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    26.08.2015   Full Service Partner Karl Knauer KG - Neuro-optimised packaging and active environmental ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... protection by EcoSmart Packaging – innovative packaging solutions at the FachPack 2015

    Packaging, advertising materials and gift packaging. The portfolio of the Karl Knauer KG is diversified. Also this year, the company presents impressively different packaging solutions at the FachPack 2015, hall 5, booth 5-157. In on it: Extraordinary finishings, neuro-optimised packaging and the topic sustainability and environmental protection.

    Packaging sustainably increases the brand equity
    At least since the development of the illuminated packaging Bombay Sapphire (photo), the Karl Knauer KG is regarded as an innovator of the industry. Whether with innovative HiLight technology based on printed electronics, through the work with illusionary magic 3D-effects or optical structures of the most delicate laser punchings – the possibilities are unlimited. The newest innovation: Under the title SENSA NATURA, Karl Knauer opens up a new dimension of multisensory, neuro-optimised packaging. Copied from nature, the new finishings affect in a particular sensual way and have a verifiable effect on branding and impulse to buy.

    EcoSmart Packaging – Decorated sustainable
    Decorated among others as the most sustainable company, Karl Knauer now offers the most sustainable cardboard packaging solutions for particularly green companies.
    With the newest material developments and manufacturing processes, a new dimension was pushed open. An environmental balance that is up to 30% better than with folding boxes made out of recycled board, active landscape conservation and additional solutions such as a CO2-neutral production – there are many aspects of smart packaging solutions that Karl Knauer presents to the interested professional audience at the FachPack this year.

    Full service along the supply chain
    Full service becomes more and more important these days. Thus, Karl Knauer does not only develop the perfect packaging solution in close collaboration with the manufacturer of the product to be packed, but also offers the greatest possible support over the entire packaging process. This remarkable full service ranges from services such as design consultancy, construction consultancy, artwork management consultancy, finishing technologies, software solutions, material consultancy and tests, deep-drawing production, process optimisation and lean management, packaging, logistics and shelf maintenance to the construction of packaging machines in the in-house engineering.

    Gift packaging: Highlights
    Just in time for autumn, the Karl Knauer KG presents the new expanded programme in the gift packaging field: Karl Knauer has developed an impressive range of gift cartons, carrying cartons and displays made of sustainable cardboard and corrugated cardboard that radiate an unparalleled, rustic charm especially for the craft beer market. What is extraordinary about it, is the innovative real wood look and feel with many accurately copied details.
    Also the new aluminium suitcase is a real highlight. With this, Karl Knauer expands the successful "suitcase" series by an exceptional design: The suitable packaging for a business gift of a special kind.
    (Karl Knauer KG)
     
    26.08.2015   Verso Corporation Reports Second Quarter 2015 Results     ( Company news )

    Company news Verso Corporation (NYSE: VRS) reported financial results for the second quarter of 2015. Results for the quarters ended June 30, 2015 and 2014 include:
    -Net sales of $778 million in the second quarter of 2015 compared to $321 million in the second quarter of 2014.

    -Operating income before special items of $14 million in the second quarter of 2015 compared to $12 million in the second quarter of 2014.

    -Adjusted EBITDA before pro forma effects of the profitability program of $80 million in the second quarter of 2015, compared to $65 million in the second quarter of 2014

    Overview
    Verso's net sales for the second quarter of 2015 increased $457 million, or 142%, due primarily to the addition of net sales resulting from the NewPage acquisition, compared to the second quarter of 2014.

    During the second quarter of 2015, Verso recorded special items affecting operating income totaling $9 million, or $0.11 per diluted share, primarily related to integrating the legacy Verso and NewPage operations, restructuring costs associated with the NewPage acquisition and closure of the Bucksport mill. During the second quarter of 2014, special items of $9 million, or $0.16 per diluted share, were primarily attributable to costs related to the NewPage acquisition.

