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    13.11.2015   Mayr-Melnhof: Results for the first three quarters of 2015 - Strong third quarter    ( Company news )

    Company news • Increase in sales and profit in both divisions
    • High capacity utilization
    • Good expectations for the whole year
    • Acquisition of French folding carton group completed by end of October

    The Mayr-Melnhof Group was able, as expected, to continue the positive development over the course of the year with a good third quarter. Under ongoing highly competitive conditions without any sign of economic upturn, sales as well as profit increased further over the first three quarters of 2015 compared to the same period of the previous year. Both divisions, MM Karton and MM Packaging, significantly contributed to maintaining the solid profitability of the Group with high levels of capacity utilization in the plants and increased productivity. The acquisition of a leading French folding carton group in the field of packaging for pharmaceuticals and luxury goods was completed successfully at the end of October 2015 and shall thereby, as hitherto, combine organic and acquisitive growth.

    Expectations for the fourth quarter and 2015 as a whole remain intact.
    In November 2015, an interim dividend of EUR 1.60 per share was paid out for the financial year 2015.

    DEVELOPMENT IN THE THIRD QUARTER
    Strong volume dynamics and high capacity utilization of the plants characterized development of both divisions in the third quarter of this year.
    At 99 % (2Q 2015: 99 %; 3Q 2014: 99 %), capacities of the cartonboard division were almost fully utilized. Average prices for cartonboard were slightly above those of the previous year’s period. The operating margin of MM Karton amounted to 9.6 % following 8.5 % in the second quarter of 2015 and 7.8 % in the third quarter of 2014.
    The operating margin of MM Packaging reached 10.5 % (2Q 2015: 7.9 %; 3Q 2014: 9.0 %).
    The Group's operating profit totaled EUR 58.1 million (2Q 2015: EUR 45.7 million; 3Q 2014: EUR 47.8 million), thus an operating margin of 10.6 % was achieved (2Q 2015: 8.5 %; 3Q 2014: 8.9 %).
    The profit for the period amounted to EUR 41.0 million (2Q 2015: EUR 31.7 million; 3Q 2014: EUR 36.5 million).

    OUTLOOK
    Since the order intake from the cartonboard market is currently much more restrained, the order backlog of MM Karton has noticeably come down. Earnings performance is, however, expected to continue on a good level also in the fourth quarter of 2015 due to continuity at MM Packaging. So far, there is no sign of relief in prices for recovered paper, which significantly increased some months ago.
    Current business remains focused on improvements in cost efficiency and product optimization in order to develop new market potential and maintain profitability. The expansion course shall continue through organic growth as well as acquisitions in the core business, cartonboard and folding cartons.
    (Mayr-Melnhof Karton Gesellschaft m.b.H.)
     
    12.11.2015   Flushable Wipes – Kelheim Fibres Communicates the Solution    ( Company news )

    Company news Public awareness of the problems caused by moist cleaning wipes disposed of in the toilet is still limited, despite extensive coverage in the press during 2015.

    In order to address this issue Kelheim Fibres GmbH has created a brief animated film that focuses attention on the problem of incorrect disposal of such wipes and the solution offered by the company’s Viloft® short cut cellulosic fibre.

    “There is still a need to communicate the problems that can be caused by the incorrect disposal of wipes to the consumer, but also that there are solutions available which are engineered to be flushed and that Viloft® fibres made in Kelheim are part of that solution”, says Matthew North, Commercial Director at Kelheim Fibres. “Our new film communicates this message in a simple and effective way for the supply chain and for the consumer”.



    Customers using Viloft® fibres to produce flushable products are invited to use the film via links on their own websites and in their promotional material.

    Kelheim Fibres can provide more information about their Viloft® short cut fibres at the ITMA Trade Fair in Milan, Italy from November 12 to 19 where the film will also be available to see at their
    stand A141b in hall 08.
    (Kelheim Fibres GmbH)
     
    12.11.2015   BillerudKorsnäs recognized as World Leader for Corporate Action on Climate Change    ( Company news )

    Company news BillerudKorsnäs has been identified as a global leader for its actions and strategies in response to climate change and has been awarded a position on the Climate “A” List presented by CDP today.

    BillerudKorsnäs is among 5% of the corporations participating in CDP’s climate change program to be awarded a position on the Climate “A” List. The purpose of the list is to recognize companies’ actions to mitigate climate change in the past reporting year. The list is requested by 822 investors representing more than a third of the world’s invested capital.

    “2015 is an important year for our climate with the Paris conference COP21 as a milestone. In combating climate change all parts of society have to participate and we are extremely pleased that the dedicated efforts of BillerudKorsnäs now have been recognized by CDP. We have for many years been working hard on energy efficiency and on reducing our own greenhouse gas emissions. In addition to that we also see that our renewable packaging materials and solutions contribute by replacing fossil materials,” comments Henrik Essén, Senior Vice President Communication and Sustainability at BillerudKorsnäs.

    BillerudKorsnäs is also recognized for transparency and awarded a position on the Nordic Climate Disclosure Leadership Index (CDLI). The reported data has been independently assessed against CDP’s scoring methodology and marked out of 100. Organizations graded within the top 10% in the region constitute the CDLI. BillerudKorsnäs has scored 99.

    CDP, formerly Carbon Disclosure Project, is an international, non-profit organization providing a global system to measure, disclose, manage and share vital environmental information. CDP works with market forces, including 822 institutional investors with assets of EUR 86 trillion, to motivate companies to disclose their impacts on the environment and natural resources and take action to reduce them. More than 5,500 companies disclosed environmental information through CDP in 2015.
    (BillerudKorsnäs AB)
     
    12.11.2015   Metsä Board Corporation Interim Report 1 January–30 September 2015    ( Company news )

    Company news Metsä Board Corporation’s operating result excluding non-recurring items for January–September 2015 was EUR 144.8 million

    Result for January–September 2015
    • Sales were EUR 1,545.3 million (Q1–Q3/2014: 1509.0).
    • Operating result excluding non-recurring items was EUR 144.8 million (99.6). Operating result including non-recurring items was EUR 164.9 million (109.8).
    • Result before taxes excluding non-recurring items was EUR 119.8 million (68.1). Result before taxes including non-recurring items was EUR 137.7 million (76.0).
    • Earnings per share excluding non-recurring items were EUR 0.27 (0.16), and earnings per share including non-recurring items were EUR 0.32 (0.18).

    Result for the third quarter of 2015
    • Sales were EUR 497.6 million (Q2/2015: 522.0).
    • Operating result excluding non-recurring items was EUR 54.6 million (47.0). Operating result including non-recurring items was EUR 54.6 million (67.2).
    • The result before taxes excluding non-recurring items was EUR 47.5 million (40.0). Result before taxes including non-recurring items was EUR 47.5 million (58.0).
    • Earnings per share excluding non-recurring items were EUR 0.08 (0.10), and earnings per share including non-recurring items were EUR 0.08 (0.15).

    Events in the third quarter of 2015
    • Paperboard deliveries continued to grow, and the paperboard price levels were stable.
    • The production of coated paper ended at the Husum mill.
    • A strike stopped Metsä Board's entire production in Finland for 24 hours.
    • Four carton packages using Metsä Board's paperboard received awards at the 2015 Pro Carton ECMA Awards.

    Events after the period
    • Metsä Board announced it would increase the price of folding boxboard in Europe starting from 1 December 2015.
    • The installation of the new paperboard machine began at Husum.
    • Metsä Board expands its offering in food and food service paperboards by investing EUR 38 million in extrusion coating.
    • The Finnish Tax Administration gave an opinion against the deductibility of certain losses in Metsä Board's 2014 taxation. The company recognised in its Q3/2015 result around EUR 15 million in income tax, which was previously unrecognised. Metsä Board will appeal against this opinion.
    • Metsä Board scored a full 100 points in the Nordic Climate Disclosure Leadership Index (CDLI). In addition, of the eight international companies included in the global Water A List concerning sustainable use of water, Metsä Board was the only European company and the only forest sector company.

    Profit guidance for the fourth quarter of 2015
    • Metsä Board’s operating result excluding non-recurring items in the fourth quarter of 2015 is expected to decline compared to the third quarter of 2015. The result is weakened primarily by the shutdown of the integrated mill related to Husum's investment programme.

    CEO Mika Joukio (photo):
    “The increased paperboard deliveries improved our profitability in the third quarter of 2015. Our result was burdened by a strike, which stopped our entire production in Finland for 24 hours. After the review period, we announced a price increase of folding boxboard in Europe, which will become effective in December.
    We respond to the increasing demand for paperboard by starting production of folding boxboard at Husum. The new production will mainly be marketed to Americas, as well as for food service packaging applications globally. Our key tasks next year are to successfully start-up our new paperboard machine and growing our sales.
    We are investing in product development in order to continue to offer our customers the most lightweight and high-quality paperboard in the market. We will expand our offering in the food service packaging segment to end uses which require barrier properties from paperboard due to requirements for withstanding fat and moisture. Related to this, we invested in the extrusion coating line at Husum.
    The production of coated paper ended at Husum in September, and the production of uncoated fine paper sheets will be discontinued by the end of this year. The remaining production of uncoated fine paper reels will end by the end of 2017, at the latest.
    I am very proud that our sustainability and high-quality products have been recognised across the field. Our inclusion in the Climate Disclosure Leadership Index (CDLI) and the recognition for sustainable use of water show that we are successful by operating responsibly. Receiving four awards in the Pro Carton ECMA Awards – and especially in the series for sustainable development – indicates that the excellence of our cartons and their ecological quality have been taken into account throughout the value chain.”
    (Metsä Board Corporation)
     
    12.11.2015   A Fresh Breeze at the Newspaper Industry: manroland web systems satisfied with WPE 2015 ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... in Hamburg

    manroland web systems and its customers have been high flyers at the World Publishing Expo (WPE) 2015 in Hamburg. The company spent the customer evening above the city roofs of the hanseatic city at the panorama roof of the Emporio. But also during the daytime at the exhibition booth of manroland web systems the atmosphere was great: the WPE as a communications platform has again been a success this year. Guests from all over the world – from Angola to the USA – held business talks with the professionals from Augsburg.

    The leading topic of the industry was a future proof integration of print rooms in times of decreasing new investments. The experts from manroland web systems described their views and solutions for high volume newspaper presses as well as for digital workflows and retrofits. Everybody was particularly pleased about the signing of a long-term service contract with Kenya’s leading newspaper printer, Nation Media.
    (manroland web systems GmbH)
     
    12.11.2015   ProAmpac New Name for Merged Prolamina and Ampac Companies    ( Company news )

    Company news Prolamina and Ampac, two recently merged global flexible packaging firms, announces its new corporate name, ProAmpac. The new name reflects the merger of two leading, progressive and innovative flexible packaging companies with enhanced product offerings unparalleled in the industry.

    ProAmpac includes four brand divisions including Prolamina, Ampac, Tulsack and Business Deposits Plus. Together, the brands offer multiple innovative solutions in flexible packaging for the food, pet food and medical markets, secure packaging for cash management, loss prevention and transportation of valuables and documents, and retail paper and plastic shopping bags.

    The ProAmpac name and logo mark reflects the company’s mission in providing a steadfast commitment to creative packaging solutions, industry-leading customer service and award-winning innovations to a diverse global marketplace. The icon mark shows forward thinking and progress which supports the ProAmpac mission.

    ProAmpac will operate as the corporate parent company of the four brand divisions Prolamina, Ampac, Tulsack, and Business Deposits Plus. In addition, Prolamina’s Terrebonne, Quebec, Canada site location will transition to the Ampac division, as its product offerings align with the adhesive laminated rollstock and pouching served by Ampac. Visit www.proampac.com to find out more about ProAmpac and its divisions.

    ProAmpac CEO, Greg Tucker, states “The ProAmpac name allows us to clearly reinforce our commitment to the flexible packaging industry while building on the momentum that our two merged companies provide. Using our core values of Integrity, Intensity, Innovation and Involvement, we can leverage the strengths of all our brand divisions, as well as our skilled teammates, for a greater global impact.”
    (ProAmpac)
     
    12.11.2015   Valmet's Interim Review January 1 - September 30, 2015: Strong development in orders ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ...received in China - profitability in the targeted range in Q3/2015

    July-September 2015: Orders received increased - solid performance in Automation
    -Orders received increased to EUR 725 million (EUR 466 million).
    -Orders received increased in the Pulp and Energy, and Paper business lines and remained at the previous year's level in the Services business line.
    -Automation contributed to orders received with EUR 70 million.
    -Orders received more than doubled in China.
    -Net sales increased to EUR 734 million (EUR 590 million).
    -Net sales increased in the Paper, and Services business lines and decreased in the Pulp and Energy business line.
    -Automation contributed to net sales with EUR 66 million.
    -Earnings before interest, taxes and amortization (EBITA) and non-recurring items were EUR 47 million (EUR 32 million), and the corresponding EBITA margin was 6.4 percent (5.5%).
    -Profitability improved due to the higher level of net sales, improved gross profit, and the acquisition of Automation.
    -Earnings per share were EUR 0.14 (EUR 0.11).
    -Non-recurring items amounted to EUR -4 million (EUR -1 million).
    -Cash flow provided by operating activities was EUR 16 million (EUR 117 million).

    January-September 2015: EBITA more than doubled
    -Orders received decreased to EUR 2,085 million (EUR 2,590 million).
    -Orders received increased in the Services business line and decreased in the Pulp and Energy, and Paper business lines.
    -Automation contributed to orders received with EUR 156 million.
    -Orders received increased in China and North America.
    -Net sales increased to EUR 2,074 million (EUR 1,697 million).
    -Net sales increased in the Paper, and Services business lines and remained at the previous year's level in the Pulp and Energy business line.
    -Automation contributed to net sales with EUR 134 million.
    -Earnings before interest, taxes and amortization (EBITA) and non-recurring items were EUR 120 million (EUR 58 million), and the corresponding EBITA margin was 5.8 percent (3.4%).
    -Profitability improved due to the higher level of net sales, improved gross profit, and the acquisition of Automation.
    -Earnings per share were EUR 0.33 (EUR 0.14).
    -Non-recurring items amounted to EUR -16 million (EUR -7 million), of which costs related to acquisition of Automation amounted to approximately EUR 12 million.
    -Cash flow provided by operating activities was EUR 14 million (EUR 206 million).

