in Limburg on 17 March. The court has appointed two lawyers of the firm Thuis & Partners in Heerlen as administrators.

    Production at the mill had been standing still since 17 March, a company spokesperson told EUWID. All 65 employees were sent home until further notice.

    Meerssen Papier houses three paper machines with a combined capacity of up to 35,000 tpy of woodfree paper and board for graphic, security, technical and packaging applications. However, only two out of the three PMs had been operational in the last five years. In 2014, the total production output amounted to 10,000 t, the company spokesperson explained.
    (EUWID Pulp and Paper)
     
    25.03.2015   PulpEye launches Dynamic Drainage Analyzer DDA 5 with new features    ( Company news )

    Company news PulpEye, is an innovative measurement technology company, is now launching the fifth generation of its Dynamic Drainage Analyzer, DDA 5. This model, like its predecessors, gives drainage values comparable to real drainage situations on modern paper machines’ wire sections. One of the new features is an automatic retention module which can calculate the retention by analysing the turbidity of the white water.

    Optimal drainage and retention are important parameters in papermaking. The right amount of chemicals added in the right position in the stock preparation increases both productivity and product quality. As the DDA gives drainage values comparable to real drainage situations on modern paper machines, it is in use by papermakers, chemical manufacturers and R&D companies worldwide.

    “DDA 5 has a compact design and is equipped with new features like the turbidity sensor which automatically gives the retention value,” says Öjvind Sundvall, MD, PulpEye. “The drainage rate can be presented for chosen time intervals during the analysis. The chemical dosage is done automatically. As the equipment is automatically cleaned after each analysis, more analyses can be done per hour in comparison to previous models. All data input and presentation of results are done with a new user friendly interface.”

    ”We have customers all over the world using the DDA in their normal production as well as in development projects. With the launch of our DDA 5 we expect that the demand will increase even further and that we will very soon sell our one hundredth unit since the first version was introduced,” finishes Öjvind Sundvall.
    (PulpEye AB)
     
    25.03.2015   Munksjö appoints Pia Aaltonen-Forsell as CFO    ( Company news )

    Company news Pia Aaltonen-Forsell (photo) has been appointed Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and member of Munksjö's Management Team. Aaltonen-Forsell (M.Soc.Sc.) will be joining Munksjö from Vacon Plc., where she currently is the CFO.

    Aaltonen-Forsell's previous positions include Senior Vice President (SVP) Finance, IT and M&A, Building and Living Business Area at Stora Enso as well as other managerial positions at Stora Enso, such as SVP Group Controller.
    Aaltonen-Forsell will join Munksjö on 1 April 2015, and she will report to Jan Åström, President and CEO of Munksjö Oyj.

    "I'm very happy to welcome Pia to the Munksjö-team. With her solid background from the industry, she will be an excellent driving force for the company's further growth and development", says the President and CEO Jan Åström.
    (Munksjö Oyj)
     
    25.03.2015   FASTSIGNS® of Vancouver brings digital cutting and routing in-house with ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... an Esko Kongsberg V table

    Business becomes more productive, completes projects faster, and is able to attract more business

    FASTSIGNS of Vancouver has recently invested in a new Esko Kongsberg V finishing table, bringing in-house many of the cutting and routing tasks it once had to subcontract to complete. In doing so, beyond productivity, quality and cost efficiencies, they have been able to attract more business (www.esko.com).

    FASTSIGNS® of Vancouver (FASTSIGNS.com/653) is an independently owned and operated sign, graphics and visual communications company—one of FASTSIGNS'® more than 530 franchises throughout the world. They provide comprehensive visual marketing solutions to customers of all sizes—across all industries—to help them meet their business objectives and increase their business visibility. Paul LeBlanc, owner of FASTSIGNS® of Vancouver, invested in his FASTSIGNS franchise, the second in Canada, in January 1996. At the time, the only other franchise in Canada was across the country in Newfoundland. Though living in Nova Scotia, LeBlanc was willing to move to a large city to start his business. While it was a tough start in an unknown city, he overcame the challenges and the business grew substantially in the early 2000s, serving retailers, the real estate industry, art galleries, and non-profits. The business expanded from their original 1,800 square foot location to their current 5,400 square foot facility in 2008. Their ten employees operate two roll printers, a flatbed printer, and a thermal transfer printer.

    Finding a need to bring cutting and finishing in-house
    However, producing signs isn't all about printing. "We originally had a saw on our wall and a hand saw we used for cutting on production tables," recalls LeBlanc. "A lot of the materials took a good amount of muscle to cut. On some occasions when clients needed a good number of retail signs and shapes, we sent them out to a subcontractor to be cut."

    LeBlanc realized that the amount of subcontracting was increasing. "One of our best customers was ordering more and more items that needed cut substrates, and it required us to seek help," says LeBlanc. "It was challenging for us. The subcontractor's cost made it difficult for us to make money. Also, it created time pressures for us. We would print the project, ship it across town, wait for the project to be cut, and then ship it back. It took too much time."

    The other influencing factor came from LeBlanc's involvement with FASTSIGNS. "We are part of the FASTSIGNS network and have a number of business friends whom I speak with regularly and meet at our annual convention," adds LeBlanc. "I had heard that many of these franchisees were reaping real production efficiencies with cutting tables. While we had plenty of resources to do the work manually, I asked a room full of people of similar FASTSIGNS centers if there was a viable business case to invest in a table. The answer was a unanimous 'yes!'"

    LeBlanc needed a table that could read registration marks from a digital printer so that it could cut squares or contours—whatever shape—on the printed piece. He also creates a lot of dimensional letters, so a router was important.

    Deciding on the Kongsberg V, a cost-effective finishing table
    "There are a few different table manufacturers, and this was an important investment—one that we believe we will be using for a decade. I needed a machine where the company had a good track record among FASTSIGNS franchisees and within the industry." remarks LeBlanc. "When I ask people what they are doing, I listen. I spoke with people who were consistently happy with the Kongsberg table. I also knew that FASTSIGNS headquarters supported them."

    They decided to invest in a Kongsberg V table and installed it in October 2014. "Price was a significant factor. If I had to make a decision before the Kongsberg V, I would have waited another year," remembers LeBlanc. "The price let me move sooner. I assessed the sacrifices that I would have to make with power and speed, and compared them to larger Kongsberg tables. I visited FASTSIGNS in Burlington, Canada. They were running their larger table at 1/2 and 1/4 speeds, which was certainly sufficient for them. It also was able to do routing—an important feature."

    Esko had a local rep, a very comforting thought for LeBlanc. "I understand that Esko has reps throughout North America," comments LeBlanc. "It's nice that I don't have to work with someone who is far away. I feel like I have a local relationship with Esko."

    The Kongsberg V table has already come in handy. "The timeline with our largest retail client's most recent job was extremely tight and would have been difficult if done outside. Now that they have a significant in-house capability, the large project, created in Coroplast, was easy to complete. We have completed a couple runs of signs for a security company where we produced 100-150 square Coroplast signs. This would have been a big problem for us before. We ran them through the cutter and it saved a lot of time," raves LeBlanc. "We also needed to create a 3D letter sign for another customer. I really don't like hard and fast deadlines for a sign that will be used for years, but the client was making it for a specific event. We were able to meet the deadline while creating a very high-quality sign—something we would not have been able without the Kongsberg V table. It got us the order. In the past we would have turned it down."

    The Kongsberg V table has met every demanding job, cutting plexi and acrylic very well. LeBlanc particularly likes the clean edges on OVC plastic. Recently, as a test, they created a 3D piece where the router cut out a custom 1/4" shape within a larger shape, as if a sand blaster did it.

    The Kongsberg table is also making the sales force more productive. "Before, when my sales people tried to sell certain projects, they were unable to quote them easily. We had to send a job request to the subcontractor," recounts LeBlanc. "Now, with the Kongsberg table and our in-house capability, they can quote projects easily, like standees, or dimensional letter jobs. Our salespeople are more confident and are converting more orders."

    "In the history of our business, success has come through technology," concludes LeBlanc. "In the early years, there was thermal transfer printing, then inkjet printing. Now I see the Kongsberg table, and flatbed cutting, as a way of staying ahead of the competition by providing services unavailable from other businesses."
    (Esko Belgium)
     
    25.03.2015   The new Stahlfolder CH 56 folding machine from Heidelberg for short run digital and ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ...offset production

    -Stahlfolder CH 56 KT auto: the first ever automated 50x70cm cross-fold unit
    -Intelligent automation technology simplifies setup and minimizes job throughput times

    Following the successful launch of the Stahlfolder BH/CH series one year ago, Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG (Heidelberg) is adding a further folding model to its portfolio. The Stahlfolder CH 56 KT auto folding machine will be available worldwide from April 2015. The machine has been specially designed to enable customers to achieve the best possible folding results for flyers in 50 x70 format. Its major advantage is the especially easy-to-use, end-to-end intelligent automation. The Stahlfolder CH 56 KT auto uses the same user-friendly touchscreen controls that thousands of customers have become accustomed to over the years.

    Its intelligent automation achieves very short makeready times. The automated parallel folding unit with buckle plates and folding rollers is accompanied for the first time in this format by an automated cross-fold unit. The operator only needs to enter the new job on the touchscreen for the front edge stop in the cross-fold unit to automatically move into position. The buckle plate and folding rollers are set to the right format and grammage. This simplifies the operator’s work enormously when setting up small folding jobs in particular, as there is no need for any manual intervention.

    Customers will also value the speed with which the folding job is completed and the last sheet stacked on the pallet. In one hour, the new Stahlfolder CH 56 KT auto folding machine could easily complete five repeat folding jobs of 500 to 1,000 copies each. The machine will appeal to customers looking to produce short runs in B2 format cost-effectively and in the shortest possible time, while still ensuring added value and quality control as part of their own offset and/or digital production processes.