    "Verso's results for the second quarter showed our resilience in the face of industry headwinds," said Verso President and Chief Executive Officer David Paterson (photo). "The results reflected strong performance improvements which include increased gross margin, a 16% reduction in SG&A compared to the first quarter of 2015, and double-digit adjusted EBITDA growth. As our integration efforts continue, our synergy achievement is ahead of expectations, with savings to date of $41 million.

    "Looking ahead, we continue to focus on keeping our people safe, integrating the NewPage business, achieving additional synergies across the entire company, and exceeding our customers' expectations."
    (Verso Corporation)
     
    26.08.2015   Xerium Reports Second Quarter 2015 Financial Results    ( Company news )

    Company news Q2 2015 Highlights:
    -Adjusted EBITDA improved to $28 million, representing a margin improvement of 170 basis points compared to Q2 2014 and the 5th consecutive quarter of improved Adjusted EBITDA margins.
    -Gross margins have improved over the last 11 consecutive quarters.
    -SG&A at constant currency declined 4% sequentially.
    -Updated full year 2015 guidance to be similar to 2014, reflecting near-term newsprint and graphical grade decline trends and weak euro.
    -Sales growth investment programs remain on track with 8 facilities beginning production or ramping up production capabilities in the second half of 2015 coupled with over 39 new patented products.

    Xerium Technologies, Inc. (NYSE:XRM), a leading global provider of industrial consumable products and services, announced its Q2 2015 results.

    Net sales for Q2 2015 were $123.1 million, an increase of $2.1 million, or 1.7%, over net sales of $121.0 million for Q1 2015. On a constant currency basis, net sales increased $3.6 million or 2.7% over Q1 2015 net sales, primarily driven by an increase of 3.2% in machine clothing net sales and an increase of 1.8% in rolls net sales. Constant currency SG&A declined by $1.3 million, or 4.1% to $30.4 million in Q2 2015 from $31.7 million in Q1 2015. Q2 2015 Adjusted EBITDA increased to $28.0 million, up 6.9% from $26.2 million in Q1 2015, driven primarily by the increase in sales volume and the decline in SG&A, partially offset by FX losses in Q2 2015 related to the revaluation of non-functional currency balances. See "Non-GAAP Financial Measures" and "Segment Information" below.

    Net sales for Q2 2015 decreased by $(3.9) million, or (2.8)% compared to Q2 2014, on a constant currency basis, primarily driven by the decline in the printing, writing and newsprint markets in North America and lower mechanical services sales in North America. See "Non-GAAP Financial Measures" and "Segment Information" below.

    Q2 2015 gross profit was $49.4 million, or 40.2% of net sales, compared to $55.4 million, or 39.6% of net sales in Q2 2014. Machine clothing gross margin improved to 43.9% (excluding $0.9 million of one-time Kunshan, China startup costs) in Q2 2015 from 41.1% in Q2 2014. These improvements were a result of positive currency effects that were partially offset by unfavorable fixed cost absorption. Rolls and service gross margin decreased slightly to 36.0% (excluding $0.2 million of Corlu, Turkey one-time start-up costs) in Q2 2015, from a gross margin of 36.5% in Q2 2014, primarily due to unfavorable currency effects.

    SG&A expenses were $30.4 million, or 24.7% of net sales, in Q2 2015, down from Q2 2014 SG&A expenses of $35.4 million, or 25.4% of net sales, primarily due to favorable currency effects and lower management incentive costs.

    Q2 2015 basic earnings per share were $(0.05) per share versus Q2 2014 basic earnings per share of $0.05 per share. Excluding non-recurring items such as restructuring costs, plant startup costs, foreign currency gains/(losses) and one-time tax reserve charges, basic adjusted earnings per share were $0.37 in Q2 2015, compared to $0.43 in Q2 2014. See "Basic Adjusted Earnings Per Share" below.