    Valmet reiterates its guidance for 2015
    Valmet is reiterating its guidance presented on February 6, 2015 in which Valmet estimates that, including the acquisition of Process Automation Systems, net sales in 2015 will increase in comparison with 2014 (EUR 2,473 million) and EBITA before non-recurring items in 2015 will increase in comparison with 2014 (EUR 106 million).

    Short-term outlook
    General economic outlook
    Global growth for 2015 is projected at 3.1 percent, 0.3 percentage point lower than in 2014, and 0.2 percentage point below the forecasts in the July 2015 World Economic Outlook (WEO) Update. Prospects across the main countries and regions remain uneven. Relative to last year, the recovery in advanced economies is expected to pick up slightly, while activity in emerging market and developing economies is projected to slow for the fifth year in a row, primarily reflecting weaker prospects for some large emerging market economies and oil-exporting countries. (International Monetary Fund, September 28, 2015)

    Short-term market outlook
    Valmet estimates that the short-term market outlook for board and paper has decreased to a satisfactory level (previously good level).
    Valmet reiterates the good short-term market outlook for pulp, the satisfactory short-term market outlook for services, automation, and tissue, and the weak short-term market outlook for energy.

    President and CEO Pasi Laine (photoo): Profitability in the targeted range for the second consecutive quarter
    We have been working hard to improve our profitability and to reach our EBITA margin target. In the third quarter of 2015, we reached this target - for the second consecutive quarter. During the last four quarters, we have been in the targeted range for three quarters.

    The integration of the automation business has been a success. It has now been six months since the acquisition was completed, and I still get a lot of positive feedback from both customers and employees. By combining process know-how, services and automation, we can serve our customers even better than before. As a result of the acquisition, Valmet's stability and profitability have increased. The share of stable business, meaning Automation and Services, was about half of the net sales in the third quarter.

    From a geographical point of view, Valmet's orders received developed especially well in China. In the third quarter, orders received increased also in North America and EMEA (Europe, Middle-East and Africa). A balanced geographical exposure increases stability of the overall business.

    Going forward, Valmet continues to develop new advanced and competitive technologies and services. Good examples of the results of our research and development process are the OptiConcept M board and paper production machine, and the Advantage NTT tissue production machine. Both machines offer customers a cost-efficient, energy-efficient and flexible way to produce high-quality products, with significant raw material savings. The machines have been well received by the markets - in total, Valmet has so far sold ten OptiConcept M machines and five Advantage NTT tissue machines.
    (Valmet Corporation)
     
    12.11.2015   Portucel: 9M 2015 – Higher paper and pulp prices and strong EBITDA     ( Company news )

    Company news •Sales turnover up by 5.8% to €1 204 million with improvement in paper and pulp prices
    •Strong EBITDA of € 294 million, with clear improvement in margin EBITDA / Sales of 24.4%
    •Net favorable impact of EUR/USD exchange rate
    •Capex of € 113.1 million
    •Successful start-up of second tissue machine from AMS
    •Decision to invest € 120 million in new tissue capacity of 70 thousand tons /year
    •First Sustainability Forum dedicated to Forest Protection and fire fighting

    At the start of 2015, Portucel announced a strategic plan for a new cycle of growth, based on pursuit of three major goals:
    consolidating its core business as a manufacturer of printing and writing paper and eucalyptus pulp, diversifying into production of tissue paper, and expansion projects in new markets, including construction of a pulp mill in Mozambique and a pellets factory in the US. The Group's activities over the first nine months are the reflection of the implementation of this plan and the different stages involved.
    Turnover in the period stood at € 1.2 billion, up by around 5.8% from the figure recorded for the first nine months of 2014, due essentially to rising pulp and paper prices (in the context of the dollar rising against the euro) and to the inclusion of tissue business in the Group's consolidated accounts. Paper sales accounted for 74% of turnover, with power sales representing 13%, pulp 8% and tissue around 3%.

    In uncoated (UWF) printing and writing paper, the European market recorded a reduction in apparent consumption of approximately 1.6% whilst the dollar rose strongly against the euro. Both these factors contributed to growth in paper exports to markets outside Europe. To take advantage of foreign exchange trends, Portucel expanded its sales to USD denominated markets, recording growth of approximately 4.1% in overseas markets. As a result, the Group's average sale price evolved positively, rising by 5% in relation to the first nine months of 2014. Sales were up by 3.6% in value, although the volume of paper sales slipped by 1.5%. The slight reduction in sales volumes was due essentially to efforts to replenish stocks, which had fallen to a very low level, and to the increase in the volume in transit to clients. Over the same period, the benchmark index in Europe, PIX A4- Copy B, dropped by 1.3%.

    Bleached eucalyptus pulp (BEKP) business maintained the positive performance recorded since the start of the year, with prices significantly better than in the same period in 2014. The dollar-denominated price index performed well, with an average price of 778 USD/ton, as compared to 749 USD/ton in the same period in the previous year. Due to the foreign exchange effect, this increase translated into a sharp rise in the price in Euros, with the benchmark PIX BHKP index pointing to an average of 698 €/ton, up by 26.3% year on year. The upward trend in pulp prices resulted in an increase of 15.8% in the value of sales, despite a reduction of approximately 8.1% in the quantity sold.

    The Group recorded a financial loss in the period of € 44.9 million euros, as compared with a loss of € 24.6 million recorded in the first nine months of 2014. As previously disclosed, the financial loss for the 3rd quarter includes recognition of the costs relating to partial early repayment of a bond issue (Portucel Senior Notes 5.375%). The amount repaid was € 200 million (of a total issue of € 350 million), and the price paid corresponded to the face value of the notes repaid, plus the contractual premium for early repayment, totalling approximately € 14.6 million, together with the recognition of approximately € 2.3 million referring to issue costs for this loan, not yet reflected in results at the repayment date. This repayment will allow for a significant reduction in borrowing costs, as the Group simultaneously renegotiated a bond issue for the same amount (€ 200 million), on more advantageous terms and a longer maturity. The
    financial results also include the cost of foreign exchange hedges contracted for 2015 (€ 4.8 million), which more than offset the reduction in borrowing costs.
    As a result, consolidated net income for the period stood at € 141.9 million, representing growth of 6.6% in relation to the first nine months of 2014.

    Outlook:
    Recent economic projections for 2015 continue to point to downwards revision of expectations for global growth, despite strong performance by the US economy and expectations of recovery in the Euro zone. The main factors of uncertainty come from emerging economies, due essentially to a slowdown in growth in China, the worsening recession in Russia and Brazil, and falling prices for the main commodities, in particular for oil. The weakness of the currencies of the main emerging economies, especially the leading exporters of raw materials, has also continued to create significant volatility on the foreign exchanges.
    Despite of this uncertainty, the pulp sector remains buoyant, with prices at rewarding levels and a healthy level of demand. High levels of consumption, particularly in the Chinese market, combined with the carefully managed entry of new capacity onto the market should continue to benefit pulp manufacturers for the rest of the year, especially if the current exchange rate situation is maintained between the dollar and the euro.
    The tissue paper segment continues to perform well, in particular in terms of demand, with interesting levels of growth in consumption in Europe and the emerging economies such as China, Turkey and Latin America, which should help to maintain a dynamic pulp market.
    In the UWF paper market, as reported above, Portucel announced in July a further increase in its prices in Europe as from 18 September. Before the close of the quarter, Portucel, like other paper manufacturers, announced a further price increase to its customers in Europe, taking effect in early January 2016.
    However, mention should be made of a number of factors which could trigger a degree of instability in the paper market in the months ahead. The impact of the anti-dumping measures initiated by the US authorities against a number of paper manufacturers (requiring these producers to apply high margins to their price when exporting to this market) will cause changes to the balance between supply and demand in a number of regions, in particular by increasing the pressure of supply in certain countries in Asia, Latin America and Europe. At the same time, falling currency values and currency controls in a number of countries in the Middle East, Africa and Latin America could also cause additional difficulties to international trade.
    As previously reported, these measures adopted by the US Department of Commerce have also affected Portucel, in the form of a provisional rate of 29.53%. The Company has expressed its complete disagreement, having cooperated with the Department of Commerce throughout the 3rd quarter to provide all the information needed to support its case. Portucel is confident that it will prove that there are no grounds for applying a rate as high as that provisionally set. Until year end, the application of this provisional rate is estimated to represent a collateral deposit of approximately USD 13.3 million.
    The definitive rate to substitute the provisional one will be set in January 2016.
    (Portucel Empresa Produtora de Pasta e Papel SA)
     
    12.11.2015   Sappi Limited results for the year and fourth quarter ended September 2015     ( Company news )

    Company news Strong performance with full year earnings per share excluding special items up 55%.

    Highlights for the Year
    -EPS excluding special items 34 US cents (FY14 22 US cents)
    -EBITDA excluding special items US$625 million (FY14 US$658 million)
    -Profit for the period US$167 million ((FY14 US$135 million)
    -Net debt US$1,771 million, down US$175 million year-on-year

    Highlights for the Quarter
    -EPS excluding special items 16 US cents (Q4 FY14 12 US cents)
    -EBITDA excluding special items US$201 million (Q4 FY14 US$200 million)
    -Profit for the period US$83 million (Q4 FY14 US$68 million)

    Commenting on the key financial highlights of the year and fourth quarter, Sappi Chief Executive Officer Steve Binnie (photo) said:
    “I am very satisfied with the strong performance by the group during the financial year. Importantly, net profit for the year increased by 24% to US$167 million and earnings per share excluding special items for the year increased by 55% from US 22 cents to US 34 cents. Operating performances improved in all regions in their underlying currencies. In particular, the group benefitted from the strong export performance of the Southern African business combined with a weaker South African Rand. In Rand terms group EBITDA excluding special items increased by approximately 8% from ZAR7 billion to ZAR7.5 billion and group net profit increased by 40% from ZAR1.4 billion to ZAR2 billion on group sales of ZAR64.5 billion for the year.

    “The refinancing of higher cost debt, and the reduction in net debt by US$175 million resulted in significantly lower ongoing interest charges. The completion of major capital projects at Gratkorn, Kirkniemi and Somerset Mills will lower our cost base further in the coming years.

    “For the quarter, all regions increased their profitability through stronger seasonal demand and improved markets for graphic paper and dissolving wood pulp. For the quarter, profit increased by 22% to US$83 million due to the higher operating profits and lower interest costs.

    “The Specialised Cellulose business generated improved returns due to increased US Dollar spot prices for dissolving wood pulp in China; driven by improved conditions for viscose staple fibre. The weaker Rand also helped margins, lowering our cost base and improving selling prices.”

    The European business achieved an increase in graphic paper sales volumes of 5% and average sales prices of 4% over the equivalent quarter last year, with particular strength in the woodfree coated segment. This was mainly due to the Euro/Dollar exchange rate on export sales pricing and the graphic paper price increases implemented in the past quarter. The speciality paper business continued to improve its sales volumes and prices compared to both the prior quarter and the equivalent quarter last year.

    The North American business showed a good recovery in a seasonally stronger quarter. This is despite the continued impact of the strong US Dollar on the graphic paper markets in the US and continued weak demand from China for the release paper business. Coated paper sales volumes were flat year-on-year, with net sales prices slightly lower.

    The Southern Africa business had a strong quarter and year. Average prices and volumes were higher for both the equivalent quarter last year and the prior quarter. Demand for dissolving wood pulp remained strong and sales volumes were higher in both instances. Demand for virgin packaging grades was also strong.

    We expect the first quarter to show an improvement in EBITDA excluding special items and a substantial increase in earnings per share excluding special items compared to the equivalent quarter last year as a result of improved operating performance and lower interest charges. However, a severe drought is currently being experienced in many parts of South Africa and may adversely impact our mill production and consequent profitability should normal summer rainfall not be forthcoming.

    Outlook
    Dissolving wood pulp markets have improved considerably this year as a result of higher pricing and improved operating rates for viscose staple fibre in China. Higher hardwood paper pulp prices are also impacting dissolving wood pulp supply as some swing producers continue to manufacture paper pulp rather than dissolving wood pulp.

    Graphic paper markets in Europe are slightly better than anticipated, albeit they are still expected to decline. Production at our mills is full and export pricing is benefitting from a weaker Euro. However, the business faces pressure from higher pulp prices. In North America, the strong US Dollar continues to impact graphic paper trade flows negatively.

    Capex during 2016 is expected to be in line with 2015 and is focused largely on energy and debottlenecking projects in South Africa together with the annual maintenance at the mills.
    Depending on market conditions, we are considering utilising some of our cash reserves to repay and refinance a portion of our debt in order to lower our future interest costs. We expect to reduce our net debt further over the course of the year and reduce our financial leverage towards our target of two times net debt to EBITDA.

    Based on current market conditions, and assuming current exchange rates, we believe that EBITDA excluding special items in the 2016 financial year will be higher than 2015. We also expect strong growth in our earnings per share excluding special items as a result of expected lower interest costs, offset somewhat by increased cash taxes.
    (Sappi Limited)
     
    11.11.2015   Successful start-up of the Toscotec delivered TM19 at the WEPA Giershagen mill in Germany     ( Company news )

    Company news After one year of work, the new tissue line of WEPA Giershagen (Germany) has been started-up on October 27, 2015, far in advance of the schedule and only 13 months after the delivery agreement signing.

    By expanding the production output of tissue paper, the WEPA will optimize the existing procurement and logistics structures in Europe, thus enhancing the competitiveness of the entire group.

    Mr. Frank Folcz, Wepa Hygieneprodukte GmbH Mill Manager at Giershagen site said: “ We are very excited for this new project, the new AHEAD line will increase the site’s production of 32,000 tpy with high quality tissue. The erection of the machinery and the start-up phases were optimally performed thanks to the experienced collaboration between Toscotec and Wepa teams.”

    The turn key Toscotec delivery for the new TM#19, based on the best available technology, included a stock preparation system for virgin pulp, an AHEAD-2.0S tissue machine, TM and plant auxiliaries, electrification & control systems. Full engineering, erection, erection supervision, training, start-up and commissioning completed the Toscotec’s scope of supply.

    With a design speed of 2.000 mpm, the tissue machine is equipped with single layer headbox, double press configuration, TT SYD-15FT and Milltech Hood, Dust & Mist removal system.

    The new line will produce, among the other grades, high-quality super-soft toilet tissue.
    (Toscotec S.p.A.)
     