    The Stahlfolder CH 56 folding machine can be customized with various options and modules to meet the customer’s individual wishes, for example with two feeder types and 4 or 6 buckle plates in the parallel folding unit.
    (Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG)
     
    25.03.2015   Mitsubishi HiTec Paper to increase prices    ( Company news )

    Company news Due to the remarkable and steady rise in raw material costs, in particular for pulp and chemicals, the producer of coated specialty papers Mitsubishi HiTec Paper Europe GmbH announces a price increase of 7% for its product range. This price increase will be effective for deliveries from May 1st 2015 onwards.
    Our sales team will contact our customers to provide further information.
    (Mitsubishi HiTec Paper Europe GmbH)
     
    25.03.2015   2015 German Business Innovation Award Goes to ISRA VISION: 3D Robot Vision Wins    ( Company news )

    Company news ISRA VISION AG: Innovative 3D Machine Vision Product Family „Plug & Automate“ for Robot Automation Receives Award

    ISRA VISION AG (ISIN DE 0005488100), one of the world’s top companies for industrial image processing (Machine Vision) as well as globally leading in surface inspection of web materials and 3D machine vision
    applications, was awarded the German Business Innovation Prize 2015 in the category „Medium-sized companies“. The prize is under the patronage of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research as well as the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology and was given to ISRA for the innovative 3D sensor product line „Plug & Automate“, which is being used in three-dimensional robot automation. The award considers not only the level of innovation, but also the market opportunities, economic efficiencies, innovation management and sustainability of the business concept.

    On the occasion of the award ceremony in Frankfurt on March 21, 2015, the founder and chairperson of the Executive Board of ISRA VISION AG, Enis Ersü, said: „The Innovation Prize represents the outstanding performance of the ISRA team and fills all employees with pride. It is a very special acknowledgment for our work over the past 30 years in industrial image processing – in one of the most dynamic growth markets of our time.“ Ersü further underscored the strategic importance of innovations, particularly for the Federal Republic of
    Germany. He called on the government to continue its efforts in intensively promoting innovations as sustainable growth drivers, thereby strengthening the competitiveness of the German economy and not only secure, but also expand the technological lead of Germany.

    The 3D sensor product family „Plug & Automate“ for robot automation represents an innovative product approach by rendering the automation of production processes more efficient for the industry and, at the same time, offering maximum flexibility. The product portfolio integrates important technological unique selling propositions; in particular, no expert knowledge is required for the integration and the use. This innovative technology enables users to automate their production themselves – quickly and easily. ISRA‘s objective hereby
    remains: „Plug & Automate automates the automation!“

    As one of the innovation leader in the industrial image processing segment, research and development have the highest priority for ISRA. The continuous development of products and applications – to optimize the customer value as well as the costs – is an elementary part of ISRA‘s R&D strategy. Besides a strong international presence and a good competitive position in the relevant markets, this creates the prerequisite for sustainable and profitable future growth.
    (ISRA Vision AG)
     
    24.03.2015   Improved printability reduces unnecessary wastage    ( Company news )

    Company news In order to create competitive packaging, print quality needs to be sufficiently high and give a uniform appearance between different packages. This can be achieved without unnecessary wastage if the board material has similar properties and behaves as expected in the printing press, according to a new licentiate thesis from Vipp industrial graduate school at Karlstad University.

    Photo: Sofia Thorman

    Packaging is an important part of a product, and protects and preserves its contents. It should also provide information about the contents and invite potential buyers to make a purchase. If the board material contributes towards satisfactory print quality being achieved quickly and easily, it will be possible to use a greater proportion of all board that is manufactured and transported to printers, and less waste will therefore be generated.

    To ensure that board will work well during printing, its properties are checked when it is produced. This production control could become even better if the way in which the board will absorb printing ink is also monitored, in addition to ensuring that the surface is sufficiently smooth.

    In her licentiate studies carried out at Innventia, Sofia Thorman has developed a new method that can be used to check how evenly board absorbs liquid. Previously, there was no technique available to carry out this type of measurement.

    Sofia used the new method to study coated board material used for liquid packaging such as milk and juice cartons. The results suggest that an uneven absorption of printing ink can lead to images and text having a mottled appearance with an uneven structure. This could explain why printing problems sometimes arise despite the board surface being smooth.

    “The method looks promising in the studies we’ve carried out so far,” says Sofia. “I look forward to carrying out trials on a larger scale, in order to confirm that the technique can provide valuable information for board manufacturing at Swedish mills.”

    “These methods were used within the Tools to Predict Flexographic Print Quality for Packaging research cluster, which was concluded in December 2014, and will also be of benefit in the recently launched Boosting Packaging Performance programme,” adds Anita Teleman, Research Manager for Printing Solutions at Innventia.

    The work was carried out at Innventia within the Vipp (Values Created in Fiber Based Processes and Products) industrial graduate school at Karlstad University, with support from the KK Foundation. Sofia Thorman received her licentiate degree on 5 March 2015 with her thesis “Absorption non-uniformity characterisation and its impact on flexographic ink distribution of coated packaging boards”.
    (Innventia AB)
     
    24.03.2015   Esko to acquire MediaBeacon - Leading Digital Asset Management (DAM) company ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... broadens Esko solutions suite

    Esko, the leading global player in packaging production and supply chain solutions (www.esko.com), announced the acquisition of MediaBeacon Inc., a leader in Digital Asset Management (DAM) software solutions. MediaBeacon, based in Minneapolis, Minnesota (USA), brings an award-winning suite of DAM tools to market, primarily in the USA, through direct distribution and strategic OEM partnerships in various industries ranging from Retail and Consumer Packaged Goods to Media, Print and the public sector.

    “It is Esko’s strategy to digitize and integrate the entire packaging production workflow from design all the way to finished packs and displays in the store. With this acquisition, we further our transformation from a prepress solution provider to an end-to-end supplier in the packaging world“, explains Udo Panenka, Esko President. “Increasing pressure on error-free and timely production of brand expressions across a diverse media range like packaging, in-store displays and online and printed advertising, turns an integrated DAM solution into a cornerstone for both print service providers and brand owners. Adding MediaBeacon tools and expertise expands the Esko Software Suite and brings to market a production workflow solution that keeps pace with the challenges of organizations around the globe.”

    To facilitate a smooth integration process, Jason Bright, CEO and founder of MediaBeacon, will assume the role of Chief Technology Officer. Jason, a highly respected thought leader and industry visionary, will work closely with the Esko R&D teams to drive software integration efforts and to ensure ongoing development of the MediaBeacon DAM software. Brett Robertson will assume responsibilities over daily operations as the General Manager of MediaBeacon. Brett was previously the Director Global Product Marketing, Servo Motors with Kollmorgen.

    “The prospect of adding MediaBeacon’s development and go-to-market efforts into Esko’s global operations in packaging workflow is very exciting and provides us with a solid platform for growth,” comments Brett Robertson. “Esko’s expertise with packaging assets, including structural design and 3D virtual mockup technology, broadens the scope, depth and breadth of the integrated solution dramatically and will surely also excite our customers.”

    Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
    (Esko Belgium)
     
    24.03.2015   New faces at marks-3zet: Three industry experts strengthen marks-3zet sales and marketing team    ( Company news )

    Company news Picture: Carmelo Roberto: Carmelo Roberto, General Manager marks-3zet Srl

    marks-3zet, the specialist for waterless offset printing based in Mülheim an der Ruhr, Germany, is pleased to welcome Carmelo Roberto as a new team member for the Southern European market. As former Sales and Marketing Manager for the Italian company Metoda SpA, Mr. Roberto has many years of experience in the printing industry, particularly in waterless offset printing. At marks-3zet, he assumes the role of Sales Manager for Southern Europe and has also been appointed the new Managing Director of the Italian subsidiary marks-3zet Srl. Carmelo Roberto will be responsible for fostering operations on the waterless market, focussing on comprehensive, service-oriented customer care and various new R&D projects. He is fluent in Italian, Spanish, and English.

    In December 2014, Joerg Seeger took over as Head of Sales at marks-3zet GmbH & Co. KG. Mr. Seeger has been active in the printing industry for more than 20 years. He began his career with professional training in letterpress and flatbed printing, followed by university studies in engineering, after which he held a number of executive positions in sales and engineering both in Germany and abroad. At marks-3zet, his main focus will be on underpacking materials and the colour printing business.

    On 1 January 2015, Volker Schimanski, born in 1968, joined marks-3zet GmbH & Co. KG as Head of Sales & Marketing. A certified print technician and with a degree in printing engineering (UAS Wuppertal, Germany), Mr. Schimanski has more than 20 years of experience in senior positions throughout the printing industry. He will be in charge of further expanding the company’s strong position as a leading specialist in underpacking materials and waterless printing.
    (marks-3zet GmbH & Co. KG)
     
    24.03.2015   Weyerhaeuser Reports Fourth Quarter, Full Year Results    ( Company news )

    Company news -31 percent increase in fourth quarter earnings from continuing operations before special items compared with prior year
    -2014 included divestiture of homebuilding business, 32 percent increase in common dividend, and repurchase of over $200 million of common shares

    Weyerhaeuser Company (NYSE: WY) reported fourth quarter net earnings attributable to common shareholders of $166 million, or 31 cents per diluted share, on net sales of $1.8 billion. This compares with net earnings of $43 million, or 7 cents per diluted share, on net sales of $1.8 billion from continuing operations for the same period last year.

    Photo: Doyle Simons, president and chief executive officer

    Earnings for the fourth quarter of 2014 include net after-tax gains of $21 million from special items. Excluding these items, the company reported net earnings of $145 million, or 27 cents per diluted share. This compares with net earnings from continuing operations before special items of $111 million, or 19 cents per diluted share for the same period last year.