    CEO Harold Bevis (photo) Comments:
    “Despite the current difficult industry trends, our Q2 2015 results demonstrated that our initiatives to improve our cost structure continue to deliver both sequential and YOY improvements in Adjusted EBITDA margins, gross margins and SG&A rates. As our sales growth investment programs come on line, we will begin to generate sales growth despite the decline of graphical grade production,” said Harold Bevis, President and CEO of Xerium Technologies, Inc. "Our 2 1/2 year $87 million sales growth investment program is nearing completion. We have completely renovated our products and factories and it has led to many patentable inventions. The second half of 2015 is a turning point for Xerium, which will enable us to expand our ability to gain sales in the competitive marketplace. We are excited about the progress we are making and expect positive financial returns as we ramp up production in the second half of 2015 and into 2016."

    2015 Outlook
    During the second quarter of 2015, the machine clothing and rolls sales environment was more challenging than we had anticipated due to customer shutdowns and curtailments. Consequently, we expect our full-year Adjusted EBITDA will likely be comparable to last year's Adjusted EBITDA, due to this quarter's results as well as our expectation for the remainder of the year. We view this as a temporary dynamic given our multi-year sales growth investments are in the early stages of gaining traction and will increasingly augment our sales growth. We expect the incremental earnings from our sales growth investment programs to more than offset the permanent market declines in graphical paper production.

    To further increase our profit rates, we are continuing to take costs out of the business. This includes the recent closure of a machine clothing facility in Warwick, Quebec, Canada. The cost structure at this plant was operating at almost twice the level of our low-cost facilities. We still have other facilities with very large cost reduction opportunities. Beyond our improving cost structure and new geographic footprint, we will also benefit from new product introductions. Currently, we have 425 issued patents and 97 pending patents. Additionally, as our capital expenditures begin to decline, we will begin to pay down our debt with the surplus cash flow.
    (Xerium Technologies Inc.)
     
    26.08.2015   MIAC 2015 - 50 DAYS UNTIL MIAC 2015. SAVE THE DATE!    ( Company news )

    Company news Only 50 days left until MIAC 2015 (22nd edition). MIAC is an international meeting point that allows you to compare the technologies and business proposals of all the companies present at the Exhibition. Taking part in MIAC means being one of 5,000 Visitors from across the globe who meet in Lucca in October of each year (last year's MIAC Exhibition registered visitors from 53 Countries). Everything is concentrated in 3 days and in one place: 270 International Exhibitors await you in Italy next October!

    MIAC PHOTOGALLERY
    At MIAC, every year, thousands of people from around the world visit the booths of the companies attending the event or participate in the conferences. In the MIAC photogallery it is possible to view same images of MIAC, conferences, hotels, tourist destinations of interest and the prizes reserved to the winners of the MIACar Contest.

    LUCCA TOWN (AND SURROUNDINGS)
    Lucca is one of the few cities in the world to conserve still intact its Walls of the XV-XVII Century. The walls of Lucca encircles the historical center entire and they are long 4,5 km approximately. Lucca historical center is well-conserved and there are many churches of remarkable architectonic wealth, Towers and Palaces of pregevole stilistic linearity. Lucca is only 20 Km. car distant from Pisa, where it is possible to visit the worldwide famous Pisa Tower.

    MIAC 2015 HOTELS
    In MIAC website is you can find list of Hotels located in Lucca area. For each hotel it is possible to view its Presentation Card. Moreover, each Hotel is linked to its own website. After choosing your favorite Hotel, you can contact directly the Hotel in order to book your accommodation for MIAC 2015.
    (Edipap Srl)
     
    26.08.2015   Invitation to visit 12th Paperex 2015, World's Largest Paper Show in Delhi     ( Company news )

    Company news Plan your visit at 12th Paperex 2015, World’s Largest Paper Show, scheduled during Nov 1-4, 2015 at Pragati Maidan, New Delhi, INDIA.

    PAPEREX is the only comprehensive business platform serving the paper industry and has established itself as a “Business Festival of the Paper Industry” for Best Sourcing, Technology & Knowledge Transfer, Joint Ventures, and Investments across the globe.

    Paperex 2015 has received an over whelming response from world over and now became the World’s Largest Paper Show with expected presence of 600 + leading Exhibitors from 28+ countries and trade visitors from 60 + countries. This year 1st Tissueex 2015, has also been planned along with Paperex 2015. This will be the only business event of its kind on Tissue Paper, Machinery and Technologies in the country.