    11.11.2015   Change in Valmet's Executive Team    ( Company news )

    Company news Mr. Kari Saarinen (MSc., age 54, photo) has been appointed Chief Financial Officer (CFO) at Valmet as of November 15, 2015.

    Kari Saarinen is currently working at Valmet as Senior Vice President, Strategy and Operational Development. In his new CFO position he continues as the member of Valmet's Executive Team and reports to the President and CEO Pasi Laine.

    Mr. Markku Honkasalo, the current CFO of Valmet, has been instrumental to Valmet's creation phase which started in 2013. Since this stage is now completed, Markku Honkasalo has decided to leave Valmet at the end of November, after a thorough handover phase to his successor.

    "I thank Markku for his contribution to Valmet during a very interesting and demanding time. Markku has been a great support in these first years as an independent, stock listed company", says Valmet's President and CEO Pasi Laine.

    "Kari Saarinen has a strong background in finance and business controlling in large, international organizations in addition to his expertise in the field of strategy and operational development. Through his four years at Valmet Kari knows the company well and is the perfect person to take over the CFO position from the good foundation built by Markku," continues Pasi Laine.

    Kari Saarinen's CV
    Kari Saarinen
    born 1961
    MSc. (Accounting and Finance)
    CFO starting from November 15, 2015
    Finnish citizen

    Kari Saarinen leads currently Valmet's Strategy and Operational Development.
    (Valmet Corporation)
     
    11.11.2015   Roland DG announces new SOLJET EJ-640    ( Company news )

    Company news Inkjet printer with outstanding productivity and low running cost

    Roland DG, a leading manufacturer of wide-format inkjet printers and printer/cutters worldwide, announced the launch of its new SOLJET EJ-640 wide-format inkjet printer.

    With dual staggered print heads, an integrated tri-heater system, rigid industrial design and high-capacity 1-liter ink cartridges available in 4 or 7 colour configurations, the EJ-640 is built for optimum performance and productivity. The EJ-640 uses new EJ ink, developed to offer substantially lower operating costs. New Roland VersaWorks Dual RIP software processes both PDF and PostScript files, including files with transparencies.

    According to Yuko Maeda, division president of digital printing, market development for Roland DG, “Today’s sign market is typified by intense competition due to the spread of wide-format inkjet printers and the increasing demand for quick delivery of high quantities with low operating costs. The new EJ-640 addresses these issues by delivering excellent productivity and quality with low ink costs.”

    Special attention has been given to high-volume users. A rigid shaft holds long and heavy rolls securely, and a newly developed Feed Adjuster ensures the smooth progression of media through the printer and onto the take-up system. Meanwhile, the powerful heater and blower prevent ink from bleeding during take-up. In 4-colour CMYK mode, up to two litres of ink can be loaded for each colour. With the Roland Ink Switching System, continuous printing is possible overnight without worrying about ink running out. When the primary ink cartridge runs out, its backup begins supplying ink automatically. Unattended operation is further facilitated by Roland OnSupport that sends an email to a smart phone, tablet or computer when a job is finished or ink is running low.

    “While the EJ-640 is built for exceptional productivity,” Maeda adds, “the other aspects for which Roland DG is renowned, such as image quality and reliability, are maintained without compromise.” The rail and frame structure has been reinforced to enable precise ink droplet placement for vivid image quality even at higher speeds. Roland VersaWorks Dual RIP reproduces images with beautifully smooth gradations. In addition to dual CMYK, a seven-colour ink configuration consisting of CMYK plus Light Cyan (Lc), Light Magenta (Lm), and Light Black (Lk) is available for colour-matched photographs, corporate colours and brand logos.

    Maeda concludes, “Since 1988, Roland DG has supported the growth of the sign industry by employing new digital technologies and providing products that truly make a difference. With the EJ-640, we continue to provide the best solutions to support print services providers.”
    (Roland DG GmbH)
     
    11.11.2015   More packaging power at Imatra mills    ( Company news )

    Company news Last year, Stora Enso announced an investment of EUR 27 million to increase the capacity of Consumer Board Machine 5 at Imatra mills in Finland. The investment is now ready.

    In addition to a capacity increase of 20 000 tonnes, the investment also enables quality enhancements and cost-competitiveness in global markets.

    "With the investment, we have anticipated the demands of our customers for their brands. The quality and capacity that we have now achieved will keep us on the cutting edge of the industry," says Marko Pekkola, Head of Operations Consumer Board.

    "We're now able to produce more general packaging, like multipacks for yoghurt, as well as more liquid packaging board for the packaging of milk and juice, for example. The new production capacity goes to European and global markets," he continues.

    The investment in the Tainionkoski unit was realised in two phases this year, one phase in June and the other in August/September during the mill's scheduled maintenance stoppage.

    "Our customers are positive about this change, and we have worked in close cooperation with them. There were no breaks in our deliveries during the transition time," Pekkola says.

    The investment required a fair amount of technical planning. The focus of the investment was on the coating part of the board machine and on modernising the winder and reel packaging section. An experienced user group of mill employees were part of the practical planning. Some occupational health and safety factors were improved with the investment as well.

    Imatra mills consist of two units, Kaukopää and Tainionkoski. The annual capacity of the mills is over one million tonnes of board and paper. The mills employ approximately 870 people, about 90 of them work at Tainionkoski.
    (Stora Enso Fine Paper Imatra Mills)
     
    11.11.2015   Rottneros launches Opacity Extreme, with superior opacity and strength    ( Company news )

    Company news After extensive development the Swedish pulp manufacturer Rottneros Group now launches its new, improved High Yield Pulp, Opacity Extreme, for thin packaging and printing paper, as well as special applications. In addition to an extremely high opacity the product, produced at the mill Rottneros Bruk, also has excellent strength properties and high purity.

    When it comes to thin packaging and printing papers, as well as a number of special applications, the opacity is critical. Low light transmission is required, for example, to ensure that prints will not be seen through the paper sheet. Similarly, the purity of the pulp, the so-called low shives content, is important in the manufacturing of thin paper.

    The development of Opacity Extreme has been a team effort within Rottneros Bruk, where Fredrik Danielsson, technical sales manager, has been responsible for the development. Danielsson says Opacity Extreme with its combination of excellent strength properties, high purity and superior opacity is the leading product in the market for thin paper.

    Olle Dahlin, CEO of Rottneros Bruk, says that the company now, with the launch of Opacity Extreme, has a very complete and competitive product range for High Yield Pulp, which includes everything from board and tissue to thin packaging and printing paper.
    (Rottneros AB)
     
    11.11.2015   Bosch Rexroth starts measures to turn its Mobile Applications business unit around     ( Company news )

    Company news -Secure future viability and return to growth
    -Wide raft of measures to cut costs
    -Consultants engaged by employee representatives verify turnaround concept
    -Up to 1,150 jobs to be shed by end of 2018
    -Negotiations about reconciliation of interests and social compensation plan now underway
    -Growth through innovation and new distribution channels

    At the end of July, Bosch Rexroth announced cost cuts in its Mobile Applications business unit. Since then, the company has been conducting talks with the employee representatives and their consultants in order to give them the opportunity to check the plausibility of the turnaround concept and propose alternative measures. The aim of the turnaround proposed by Bosch Rexroth is to cut costs by 450 million euros and in this way secure the unit’s long-term viability. In this regards, the company intends to reduce overcapacity, increase efficiency, and facilitate future growth. The consultants engaged by the employee representatives have now validated the concept. Bosch Rexroth is examining the employee representatives’ proposals in detail; its concept already takes many of them into account. The company is now starting its turnaround program, with employee representatives still free to propose alternative measures for the locations affected.

    The cost-cutting package will mean that as many as 1,150 jobs will be shed at six German locations – Augsfeld, Elchingen, Homburg, Horb, Lohr, and Schwieberdingen – by the end of 2018. Jobs are to be cut in as socially compatible a way as possible, using severance packages and phased retirement schemes, as well as offering associates employment at other Bosch Group locations. Mapping out the next steps in the process, Dr. Karl Tragl (photo), the president of Bosch Rexroth AG, says: “We can now start negotiations about the social compensation scheme and reconciliation of interests. Our goal is to avoid redundancies.” The negotiations will also include talks with the respective employee representatives about measures for each of the locations. Tragl stressed that management is still open for any proposals the employee representatives may have for turning the respective locations around, especially if these proposals mean that fewer jobs need to be shed.

    Simpler work processes and new products

    To cut costs and turn the Mobile Applications business unit around, Bosch Rexroth has planned a wide raft of measures: simpler work processes will be introduced, and greater use made of lower-cost plants outside Germany. In addition, manufacturing processes will be made more flexible to allow Bosch Rexroth to react better to ever greater fluctuations in demand. Distribution processes are also to be made more flexible so that the company can react faster to customer requirements. At the same time, the company plans to invest in the development of new products.

    Falling demand and overcapacity make cost cuts necessary

    Bosch Rexroth is a leading supplier of mobile applications for excavators, wheeled loaders, forklifts, tractors, and combine harvesters. Worldwide, demand has been declining for some years, with the companies that manufacture these vehicles reducing capacity, relocating to lower-cost countries, and even closing down plants completely. To compound this situation, sales of construction machinery in China have fallen even further, and were down more than 40 percent year on year in the first half of 2015.

    At meetings held at the end of July at the six locations affected, the company informed associates of the need for cost cuts amounting to 450 million euros, made up of reductions in product costs, cost of materials, and personnel expenses. In the months since then, the turnaround concept has been the subject of talks with the employee representatives and their consultants.

    “In the long-term view, the target markets for mobile applications are still attractive. For the time being, however, we have to react to structural changes in our markets in order to make the business unit fit for the future and return to a growth path,” Tragl says, summing up the combination of cost cuts, investment in new products, and realignment of distribution structures.
    (Bosch Rexroth AG)
     
    11.11.2015   Yuen Foong Yu has signed another contract with PMP - strategic partnership is successfully ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... continued

    In October 2015, Yuen Foong Yu has signed a contract with PMP for rebuild of TM#7 in Ching Shui Mill (Taiwan). The delivery includes steel Intelli-YDTM, Intelli-CapTM and Steam & Condensate equipment. PMP has been chosen again as a strategic partner supporting YFY’s development.
    PMP is a global provider of paper, board and tissue technology and has been serving pulp & paper industry for over 160 years. PMP has built business partnership with Yuen Foong Yu in Asia that lasts several years already.
    Yuen Foong Yu’s core business is paper manufacturing. Company produces printing, writing, industrial and home use paper. YFY owns three major brands of tissue paper at present: Mayflower, Tender and Delight. Its production lines cover paper products such as toilet paper, tissue paper, facial tissues, paper towels and napkins. YFY is not only one of leading Asian papermakers, it also ranks among the 50 largest paper manufacturers in the world.
    This time, the scope of supply covers 12’ steel YD designed and manufactured by PMP (2420 mm sheet width on Yankee), a high efficiency Yankee cap supplied with an air fan – Intelli-CapTM – and a Steam & Condensate equipment. Designed Yankee is a steel welded construction with bolted on journals. In order to increase Yankee efficiency, PMP offers optimized and tailor-made solutions. Intelli-YDTM designed for YFY will be capable to operate up to 9.5 bar(g) of steam pressure and a maximum design speed of 1200 mpm. Additionally PMP will exchange existing steam Yankee Hood with Yankee Cap to reduce steam consumption. Appropriate changes in Steam & Condensate system will be implemented to fit new system conditions.
    YFY decided to choose PMP Intelli-YDTM in order to great running references representing very high performance and ultra-low media consumption. This project is an example where PMP’s knowledge combined with high-tech equipment can become a key factor to achieve common success. The delivery is scheduled on June 2016, followed by erection at site and start-up on August 2016.
    (PMPoland S.A.)
     
    11.11.2015   Strong cellulose filaments win the Van den Akker Prize    ( Company news )

    Company news A research team from the Wallenberg Wood Science Center has won the Van den Akker Prize for Paper Physics for the article 'Hydrodynamic alignment and assembly of nanofibrils resulting in strong cellulose filaments', published in Nature Communications.

    The prestigious Van den Akker Prize is presented each year for the best publication within paper physics. This year's prize was awarded to an interdisciplinary research team from the Wallenberg Wood Science Center, which includes Innventia, KTH Royal Institute of Technology and Chalmers University of Technology. The team received the prize for the article 'Hydrodynamic alignment and assembly of nanofibrils resulting in strong cellulose filaments', published in Nature Communications in June 2014.

    Their award-winning work involves putting together fibrils from cellulose to create very strong filaments. In this new method, the fibrils are oriented in a controlled manner along the direction of the filament during the production process.

    Innventia has applied for a patent for this new technique for spinning, which is an example of the development of materials from nanocellulose currently being carried out within nanocellulose processes. One contributing factor behind Innventia's efforts towards new application for nanocellulose is the pilot facility for the production of nanocellulose (also known as CNF), which was opened in 2011. The pilot facility means that sufficient quantities of raw materials can be produced to work with different applications.

    "This award is confirmation that what we have achieved is appreciated and is of value to the forest industry, even if it doesn't relate directly to paper," says Karl Håkansson, the first author of the article. "So I hope that this cooperation can continue, and perhaps even be broadened to develop the process described in the article further."

    "We're extremely proud to have received this award," adds Torgny Persson, Director of the Material Processes business area. "This is an excellent example of successful cooperation between institutes and academia, in terms of both R&D and resources for upscaling and verifying research findings."
    (Innventia AB)
     
    10.11.2015   GLATFELTER REPORTS THIRD-QUARTER 2015 RESULTS    ( Company news )

    Company news Glatfelter (NYSE: GLT) reported third-quarter 2015 net income of $13.5 million, or $0.31 per diluted share, and adjusted earnings of $20.8 million, or $0.47 per diluted share. For the third quarter of 2014, net income was $30.4 million, or $0.69 per diluted share, and adjusted earnings were $30.8 million or $0.70 per diluted share.

    Consolidated net sales totaled $420.0 million in the third quarter of 2015 compared with $465.1 million in the third quarter of 2014. The translation of non-U.S. dollar sales unfavorably impacted the year-over-year comparison by $25.2 million, reflecting a weaker Euro.