    For the full year 2014, Weyerhaeuser reported net earnings attributable to common shareholders of $1.8 billion, or $3.18 per diluted share, on net sales from continuing operations of $7.4 billion. This compares with net earnings of $540 million, or 95 cents per diluted share, on net sales from continuing operations of $7.3 billion for the same period last year.

    Full year 2014 includes after-tax earnings of $998 million from discontinued operations related to the divestiture of Weyerhaeuser Real Estate Company and $84 million from special items. Excluding these items, the company reported net earnings of $700 million, or $1.25 per diluted share. This compares with net earnings from continuing operations before special items of $572 million, or 99 cents per diluted share, for the full year 2013.

    "In 2014, we demonstrated our commitment to driving shareholder value,” said Doyle Simons, president and chief executive officer. “During the year, we divested our homebuilding business to become a focused forest products company, achieved our 2014 operational excellence targets and made significant progress on our multi-year initiatives, and improved earnings from continuing operations by more than 20 percent compared with 2013. In addition, we increased our dividend by 32 percent and completed nearly 30 percent of a newly authorized $700 million share repurchase program. For 2015, we remain relentlessly focused on driving operational excellence to fully capitalize on our improving markets and delivering value to our shareholders."
    (Weyerhaeuser Company)
     
    24.03.2015   Toscotec to supply two new tissue machines to Chinese producer Liuzhou Liangmianzhen ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ...Paper Product Co., Ltd

    Liuzhou Liangmianzhen Paper Product Co., Ltd. has placed an order with Toscotec for #2 MODULO-PLUS ES tissue lines, which will be installed at its production site in Liuzhou, Guangxi.

    Originally established in 1941 as a group of private soap enterprises, the LMZ Group was listed on the Shanghai Stock Exchange in 2004. It currently operates in 5 different areas: cosmetics, paper, fine chemicals, medicine and real estate.

    The two TMs are based on Toscotec ES concept. Especially interesting for Asian market, the Energy Saving solution is capable to guarantee, according to the configuration, a substantial reduction in energy consumption during the tissue drying process. The two MODULO-PLUS are designed for a design speed of 1500 m/min and will produce 65 tons/day of high-quality toilet and facial tissue from pre dried virgin pulp and Slush pulp produced by LMZ.

    The order includes the two crescent former machines, each equipped with a TT SYD-15FT (4572mm) and a double press configuration, a Milltech Steam Heated Hood, Toscotec stock preparation high efficiency equipment and the electrical and control systems. A TT WIND-M Tissue Slitter Rewinder, spare parts for the entire plant and a full service package complete the scope of supply.

    Start-up is scheduled for the second half of 2015.
    (Toscotec S.p.A.)
     
    23.03.2015   Plastic Crisis in the Oceans - BillerudKorsnäs contributes to finding solutions to ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... marine plastic pollution

    BillerudKorsnäs, the leading Swedish provider of renewable packaging materials and solutions, has launched a partnership with the French scientific research foundation Tara Expeditions. The partnership will concern scientific research on the consequences of plastic littering in the oceans.

    Eight million tonnes of plastic waste are deposited into the sea each year. This corresponds to 16 plastic bags per meter of the world’s total coast lines. These findings were recently published in the journal Science. There is, however, still very little research that shows how all this plastic affects the oceans, animals and people. In order to fill the gap, Tara Expeditions conducts scientific expeditions aimed at collecting and understanding how plastic affects the marine ecosystem.

    “Our goals with the results of this research are to inform the public that a change in behaviour is crucial. We also hope to influence decision-makers to regulate and reduce plastic littering in the oceans as well as to encourage industries to develop innovative alternatives to plastic. BillerudKorsnäs, with its renewable fiber based product range, proposes an alternative to plastic packaging, and is thus a relevant and suitable partner for us”, says Romain Troublé, secretary general, Tara Expeditions.

    BillerudKorsnäs challenges conventional packages for a sustainable future. The company’s notion is that smart packaging solutions made of paper and carton board reduce detrimental environmental impact and contribute to a sustainable future. In order to gain valuable knowledge and new insights, BillerudKorsnäs works closely with brand owners, packaging manufacturers and partners around the world.

    “BillerudKorsnäs has a lot to learn from Tara, lessons we can use in our product development. Both Tara and BillerudKorsnäs are constantly seeking new answers to sustainability challenges and want to drive a change towards a more sustainable future. We also share a vision of a future in which plastics in the ocean is an issue of the past”, says Henrik Essén, director of Communications and Sustainability, BillerudKorsnäs.

    The partnership will begin with BillerudKorsnäs’s participation at “Beyond Plastic Med”, an international conference which Tara is co-arranging with other organizations. BillerudKorsnäs will be speaking on the theme “Innovation: a solution that works for ecological transition?”

    “We want to communicate how our innovation agenda and our products can contribute to the solution of the plastic waste in ocean. Packages made of paper and carton board are of course not the entire solution, but can through correct use make a difference. The conference, which points to innovation as one possible solution to plastic littering, is therefore an excellent forum for us”, says Henrik Essén.
    (BillerudKorsnäs AB (publ))
     
    23.03.2015   WWF Statement on APP's Forest Conservation Policy and Rainforest Alliance ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ...Independent Evaluation

    Two years after Asia Pulp & Paper (APP) announced a new “forest conservation” policy, APP’s pledge to halt forest clearing has held, but its forests are still disappearing.

    A Rainforest Alliance audit released today confirmed the findings by WWF and local NGOs that APP is failing to stop deforestation and illegal activities in its concessions by other parties, even in areas already identified by the company as containing high conservation values and carbon stocks.

    “APP has halted its own forest clearing and embarked on a wide array of assessments in its concessions,” said Aditya Bayunanda, Forest Commodity Leader WWF-Indonesia. “But not much has changed on the ground - forests continue to disappear, peat soils continue to be drained and social conflicts remain unresolved. The company has even failed to protect forests they are legally required to conserve”.

    "No concrete plans on where forests will be restored or conserved, and with what financing"

    Progress is lacking on action to reduce the climate impacts of APP’s vast concessions on peat. The Rainforest Alliance audit confirmed that other than stopping new canal development APP has taken no action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions resulting from the draining of over a million hectares of peatland under company control.

    WWF is also very concerned with the lack of progress by the company to resolve hundreds of social conflicts. The findings of local NGOs were confirmed in the Rainforest Alliance audit and should send high alerts through APP headquarters.

    WWF had welcomed APP’s 2014 announcement to restore and conserve 1 million hectares of tropical ecosystems beyond legal requirements as the right measure to address the company legacy of deforestation of an estimated 2 million hectares of tropical forest.

    “WWF has participated in numerous stakeholder meetings and task force activities since the announcement,” said Bayunanda. “These discussions have resulted in very little progress. There are no concrete plans on where forests will be restored or conserved, and with what financing. Even in APP’s priority landscape, Bukit Tigapuluh, the company has yet to take promised steps to provide wildlife corridors and stop illegal loggers, poachers and encroachers from accessing the forest through its logging road“.

    WWF commends APP for having invited Rainforest Alliance to audit its progress, and urges APP to act quickly and decisively to address the audit findings. WWF will also carefully study the audit findings and advise APP customers accordingly.

    “After two years of assessments and planning, APP needs to shift its focus to action. Today, APP promised change and WWF will monitor its next steps to see how serious it is about saving forests,” said Rod Taylor, Director, Forest Program at WWF-International.

    “APP customers should be alert to the risk of doing business with a company that has not yet eliminated deforestation and peat carbon emissions from its wood supply areas ".
    (WWF World Wildlife Fund)
     
    23.03.2015   Q4 results reflect key decisions to position Catalyst for the future     ( Company news )

    Company news Catalyst Paper (TSX:CYT) announced earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) of $6.8 million in Q4 compared to $8.0 million in Q3.

    Catalyst reported a net loss, excluding specific items, of $10.4 million in Q4 compared to $10.8 million in Q3. Operating results were impacted by increased manufacturing expenses, including higher rates for electricity, as well as costs related to curtailments and acquisitions.

    “Our results reflect critical decisions to position the company effectively for the future,” said Joe Nemeth, Catalyst President & CEO. “In Q4, we incurred one-time costs and made strategic investments that will enable us to optimize our product mix and performance, while continuing to focus on cost, productivity, efficiency and customer service.”

    North American paper demand was down in the fourth quarter for all segments with the exception of lightweight coated and uncoated paper. Benchmark prices remained flat for specialty grades and declined for newsprint and pulp. Despite sluggish markets, sales revenues increased modestly in Q4 compared to Q3 due to the positive impact of a weaker Canadian dollar, higher average transaction prices for pulp, and increased sales volumes for newsprint, uncoated mechanical and lightweight coated paper.

    Results for the Year
    Adjusted EBITDA was $47.6 million in 2014 compared to $46.1 million in 2013. Excluding specific items, our net loss was $28.3 million in 2014 compared to $31.5 million in 2013. Free cash flow was negative $17.2 million compared to negative $21.4 million in 2013.

    These results understate the year-over-year improvement we achieved, as we incurred one-time costs of $3.1 million to complete the acquisition of the US assets and did not have the $4.3 million in EBITDA contribution from our interest in Powell River Energy Inc. that existed in 2013. After normalizing for these non-recurring items, adjusted EBITDA increased by $8.9 million compared to the prior year.

    “Where we applied a sharp focus on operational excellence, we made substantive progress,” said Joe Nemeth, Catalyst President & CEO. “As we look ahead to 2015, we expect continued improvement as we work diligently to realize the benefits of our US acquisition, revitalize our Powell River operations and consistently apply the operational excellence principles that have enabled our financial recovery.”