    The four day concurrent international conference on "Pulp & Paper Industry: Innovations - Need of the Hour" is also being organized by Indian Agro & Recycled Paper Mills Association.
    This Global business platform will contact you with the best of the Paper, Tissue and allied industry for:
    --Specialty Papers:- Printing Paper, Newsprint , Kraft Paper, Graphic paper , paper board etc
    --Tissue Paper- Product, Machinery, technology, etc at Tissueex 2015
    --Paper Mill Plant & Machinery. New and used paper machinery, converting machinery
    --New Technologies:- Automation & Instrumentations, Quality & Process Control, Surface Coating, and many more..
    --Packaging machinery and material
    --Latest Equipment & Accessories:- Rolls, Bearings, Blade & Knife, Pumps & System, etc.
    --Raw Materials:- Pulp, Waste Paper, Specialty Chemicals, Mineral & pigments, etc
    --Networking with industry: - through major paper Industry associations
    --And many more innovation.

    Also some feature area like
    • Specialty Technology & Services Pavilion – Hall #7D & 7E
    • Specialty Paper & Printing Pavilion – Hall #7H
    • Tissueex - Hall #7FG
    • IPPTA Networking Lounge at Hall 7
    • Federation of Paper Traders Association Of India (FPTA) Networking Lounge at Hall 7
    • Paperex Industry Networking Village – Outside Hall #7
    (World Paper Forum (WPF))
     
    26.08.2015   Sulzer Board of Directors Refrains from Issuing a Recommendation on the ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... Mandatory Offer by Renova Shareholder Group

    The largest shareholder of Sulzer AG, the Renova shareholder group, exceeded the threshold of 33 1/3% of the voting rights in Sulzer on July 31, 2015. This triggered a legal obligation upon it to make an offer, and the shareholder group complied by making a public purchase offer to all Sulzer shareholders on August 3, 2015. The Board of Directors of Sulzer AG appointed an Independent Committee comprising all independent members of the Board of Directors, with the exception of the two Renova representatives on the Board of Directors, Peter Löscher and Marco Musetti, to review this offer.

    Following a careful examination of the mandatory purchase offer, this Independent Committee of the Sulzer Board of Directors, chaired by Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors, Dr. Matthias Bichsel, decided against issuing a recommendation to shareholders to accept or reject the offer. Justifying this decision (www.sulzer.com/BoD-report) the Independent Committee pointed out that, according to the offer prospectus, the Renova shareholder group has no intention to change either Sulzer’s strategic focus or the existing composition of its Board of Directors or Executive Committee and that the company's listing was to remain unchanged. It followed, then, that no change in control was at issue.

    The Board of Directors indicates that in its opinion the offer price fails to take sufficient account of the potential rise in the Sulzer share price. As a result, those shareholders who accept the purchase offer would not be able to benefit if the share price were to rise. On the other hand, the Board of Directors points out that tendering the shares would protect shareholders from a fall in the share price and, moreover, that the share's liquidity could be reduced if a large number of shares were tendered. The Board of Directors therefore leaves it to shareholders themselves to decide whether to accept or reject the purchase offer.
    (Sulzer Pumps Ltd)
     
    25.08.2015   Notice Regarding Completion of Acquisition of AR Metallizing Group    ( Company news )

    Company news Nissha Printing Co., Ltd. (hereinafter, “Nissha”) acquired shares in H.I.G. Luxembourg Holdings 28 S.à r.l. (hereinafter, “H.I.G. Luxembourg”), holding company of business company AR Metallizing N.V. and its group companies (hereinafter, “ARM Group”) from ARM Holdings S.C.A. on August 6, 2015 as previously announced on July 17, 2015 disclosure regarding conclusion of an agreement on share acquisition entitled “Notice Regarding Making AR Metallizing N.V. a Subsidiary through Acquisition of Shares in H.I.G. Luxembourg Holdings 28 S.à r.l.” As a result, H.I.G. Luxembourg (holding company) and the ARM Group (business companies) have become fully-owned subsidiaries of Nissha.