    “At Glatfelter, we continue to take the steps necessary to manage controllable elements of our business, capitalize on near-term opportunities in our targeted markets and successfully execute our long-term growth strategy. While macro-level challenges continued to impact our company during the third quarter, we remain steadfast in our efforts to grow the business and we are confident in our outlook for long-term success,” said Dante C. Parrini (photo), chairman and chief executive officer.

    Mr. Parrini continued, “During the quarter, demand remained solid in most Composite Fibers’ market segments including tea, coffee and electrical, and we saw improving demand for Advanced Airlaid Materials’ products. We are also continuing to realize the benefits of previously announced cost reduction initiatives across our businesses, and remain on target to reach our goals for the year. These positives were offset by the ongoing instability in Russia and Ukraine, which has significantly impacted the nonwoven wallcover market, and weaker pricing and demand in our Specialty Papers markets. Despite the continuing macro level challenges, we expect solid demand for each of our businesses in the fourth quarter.”

    Outlook
    Composite Fibers’ shipping volumes and selling prices in the fourth quarter are expected to approximate the third quarter of 2015 levels. Raw material and energy prices are expected to be slightly higher than the third quarter.
    Shipping volumes for Advanced Airlaid Materials in the fourth quarter of 2015 are expected to be down slightly compared with the third quarter. Average selling prices and raw material prices in the fourth quarter are expected to be in-line with the third quarter.
    For Specialty Papers, the Company expects shipping volumes in the fourth quarter of 2015 to be in-line with the third quarter. Overall, selling prices are expected to decline slightly in the fourth quarter compared to the third quarter due to continued pressure on commodity products and input costs are expected to be in line with the third quarter of 2015. The Company does not expect any market downtime in Specialty Papers in the fourth quarter.
    (Glatfelter Corporate Headquarters) 
     
    10.11.2015   Metsä Board expands its offering in food and food service paperboards by investing ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... EUR 38 million in extrusion coating

    Metsä Board is investing EUR 38 million in an extrusion coating line and related infrastructure at its Husum mill in Sweden. The line with a paperboard extrusion coating capacity of approximately 100,000 t/a will be taken into use at the beginning of 2017.

    As previously announced, the company is currently installing a folding boxboard machine with a capacity of 400,000 t/a targeted to start up in January 2016 in Husum. Metsä Board is marketing this new volume to the Americas as well as to food service end-uses such as cups, plates and trays globally. A substantial amount of food and food service packaging requires barrier properties against e.g. moisture and grease, and they can be produced with extrusion coating.

    “Extrusion-coated paperboard based on renewable fresh forest fibre competes on many occasions with plastics. Transferring to paperboard offers food service companies an opportunity to improve their responsibility. As our paperboards are lightweight and stiff, they also bring many additional benefits to e.g. logistics and converting,” says Mika Joukio, CEO of Metsä Board.

    In 2015–2016, Metsä Board’s paperboards are coated by external converters. The company is also continuing development work on other barrier solutions.
    (Metsä Board Corporation)
     
    10.11.2015   Toscotec starts up its first AHEAD-1.5M tissue machine at Yuen Foong Yu Taiwan    ( Company news )

    Company news The Toscotec-supplied AHEAD-1.5M tissue machine has started up at Yuen Foong Yu’s Chingshui mill in Taiwan. Yuen Foong Yu Paper, with its famous brand Mayflower, is currently the largest paper manufacturer in Taiwan and it ranks 49th in the world. The start-up has been welcomed by the Taiwanese producer as the positive outcome of a strong cooperation between the two teams: “We are pleased with the qualified teamwork and Toscotec’s support all the way from the engineering phase to the commissioning field work. We look forward to seeing the outstanding performances and energy saving results that we expect from Toscotec’s technological solution” says Mr. Ming Fa Tang, YFY’s Deputy General Manager.

    The scope of supply of the Italian supplier included one AHEAD-1.5M machine, installing Toscotec’s second generation Steel Yankee Dryer TT SYD-18FT, a 1,425 mm diameter suction press roll and steam-heated hoods, as well as the stock preparation system. The machine has a working speed of 1,650 m/min and it will increase the mill’s production capacity by 40k t/y.

    The Taiwanese producer has chosen Toscotec’s cutting-edge technology and customized design as the winning solution that strikes the perfect balance between machine performance and the lowest possible total energy consumptions. The masterly combination of a large diameter Steel Yankee Dryer, a single jumbo press roll and steam hoods delivers key advantages in terms of energy savings. TT DOES (Drying Optimization for Energy Saving) is now widely acknowledged as Toscotec’s signature design solution, especially on the Asian market, where energy savings are a major concern for tissue producers.
    (Toscotec S.p.A.)
     
    10.11.2015   A new name for a company - Oji Fibre Solutions    ( Company news )

    Company news One of our major members of Oji Group, Carter Holt Harvey Pulp, Paper and Packaging announces a change of name to Oji Fibre Solutions.

    The new name reflects Oji’s commitment to transcend traditional boundaries as captured by the group’s global catch phrase: “Beyond the Boundaries”. Oji Fibre Solutions looks beyond geographies, beyond capabilities and beyond pulp and paper.

    Oji Fibre Solutions is a leading softwood fibre-based forest products businesses producing a range of kraft pulps, container board and packaging products (e.g. for dairy and horticulture industries). The group includes three pulp and paper facilities, packaging operations in New Zealand and Australia, the Fullcircle waste paper collection business and the Lodestar logistics operation. Its export markets include China, the US, South Africa, Southeast Asia, South Asia and Australia.

    The new name follows our acquisition of the business last year, jointly with Innovation Network Corporation of Japan (INCJ).
    (Oji Holdings Corporation)
     
    10.11.2015   BASF completes divestiture of paper hydrous kaolin business to Imerys    ( Company news )

    Company news BASF has closed the previously announced transaction to divest its global paper hydrous kaolin (PHK) business to Imerys, a producer of mineral-based specialty solutions for industry, based in Paris, France. Under a tolling agreement of limited duration, BASF will continue to manufacture and supply PHK products to Imerys to enable a smooth transition for customers. Included in the transaction is a kaolin milling facility in Wilkinson County, Georgia referred to as the "Gibraltar mill".

    BASF will continue to own and operate its other assets in Georgia, USA including kaolin reserves, mining and production facilities as well as a slurry facility in Ghent, Belgium.

    "We have taken action to make our business fit for the future," said Dr. Shane Porzio, Vice President, Global Business Management Kaolin. BASF is committed to providing customers with the highest quality kaolin products, solutions and service.
    (BASF SE)
     
    10.11.2015   Call for Papers for FILTECH 2016    ( Company news )

    Company news With the FILTECH Show taking place from 11-13 October 2016 the City of Cologne in Germany will turn into the top-meeting-place for all those involved with filtration and separation and adjacent sectors. With 350 exhibitors the world’s largest filtration Show will take place for the first time at the new venue KoelnMesse. The FILTECH Congress with more than 200 presentations will offer a representative cross section of current research findings, global developments and new approaches. Special highlights are a plenary and six survey lectures in which internationally renowned experts give a comprehensive overview of state of the art knowledge and techniques concerning important aspects of separation technology. Abstracts can be submitted until 28 February 2016. Details for abstract submission and stand booking are available at www.filtech.de.

    We look forward to welcoming you to FILTECH from 11.-13. October 2016 at Koelnmesse - Cologne - Germany.
    (Filtech Exhibitions Germany)
     
    09.11.2015   THE SOFIDEL GROUP CONTINUES TO GROW WITH NEW INVESTMENTS IN THE USA    ( Company news )

    Company news The Italian tissue paper group Sofidel, one of the world leaders in paper production for sanitary and household use, has strengthened its position in the US by acquiring from Green Bay Converting Inc. company a converting plant (photo) with its corresponding business in Green Bay (WI), and a new state of the art converting building in Hattiesburg (MS), launching a new greenfield investment in Ohio, and opening a new head office in Philadelphia.

    The Sofidel Group, one of the world leaders in paper production for sanitary and household use, has strengthened its position in the USA through three major initiatives.

    The Italian multinational, with its subsidiary Sofidel America, has acquired a converting plant in Green Bay with its corresponding business and a new state of the art converting building in Mississippi from the Green Bay Converting Inc. company, has also launched a new greenfield investment in Ohio, and has opened a new head office in Philadelphia (PA).

    Green Bay (WI) and Hattiesburg (MS)
    Founded in 1999, Green Bay Converting (GBC) is one of the most important independent US converting companies, has over 300 employees and carries out converting activities for the North America market, both in the Away-From-Home and Consumer segments.
    The assets covered by the acquisition are:
    • a 800,000 SF converting plant in Green Bay (WI) the main region for the production of tissue in the United States, rich in know-how and human resources, where Sofidel already has a presence with its own converting plant – and the connected activities
    • a 400,000 SF brand new industrial building in Hattiesburg (MS) which will house a new converting plant
    for a total additional annual production capacity amounting to approximately 65,000 tonnes, to which in the next few months several production lines will be added at the Hattiesburg location, and a few production lines at the Green Bay location.

    For its part, GBC will continue to run its remaining operations as a contract manufacturer.

    Circleville (OH)
    By replicating its successful strategy already implemented as part of the company’s internationalisation process in Europe, Sofidel has identified Circleville (Pickaway county, in the Columbus area), in Ohio – pending required approvals and favorable due diligence – as an area for launching the first greenfield investment in the new continent, a step which will significantly increase the company's production capacity.
    The selected area, in the Midwest, offers important cities located within a few hundred kilometres and is a well-established logistics hub for distribution operators.

    Philadelphia (PA)
    Additionally, Sofidel has also recently set up a new office in Philadelphia (PA), on the East Coast, one of the most densely populated areas in the country which will serve as the new headquarters of Sofidel America.

    Sofidel in the USA
    The activities announced combine with the recent opening of a new production plant in Tulsa (OK) producing AFH and consumer Private Label products.
    As a whole Sofidel is committed to investing more than $ 300 million over three years (2015 – 2016 – 2017) in the USA.
    “The US market is a key market for our Group, because it is the first in the world in terms of per capita consumption in the tissue sector”, explained Luigi Lazzareschi, CEO of Sofidel Group. “Today, the Sofidel Group has operations in seven states, and with the recent investments we are creating the necessary conditions to further increase our service levels and enhance the added value that we offer our customers.”

    The company is therefore committed to its growth and development in the North American market. After its arrival on the continent in 2012 with the acquisition of operations in three states, today, Sofidel is active in 7 states. This geographical expansion in capacity is in line with the Sofidel strategy focused on providing highest quality products and services while being close to the markets in which it operates, and represents the second step in the development plans of Sofidel America.
    (Sofidel S.p.A.)
     
    09.11.2015   Fujifilm showcases its industrial inkjet capability at InPrint 2015    ( Company news )

    Company news Fujifilm announces that it will showcase a range of advanced technologies for industrial and package printing applications at InPrint 2015 (10th - 12th November 2015, Munich). Visitors will have the opportunity to take advantage of the company’s leading expertise to discover how they can fulfil a wide array of industrial inkjet applications.

    The Fujifilm Dimatix Samba™ industrial inkjet printhead will be shown on the stand, in combination with a Fujifilm water based ink, to print onto décor papers for laminate flooring. SambaTM printheads, which have been refined for industrial applications, can achieve the high print speeds and excellent image quality demanded by applications like flooring. This demonstration, running at 100 m/min, will be using Schoeller substrates designed for décor applications. The 1200 x 1200 dpi resolution and 2 picolitre drop size, coupled with a specific ink formulation for this application, means Fujifilm is able to raise the quality that can be achieved by a digital printing system. This décor demonstration represents only one of a series of applications where the combination of SambaTM printheads and Fujifilm ink are expanding the potential for digital printing in the industrial market place.

    Fujifilm Dimatix will also show the functional fluid capability of the Merlin DCE modular inkjet print engine. The Merlin DCE has been developed as a manufacturing tool to be used for product decoration and materials deposition. The Merlin DCE can be supplied in different configurations that enable integration into existing production environments.

    Also on show will be Fujifilm’s extensive range of high performance UV, hybrid and water based inks that have been developed to meet the specific needs of the industrial and packaging industries. A variety of applications produced using these inks will be on display, including a live demonstration of thermoforming using a highly flexible UV inkjet ink.

    Finally, the large format LED UV hybrid inkjet printer Acuity LED 1600 II (photo), which guarantees excellent image quality and can print on flexible and rigid substrates up to 13mm thick, will be displayed in a special configuration to create proofing samples for packaging applications. This complements its ability to print specialist environmental graphics like wallpapers and window films. Environmental graphics are an increasingly popular application enabling wide format printers to differentiate their services and take a step into industrial printing. Thanks to its capability to print six ink colours plus opaque white and gloss varnish, the Acuity LED 1600 II helps printers to deliver appealing interior decor projects.

    Gary Barnes, marketing manager for industrial inkjet at Fujifilm Speciality Ink Systems, comments: “Building on the success of the show last year, the Fujifilm stand at InPrint 2015 is a showcase of advanced printheads, inks and print engines that demonstrate how inkjet technologies can successfully contribute to the growth of the industrial market.” He adds: “We are committed to raise the awareness of Fujifilm’s inkjet technologies outside of our traditional printing sectors, and we are confident that InPrint 2015 will be an ideal platform to reach this objective.”
    (Fujifilm Speciality Ink Systems Ltd)
     
    09.11.2015   Rayonier Advanced Materials Reports Third Quarter Results    ( Company news )

    Company news -Raises 2015 pro forma EBITDA guidance to approximately $230 million
    -Continues progress toward $40 million cost-reduction initiative
    -Reduces net debt by $86 million through first nine months and $136 million since separation

    Rayonier Advanced Materials Inc. (NYSE:RYAM) (the “Company”) reported net income for the third quarter 2015 of $32 million, and $0.76 diluted earnings per share, compared to net income of $19 million, and $0.46 diluted earnings per share for the same period in 2014.

    Pro forma net income for the third quarter 2015 was $33 million, or $0.78 per share compared to $22 million or $0.53 per share for the prior year period. Year-to-date pro forma net income was $60 million, or $1.42 per share, compared to $80 million, or $1.90 per share, for the prior year period.

    “Our year-to-date results reflect the significant progress we have made on our initiatives to reduce cost and improve operational efficiency. Our execution in these areas over the last nine months has positively impacted our operating performance and allows us to raise 2015 pro forma EBITDA guidance to approximately $230 million,” said Paul Boynton (photo), Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer.