    Cost factors beyond the company’s control continued to challenge the competitiveness of the business. In 2014, manufacturing costs were higher mainly due to price increases in fibre, chemicals, steam fuel and electrical power, which represents a major cost for our energy-intensive business.

    A critical priority in 2014 was implementing initiatives to mitigate the increasing cost of hydroelectricity. The company took advantage of a new Power Smart Program extended to pulp producers that provides 75% of capital funding for equipment upgrades that more efficiently harness energy. Through its efforts to mitigate power usage, the company expects to realize funding potential of approximately $45 million through the Program.

    Liquidity
    Our total liquidity as of December 31, 2014 was $102.7 representing a $19.9 million decrease from the prior year. This decrease reflects negative free cash flow of $17.2 million generated for the year.

    Outlook
    A key focus for 2015 is the full integration of the Biron and Rumford mills. Our approach is to identify opportunities to optimize production, product mix and performance. We have recruited additional talent to enhance our sales capacity and capabilities, and to ensure we can continue to distinguish Catalyst as the industry’s leading provider of quality products and superior services to customers worldwide.

    Mitigation of increasing hydroelectricity rates remains a priority in 2015. We have launched a pilot program in concert with BC Hydro at all of our Canadian mills that financially rewards the company for shifting energy use within specific timeframes. We will explore all feasible opportunities to mitigate the impact of escalating rates, including another 6% increase planned by BC Hydro on April 1.

    We anticipate that specialty printing paper markets in North America will remain challenging with the continued evolution of digital media and the displacement of printed mediums. Our strategy within this market is to focus on lightweight niches in all printing and writing grades, and to increase sales of higher-value products, including coated free sheet and coated one side grades.
    (Catalyst Paper Corporation)
     
    23.03.2015   Miltenberg PM 7 impresses with efficient tissue production    ( Company news )

    Company news The PM 7 process line commissioned mid-November 2014 at the Miltenberg headquarters of Fripa Papierfabrik Albert Friedrich KG has achieved the production speed of 2,100 m/min, making it one of the most efficient tissue machines currently operating worldwide.

    The NipcoFlex T shoe press and EvoDry Y yankee cylinder enable high speeds at lower energy consumption. An increased dry content, which reduces the thermal energy requirement by up to 20%, is achieved downstream of the press section. The PM 7 produces super soft toilet tissue and kitchen paper in superlative qualities.

    “The success of our project is due to exemplary collaboration based on a spirit of partnership," explains Fripa’s Managing Director Andreas Noack and adds: “The PM 7’s innovative technology allows us to safeguard and further enhance our high quality standards.”

    The roots of Fripa Papierfabrik Albert Friedrich KG, a renowned manufacturer of high-quality tissue papers for the international market, go as far back as 1911. At its production site in Miltenberg, Fripa operates a total of three paper machines and several converting plants.
    (Voith Paper GmbH & Co KG)
     
    20.03.2015   Bobst Bielefeld showcases high-speed F&K 20SIX CS wide-web press at open house    ( Company news )

    Company news Picture: Fast change-over using the cylinder handling system

    On February 25 and 26, Bobst Bielefeld, Germany, held an open house with its focus on high speed and wide web width flexo printing. Following the approach taken at BOBST’s highly successful open house last October, the event was divided into a seminar session in the morning and a print demonstration in the afternoon. Visitors from fifteen countries around the world attended the event and got an update on the latest flexo printing and process related developments.

    The print demonstration utilized the flagship of the F&K 20SIX series of CI flexo presses, a “CS” model featuring a print width of 1650 mm (65''), a repeat of 1200 mm (47.2''), and a speed of 600 m/min (1970 ft/min). The extensive range of equipment onboard the press included smartGPS™, shaftless winders, a BOBST three-chip camera, a 100% inspection system, a special slitting device, and an auxiliary system for sleeve and cylinder handling.

    During the demonstration, two five-color jobs were run at 600 m/min, i.e. the maximum mechanical speed of the model showcased. The changeover of the print sleeves in between the two jobs was performed using the cylinder handling system, which gave visitors an idea of its fast and user-friendly handling of even large format printing hardware. For impression and register set-up, smartGPS™, BOBST’s unique off-press technology was used, so visitors witnessed a complete changeover - from the end of the first five-color job to saleable quality of the subsequent job - in less than 15 minutes.

    During the seminar session, Bill Duckham and Hermann Koch, Bobst Bielefeld Sales Directors, spoke about specific challenges on a press designed for high speed and wide width applications, and about technical solutions integrated into the F&K 20SIX to meet these challenges. Visitors heard that, most importantly, the specific technologies and measures that ensure consistently superior print quality throughout the process are related to: - mechanical rigidity of cylinders and bearings; high precision impression adjustment; ink transfer from the ink chamber to the substrate; and to guaranteed drying of ink on the substrate. Michael Schmidt from Siegwerk Druckfarben highlighted the topic of high speed printing from the perspective of an ink manufacturer, presenting practical examples, limitations, and potential for optimization.

    The second part of the seminar session was dedicated to plastic film as a packaging substrate. In his speech about the latest developments in extrusion, Sascha Skora, from Reifenhäuser Blown Film, presented typical problems converters are faced with - from pellet quality to reel/winding quality of the film material. Mr. Skora also updated the visitors on the latest quality inspection systems for ensuring superior film quality throughout the extrusion process. Last but not least, Dr. Carolin Struller, from Bobst Manchester, illustrated the company’s in-depth research on AlOx clear coating, from the way it is produced and its performance on various filmic substrates, through to its barrier retention with subsequent processes of printing and converting. AlOx coating is especially suitable for packaging where product visibility is required, including baked goods and microwaveable food.
    (Bobst Bielefeld GmbH)
     
    20.03.2015   Smurfit Kappa to enter higher growth Central American market through CYBSA acquisition    ( Company news )

    Company news Smurfit Kappa Group is pleased to announce that it has agreed to acquire Grupo CYBSA, a non-integrated corrugated, folding cartons and flexible packaging manufacturer with operations in El Salvador and Costa Rica.

    Photo: Gary McGann, Smurfit Kappa Group CEO

    CYBSA is a private company with approximately 1,000 employees and net assets at 31 December 2014 of approximately US$40 million. It operates five packaging plants located in the higher growth markets of El Salvador and Costa Rica, from which it services a growing customer base in its domestic markets, along with Guatemala and Honduras.

    Following the completion of over €160 million of acquisitions in the Americas in 2014, the acquisition of CYBSA will further enhance SKG’s presence in the region, providing us with an unrivalled packaging footprint across 12 countries from the southern United States to Argentina. Within these markets, the Group is uniquely placed as the largest pan-regional supplier to apply its increasingly global perspective and differentiated offering to create and drive value for our customers.

    The transaction, which will be immediately earnings accretive, is expected to close in the second quarter of 2015 subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approval. Based on 2014 EBITDA of almost US$13 million and expected synergies of approximately US$6 million, of which over US$4 million will be delivered in year one, the Group will complete the acquisition at a post synergies multiple of 5.5 times EBITDA.

    Gary McGann, Smurfit Kappa Group CEO, said: “We are very pleased to announce our agreement to acquire CYBSA and look forward to welcoming the excellent team from CYBSA into the Smurfit Kappa Group. The transaction reflects our continued commitment to increase our market presence in the Americas and will further enhance SKG’s capacity to provide innovative, insight-led, differentiated and value enhancing packaging solutions to both current and prospective customers throughout the Americas.”
    (Smurfit Kappa Group Headquarters plc)
     
    20.03.2015   Regina launches its new disposable paper towels    ( Company news )

    Company news Regina is boosting its line-up of products with a new, environmentally friendly product that promises advantages to the consumer.

    Similar products are already on sale. What is unique about the Regina paper towels is that they can be disposed of directly in the WC without clogging up the waste system. This is where this product differs from any other similar tissue.

    The so-called Temporary Wet Strength technology (TWS) adopted in the making of this paper towel makes it behave initially like any other strong paper towel, only to dissolve like toilet tissue when disposed of in the WC.

    This toilet tissue really is biodegradable.
    (Sofidel S.p.A.)
     
    20.03.2015   PAPER-ME 2015: New Investment Opportunities    ( Company news )

    Company news The 7th International Exhibition for Paper, Board, Tissue, Hygiene Products, Packaging & Printing

    Three Exhibitions covering the wide spectrum of Paper, Board, Tissue Paper, Hygiene Products, Packing, Packaging, Printing Industries.
    Date: October 22-24, 2015
    Venue: Cairo International Convention Center (CICC), Cairo, Egypt
    Halls: 1,2,3

    The growth rate of Pulp and Paper industry increased following the Egyptian Industrial reforms and industrial growth.
    PAPER-ME, TISSUE-ME, PACK2PACK annual growth is a positive indicator for the real dynamic activities in the Egyptian economy.
    Future industrial policies in Egypt will be focused on enabling the industrial sector to be the engine of growth through the expansion of exports.
    As forecasted by the International Monetary Fund, Egypt’s growth rate is projected to reach 3.8% in 2015.
    (Nile Trade Fairs)
     
    20.03.2015   Cham Paper Group achieves continued success    ( Company news )

    Company news - Pleasing revenue development thanks to good market conditions and successful products
    - Significant improvements in results, with EBIT rising from CHF 1.8 million to CHF 8.9 million
    - Investment to increase productivity and capacity at the Italian mills
    - Town planning study commissioned for the Papieri-Areal successfully concluded, master plan drawn up with framework for the project
    - Payment of a dividend of CHF 3.00 per share

    2014 was an important year for the future of the Cham Paper Group. The favourable economic environment and the strong market position of Cham Paper speciality papers led to a significant improvement in results, while considerable progress was made with the development of the Papieri real estate project.