    Outlook for the Future
    The impact of the acquisition on Nissha’s consolidated business results is currently under review. Revisions to forecasts and other details will be promptly disclosed as necessary.
    This is to announce the finalization as follows of the share acquisition amount in regard to the matter announced in the “Notice Regarding Making AR Metallizing N.V. a Subsidiary through Acquisition of Shares in H.I.G. Luxembourg Holdings 28 S.à r.l.” of July 17, 2015.
    (The total acquisition amount of EUR 120 million has been changed to EUR 114 million.)
    Enterprise value (EUR 136 million.) is no change.
    (Nissha Printing Co. Ltd)
     
    25.08.2015   Satu Perälampi appointed Vice President, Communications at Ahlstrom    ( Company news )

    Company news Satu Perälampi (M.Sc. Econ.) has been appointed Vice President, Communications at Ahlstrom Corporation as of August 31, 2015.

    Her responsibility area includes external and internal communications as well as investor relations. She reports to Sakari Ahdekivi, Chief Financial Officer.

    Satu Perälampi joins Ahlstrom from Varma Mutual Pension Insurance Company, where she worked as Senior Vice President, Communications responsible for external and internal communications. Previously she has worked at Pöyry Plc, where she was Vice President, Corporate Communications and Investor Relations.
    (Ahlstrom Corporation)
     
    25.08.2015   Flint Group launches two new inks systems for the medium to medium-high flexo and ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... gravure flexible packaging segments – OmniLam F and OmniLam G

    Flint Group announces the launch of OmniLam F and OmniLam G – a medium to medium-high lamination ink system for the North American flexible packaging market for both flexo and gravure printing processes.

    OmniLam F (flexo) and OmniLam G (gravure) are non nitrocellulose ink systems that deliver high bond strengths on a wide range of film structures. These inks will enable the printing of high definition graphics that can withstand harsh environments with bond strengths greater than 400 g/in on substrates like OPP, Polyesters, and Nylon that are both extrusion and adhesive laminated. OmniLam was developed for Flexographic and Rotogravure converters.

    Tim Wagner, Product Manager, Flexible Packaging North America had this to say, “Our goal at Flint Group is to provide best in class products to the market. We identified that Flint Group needed to develop ink systems that would meet the needs to the ever changing lamination market.”

    He continued, “Historically, the legacy nitrocellulose ink systems could not support these new market opportunities. We also realised that a single ink needed to provide adhesion for all types of Laminations with high bond strengths, such as solvent, SAL, and extrusion. OmniLam F and OmniLam G met our expectations and will meet the future demands of the lamination market in North America.”

    A full line of colours have been formulated to provide high colour strength, excellent resolubility, and good flow at low viscosities. Both OmniLam F and OmniLam G deliver high bond strengths on a wide variety of films and can be adhesive or extrusion laminated. OmniLam functionality allows it to be an excellent choice for mint oil resistant, microwavable (withstands cooking temperatures over 275° F) or “lower end” retort packages (1-2 bar pressure / 1 cycle / 130° C. Shelf life 6 months or less).
    (Flint Group)
     
    25.08.2015   Every gram counts - Progroup at FachPack in Nuremberg from 29.09. - 01.10.2015    ( Company news )

    Company news Green Hightech specialist forum for a new perspective
    Following a successful and informative appearance in 2013, Progroup will again be represented at FachPack this year. At the same location in Hall 7, Stand 620, the focus will be on Progroup's latest developments and products under the motto "Every gram counts – change of perspective with Next Box® – Green Hightech for the future". As in 2013, topics covered in the form of specialist presentationsGreen Hightech Expert Forum will be conservation of resources, energy saving and reduction of CO2.

    In addition, visitors to the Progroup stand will be able to experience a Change of perspectivevirtual factory tour around Propapier PM2, the centre for the Green Hightech concept. With the aid of glasses made from corrugated board, a smartphone and a virtual reality app, virtual reality will in fact become reality for the viewer.