    Third Quarter and Year-to-Date Results
    Sales of $257 million for the quarter were comparable to third quarter 2014. Sales for the nine months ended September 26, 2015 of $700 million, were also comparable to the prior year period. As expected, cellulose specialties prices were down 6 percent and 7 percent from the prior year three month and nine month periods, respectively, reflecting the results of our 2015 price negotiations. Cellulose specialties sales volumes for the three months were slightly higher and, for the nine months, slightly lower compared to the prior year periods. Commodity product sales volumes increased significantly reflecting improved production efficiency and more operating days in 2015.
    Pro forma operating income was $60 million for the third quarter, up 28 percent from the prior year, as stronger cellulose specialties and commodity volumes combined with lower costs more than offset lower cellulose specialties sales prices. Costs were lower due to cost reduction activities and favorable wood, chemical and energy prices. Year-to-date, pro forma operating income was $118 million, down 13 percent from the prior year period as lower cellulose specialties sales prices and volumes were partially offset by lower costs and higher commodity sales volumes. In addition, the year-to-date 2014 period reflects carve-out accounting treatment for the first six months of the year. As such, the selling and general expenses are not comparable to the stand-alone company’s costs.
    During the quarter, the Company continued to make progress on its $40 million annualized cost-savings initiative. Year-to-date savings of roughly $21 million are reflected in operating results. The Company is currently targeting at least $30 million in permanent cost savings to be realized in 2015 operating results with an annualized run-rate approaching $40 million by year-end.

    Interest Expense, Net
    Interest expense, net of interest income, was $27 million for the nine months ended September 26, 2015 reflecting the debt issued to effect the separation.

    Income Tax Expense
    The 2015 year-to-date effective tax rate was 33 percent, compared to 30 percent for the same period in the prior year. The prior year period reflects the reversal of a tax reserve. The full year effective tax rate is expected to be between 33 and 34 percent.
    The year-to-date effective tax rate was below the federal rate of 35 percent primarily due to the benefit of the domestic manufacturing tax deduction and state tax credits, partially offset by an adjustment to the state deferred tax rate. The impact of the manufacturing deduction on the effective tax rate is greater in periods that include expenses that reduce pre-tax income but are not currently deductible for income tax purposes.

    Cash Flow and Liquidity
    Year-to-date, the Company generated $183 million of pro forma EBITDA and $92 million of adjusted free cash flow; as a result, net debt has been reduced by $86 million since December 31, 2014. As of September 26, 2015, the Company had $336 million of liquidity including $236 million available under its revolving credit facility after taking into account outstanding letters of credit.

    Outlook
    “The persistent imbalance of supply and demand, coupled with other global economic headwinds, including a strong U.S. dollar, requires us to stay focused on streamlining operations, maximizing cash flow and reducing debt,” said Boynton.
    (Rayonier Advanced Materials Inc.)
     
    09.11.2015   Felix Schoeller & Xeikon launched their new product portfolio for Xeikon printing presses    ( Company news )

    Company news Felix Schoeller Digital Media, one of the Felix Schoeller Group‘s business units, supported the Xeikon Café event – held in Lier, Belgium in October - as a business partner. The fact that the event’s main theme was wall decoration gave Felix Schoeller – the Osnabrück-based specialty paper manufacturer - the opportunity to showcase the product portfolio it has put together especially for Xeikon. The paper manufacturer and printing specialists worked together to qualify these nine papers for Xeikon’s presses.

    The new product portfolio, which has not only wallpaper base but also other high-end digital printing papers, opens up a whole range of new applications and design options for Xeikon customers. Anyone interested in knowing more can simply send an email to ATovar@Felix-Schoeller.com to request a samples book with print examples.

    In his presentation at the Xeikon Café, Michael Avermann – product manager for this product segment at Felix Schoeller – emphasised the versatility of wall decoration. He also gave his audience an insight into the market, along with information about future market trends.

    “We are delighted that Felix Schoeller is able to offer our customers a broad portfolio, which gives them a huge choice of products and a host of possibilities to develop their business. We have joined forces and been able to develop other opportunities - in addition to wallpaper – for exciting digital printing applications,” says Monika Olbricht, Sales Director for Document Printing, summing up the productive collaboration between the two companies.

    The product portfolio that has been qualified for Xeikon printing presses consists of Felix Schoeller’s INSPIRE wallpaper range – both coated and uncoated in natural white, PE-coated papers with canvas and lustre surface finishes and a basis weight of up to 340 g/m² in bright white and alpine white, and high-end uncoated digital printing papers in the E-FEEL® and E-PURE (150-230 g/m², alpine white) series.
    (Xeikon Manufacturing NV)
     
    09.11.2015   Focus on shorter setup times sees good attendance at the 2015 Bobst Meerbusch ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ...FOLDING CARTON DAYS

    Like the FOLDING CARTON DAYS organized by Bobst Meerbusch in the past, this year's event again attracted great interest among packaging producers from Germany and the Benelux countries. The topic selected by the company - "Are you producing yet, or are you still setting up?" – highlighted an issue that is currently putting increasing pressure on many packaging producers in view of shrinking run lengths and the associated higher frequency of job changes. As a result, almost a hundred visitors came to the BOBST Competence Center in Meerbusch during the three 2015 FOLDING CARTON DAYS (23 - 25 September) in order to investigate the theoretical and practical aspects of shorter set-up times when die-cutting and gluing folding cartons.

    The speakers from the partner companies taking part in the event likewise focused their presentations on the options offered by their companies for reducing set-up times. The topics presented ranged from working with optimum tools for die-cutting, gluing and quality control, to important criteria for adhesive selection, and all the way to the financing of investments in new machines, upgrades, or the expansion of existing production systems.

    Just how quickly job changes on flat bed die-cutters and folder-gluers can be handled today was illustrated by live presentations on an EXPERTCUT 106 PER and an EXPERTFOLD 110 A-2 CSM, installed at the BOBST Competence Center in Meerbusch for demonstration and training purposes.

    The EXPERTCUT 106 PER was used to demonstrate the production of a folding card. The job was lifted, and the machine operator reset the machine to a document folder single-handed. The setting time was roughly 18 minutes, this being about average for the given machine equipment. During this setup operation, Wolfgang Gross, Managing Director of Hesse Stanzwerkzeuge GmbH, reported on the possibilities for supporting the set-up process by means of the tools used. After briefly starting production, this job was likewise interrupted, in order to again reset the EXPERTCUT 106 PER for the folding card demonstrated before. Three employees from the nearby production environment were called in to assist. Thanks to efficient coordination, the setup time was reduced to less than four minutes. The average time spent on the machine by the additional staff members was less than two minutes.

    Print marks were used on both jobs, allowing the innovative Power Register II system from BOBST to ensure perfect register between the printed images and the die-cutting layout.

    The EXPERTFOLD 110 A-2 CSM was first of all used to fold and glue the folding cards die-cut on the EXPERTCUT 106 PER, with four glue lines at a speed of 27,000 blanks per hour. The machine operators subsequently reset the EXPERTFOLD 110 A-2 CSM for a six-corner carton. The modules needed for production of this carton had previously been completely prepared with all the necessary tools, and thus only needed to be attached to the machine. This job change took just under 13 minutes. High-speed images of the previous job were shown during the resetting operation, providing interesting insights into the correct choice of grain direction.

    These live demonstrations on the two machines made it very clear that if processes are perfected accordingly, including the preparation of the necessary tools off the machines, the setting and control effort involved in machine set-up can be reduced to a minimum. The result is significantly more production time on the machines, the impact of which grows with the number of job changes required in day-to-day business.

    "We wanted to give our customers some ideas as to how they can optimize their setup operations with relatively little effort, and thus improve their productivity. The great interest expressed showed us that this was exactly what our visitors wanted to know, as did the intensive expert discussions that went on until the early evening. This experience matches the massive response we have been getting to the EXPERTISE TO GO series of events that we recently launched. These seminars similarly focus on topics with a concrete, practical focus," explains Dirk Corsten, Managing Director of Bobst Meerbusch GmbH. He says that the FOLDING CARTON DAYS to come will likewise pay attention to offering the visitors the greatest possible practical benefits.
    (Bobst Meerbusch GmbH)
     
    09.11.2015   Valmet to supply press section technology for Marusumi Paper Co., Ltd. in Japan    ( Company news )

    Company news Valmet will supply a paper machine rebuild to Marusumi Paper's Ohe mill in Japan. The rebuild includes a new press section utilizing Valmet's modern shoe press technology.

    The main target of the rebuild is to decrease energy consumption at the plant. The rebuilt machine will be started up during fourth quarter of 2016.

    The order was included in Valmet's third quarter 2015 orders received. The value of the order is not disclosed.

    "The trend in newsprint production has recently been towards lighter paper weights, driven by resource and energy savings. To further meet this lighter weight tendency, Marusumi Paper has decided to proceed with a press rebuild project in order to improve productivity and end product quality. We chose Valmet as a supplier for this rebuild for several reasons. The original supplier of the machine is Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, and Valmet has acquired the company's paper machinery technology. We have also had good experience with Valmet in an earlier project when installing a sizer for Ohe mill's PM 3 in 2005. We are expecting great performance from Valmet also with this project", says Toru Shinohara, Director and Mill Manager, Marusumi Paper Co., Ltd.

    "Valmet can offer key technologies for challenging rebuilds, and pressing technology is one of our core know-how areas. Modern pressing technology can help our customers to achieve higher end product quality and significantly decrease energy consumption," says Petri Paukkunen, Vice President, Paper Mills Sales and Marketing, Valmet.

    Key features of the delivery
    Valmet's delivery includes a new center roll based press section with modern shoe press technology as well as related runnability solutions, new press section frames, installation, motors and electrification. The existing press section at PM 2 will be rebuilt into Valmet's OptiPress Center press section. With this tri-nip solution, the new 1st press, the 2nd press and the 3rd press shoe nip maximizes the dry content, decreases steam consumption and increases the wet strength of the paper.
    The 9000-mm-wide (wire) PM 2 produces newsprint grades at the design speed of 1200 m/min.
    (Valmet Corporation)
     
    06.11.2015   Reinforcement of our team at CITO UK Ltd.    ( Company news )

    Company news As of 1st November 2015, Steve Tiley (photo) joined our team in the UK. Steve has been employed in the Packaging graphic industry for the last twenty years, and from 2005 to 2015, he was part of the sales team at Sandvik Saxon. Thanks to his previous activities, he is highly familiar with the Packaging graphic industry, not only in the UK but also worldwide. Steve Tiley has been a familiar name to us and a companion in the industry for many years, we have followed his professional development with great interest. Following Sandvik Saxon's decision to withdraw from the industry, we were free to conduct direct talks regarding his future professional plans.

    We are very pleased that Steve will now be reinforcing our management team in the UK. As he is already well known to many of our customers, he will only require a brief period of familiarisation before he begins supporting us in developing our sales success in the UK.

    We would all like to welcome Steve to the CITO family, and we will be giving him all the support he needs to successfully develop in our group. Naturally, our promise of being a "partner for success" also applies to employees.
    (CITO UK Ltd)
     
    06.11.2015   KapStone Reports Third Quarter Results: Operating cash flows exceed $100 million    ( Company news )

    Company news KapStone Paper and Packaging Corporation (NYSE:KS) ("KapStone", or the "Company") reported results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2015. As compared to 2014's third quarter, results for 2015's third quarter are below:
    -Net sales of $808 million up $209 million, or 35 percent
    -Net income of $34 million down $20 million, or 37 percent
    -Adjusted net income of $49 million down $9 million, or 15 percent
    -Adjusted EBITDA of $126 million down $6 million, or 4 percent
    -Diluted EPS of $0.35 down $0.21 per share, or 38 percent
    -Adjusted diluted EPS of $0.51 down $0.09 per share, or 15 percent

    Roger W. Stone, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, stated, "The strength of our operations generated third quarter free cash flow of $73 million, up 24 percent over the prior year. The increase in cash flow includes $17 million generated by Victory, while our legacy operations also performed very well despite a 12 day work stoppage by our union at the Longview mill. No one wins in a strike, and this strike was no exception. The strike cost KapStone approximately $14 million, and our Longview union employees lost approximately $2 million of wages and benefits.

    "Our Charleston and Roanoke Rapids mills set all-time production records for the third quarter, and our corrugated products shipments year-to-date were up 4 percent on an average weekly basis over 2014. The stronger dollar, however, continues to negatively impact our export sales, resulting in lower sales prices for saturating kraft, export containerboard, and extensible grade kraft paper and a less favorable product mix.

    "We are making strong progress at integrating Victory Packaging, and we are on target to realize the $30 million run rate of synergies by mid-2016. We are aggressively working on realizing the benefits of increased integration that Victory provides."

    Third Quarter Operating Highlights
    Consolidated net sales of $808 million in the third quarter of 2015 increased by $209 million, or 35 percent compared to $598 million for the 2014 third quarter. The increase is primarily due to $248 million from the Victory Packaging acquisition, partially offset by $24 million of lower shipments due to the Longview work stoppage, $3 million due to a stronger U.S. dollar compared to the Euro which impacted sales in Europe and some exports, and lower selling prices. The Company sold 678,000 tons of paper during the third quarter of 2015 compared to 715,000 tons a year earlier. The Company's average mill selling price of $671 per ton in the third quarter of 2015 decreased by $18 per ton compared to the third quarter of 2014, due to the stronger U.S. dollar and lower domestic and export containerboard prices.

    Operating income of $62 million for the 2015 third quarter decreased by $33 million, or 35 percent, compared to the 2014 third quarter. The lower operating earnings primarily reflects lower sales volume and higher costs due to the work stoppage at Longview, lower average mill selling prices, higher fiber costs, inflation on compensation and benefit costs, and the stronger U.S. dollar which impacted prices in Europe and for some exports. On the positive side, Victory Packaging generated $18 million of earnings in the third quarter of 2015 prior to acquisition-related expenses of $2 million for a non-cash inventory step-up charge and $5 million of amortization expense of identified intangible assets.

    Interest expense, net, of $10 million for the third quarter of 2015, was about $2 million higher than a year ago, reflecting the additional borrowings in June 2015 to finance the Victory Packaging acquisition. Our weighted average interest rate as of September 30, 2015 is 1.8 percent which is about the same as last year. Loss on debt extinguishment was about $2 million lower in 2015 compared to 2014 based on a lower amount of debt prepayments. In the quarter ended September 30, 2015, the Company made a $52 million debt prepayment compared to a $175 million prepayment in the period a year earlier.