    Growth of strategically important products and clear improvement in results
    The Cham Paper Group's revenue with speciality papers fell by 6.6% to CHF 216 million in 2014. The Group achieved growth in strategically important product groups. Sales of speciality papers from the two Italian mills rose by 2.4%, resulting in a 1.4% increase in revenue to CHF 187 million. In Switzerland, revenue from the sale of paper coated in Cham, particularly for the Digital Imaging product family, grew by 22% to CHF 29 million. Thanks to improved cost structures, the Group achieved an operating profit before restructuring costs of CHF 8.9 million and an EBIT margin of 4.1%. This represents a significant increase on the previous year (CHF 1.8 million, EBIT margin 0.8%), in which the challenging transformation phase was still ongoing.

    Technology transfer from Cham to Italy
    To further improve the competitiveness of our speciality papers, we decided to transfer additional technology from Switzerland to Italy in mid-2014. The associated investment of around CHF 20 million in the Italian mills (of which CHF 13 million in 2014) will lead to a further improvement in productivity and capacity in 2015. The relocation of the coating technology operations currently run in Cham for producing the digital imaging and barrier papers will take place in the first quarter of 2015. The associated restructuring costs for the redundancy scheme and write-downs on facilities in Cham reduced the operating profit for 2014 by CHF 3.1 million. The total net profit for the 2014 financial year came to CHF 1.8 million (previous year: CHF 0.4 million).

    Balance sheet streamlined and equity ratio increased to 53%
    The paper division reduced the level of outstanding customer debts and optimised its warehouses for raw materials and finished products, which led to a reduction of CHF 13 million in tied-up capital. Some of the funds freed up as a result of this were used to pay suppliers earlier, which allowed us to benefit from more favourable purchasing conditions. At the same time, liabilities to banks of CHF 14 million were repaid. The Group had cash reserves of CHF 38 million at the end of the year and is thus free from debt in net terms. The balance sheet total was reduced by around CHF 30 million, while the equity ratio is now a comfortable 52.8% (previous year: 46.3%).

    Town planning study concluded and master plan drawn up
    The future use of the Papieri-Areal in Cham is increasingly taking shape. An assessment panel consisting of experts, representatives of the community of Cham, the Cham Paper Group and various cantonal offices had unanimously recommended following up a project proposal from the study commissioning process at the end of June 2014. The authors of the project were then able to develop their draft into a master plan with a framework for the project. We are now working flat out on the legal groundwork together with the cantonal authorities involved. The electors of the municipality of Cham will vote on rezoning in 2016.

    Interim use intensified and head of the new real estate division appointed
    The buildings and the Papieri-Areal have already come to life, with a total of 73 interim tenants using the space that has become free until the renovation and new construction work begins. The revenue obtained from this will cover a large proportion of the project costs. Andreas Friederich has joined the Cham Paper Group and has been building up an internal real estate team since March 2015. On 1 July 2015 he will become the head of the new real estate division. This division will report directly to the Board of Directors' real estate committee, which consists of Philipp Buhofer and Niklaus Peter Nüesch, as well as external experts.

    New head of the paper division from 1 July 2015
    The Delegate of the Board, Urs Ziegler, who has successfully completed the extensive restructuring of the Cham Paper Group since the end of 2012, will reduce his workload as planned from summer 2015 onwards. Luis Mata, until now the Head of Finance at the Cham Paper Group, will take over the operational management of the paper division as COO from 1 July 2015.

    Proposals to the General Meeting of Shareholders
    The Board of Directors will propose to the General Meeting of Shareholders that an unchanged dividend of CHF 3.00 per share be paid (previous year: CHF 3.00), which will be exempt from capital gains tax for Swiss private investors. All five members of the Board of Directors will also be put forward for re-election.

    Demanding challenges, but strategically well-placed
    The Cham Paper Group is confident regarding the Group's further development. The Paper business unit is well positioned and will benefit from the strong performance characteristics of its products in all markets. At the present time, the strength of the US dollar against the euro is having a detrimental effect on the margin. The real estate division will develop into a strong second pillar for the Group over the next decade.
    (Cham Paper Group Schweiz AG)
     
    20.03.2015   Model Group: Positive sales and volume increase    ( Company news )

    Company news The Model Group recorded consolidated sales of CHF 709 million in the 2014 fiscal year. This represents an increase of 3% over the previous year. It made investments of CHF 60 million and employed an average of 3,251 people in 2014 (+ 3%). There were 984 employees in Switzerland at the end of 2014.

    The increase in consolidated sales would have corresponded to a 5.4% gain had currency exchange rates remained the same. The devaluation of two currencies, the Ukrainian hryvnia (-30%) and the Czech koruna (-7%), was particularly striking. Almost all of the group's plants contributed to the increase in sales, with the strongest growth coming from corrugated cardboard operations in the Czech Republic, Poland and Croatia.

    Investments
    Nearly half of the investment volume was channelled into Swiss plants. Measures to reduce costs per manufacturing unit included the construction of a central palletising station, the installation and commissioning of new robotic systems and gluing machines at Model AG in Weinfelden and at Model PrimePac AG in Au (SG), the replacement of a flat-bed die cutter in Moudon and various other automation projects. The long-term renewal programme for the paper machines continued with the channelling of investments into both Swiss paper factories.
    The Model Group is growing faster in Poland and the Czech Republic than the market. Investments were made to increase capacity accordingly.

    Outlook – Switzerland to become a laboratory
    The strong franc is shrinking domestic market production. While this will result in strong purchasing power abroad, it is also causing prices to fall. In order to maintain sales in a shrinking market, Model will make significant investments in innovation and higher productivity, effectively turning Switzerland into a laboratory for the European Model Group.
    (Model AG)
     
    20.03.2015   Mercer International Inc. Reports Strong 2014 Fourth Quarter and Year End Results    ( Company news )

    Company news Mercer International Inc. (Nasdaq: MERC, TSX: MRI.U) today reported strong results for the fourth quarter and year ended December 31, 2014. Operating EBITDA in the fourth quarter of 2014 increased to $71.3 million from $27.2 million in the fourth quarter of 2013 and $67.6 million in the prior quarter of 2014. For 2014, Operating EBITDA increased markedly to $239.8 million from $110.3 million for 2013.

    For the fourth quarter of 2014, we had net income of $3.2 million, or $0.05 per basic and diluted share, after giving effect to a loss of $28.5 million, or $0.44 per basic and diluted share, on the payout and settlement of our old 2017 9.5% senior notes and Stendal bank credit facilities in connection with our refinancing effected in November 2014, compared to net loss of $9.8 million, or $0.18 per basic and diluted share, in the fourth quarter of 2013. For 2014, net income improved to $113.2 million, or $1.82 per basic share and $1.81 per diluted share, from a net loss of $26.4 million, or $0.47 per basic and diluted share, in 2013.
    Total revenues in 2014 increased by approximately 8% to $1,175.1 million from $1,088.4 million in 2013, primarily due to higher pulp revenues and higher energy and chemical revenues.
    Pulp revenues in 2014 increased by approximately 8% to $1,073.6 million from $996.2 million in 2013, due to higher pulp price realizations and higher sales volumes.
    Energy and chemical revenues increased by approximately 10% to $101.5 million in 2014 from $92.2 million in 2013, primarily because of record energy sales volumes resulting from Project Blue Mill coming online at our Stendal mill at the end of 2013.

    President's Comments
    Mr. Jimmy S.H. Lee, President and Chairman, stated: "2014 was a transformative year for us as:
    -We recapitalized our Stendal mill, acquired substantially all of the prior minority shareholder's interest and certain other rights to acquire all of the economic interest in our largest mill and eliminate the minority interest;

    -We paid out and discharged our old 2017 9.5% senior notes and the Stendal bank credit facilities aggregating $835 million, through the issuance of new 2019 7.0% and 2022 7.75% senior notes aggregating $650 million, cash on hand and borrowings under our revolving credit facilities, established a new €75 million revolving credit facility for Stendal and extended the maturity of our Celgar revolving credit facility to 2019 and reduced its borrowing cost (the "Refinancing");

    -We reduced our debt by over $290 million, increased our total equity by over $90 million and as a result have a much improved balance sheet;

    We significantly increased our financial and operational flexibility and simplified our structure by eliminating restrictive covenants within our old Stendal bank credit facilities, reducing our debt, extending the maturity of our long-term debt, enhancing the terms of our revolving credit facilities and eliminating our 'restricted group' structure;

    -We had record pulp production, pulp sales volumes and energy sales volumes; and

    -Through the foregoing, we better positioned ourselves to achieve our overall goals to enhance our business and value for our stakeholders."

    Mr. Lee continued: "For the fourth quarter of 2014, our Operating EBITDA increased by approximately 162% to $71.3 million from $27.2 million in the same quarter of 2013, primarily as a result of the strengthening of the U.S. dollar relative to the Canadian dollar and the Euro, lower per unit fiber costs and lower scheduled maintenance downtime. Compared to the third quarter of 2014, our Operating EBITDA in the fourth quarter of 2014 increased by approximately 5% from $67.6 million, primarily as a result of the strengthening of the U.S. dollar.

    In 2014, Operating EBITDA increased by 117% to $239.8 million from $110.3 million in 2013, primarily as a result of higher pulp prices, lower per unit fiber costs, the strengthening of the U.S. dollar versus the Euro and Canadian dollar and higher energy sales volumes."

    Mr. Lee added: "Our mills generally performed well in the fourth quarter and throughout 2014. In 2014, we achieved a new pulp production record, led by a record production year at our Stendal mill and a near record year at our Rosenthal mill. In the current quarter, pulp sales volumes increased by 1% from the same period of 2013 but declined by 7%, compared to the third quarter of 2014 due to year-end shipping limitations. In 2014, we had record pulp sales volumes which increased by 3% over 2013."