    We need to act
    There is a danger that we are clearly underestimating. It is "maintaining the status quo". We know that every day in the battle against changes to the climate on our planet ought to be an active day. The climate conferences held in the last few years have generated a great deal of discussion and little real action. Durban, Doha, Warsaw, Lima... what will the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris in 2015 deliver?

    Time is of the essence
    Irrespective of any political agreement in Paris, industries in the USA, China, India and the EU are called on more than ever before to invest in ground-breaking technologies. Only a small number of companies have acted with such a consistent approach as Progroup. "We are one of the drivers of innovation in our industry. With our Green Hightech concept, we meet the climate protection demands that are stipulated in the Roadmap 2050," says Jürgen Heindl, Chief Executive Officer of Pro­group AG.

    Every gram counts
    The next stage in the global battle for the precious resource of recovered paper is already playing out today. New paper machines and reconfigured paper machines for corrugated board base papers will see the production capacities continue to grow over the coming years and this will require raw materials. The Progroup approach is to use lightweight, resource-conserving papers on high-tech machines. It is evident that the comprehensive investment in the Green Hightech concept was necessary and correct and is bearing fruit today – with positive repercussions for the future and the environment.

    Visit our Green Hightech specialist forum at FachPack in Nuremberg!
    Hall 7, Stand 620
    (Progroup AG)
     
    25.08.2015   Ence: Refinancing of project finance loans of Mérida and Huelva biomass power plants    ( Company news )

    Company news • The refinancing operation, adapting to new regulatory framework for renewable energy, will allow the company to amortize the previous funding and liquidity have an additional 31 million euros.

    Ence Energía y Celulosa has signed the refinancing of project finance loans of their plants generating electricity with biomass Huelva (50MW) and Merida (20MW). The company reduces the spread of 100 basis points over Euribor.

    With this operation, Ence finances the two plants into one project finance loan agreement for a total amount of 135 million euros with a maturity of 10 years.

    The refinancing operation, adapting to new regulatory framework for renewable energy, will allow the company to amortize the previous funding and liquidity have an additional 31 million euros.
    (Grupo Empresarial ENCE S.A. Divisíon de Celulosa)
     
    25.08.2015   Cham Paper Group: Challenging first six months    ( Company news )

    Company news - Positive trend in demand in all segments of the paper division
    - Efficiency temporarily curbed by investments in machinery upgrades
    - High pulp costs caused by currency effects impact on profitability
    - Strong balance sheet - equity ratio 51.6%
    - Real estate project remains on track

    As expected, the Cham Paper Group's paper division had a challenging first half in 2015. Investments in machinery upgrades to increase capacity in Carmignano at the start of the year and the relocation of the coating machine from Cham to Italy in the second quarter increased costs and led temporarily to restricted capacity and production inefficiencies. The strengthening of the US dollar against the euro also resulted in significantly higher pulp prices, which could not be passed on directly to customers in the form of price rises. In the new real estate division, preparations for converting the industrial site into a new urban district proceeded according to schedule.

    In the first half of the year, the Group achieved a turnover of CHF 100.8 million. Although this is 13.8% lower than in the previous year, in local currencies turnover is actually on a par with 2014. Operating profit before restructuring costs came to a modest CHF 1.5 million (CHF 5.5 million in the same period last year), with the net result virtually even at CHF 0.1 million (CHF 3.6 million).

    Paper division
    Turnover and profits did not develop in line with the opportunities presented by the market over the first half of the year. The comprehensive upgrade of PM4 in Carmignano to increase capacity and efficiency was completed on schedule at the start of the year. The start-up process proved more difficult than anticipated, however, and the full production potential could not initially be utilised. It was not until February that the machinery was operating at full capacity. The challenging task of relocating the complex digital imaging products to Italy is also going well, albeit with some departures from the budget and timetable. Production costs have increased across the board under the impact of the pulp price, which is traded in US dollars.

    The paper division generated net turnover of CHF 100.4 million. Gross profit decreased to a disproportionately high extent from CHF 14.9 million to CHF 10.8 million, while operating profit came to CHF 1.4 million (previous year CHF 5.0 million).