    The effective income tax rate for the 2015 third quarter was 32.5 percent compared to 33.9 percent for the 2014 third quarter. The decrease reflects a discrete benefit from a state tax law change enacted in the third quarter of 2015.

    Cash Flow and Working Capital
    Cash and cash equivalents decreased by $21 million to $8 million in the quarter ended September 30, 2015, from June 30, 2015. Operating activities generated $104 million during the third quarter while investing and financing activities used $32 million and $93 million, respectively. Capital expenditures in the third quarter were $31 million including the start-up of a new corrugator at the Company's Aurora Illinois box plant. Financing activities included a $52 million debt prepayment.

    At September 30, 2015, the Company had approximately $431 million of working capital and $480 million of revolver borrowing capacity.

    Conclusion
    In summary, Stone commented, "Having now worked together with the team from Victory, I am even more optimistic regarding the opportunities available to KapStone. These insights coupled with the strength of our industry, provide strong assurance that KapStone is well positioned for the future."
    (KapStone Paper and Packaging Corporation)
     
    06.11.2015   Munksjö Oyj's Interim Report for January-September 2015: Price increases not yet covering the ...    ( Company news )

    Company news Highlights of the third quarter 2015
    - Net sales were EUR 269.3 (275.9) million.
    - Adjusted EBITDA was EUR 20.0 (23.2) million and the adjusted EBITDA margin was 7.4% (8.4%).
    - Operating result adjusted for non-recurring items was EUR 6.8 (9.5) million. Non-recurring items amounted to EUR -4.9 (-0.3) million.
    - Operating result was EUR 1.9 (9.2) million and net result EUR 3.2 (-3.4) million.
    - Earnings per share (EPS) were EUR 0.07 (-0.07).
    - Operating cash flow was EUR 9.8 (16.2) million.
    - In September Munksjö announced a plan to further adjust its cost structure in Business Area Release Liners.

    Highlights of January-September 2015
    - Net sales were EUR 840.7 (856.3) million.
    - Adjusted EBITDA was EUR 71.5 (76.6) million and the adjusted EBITDA margin was 8.5% (8.9%).
    - Operating result adjusted for non-recurring items was EUR 31.5 (36.6)
    million. Non-recurring items amounted to EUR -7.3 (-1.9) million.
    - Operating result was EUR 24.2 (34.7) million and net result EUR 15.6 (5.0) million.
    - Earnings per share (EPS) were EUR 0.30 (0.09).
    - Operating cash flow was EUR 11.0 (24.5) million.

    Comment from Munksjö's President and CEO, Jan Åström (photo)
    "During the first nine months of 2015, our operating environment has been challenging with increased short fibre pulp prices and mostly flat market development in many of our specialty paper segments.
    The profitability development during the first nine months of 2015 has been unsatisfactory. A higher raw material cost level, negatively impacting EBITDA with EUR 21 million, was only partially compensated for by a positive impact of EUR 12 million as a result of increased sales prices. The gradually implemented sales price increases are expected to have full effect at the beginning of the fourth quarter.

    There has also been a rapid negative macro-economic development in Brazil, affecting Business Area Release Liners, leading to a decline in the demand of our paper grades of up to 20 per cent. The combined effect of the increase in the price of short fibre pulp and the effect of the decline in the demand had a significant negative effect on the profitability of the paper business unit in Brazil in the third quarter.

    In Business Area Graphics and Packaging, we have within the uncoated paper business succeeded with the implementation of the profitability improvement plan and have reached improved gross margins. For the coated paper business we have for some time been facing increased competitive pressure, as new competitors have entered the market, and the possibilities to raise prices have been limited, even if the price of short fibre pulp has substantially increased. We have, as a result of our re-financing in September 2014 and a more favourable currency development for financial items, significantly increased our net result and earnings per share. We continue the efforts and actions to achieve our profitability target, an EBITDA margin of 12 per cent at the end of 2016.

    In September we announced a restructuring program at the mill in Italy, which is part of Business Area Release Liners, and we will continue to adjust our cost structure in order to increase our margins."

    Outlook
    The demand outlook of specialty paper products for the fourth quarter of 2015 is stable and is expected to reflect the seasonal pattern, with the exception of the paper business in Brazil, which is affected by the continued weakened macro-economic environment.
    The price increases announced in the second quarter of 2015 for business areas Decor and Release Liners have been gradually implemented and the full effect is expected at the beginning of the fourth quarter.
    The seasonal shutdowns at the end of 2015 are expected to be carried out to about the same extent as in 2014, with the exception of Business Area Graphics and Packaging and the paper business unit in Brazil of Business Area Release Liners, where the shutdowns are prolonged in order to reduce inventory levels.
    The reduction of inventory levels is expected to reduce the financial result and improve the cash flow. The cash flow from operations is expected to reflect the seasonal pattern and hence be strongest in the fourth quarter of 2015.
    The cash flow effect from capital expenditure for fixed assets for 2015 is expected to amount to slightly above two thirds of the depreciation level, and amount to EUR 35-40 million.
    (Munksjö Oyj)
     
    06.11.2015   Successful manufacturer of branded goods Baier & Schneider invests in sheetfed offset and ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ...digital presses from Heidelberg

    -Stationery manufacturer uses new Speedmaster SX 52 Anicolor for the cost-effective production of short runs with high surface finishing requirements
    -Press contains 40,000th printing unit in the Speedmaster SM/SX 52 series
    -New Linoprint CV digital printing system produces extremely short orders with numerous versions
    -Excellent quality and reliability thanks to perfectly coordinated consumables and services

    The notebooks, calendars, and stationery sets from Brunnen are a familiar sight to schoolchildren, office workers, and householders around the world. The brand’s product range comprises a total of more than 7,000 items, which are produced mostly at the Heilbronn site of Baier & Schneider GmbH & Co.KG in Germany. Founded in 1877, the Schneider Group currently has more than 900 employees and processes more than 18,000 metric tons of paper each year. It is represented in eight European countries and exports to 60 countries.

    “We are successful because we monitor the market constantly and know what our customers want,” explains Ralf Wagner, head of production at the Heilbronn plant. “Product requirements change and we are seeing a growing demand for short runs and widely varied coatings and special effects.” That is why the company is soon to install a Speedmaster SX 52 four-color perfecting press with coating unit. The press is equipped with Anicolor zoneless inking unit technology, which keeps setup times extremely short, produces up to 90 percent less paper waste, and ensures high productivity. Moreover, the press includes the 40,000th 35 x 50 cm printing unit manufactured in the Speedmaster SM 52/SX 52 range. “We want to use the press primarily to produce covers for school books, cover sheets for college blocks, and calendars. We’ll be doing that in short runs and, most importantly, with special surface finishing techniques such as drip-off effects,” says Wagner.

    A Speedmaster SM 52-4-P, a Speedmaster SM 52-2-P, and five Speedmaster SM 102 machines as two-, four- and five-color presses are currently in operation at various sites operated by the Brunnen Group.
    (Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG)
     
    06.11.2015   Nordic Paper strengthens the business area Greaseproof     ( Company news )

    Company news To improve and boost the business area Greaseproof Peter Warren has been appointed our new Sales and Marketing director. Peter has an extensive background in sales and marketing. His last position was with the Avery Dennison Materials Group, where he was Director of Sales & Customer Service for Northern Europe.

    Also, a new position, Product Manager, has been instated within Greaseproof. Henrik Kjellgren, who already works at Nordic Paper, has been appointed Product Manager.
    (Nordic Paper Säffle AB)
     
    06.11.2015   Paper Converting Machine Company announces new Fusion Compact press    ( Company news )

    Company news PCMC, a worldwide leader in the design and manufacture of inline and CI presses, announced that it will unveil a new Fusion Compact (C) Press.
    The new Fusion C press will be loaded with the same fast make-ready and waste saving features as PCMC’s Fusion family of products – but with a smaller footprint (44’ L x 19’ W x 14’ H).
    The new 8 or 10 color gearless sleeved press will have a 12”-30” repeat range, 1000 FPM (305 MPM), and 42” / 1040 mm maximum web width.

    “Our new Fusion Compact press was created from listening to our clients’ changing needs. The Fusion Compact addresses today’s pressures of running short-run work,” said Rich Rogals, sales director at PCMC. “The Fusion C will be a tremendous tool for the print industry and I am thrilled to offer this to our customers. As with all of our products, PCMC offers a superior level of technical service, support and training, making an implementation completely seamless.”

    The first Fusion C will begin production in January, and PCMC plans to have an open house to demonstrate the new machine in late July.
    (PCMC Paper Converting Machine Company)
     
    06.11.2015   ANDRITZ GROUP: favorable business development in the third quarter of 2015    ( Company news )

    Company news In the third quarter of 2015, international technology Group ANDRITZ showed a favorable business development.

    Sales amounted to 1,583.5 MEUR in the third quarter of 2015 and were thus 8.2% higher than the figure in the third quarter of 2014 (1,463.5 MEUR), with all four business areas increasing their sales. In the first three quarters of 2015, Group sales rose by 11.3% to 4,589.1 MEUR compared to last yearʼs reference period (Q1-Q3 2014: 4,122.9 MEUR).

    The order intake in the third quarter of 2015, at 1,187.6 MEUR, was 25.4% below the high figure for the previous yearʼs reference period (Q3 2014: 1,591.5 MEUR), which included some large orders in the PULP & PAPER and METALS business areas. In connection with the decline in order intake it has to be mentioned that the large order awarded to ANDRITZ by Fibria in July 2015 to supply equipment for a new pulp mill in Brazil was booked in the fourth quarter of 2015; typical order values of comparable projects are about 600 MEUR. In the first three quarters of 2015, the order intake amounted to 3,767.6 MEUR and was thus 17.6% below the high previous year’s reference figure (Q1-Q3 2014: 4,571.6 MEUR).

    Earnings of the ANDRITZ GROUP developed favorably. In the third quarter of 2015, EBITA rose to 110.1 MEUR, which is an increase of 9.0% compared to the previous yearʼs reference figure (Q3 2014: 101.0 MEUR). The EBITA margin amounted to 7.0% (Q3 2014: 6.9%). As announced at the end of August 2015, around 55 MEUR of financial provisions were booked in the reporting period for optimization of the value chain at Schuler. These provisions were partly offset by project-related one-off improvements in the amount of approximately 30 MEUR in the PULP & PAPER business area. After adjustment of these extraordinary effects, the Groupʼs EBITA amounted to 135.1 MEUR and the EBITA margin to 8.5% in the third quarter of 2015. Earnings also increased substantially in the first three quarters of 2015. At 295.0 MEUR, the EBITA was 25.9% higher than the figure for the previous yearʼs reference period (Q1-Q3 2014: 234.4 MEUR), while the EBITA margin amounted to 6.4% (Q1-Q3 2014: 5.7%). Excluding the extraordinary effects booked in the third quarter of 2015, the EBITA increased to 320.0 MEUR and the EBITA margin to 7.0%.

    Net income (without non-controlling interests) in the first three quarters of 2015 reached 181.3 MEUR (Q1-Q3 2014: 123.6 MEUR).

    On the basis of this business development, the project activity in the ANDRITZ business areas, and the order backlog as of end of September 2015, ANDRITZ currently expects an increase in sales and net income for 2015 compared to the previous year. However, if the economic weakness looming in the emerging economies (particularly China) worsens in the coming months and the global economy further weakens, this could have a negative impact on ANDRITZ’s business development.
    (Andritz AG)
     
    05.11.2015   Pöyry PLC: Interim Report 1 January - 30 September 2015    ( Company news )

    Company news OPERATING PROFIT IMPROVED

    HIGHLIGHTS JANUARY - SEPTEMBER 2015
    -The Group's order stock at the end of September was EUR 487.8 (475.3) million.
    -Comparable net sales were EUR 430.8 (416.1) million. Reported net sales in 2014 were EUR 434.8 million.
    -Operating profit increased to EUR 3.9 (-10.9) million. It improved in all Business Lines, especially in the Regional Operations and in the Industry Business Group.

    ALEXIS FRIES (photo), PRESIDENT AND CEO:
    "I am satisfied with Pöyry's improving performance during the reporting period. Our increased focus on sales is bearing fruit with several important projects secured during the quarter. We continued to sharpen project management processes and increase internal efficiency.

    Pöyry's comparable net sales, excluding the business that was divested in Finland in June 2014, increased during the reporting period to EUR 430.8 (416.1) million. The figure increased in the Energy and Industry Business Groups and remained stable in the Management Consulting Business Group and in the Regional Operations.

    Consolidated operating profit increased to EUR 3.9 (-10.9) million. The figure improved in all Business Lines, especially in the Regional Operations and in the Industry Business Group. In the reporting period, operating profit was impacted by one-time items totalling EUR -3 million, which were mainly recorded under the Regional Operations. As earlier reported, these include project losses recognised on a project originating from the former Urban Business Group, as well as expenses related to on-going arbitration proceedings in Brazil. The figure also includes costs associated with the CEO succession announced in August 2015.

    Operating profit last year was burdened by one-time items totalling EUR -11 million and a write-off of the receivables from Venezuela amounting to EUR -14 million. The write-off and most one-time items were recorded in the Regional Operations and related to project losses originating from the former Urban Business Group. In addition, operating profit included a gain of EUR 19 million from the divestment in Finland.

    The Group's order prospects remained solid. The comparable order intake increased year-on-year and several important projects were secured during the period. The figure improved clearly in the Industry Business Group, where order intake was strong especially in the pulp and paper sector. It also increased in the Energy Business Group, mainly due to the good performance in Asia and Middle East, as well as in the Management Consulting Business Group especially due to new projects in the energy sector. Order intake remained stable in the Regional Operations, where it stayed on the previous year's level in Northern Europe but decreased in other regions.

    Pöyry's order stock increased year-on-year to EUR 487.8 (475.3) million. It increased in the Management Consulting Business Group and particularly in the Industry Business Group, demonstrating the improving order intake since 2014. The figure remained stable in the Energy Business Group and in the Regional Operations.