    Mr. Lee continued: "In the current quarter, energy production increased by 8%, compared to the same period of 2013. In addition, our Rosenthal mill's new tall oil plant was completed on time and budget at the end of the fourth quarter of 2014 and will contribute to our by-product revenues."

    Mr. Lee stated: "List pulp prices were essentially flat in the fourth quarter of 2014 due to steady demand in Europe and China. At the end of 2014, list pulp prices in Europe were approximately $935 per ADMT, while list prices in North America and China were approximately $1,020 and $700 per ADMT, respectively. At year end, world producer inventories of NBSK pulp were at about 31 days' supply. We expect steady NBSK demand, driven by customer inventories at normal to low levels and new tissue machines coming online in 2015."

    Mr. Lee continued: "Overall, per unit fiber costs were approximately 14% lower in the fourth quarter of 2014, compared to the last quarter of 2013, as a result of lower per unit costs in our German fiber supply markets and the strengthening of the U.S. dollar versus the Euro and the Canadian dollar. Fourth quarter 2014 per unit fiber costs were down 1% from the prior quarter as the strengthening of the U.S. dollar offset an increase in per unit costs. We currently expect our overall per unit fiber costs to be generally flat for the next quarter of 2015, largely as a result of the continuing strengthening of the U.S. dollar versus the Euro and Canadian dollar, offsetting small expected per unit cost increases."

    Mr. Lee concluded: "As our operating costs are primarily incurred in Euros and Canadian dollars and our principal product, NBSK pulp, is quoted in U.S. dollars, our business and operating margins materially benefit from the current strengthening of the U.S. dollar. Our energy and chemical sales are made in local currencies and as a result decline in U.S. dollar terms when the U.S. dollar strengthens. Going forward, while we will continue to benefit from a stronger U.S. dollar, it will be partially offset as in 2015 the rapid strengthening of the U.S. dollar has put downward pressure on pulp prices as a stronger U.S. dollar increases costs to our European and Asian customers."
    (Mercer International Inc.)
     
    20.03.2015   Valmet to supply key technology to Metsä Fibre's Äänekoski bioproduct mill project    ( Company news )

    Company news Valmet and Metsä Fibre have signed a letter of intent according to which Valmet will deliver key technology to Metsä Fibre's planned Äänekoski bioproduct mill in Finland. The letter of intent covers recovery boiler, pulp drying line, gasification plant, and lime kiln deliveries. The delivery also includes a mill wide Metso DNA automation system.

    Photo: Bertel Karlstedt, Pulp and Energy Business Line President from Valmet

    The contract is subject to Metsä Fibre's investment decision. Metsä Fibre has announced that if the prerequisites for the investment are met, the decision on the construction of the bioproduct mill will be made during this spring, meaning that production at the new mill would begin in 2017.
    The estimated value of Valmet's anticipated delivery, which includes only the core equipment supplied by Valmet, is about EUR 125-150 million.
    "This technology delivery for the Metsä Fibre Äänekoski project is a good sign of Valmet's competiveness and technological innovativeness. We are delighted to be able to continue our good and long cooperation with Metsä Group and Metsä Fibre," says Pasi Laine, President and CEO of Valmet.

    Important employment impact
    Valmet's anticipated delivery for Metsä Fibre's planned bioproduct mill will have an important employment impact on Valmet and its subcontractors. The employment impact of Valmet's project delivery is expected to be around 250 man years, out of which half in Finland.
    "In projects like Äänekoski, we can utilize our know-how in pulp and bioproduct technology. In addition to bringing work to us our delivery also employs many other suppliers in the Nordics and Europe for engineering, manufacturing and installation. This delivery would employ Valmet employees especially in Finland, in the cities of Tampere, Ulvila, Jyväskylä and Raisio," says Bertel Karlstedt, Pulp and Energy Business Line President from Valmet.

    Details about Valmet's technology delivery to Metsä Fibre Äänekoski project
    If materialized, the approximately EUR 1.1 billion bioproduct mill planned by Metsä Fibre would be the largest ever investment in the forest industry in Finland. The mill would have an annual pulp production capacity of 1.3 million tonnes.
    Valmet's delivery would include engineering, procurement, supply and construction management of a recovery boiler, a pulp drying line, a lime kiln and a gasification plant.
    The planned recovery boiler has a capacity of 7,200 TDS/d (tonnes dry solids a day). The planned pulp drying line will have a trimmed width of 8.25 meters and a capacity of 2,700 Adt/d (air dry tonnes a day). The planned lime kiln has a capacity of 1,200 t/d and will be operated by renewable fuel provided by 87 MW product gas capacity biomass gasification plant. The gasification plant dries bark and gasifies it to product gas.
    (Valmet Corporation)
     
    19.03.2015   X-Rite to Demonstrate Color Control at Gulf Print and Pack    ( Company news )

    Company news Company to Highlight Range of Solutions that give Printers End-to-End Color Management

    X-Rite Inc. and its wholly owned subsidiary Pantone LLC, announced they are exhibiting at Gulf Print and Pack, the leading event for commercial and package printers in the Middle East and North Africa. X-Rite will be exhibiting in the booth of their Middle East Partner, Phoenix Technologies (Booth #A20). Gulf Print and Pack is taking place April 13 - 16 at the Dubai World Trade Centre, Dubai UAE.

    At the event, X-Rite will be collaborating with Mr. Afsal Kottal, Business Director at Phoenix Technologies, to showcase X-Rite’s range of market leading hardware and software solutions developed to maximize end-to-end color control in the print production process. This high level of color control enables commercial and package printers to deliver maximum color consistency to their clients while achieving a higher level of efficiency in their operations.

    At Gulf Print and Pack, X-Rite Pantone will be showing:

    - eXact and eXact Scan – This next generation in handheld color measurement enables printers and packaging converters to truly understand, control, manage and communicate color, avoiding unwanted reprint and rework.

    - i1 Professional Color Management Solutions – A collection of color profiling tools that offer an unprecedented level of flexibility to address the needs of digital imaging workflows. It features a number of unique color management capabilities, giving users power and control in creating professional quality profiles.

    - The Ci64 Ci6x Series Portable Spectrophotometers – The Ci6x family of handheld spectrophotometers — Ci60, Ci62, Ci64 & Ci64UV — enables printers to manage color in all stages of production. These spectrophotometers ensure printers are confident in their color data, regardless of where or when the measurements are collected.

    Simone Viscomi, X-Rite Sales Director, says, “Printers everywhere are under pressure to deliver exceptional work while also controlling costs. X-Rite’s color management solutions help them to succeed at both goals. Rework and customer rejects are greatly reduced because color is ensured at each step of the process. Best of all, the customer receives the color quality they expected. We look forward to joining our partners Phoenix Technologies at the show, and to helping printers in the Gulf region succeed.”
     
    19.03.2015   MB-System 438 - Intelligent input channel for conventional inserting systems    ( Company news )

    Company news The MB-System 438 has been designed for reading, accumulating and folding personalized mail and stands out for its compact design and simple operation. The documents are either fed by means of a shingling pre-loader or a bulk loader with high stacking capacity.

    The data are matched with a read system that is integrated in the suction feeder. All standard optical codes such as OCR- or OMR, bar code or Datamatrix code can be handled. Before folding, the accumulator assembles a defined, variable number of sheets, which has been determined by means of code reading or a batch counter. The accumulator distinguishes itself through its reliable processing of different numbers of sheets with the same roller setting. It is possible to replenish the paper stack from above or from below.

    The MB-System 438 utilizes the successful fold unit multimaster 38 with four fold plates to ensure a high flexibility when choosing the type of fold. Due to its modular design and wide range of accessories, the fold unit can be adapted to individual requirements. The timed conveyor after the fold unit ensures reliable loading of a downstream inserting system By means of an open interface the MB-System 438 can be connected to inserting systems from other manufacturers for data transmission.
    (MB Bäuerle GmbH)
     
    19.03.2015   CelluForce: SDTC Funds Development of Oil and Gas Applications from Forest Biomass    ( Company news )

    Company news CelluForce welcomes the announcement by Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC) of a contribution of $4.0 million to optimize the extraction process of Nanocrystaline Cellulose (NCC) from dry wood pulp and develop applications for its use in the oil and gas sector. The announcement was made in Quebec City by the Honourable Greg Rickford, Minister of Natural Resources and Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario.

    Photo: René Goguen, Acting President of CelluForce Inc.

    NCC is a fundamental building block of trees that can be extracted from the forest biomass and has unique properties that offer a wide range of potential applications.
    Measured in units as small as nanometres, these tiny structures have strength properties comparable to steel and will have uses in a variety of industrial sectors.
    In particular, NCC is touted as having the potential to significantly advance the oil and gas industry.
    “Our Government is positioning Canada as a global leader in the clean technology sector by supporting innovative projects aimed at growing our economy while contributing to a cleaner environment,” said the Honourable Greg Rickford, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources. “
    By developing our resources responsibly, exploring next-generation transportation and advancing clean energy technology, the projects announced will create jobs and improve innovation opportunities in Quebec and across Canada.”
    “World-class research led to the development of this ground breaking extraction process and placed Canada at the leading edge of NCC research”, stated René Goguen, Acting President of CelluForce Inc. “This announcement by SDTC sets the stage for the pre-commercial
    development of applications that will not only support Canada’s forest sector but also the oil and gas sector, both of which are important drivers of the Canadian economy.”
    This project will further improve and optimize the process developed by CelluForce to extract nanocrystalline cellulose (CelluForce NCC™) from dry wood pulp. In addition to improving the extraction process, this project will investigate additional applications for the oil- and
    - gas industry such as cementing using this renewable forestry resource.
    (CelluForce)
     
    19.03.2015   The 4th China (Guangzhou) International Biomass Energy Exhibition 2015    ( Company news )

    Company news Date: August 18th-20th, 2015
    Venue: China Import & Export Fair Pazhou Complex (Area B)

    Guangzhou International Biomass Energy Exhibition (CNIBEE), a theme exhibition of China (Guangzhou) International New Energy Industry Expo, has gained government support and drawn public attention since the very beginning. It respectively attracted nearly 70 and 119 exhibitors in 2012 and 2013, and in 2014 the exhibitors reached the highest record with 10,000 square meters of exhibition area. At present, CNIBEE has been developed into Asia’s most professional and influential platform for promotion and trading.

    With the concerted efforts of government, representatives from different fields, media and organizing committee, Guangzhou International Biomass Energy Exhibition 2014 (CNIBEE 2014)was successfully held at China Import & Export Fair Pazhou Complex. The exhibition attracted more than 140 exhibitors and over 17,000 purchasers and has received close attention and broadcast from more than 300 media both at home and abroad, reached a new high.

    Covering an area of 12000 square meters, CNIBEE2015 will occupy larger exhibition space, and make greater efforts in cooperation with various media for publicity. It is estimated that about 260 exhibitors and nearly 30,000 professional visitors will participate in this unprecedented event. CNIBEE not only leads China’s biomass energy industry, but also creates a global trading platform for this industry.
      
    Let us look forward to CNIBEE 2015. Creating a new miracle in biomass industry together!
    (Guangzhou Grandeur Exhibition Services Co.,Ltd)
     
    19.03.2015   FILTECH 2015 – The story of growth continues    ( Company news )

    Company news The world of filtration and separation came to Cologne for FILTECH 2015 from 24-26 February. During these three days, over 12,000 participants from 76 countries visited the leading filtration and separation (F&S) event to catch up on innovations and equipment as well as related cutting-edge products and services displayed at the show. The reported number of contacts and the deals made at FILTECH 2015 clearly marked a willingness to invest and reflected the positive market development in the F&S sector. The show featured 320 exhibitors and was accompanied by a 3-day conference that attracted close to 500 experts and all those interested in the latest F&S research from around the globe.

    With an increase of exhibitors by 15% and total participants by 30%, FILTECH reaffirms its claim to be the largest Filtration Show world-wide. FILTECH also successfully extended its range and featured many closely associated industries, among these were adhesive applications, plasma treatment technologies, cutting, ultrasonic welding and sewing innovations as well as special machinery e.g. for additive manufacturing.

    52% of the visitors travelled to Cologne from outside Germany to learn what’s new in the market, making FILTECH an intercultural experience. (Western Europe 30,4%, Asia 7,6%, Eastern Europe 7,3%, North/South America 4,3, Middle East 1,9%). The experts came from 76 nations and all continents – they even travelled to Cologne from Kazastan, Jordan, Kenya and Quatar. A substantial increase was registered in the number of trade visitors from Turkey, Poland, Italy, USA, France, Israel, Japan and India.

    Exhibitors reported that visitors to FILTECH 2015, showed an extremely high willingness to invest. Exhibitors particularly highlighted the the even wider international spread of visitors (52% foreign visitors of which 32,1% came from overseas) and their great specialist expertise plus the fact that an extraordinary high number of top managers (36% top executives) travelled to FILTECH 2015.

    For many years now, FILTECH is an indispensible trade Show for catching up on newest products and developments, cultivating contacts and generating business. Once more, these expectations were fulfilled - exhibitors, delegates and organizers are highly satisfied with the outcome of the event.

    Next FILTECH will be held 11.-13. October 2016 again in Cologne.
    (Filtech Exhibitions Germany)
     
    18.03.2015   Parajett Chooses Ricoh Pro™ VC60000 next generation continuous ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... feed inkjet platform to shape future

    Picture: From left to right: Peter Williams - Executive Vice President Production Printing Business Group Ricoh Europe, Yasuhiko Hosoe - Corporate Associate Vice President, General Manager Business Strategy Center Production Printing Business Division, Anders Persson - CEO Parajett, Tommy Segelberg - Director Printing Business Group Nordic Operations

    Parajett, one of the largest printers in Scandinavia, based in Sweden,is yet another print service provider to order the new Ricoh Pro™ VC60000 continuous feed production inkjet.

    Parajett, located in Landskrona, Sweden, an IT specialist and provider of direct response marketing promotional production for commercial clients, has also ordered a Ricoh ProTM C9110.

    It is often at the forefront of market evolution. Keen to further enhance its expertise in the print production market, AndersPersson, CEO of Parajett, recognised the potential offered by the Ricoh Pro VC60000. He was also confident that it would deliver the quality and performance expected and adoption would be smooth thanks to many of its market leading features.

    "Parajett has seen the future of graphic arts production,” He says: “And we are investing in it. We are confident that Ricoh's Pro VC 60000 will meet all our demands, for a versatile production platform, delivering outstanding print quality, that can adapt and grow with Parajett. This is why we placed this order with Ricoh that initially comprises one duplex system line.”

    Parajett uses both offset and digital technologies. Mr Perssoncontinues: “Right from the beginning our focus was on unique and personalised documents. Today we produce individual offers or information to each receiver and the Ricoh Pro VC60000 will help us continue to offer that high quality service.”

    “The versatile colour Ricoh Pro VC60000 was chosen by Parajett for its print quality and its ability to deliver a strong return on investment,” says Tommy Segelberg, Ricoh PPBG, Director Nordic Operations.

    “Also the fact it will allow Parajett to print with ink rather than toner and on a wider range of stock, particularly heavier grammages, will enable the business to expand its service capabilities,” continues Mr Segelberg.

    It is powered by the TotalFlow Print Server R600A, Ricoh’s own Digital Front End, developed to meet the needs of demanding graphic arts environments and applications. With Ricoh-developed long-lasting print heads and high viscosity pigment inks, it achieves a physical resolution of up to 1200x1200 dpi with dynamic variable drop size within each pixel to provide significant additional perceived print quality. It can run at nearly 100,000 A4 images per hour and provides support for uncoated, coated offset, digital, treated and recycled papers.

    Parajett’s investment also includes an undercoat unit to enable it to print on a broad variety of media, including offset coated stocks; a protector coat unit to deliver durable “scratch & scuff resistance” on coated paper; and a hot air knife dryer that ensures that ink dries quickly, in a power-efficient manner.

    The Ricoh Pro C9110 durable high volume digital colour press is the fastest press in is class with a production speed of 130ppm. It has a duty cycle of 1.75 million coupled with the ability to print on textured substrates and media up to 400 gsm, including textured stocks, specialty media such as super-gloss, magnet, metallic, transparent or synthetic, at full rated speed. Its new toner delivers a larger colour gamut and it can offer a 700mm print length for banners, a wide range of finishing options and the ability to integrate third-party options. The press uses VCSEL technology to produce 1200×4800 dpi output.

    The Ricoh Pro VC60000 will receive its first public showing at Hunkeler Innovationdays, 23-26 February, Lucerne, Switzerland.
    (Ricoh Europe PLC)
     
    18.03.2015   Vacon's AC drives helped save 24 hours of global electricity production in 2014     ( Company news )

    Company news Global AC drives manufacturer Vacon estimates that its products helped save approximately 62 TWh of energy in 2014. Also, the amount of energy produced last year from renewable energy sources with Vacon's AC drives was approximately 25 TWh.

    Photo: Vesa Laisi, Vacon's President and CEO

    About 62 TWh (55 TWh in 2013) of electrical energy was saved last year with the help of Vacon AC drives. This corresponds to the amount of energy produced by approximately eleven 700-MW nuclear power reactors in a year, or the annual electricity consumption of approximately 13.8 million households in Europe. This also corresponds to approximately 24 hours of the world's annual electrical energy generation1.
    In addition, in 2014, the amount of energy produced with the help of Vacon's AC drives from renewable energy sources was approximately 25 TWh (22 TWh in 2013). This corresponds to the annual electricity consumption of approximately 5.5 million households in Europe, or approximately 9.5 hours of the world's entire annual electrical energy generation1.
    An AC drive adjusts the speed of an electric motor according to the real process need, which typically reduces energy consumption by 20-50%. According to studies, the payback time of AC drives has continuously shortened. For example, in pump and fan applications the payback time can even be less than one year. In addition, AC drives technology can also be used for power conversion in renewable energy applications.
    "Vacon has delivered AC drives since 1995. From the technological perspective, AC drives will be more energy efficient and offer better performance in the future. Competing or substitute technical solutions do not exist for AC drives and are not within sight," says Vesa Laisi, Vacon's President and CEO.
    (Vacon Plc)
     
    18.03.2015   X-Rite showcases the new Ci7x00 Spectrophotometer at the European Coatings SHOW 2015    ( Company news )

    Company news New Ci7x00 Spectrophotometer joins other solutions that ensure color consistency throughout the supply chain

    X-Rite Inc. and its wholly owned subsidiary Pantone LLC, announced they are exhibiting at the European Coatings SHOW taking place 21 April - 23 April, 2015 in Nuremberg, Germany. From their stand in Hall 5, 5-448, X-Rite Pantone will be highlighting their new Ci7600/7800Spectrophotometers, the next generation benchtop spectrophotometers that keeps pace with industry demands by ensuring color quality and accuracy across the supply chain.

    Increasingly, paint is manufactured and mixed for distribution on a global basis. This global distribution also comes at a time when the demand for custom color is also increasing. To ensure the quality of these colors throughout the supply chain, paint manufactures have relied on benchtop spectrophotometers. But older spectrophotometers can be difficult to configure, and many have become contaminated with dust or paint. The operator is often unaware of these issues, resulting inconsistencies along the supply chain.