    The Group's unallocated costs developed in line with expectations, as we continued to streamline our cost structures in the global support functions."
    (Pöyry Plc)
     
    05.11.2015   Fujifilm announces Jet Press 720S is now suitable for folding carton applications    ( Company news )

    Company news Fujifilm announces that it’s successful B2 inkjet digital press, the Jet Press 720S, can now be configured to handle folding carton applications. The Jet Press 720S configured for folding carton applications benefits from the same industry leading quality and productivity as the general commercial print version, but the ability to increase the vacuum pressure around the drum, together with a redesigned vacuum jacket, allows the press to accommodate a more diverse range of heavier carton boards commonly used in packaging applications.

    Says Taro Aoki, Head of Digital Press Solutions in EMEA for Fujifilm: “The folding carton and package printing market is changing, with advances in print technologies creating opportunities for forward thinking companies to take advantage of the trend towards more creative, personalised and shorter run packaging. The Jet Press 720S, configured to take heavier duty folding carton board, fits this trend perfectly, with its high quality and productivity perfect for these types of applications. The press is already proven in the market, with an increasing number of commercial printers taking advantage of its industry leading performance. Now these benefits can be applied to folding carton print applications.“

    A robust, workhorse B2 production press, the Jet Press 720S is becoming increasingly popular, thanks to its reliability and uptime, a wide colour gamut, and its ability to produce short run print of the highest possible quality, out-performing offset in many areas. High capacity data servers using Fujifilm’s own XMF workflow solution enable the Jet Press 720S to download all the data needed to print complex jobs on the fly, making variable data and versioned print jobs possible on a single sided press. In addition, the ability to produce collated print, where each sheet of a job is different, simplifies the finishing process considerably, minimising the post-press costs.

    The Jet Press 720S features new generation SAMBA™ printheads – the industry’s most advanced single pass printhead technology with each B2 width print bar comprising of 17 individually replaceable modular printheads, each with 2,048 nozzles, ensuring the 720S can achieve native resolutions of 1,200 x 1,200 dpi. The print bar also takes advantage of unique VersaDrop™ technology, allowing the size and shape of each ink drop to be precisely controlled and placed on the paper. This guarantees the highest digital print quality in the industry with unbeatable consistency, with no on-press tweaks necessary. The replaceable modular printheads also significantly reduce the necessity for system downtime and minimise breaks in production for press maintenance, with a traditional sheet-fed paper feed mechanism providing high registration accuracy and reliable operation.

    Concludes Taro Aoki: “The new configuration of the Jet Press 720S enables packaging companies to offer their customers ultra-high quality short-run, versioned and personalised packaging, while also acheiving substantial reductions in substrate waste and associated production costs. Fujifilm’s focus on the packaging market is growing, and the launch of this configuration of the Jet Press 720S will provide exciting opportunities for packaging printers to offer their customers something different.“
     
    05.11.2015   Weyerhaeuser Reports Third Quarter Results    ( Company news )

    Company news - 35 percent increase in earnings compared with second quarter
    - Increased quarterly dividend 7 percent
    - Completed $700 million share repurchase program announced in 2014, authorized new $500 million program

    Weyerhaeuser Company (NYSE: WY) reported third quarter net earnings to common shareholders of $180 million, or 35 cents per diluted share. This compares with net earnings of $133 million, or 26 cents per diluted share, for second quarter 2015 and net earnings from continuing operations before special items of $178 million, or 33 cents per diluted share, for the same period last year. Third quarter 2014 net earnings of $1,153 million, or $2.15 per diluted share, included after-tax gains of $975 million from discontinued operations and special items, primarily related to the divestiture of Weyerhaeuser Real Estate Company.

    Net sales for the third quarter 2015 totaled $1.8 billion, compared with net sales of $1.8 billion for the second quarter, and $1.9 billion for the third quarter 2014.

    "I am very pleased with our third quarter performance, as each of our businesses leveraged operational excellence improvements to drive strong results despite market and global macroeconomic headwinds," said Doyle R. Simons (photo), president and chief executive officer. "In addition, we delivered on our ongoing commitment to return cash to shareholders by increasing our quarterly dividend by 7 percent and have completed the $700 million share repurchase authorized in 2014. We remain relentlessly focused on driving value for our shareholders and fully capitalizing on an improving US housing market."
    (Weyerhaeuser Company)
     
    05.11.2015   Scheufelen goes packaging. The phoenolux brand showcases the company's new focus on ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... packaging and board products

    Innovation at Scheufelen has a new name – phoenolux. The company’s latest development, a premium packaging board with one or two-sided coating and outstanding technical properties, heralds a new expansion into high-quality packaging and graphic applications.

    Scheufelen, a traditional company based in Baden-Württemberg in Germany, is breaking new ground with a major realignment programme. “We’ve decided to expand into the packaging market because it is a highly promising sector. The market for graphic papers has become very difficult,” explains Horst Lamparter, Director of Sales for graphic papers.

    The two new high-quality board products – the phoenolux c1s with one-sided coating and the phoenolux c2s coated on both sides – are testament to the unparalleled wealth of experience and skill in the art of paper making offered by the world’s leading manufacturer of premium coated papers. The outstanding technical properties that phoenolux delivers meet the highest standards in the field of premium boards.

    Flexible applications:
    The phoenolux brand provides the ideal basis for graphic applications and high-quality packaging. The spectrum ranges from covers for
    brochures, magazines, reports and books to postcards, business cards, folders and CD sleeves. In terms of packaging, the premium paper product is ideal for use in even the most discerning industries, including food and beverages, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics/beauty.

    Extensive product range:
    Scheufelen offers phoenolux c1s in grammages of 180, 220, 250, 275, 300, 330 and 350 gsm. phoenolux c2s with two-sided coating is available in grammages of 250, 280, 300, 330, 350 and 400 gsm.

    Premium quality:
    The phoenolux premium board delivers exceptional whiteness in the packaging and board sectors. It is double-coated for maximum printability, and its high proportion of long fibres ensures optimised folding properties, a matt silk surface, a pleasing touch and high rigidity.

    Printing and processing:
    The phoenolux brand from Scheufelen ensures fast final processing thanks to exceptional runability and stacking properties, excellent rub resistance, high dimensional stability and rapid drying. All of this is combined with superb aesthetic results and excellent ink gloss.
    “Our aim is to use this premium board to take the step from graphic applications into the packaging market – and thus establish ourselves in a key future growth sector,” Horst Lamparter sums up.
    (Papierfabrik Scheufelen GmbH + Co. KG)
     
    05.11.2015   Abbey Labels chooses Xeikon CX3 to expand digital production services     ( Company news )

    Company news Addressing capacity pressures with newest and fastest Xeikon digital label press

    Xeikon, an innovator in digital color printing technology, is proud to announce that leading UK label producer Abbey Labels Ltd has chosen the Xeikon CX3 digital label press to expand its digital production services and reduce pressure on capacity. The Xeikon CX3, based on Xeikon Cheetah digital print technology and officially launched for worldwide availability at Labelexpo Europe, is the fastest five-color digital label press in its class.

    As for the choice to invest in the Xeikon CX3, Tom Allum, Chairman of Abbey Labels is clear, “We acknowledged that with our existing digital equipment, we were getting to over-capacity and our lead times were drifting because of the great success of our digital department. We aim to turn jobs around in four days, but it was stretching to a week. The Xeikon CX3 is adding exactly the digital printing capability we need. It will help us to stay one step ahead and keep up to speed with market requirements.”

    Digital gives more options
    “We specialize in trade work for print management and procurement businesses. In addition we serve various other clients in the food, beverage, retail, cosmetic, chemical and pharmaceutical industries” explains Allum. “. Due to the great success of our digital department, we installed a second Xeikon press earlier this year. The Xeikon CX3, scheduled for installation at the end of this year, was chosen to help us address the continuously increased demand for digital and achieve a 20% year-on-year growth.” The digital service is complementary to Abbey’s HD flexo production on four presses.
    The way Abbey Labels operates has dramatically evolved during this investment program from one of a supplier to a more integrated part of the natural supply chain. Allum comments, “We are now talking to customers earlier in the process because they know we can help them achieve the results and the quality they are looking for – even in the most challenging situations” The need to maintain high quality has always been one of the main drivers for the investment in Xeikon technology. “Our Xeikon presses have helped us to reduce production times and therefore enable us to meet tighter deadlines with the quality we demand. We understand technology and software, and it was that understanding that led us to invest in Xeikon,” says Allum.

    Press productivity at high speed
    As for the last investment in the Xeikon CX3, one key attraction for Abbey Labels was the speed of the press – 30 meters per minute, which is 56% faster than the current presses. This speed will enable Abbey Labels to create a highly flexible approach to print production, help expand its portfolio and win new business. Another deciding factor was the ability to print on a variety of heat-sensitive substrates, which is made possible by Xeikon’s unique toner technology, the specifically-designed CX3 toner (QA-CH) which requires a much lower fusing temperature than typical toner-based presses. In addition, it meets FDA regulations for food contact and offers the ability to print opaque white toner in one pass.

    “The Xeikon CX3 will help us to extend our product line. We will be able to work with thermal labels and thinner films thanks to the Cheetah toner. We are well-known for our ability to run complex jobs on a wide range of substrates, and the Xeikon CX3 will allow us to continue and expand that service” states Allum. “The fact we can run white toner and that the inks are food safe was also a big selling point. Since we work a lot with trade customers, we don’t always know what we are quoting for, and being BRC and ISO14001 accredited, we need the reassurance that however we run it, we can meet those standards. Having Xeikon technology, we are certain.”

    Installation of the Xeikon CX3 is expected to go smooth according to Allum: “Our operators are already trained to use Xeikon’s systems, and everything for the color control is in place. So when the press comes in, we can be up and running straight away. We are currently running two shifts per day and are looking at running three. It’s a busy shop and the shorter the learning curve for our operators, the better.”

    Allum also adds that the investment was well-thought-out and other vendor solutions were carefully reviewed before the final decision was made. “That approach has held us in good stead over the years so we looked at solutions from other toner and inkjet suppliers. We ran tests, visited installations and did a lot of research to be sure we made the right choice. Xeikon was the only one that had the solution we felt was most suitable, and that fitted the bill entirely,” he says.

    Riding the growth wave
    As for where the growth is coming from, Allum states, “There is momentum, and we are on the crest of a wave. We are not taking work from our flexo presses. The work we are gaining in digital is new work for us from current customers and we are also dramatically increasing our customer base. One process complements the other, and we can offer our customers the most cost-effective solution for every job. And the most important thing is that, whatever technology the customer chooses, there is no degradation in quality! The mix of flexo and digital printing positions us well for the future. We can produce one label or many millions. We have to be a jack of all trades in this business, and the Xeikon CX3 will help us do just that.”
    (Xeikon Manufacturing NV)
     
    04.11.2015   SCA Interim Report Q3 2015    ( Company news )

    Company news JANUARY 1 – SEPTEMBER 30, 2015 (compared with same period a year ago)
    -Net sales rose 13% (5% excluding exchange rate effects) to SEK 86,276m (76,657)
    -Organic sales growth, which excludes exchange rate effects, acquisitions and divestments, was 5%
    -Operating profit, excluding items affecting comparability, rose 11% to SEK 9,560m (8,599)
    -The operating margin, excluding items affecting comparability, was 11.1% (11.2%)
    -Profit before tax, excluding items affecting comparability, rose 13% to SEK 8,864m (7,847)
    -Items affecting comparability totaled SEK -2,764m (-513) of which SEK -710m (-470) affect cash flow
    -Earnings per share were SEK 5.94 (7.35)
    -Return on capital employed, excluding items affecting comparability, was 11.7% (11.5%)
    -Cash flow from current operations was SEK 6,944m (5,373)

    CEO Magnus Groth (photo) comments:
    The third quarter of 2015 showed good organic sales growth, a higher operating profit and a higher operating cash flow compared with the same period a year ago.

    The past few months have been eventful, during which we made a number of important, strategic decisions. To further intensify the focus on the Group’s two operations, SCA has decided to initiate a dividing of the Group into two divisions: a Hygiene division and a Forest Products division. As of January 1, 2017, the Forest Products division will expand its quarterly financial reporting. In Forest Products, we have decided to invest in increased capacity for pulp production at the Östrand pulp mill in Sweden. Over time, the investment in Östrand will increase sales and competitiveness and create a world-class cost position and higher margins.

    To accelerate growth and the pace of innovation as well as to further strengthen the competitiveness of SCA’s hygiene operations, we have also decided to implement an enhancement of our hygiene organization, effective January 1, 2016. In October we announced that SCA is acquiring Wausau Paper Corp., a North American Away-from-Home tissue company. Wausau Paper’s product portfolio complements SCA’s offerings in North America and gives us access to premium tissue in the region. We expect the acquisition to generate benefits for SCA and our customers. The transaction is subject to Wausau Paper shareholder and regulatory approvals, and is expected to close during the first quarter of 2016.

    In Asia, which is an important growth market with a large population and low penetration of hygiene products, we strengthen the collaboration with Vinda by divesting our business in South East Asia, Taiwan and South Korea for integration with Vinda. The transaction enables us to further leverage on our strengths to build a leading Asian hygiene business.

    We have continued to address areas for improvement. Against the backdrop of declining global demand for publication papers over several years and weak profitability at the Ortviken paper mill, we intend to close one newsprint machine at Ortviken paper mill in Sundsvall, Sweden. We will also recognize an impairment loss for the mill. We are divesting our baby diaper operation in South Africa, which has had unsatisfactory profitability. In addition, we have addressed our brand valuation in relation to our baby diaper operation in Mexico and the Everbeauty acquisition in Asia, which has entailed impairment losses. We are divesting our ownership in Bromma Business Jet and have recognized costs for this during the third quarter. The sale is in line with SCA’s previous announcement that the Group will not own business jets.

    As part of SCA’s ongoing cost-savings program related to the acquisition of Georgia-Pacific’s European tissue operations, in October we closed our tissue production plant in Saint-Cyr-en-Val, France. The closure gave rise to restructuring costs during the third quarter 2015.

    Also during the quarter, SCA was included in Dow Jones Sustainability Indices, one of the world’s most prestigious sustainability rankings. SCA was named industry leader in the Household Products sector.

    Consolidated net sales for the third quarter of 2015 increased by 9% compared with the same period a year ago. Organic sales growth was 5% as a result of favorable growth for both Personal Care and Tissue. In emerging markets, which accounted for 32% of sales, organic sales growth was 12%, and in mature markets organic sales growth was 3%. During the quarter we introduced eight innovations and product launches under the Drypers, Libero, Tempo, TENA and Tork brands.

    Consolidated operating profit for the third quarter of 2015, excluding items affecting comparability and currency translation effects, rose 10% compared with the same period a year ago. The increase is mainly attributable to a better price/mix, higher volumes and cost savings. Raw material costs increased by SEK 758m, mainly due to the stronger U.S. dollar. The operating margin, excluding items affecting comparability, increased by 0.5 percentage points to 11.9%. Operating cash flow increased by 7%. Return on capital employed, excluding items affecting comparability, grew by 1.4 percentage points to 12.8%.

    Both Personal Care and Tissue showed a higher operating profit for the third quarter of 2015 compared with the same period a year ago. Operating profit was favorably affected by a better price/mix, higher volumes and cost savings. Higher raw material costs had a negative impact on earnings mainly owing to the stronger U.S. dollar. Operating profit for Forest Products rose mainly as a result of higher prices (including exchange rate effects), cost savings and lower raw material and energy costs.
    (SCA Svenska Cellulosa Aktiebolaget)
     
    04.11.2015   Additional Reduction of Lecta CWF 2S Production Capacity    ( Company news )

    Company news Continuing with its strategy defined in 2013, Lecta is gradually adapting its production, reducing its capacity and dependency on its CWF 2S product line. In 2016 the additional reduction capacity will be approximately 50,000 tons.

    The main steps have been the closure of the Condat L6 in 2013, with a capacity reduction of 130,000 tons, and around 160,000 tons of CWF capacity shifted to base paper production at the Zaragoza and Motril mills from 2014 to 2016 after the closure of Sarria de Ter and Uranga mills.

    As a consequence, Lecta’s total CWF 2S capacity reduction during this period will be approximately 290,000 tons.
    (Lecta Group)

     
    04.11.2015   Rengo Kanazu Mill Completes Steam Turbine Generator Facility and Commences Electricity Sale    ( Company news )

    Company news Rengo Co., Ltd. (Head Office: Kita-ku, Osaka; Chairman, President & CEO: Kiyoshi Otsubo) announces it has newly installed a steam turbine generator at its Kanazu Mill (Awara-shi, Fukui Prefecture).

    The new facility was installed to maximize the potential of the existing boiler for better efficiency in energy consumption, and at the same time start a new business in selling electricity. Compared to before, the rated output has been significantly increased, and besides meeting all the electric power requirements of the mill, it contributes to the energy needs of an area facing the continued stoppage of nuclear power by selling electricity to the local power company, as well as forwarding electricity for use at Rengo’s Yodogawa Mill (in Fukushima-ku, Osaka).
    (Rengo Co Ltd)
    Rengo actively promotes the optimization of energy consumption in its manufacturing process, aiming to create packaging of greater value with fewer resources, keeping resource and energy saving in mind with its concept of “Less is more.”
     
    04.11.2015   Voith and Huatai Paper Enter Strategic Partnership Agreement     ( Company news )

    Company news Voith signed a strategic partnership agreement with Shandong Huatai Paper Co., Ltd., one of the largest paper manufacturers in China.

    Photo: Voith-CEO Dr. Hubert Lienhard and Jianhua Li, Chairman of the Board of Huatai Group, signed an agreement for a strategic partnership.

    The signing of the agreement was witnessed by Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and German Chancellor Angela Merkel during her visit to China. Under the framework agreement, Huatai Paper and Voith will strengthen their cooperation in a number of areas in the next five years, including the upgrade of existing production lines, the expansion of R&D activities, and the implementation of Industrie 4.0, which will be supported by a total investment of RMB 840 million from Huatai (approx. €120 million).

    Huatai Paper is the world’s largest newsprint manufacturer, operating six newsprint production lines with a total annual output of 1.8 million tons. The five-year partnership with Voith will involve improvement of five newsprint production lines and an increased capacity for the production of graphic paper and packaging paper, as well as the establishment of a joint R&D center focused on papermaking. Huatai will also work with Voith to adopt “Papermaking 4.0”, a concept modeled on Industrie 4.0 to achieve smart manufacturing in the papermaking process. Introduced by Voith, Papermaking 4.0 is well aligned with China’s efforts to upgrade and transform key manufacturing sectors, including paper, steel, and nonferrous metal, as outlined by the recently released “Made in China 2025” plan.

    “Voith has long been a reliable supplier and partner for Huatai Paper. We are pleased to expand our partnership, which will facilitate our long-term development by addressing our top priorities, including transformation, R&D, the smart manufacturing,” said Jianhua Li, Chairman of the Board of Huatai Group, at the signing ceremony.

    “As a global provider of technology and industrial services, the Voith Group is committed to suppporting our customers around the world to achieve sustainable business growth. The strategic partnership aims to capitalize on the emerging opportunities in China’s paper market with our combined energies,” said Hubert Lienhard, President and CEO of Voith Group, and Chairman of the Asia Pacific Committee of German Business (APA). He is heading the business delegation led by Chancellor Merkel during her China visit.

    For Voith, this contract is another milestone in the Chinese paper market. In the last decade, Voith has delivered the worldwide largest, most modern and most efficient paper machines to Chinese customers. Today, Voith Paper City, located in Kunshan, is the largest production site for paper machines in the Voith Group. From here, Voith serves paper customers all over China and the Asia Pacific Region. Over the last five years, Voith has been investing over €200 million in this location.
    (Voith Paper GmbH & Co KG)
     
    04.11.2015   Turning lignin into bio-based aviation fuel    ( Company news )

    Company news Innventia is coordinating the Lignojet research collaboration, which aims to establish lignin as a raw material in bio-based aviation fuel. The Swedish-Brazilian project is co-funded by VINNOVA, and brings together players throughout the entire value chain.

    The global market for renewable products is expected to exceed USD 200 billion as early as 2015. Brazil will be one of the most important producers in this global market, with significant raw material assets and large-scale production of bio-based fuels. The recently launched Lignojet project will demonstrate how bio-based aviation fuel can be produced from forest raw materials that do not compete with food production through integrated production in the pulp mill.

    Future aviation fuel must be based on renewable raw materials, but in order for these to be able to compete with fossil fuels they must be produced cost-effectively. This can be achieved by integrating production in the pulp mill, where there are already processes and equipment for dealing with large flows in a cost-effective and environmentally-friendly manner.

    The project is bring co-funded by VINNOVA, and will run until December 2016. In addition to Innventia, the Brazilian pulp producer Fibria, Karlstad Airport, LignoBoost Demo, Valmet and SP Process Development are also involved. One of the project’s aims is to establish a roadmap for introducing lignin-based aviation fuel in Brazil and Värmland. Europe’s first permanent tank facility for bio-jet fuel was installed at Karlstad Airport a year ago.

    “It’s certainly true that bio-jet fuel made from various raw materials is already used, but here it’s a matter of also developing applications within products based on forest raw materials as quickly as possible,” says Karlstad Airport’s CEO Peter Landmark. “In this way we will gain a new local fuel industry, and with our current knowledge we should be able to fly using certified biofuel from forest raw materials within 5-8 years.”

    “Bringing so many players together along the value chain has enabled us to create the right starting point for a large-scale launch of a new biofuel,” explains Marie Anheden, who is leading the project and is responsible for Energy & Chemicals at Innventia.
    (Innventia AB)
     
    04.11.2015   WWF's Environmental Paper Company Index shows continual improvement by leading pulp and ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... paper producers

    The WWF Environmental Paper Company Index (EPCI) 2015 shows a positive trend towards more transparency and sustainability by the world’s more progressive pulp and paper manufacturers. The 31 voluntary participants in this year´s Index together produce 15% of the world´s paper and board and 15% of the world´s pulp. While all participating manufacturers demonstrated outstanding transparency, more than 90% of product categories reported since 2013 showed improvement.

    “The pulp and paper industry has the potential to contribute to a greener economy. The EPCI 2015 signals progress in that direction, at least by the industry’s most transparent companies,” says Emmanuelle Neyroumande, Pulp and Paper Global Manager at WWF International.
    The 31 companies participating in EPCI 2015, up from 25 in 2013, disclosed the ecological footprint of 85 million tonnes of pulp and paper. This represents 30% of the world´s tissue, 28% of the world´s
    graphic paper, 16% of the world´s newsprint, 7% of the world´s packaging and 15% of the world´s pulp.

    The EPCI is based on voluntary data disclosure by the companies. WWF evaluated environmental policies and targets as well as environmental performance in the production of newsprint, graphic paper, tissue, packaging and pulp. Scores were assigned on responsible sourcing, clean production, Environmental Management Systems and reporting. The Index also shows progress between 2013 and 2015 for companies that have participated in both of those years.

    “Of the 80 major manufacturers invited to the EPCI 2015, 31 participated, some already for the fourth time. We invite those who declined this year to get more familiar with the tool and to join the next EPCI 2017,” says Neyroumande.
    Companies who participated in the EPCI 2013 were able to increase their overall scores on more than 90% of product categories. The product category in most need for improvement is pulp, which tends to
    show generally lower scores than other products.

    WWF’s Living Forests Report 1projects paper production and consumption may double in the next three decades, and overall wood consumption may triple.The key challenge for forest-based industries is how to supply more wood products with less impact on nature. This challenge spans the whole supply chain, from where and how wood is grown and harvested to how wisely and efficiently it is processed, used and reused.

    “The pulp and paper sector has unique potential to supply renewable materials that help do things as diverse as share knowledge, improve sanitation and keep food safe. However, this potential is diminished if poor logging practices degrade forests and deplete carbon stores, if plantations take land away from traditional communities, if dirty pulp mills pollute air and water or if paper fit for recycling is
    dumped or burned. The EPCI helps us assess if industry is making good on its promise of supplying essential products with reduced impact on nature,” says Rod Taylor, Director of WWF’s Global Forest Programme.
    (WWF Forests for Life Programme)
     
    03.11.2015   Voith: New Paper product successful in the market    ( Company news )

    Company news Voith announces the sale of the 100th HydroSeal sealing strip system for suction rolls. Another step up the ladder of success for the sealing strip system after the State of Baden-Württemberg had awarded Voith with its Environmental Technology Prize for the HydroSeal in July.

    HydroSeal is a sealing strip system with an integrated lubrication water feed for paper machine suction rolls. Since it was launched on the market, the HydroSeal has been used successfully in all suction roll types and for the production of all paper grades. “An important success factor is without doubt the fact that the patented design meets the evergrowing demand for resource-conserving production with low water and energy use. In both these respects, the HydroSeal has meanwhile demonstrated its effective-ness worldwide," says Jochen Honold, Global Product Manager Mechanical Roll Service at Voith Paper.

    The benefit to the environment is immense: the rebuild of just a single suc-tion roll achieves savings of up to 20,000 m³ fresh water and waste water per year. This volume is equivalent to the contents of around eight Olympic swimming pools. The energy savings possible with HydroSeal are also considerable: up to 1 million kWh per year.
    (Voith Paper GmbH & Co KG)
     
    03.11.2015   Successful ramp-up of the expansion in the UPM Kymi pulp mill     ( Company news )

    Company news The ramp-up of the UPM Kymi pulp mill expansion has proceeded well on schedule. The EUR 160 million UPM investment project was started in the spring of 2014 and has now proceeded to final finishing work.

    The new debarking plant started operation in June, the modernisation of the softwood fibre line was finished in August and the biggest project, the new pulp drying machine, started operation in August-September - approximately one month ahead of schedule. During the ramp-up, pulp production has exceeded expectations and the quality of pulp has improved. The entire Kymi pulp and paper mill integrate is benefiting from the improvements in energy efficiency and flexibility of operations.

    UPM invests in the Kymi pulp mill to strengthen its position in the growing end-use sectors of the global pulp market. As the result of this investment, annual production capacity at the Kymi mill will increase by 170,000 tonnes to 700,000 tonnes of bleached northern softwood and birch pulp.

    The investment will have a positive effect on the employment rates and businesses in the region. The increasing use of wood in the mill integrate will bring wood harvest and transportation work for forest industry professionals and stumpage earnings for forest owners.
    (UPM Group)
     
    03.11.2015   Wepa starts up the new Toscotec tissue line in Lille, France    ( Company news )

    Company news The WEPA Group announces the successful start-up of the new Toscotec’s tissue line installed in Lille, France. The machine came easily on stream after the commissioning period and is now producing high quality tissue products according to the guaranteed technological parameters.

    Established in 1948, WEPA started out as a trading company, grew to become a processing company, and since 1958 it has been successfully running its core business as a paper manufacturer, until to be now one of the largest manufacturers in the German Industry for hygiene paper product, and one of the four largest supplier in Europe.

    The new Toscotec's line, based on the best available technology, includes an AHEAD-2.0 crescent former tissue machine with TT Headbox-MLT double-layer, a Steel Yankee Dryer (TT SYD-15FT), Milltech hood, steam&condensate and dust removal system. The supply also comprises stock preparation plant for virgin pulp, vacuum plant, boiler plant, air compressors and electrification & control system and an automatic roll handling system. Erection, supervision and training are also included in the scope of the furniture.

    With a net web width of 2820 mm and a maximum drying capacity of 120 tpd, the new tissue line has a capacity of 35,000 tpa. The new machine started up at Wepa Lille site, is already running at the maximum operating speed of 2,000 mpm with great satisfaction of WEPA and Toscotec team.

    “This new project strengthens the collaboration with Toscotec, our trusted partner in tissue machinery supply – says Mr. Martin Krengel, President of WEPA. All the start-up phases were performed very well and the machine has achieved excellent performance with high quality tissue at 2,000 mpm just a month after the take-over. Our readiness to invest in state-of-the-art machinery, choosing the right partner, makes our sustained orientation to the future a success”.
    (Toscotec S.p.A.)
     

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    Buyers' Guide of Producers' and Converters' Products:
    Base papers and boards
    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
    Pulps and mechanical groundwood pulps
    Sacks, bags, carrier bags

    Buyers' Guide of Merchants:
    Base papers and boards
    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
    Pulps and mechanical groundwood pulps
    Sacks, bags, carrier bags

    Buyers' Guide of Suppliers' Products:
    Assembly and handling equipment
    Associations and institutions
    Chemicals and raw materials
    Cleaning plants, filtres and filtrations systems
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