    To solve this challenge, X-Rite has introduced the Ci7x00 benchtop Spectrophotometer Series. When used in conjunction with other X-Rite solutions, the Ci7x00 gives paint manufactures an automated, software-driven set-up that assures consistent configuration across all locations in the global supply chain. The Ci7600/7800 spectrophotometers not only measure color quality, they also measure important details on the condition of the devices and the environment at the time of measurement. This critical information is provided in an audit trail that gives paint manufactures a level of quality assurance that was not previously available to them.

    In addition to the Ci7x00 Series, X-Rite will also be showing their range of color measurement instruments that let paint manufacturers ensure their specifications and tolerances are met the first time, and every time. These include:

    • The MA9X Multi-Angle Instrument family of hand-held spectrophotometers. These instruments give users the ability to easily, accurately, and consistently measure traditional and special effect paints and coatings, including the multi-angle spectrophotometer MA98 that measures coatings with special effects. This is the only device that meets the ASTM Standard E2539 for the measurement of interference pigments.

    • The Color Viewing Booth QC Spectra Light, which offers more standardized light sources than any other visual quality control solution. Also featured will be the compact light cabin Judge II. This compact visual color evaluation system provides the closest fluorescent daylight simulation available.

    • NetProfiler 3 is the software solution that verifies, optimizes, and certifies handheld and benchtop spectrophotometers used in the supply chain at locations around the world.

    • The spectrocolorimeter RM200QC, which compares colors of laboratory samples or coated surfaces with reference standards. This instrument can also create reports that can be transmitted to the other partners in the supply chain.

    • The noncontact benchtop VS450, which measures color and gloss measurements on dry and wet samples.

    • Color iMatch, the intelligent software used for the formulation of paints. Color iMatch enables quick, accurate color analysis to optimize each recipe for cost and color accuracy.

    In addition, PANTONE® Color Trends and libraries will also be showcased, along with variety of special licensing arrangements designed for the paints and coatings industry.

    Francesco Tomasello, Vice President of European Sales for X-Rite Pantone, “The industry continues to grow and adapt to the challenges of a global market place. Our new Ci7600/7800 spectrophotometers are an example of how X-Rite Pantone’s solutions keep pace with this trend.

    They provide users with an updated solution that not only ensures the accuracy of the color, but also ensure the accuracy of the instruments that are measuring the color. We look forward to showing users their capabilities, along with our other powerful color quality solutions at the European Coatings SHOW.”
    (X-Rite Europe GmbH)
     
    18.03.2015   Seamless counterfeit protection for mechanical and plant engineering with SECUTAG    ( Company news )

    Company news 3S Simons Security Systems GmbH at Hannover Messe 2015

    3S Simons Security Systems GmbH will be presenting its wide range of industry solutions relating to the counterfeit protection system SECUTAG at this year's Hannover Messe. Direct product protection with SECUPRODUCT, which can be easily and cost-effectively integrated with other systems, is a central focus of 3S at the world's biggest industrial trade show. Another key area is the combination of traceability and counterfeit protection. Therefore, SECUDATA combines the logistic advantages of different traceability codes and counterfeit protection provided by micro colour codes. Moreover, 3S will be showcasing a wide range of printing solutions, including security labels, closures (originality and tamper-proof protection), labels and stickers for different applications. In cooperation with ten technology providers of VDMA's Working Group 'Product and Know-How Protection', 3S will show a demonstrator for the packaging of spare parts and components which visualises proof of authenticity, online verification and traceability. The expert for legally binding counterfeit protection will be presenting its wide range of products and solutions at Hannover Messe, in hall 8, stand no. D08, from 13 - 17 April 2015.

    Joint demonstrator: Product Protection for Industry 4.0
    Plagiarism poses an ever-growing risk to industry and trade. Counterfeit products do not only endanger the safety of employees and customers, but they also might result in product liability claims and court proceedings - the outcome of which is often uncertain to the companies affected. This is why 3S and 10 members of the Working Group 'Product and Know-How Protection' will present a joint demonstrator for spare parts and components packaging in Hannover. Visitors can see and experience how a product is coded individually and equipped with security features and how its packaging is sealed. The combination of tracking and anti-counterfeiting makes sure that each product can be tracked at any time, while protecting it on its way to the customer. This approach shows that effective protective measures can keep counterfeit products from entering the production and logistics chains. The result: comprehensive product protection for Industry 4.0. Such a protection strategy will not only reduce control costs along the supply chain, but it will also strengthen the corporate image of brand manufacturers as guarantors for premium quality products because the use of the counterfeit protection system can be communicated to the public. The demonstrator can be seen in hall 8, stand D08 (joint stand of the VDMA's Working Group 'Products and Know-How Protection').

    Economic damage caused by product piracy
    Product piracy causes immense damage to the economy as a whole. More than 70 percent of German engineering firms are affected by product piracy, their economic losses amount to 7.9 billion a year. The People's Republic of China is the unchallenged Number 1 among the manufacturing countries, followed by plagiarism from Germany (23 percent). However, the risks to consumers should also be taken into account, because counterfeit products can pose a significant public health threat. Consumers are thus confronted with windscreens of inferior quality, faulty motor vehicle steering systems, drugs without active ingredients and hazardous chemical substances in textiles, cosmetics and toys. "Counterfeit protection is consumer protection. Given the dangers arising from plagiarism, the consumer should be able to unambiguously identify the original product, in particular if it affects people's health or lives," says Rolf Simons, founder and CEO of 3S.

    Direct product protection with SECUPRODUCT
    In mechanical and plant engineering, 3S' industry solution SECUPRODUCT provides the legally binding proof of identity for individual parts such as aggregates, compressors or ball bearings, as well as for spare parts and precision tools. In the automotive and aircraft industry it helps to protect products from component suppliers, such as brake pads and filters, against counterfeiting. SECUPRODUCT can be meticulously and precisely applied onto nearly all solid matters, among which metals, synthetics, paper-products, glass, alloys and textile fabrics. The product's authenticity can be checked by means of a standard pen microscope with 100x magnification. This means costly investments in skilled labour and technical equipment as well as time-consuming verification procedures are no longer required. The system is quickly integrated into all production processes; costly changes are not necessary - a very important consideration because even in the field of counterfeit protection it is essential that expenses and costs remain at manageable levels.

    Counterfeit-proof traceability with SECUDATA
    SECUDATA combines the logistic advantages of traceability systems (e.g. data matrix and RFID) and counterfeit protection by means of micro colour codes. Both codes are applied onto the product, its primary or secondary packaging, labels and closures. Thanks to the micro colour code both the traceability code and the product are protected against counterfeiting in a manner that cannot be legally contested. First, the traceability code is checked in databases. But only by checking the micro colour codes, authenticity of the traceability codes and the product are proven beyond doubt. This way, SECUDATA ensures seamless security along the entire supply chain, from suppliers via those involved in production, all the way to the retailers and end-customers.
    OTF security label protects against tampering and counterfeiting
    Further exhibition highlights includes 3S' printing solutions. The OTF security label ensures that online terminals used for cashless payment transactions, for example, are protected against tampering and unauthorised access. The advantage of this closure is that it is based on the Secure-ID technology and can be removed without leaving any residue. In contrast to Void films, adhesive residues, which might contaminate the protected device, are thus avoided. Fressnapf Tiernahrungs GmbH, the leading supplier of pet food and supplies, is one of 3S' customers who uses the OTF security label in its German stores to secure its online terminals for cashless transactions against unauthorized access.

    High-security label incorporating hologram technology
    Moreover, 3S will be presenting a security label incorporating hologram technology. Micro colour codes SECUTAG and additional variable security features were used to create a high security label. The hologram consists of a PET film with an incorporated micro colour code. It can be optionally equipped with a void effect. The wide portfolio of add-on security features includes the holographic tilt effect with changing images, sequential numbering and security cuts which make it impossible for the label to be removed without causing irreversible damage. Space for the company logo may also be integrated in the surface film of the PET label. It is also possible to implement traceability codes.

    INGUN uses SECUTAG for legally binding packaging
    Constance-based INGUN GmbH is the world's leading supplier of testing equipment. INGUN has chosen the legally binding micro colour code technology SECUTAG for protecting the packaging of its contact pins that are used for checking the PCBs of mobile phones. For this purpose, specific closure seals, that contain both technical data and the micro colour code particles, are affixed crosswise over all four sides of the box. The pins are thus clearly identified as originals, unauthorized opening of the box would be discovered immediately. The labels can be applied without changing the manufacturing and packaging process.
    (3S Simons Security Systems GmbH)
     
    18.03.2015   MEET 270 INTERNATIONAL COMPANIES, NEXT OCTOBER, IN LUCCA (ITALY)!    ( Company news )

    Company news Next October in Lucca 270 International Exhibitors will show their latest innovations in terms of machinery, equipment, technologies and services. At MIAC Exhibition you can meet, in just 3 days and in one place, the leader companies in the paper industry sector.

    MIAC 2015 (22nd edition) is an international meeting point which allows you to compare technologies and business proposals of several companies present at the Exhibition. Participate in MIAC 2015 means being part of the 5,000 visitors who every year, in October, come in Lucca from all over the world (last year's MIAC Exhibition registered the presence of visitors from 54 Countries).
    We are looking forward to welcoming you. Please save the date!
    (Edinova Srl)
     

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    Board for packaging use
    Board, misc.
    Boxes, packages, etc.
    Corrugated boards
    Household and sanitary paper goods
    Household and sanitary papers for converting
    Office and exercise goods, general stationery
    Other converted paper and board products
    Paper and board for technical use
    Paper rolls all kinds
    Papers all kinds
    Papers and boards; coated, laminated, impregnated
    Papers for packaging use
    Printing, fine and writing board
    Printing, fine and writing papers
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