    Market demand (however) is satisfactory to good in all segments. The strategic positioning of all three segments in the paper division is promising:

    In volume terms, sales in the consumer goods segment were on a par with the previous year in the first six months. The food/non-food and wet glue labels segments enjoyed a positive trend, each growing by almost 12%. In the tobacco segment, the fall in volumes in Europe due to lower demand and more stringent legislation was not entirely offset by growing demand from Asia.

    Turnover in products for industrial applications (IR) was up year on year. The Cham Paper Group has further expanded its IR activities in the USA, South America and Asia. Persistently high demand permitted the introduction of price increases, which will boost the result in the second half of the year.

    The market for digital sublimation printing continues to grow at an above-average rate, prompting many new suppliers, particularly from Asia, to crowd onto the market offering cheap products. Since production costs are now lower, however, following the transfer of operations to Italy, the Cham Paper Group will be able to hold its ground against the competition.

    The transfer of coating technology has been delayed, leading to supply and capacity bottlenecks. The sales team was unable to fulfil all customer orders in the second quarter. Additional investments have since been made in Italy to increase capacity and thus meet the rising demand for DI products.

    Real estate division
    Another event allowing the general public to have their say was held in late January. This was an opportunity for residents to evaluate the master plan and outline project devised for developing the Papieri-Areal site. Based on their feedback, the outline project and the plan for the open spaces were fleshed out and revised by the team responsible.

    In early April, the community of Cham and Cham Paper Group Schweiz AG as the landowner initiated the final phase of the joint planning process by drafting the zoning plan for the Papieri-Areal. The contents of this plan, comprising planning documents with binding regulations and a supplementary planning report, are currently being finalised together with the association and in consultation with specialist cantonal departments. An environmental impact assessment is also currently being prepared for the planned development of the Papieri-Areal and the municipal outline plan and the building and zoning regulations are being revised.

    Once these have been circulated to the municipal committees and endorsed by the town council of Cham, the zoning plan and environmental impact report will be presented to the cantonal authorities for preliminary examination on schedule in early October. The aim is still to hold the vote on the zoning plan and the environmental impact report in summer 2016. A potential phasing concept has also been devised in parallel to the zoning plan process.

    The space that has been freed up on the factory site has already found numerous temporary uses by more than 50 different tenants, with new enquiries still being received. The real estate division generated turnover of CHF 0.7 million in the first half of 2015 and a more or less even operating profit (EBIT). The development costs for the Papieri project have been capitalised.

    Balance sheet remains strong
    Despite a dividend payment, the further weakening of the euro and the associated lower valuation of the Italian assets in Swiss francs, the Cham Paper Group still has a strong balance sheet. The equity ratio stood at 51.6% at the end of the first half of the year. The Group has no net debt. The site in Cham is still valued at acquisition cost.

    Positive outlook
    The Board of Directors and the Executive Management Board believe the Group is well positioned. The paper division serves attractive growth markets across all three of its segments - consumer goods, industrial release and digital imaging. Cost control continues to present a challenge. The exchange rate between the US dollar and the euro and the associated higher pulp prices will continue to impact negatively on the paper division's operating result in the second half of the year.
    (Cham Paper Group Schweiz AG)
     
    25.08.2015   Powerflute Trading Statement    ( Company news )

    Company news Powerflute Oyj ("Powerflute" or the "Group") provides an update on trading during the six months to 30 June 2015 and on the outlook for the remainder of the year ending 31 December 2015.

    Consistent with the trends described in the Trading Statement provided on 15 May 2015, the Group has performed strongly during the first half of the year in both its Coreboard and Cores and Packaging Papers activities and the outlook for the second half of the year remains positive.

    In Coreboard and Cores, market conditions in the US and China remain broadly favourable and the Nordic region continues to perform well. In the more challenging European markets, actions taken during the first half to reposition and restructure certain businesses are already beginning to take effect and should lead to further improvement during the second half. Packaging Papers is expected to enjoy healthy market conditions for the remainder of the year and will also benefit from more favourable hedging of its exposure to the US dollar.

    The results for the first half and for the full year will be affected by non-recurring items related to the acquisition and integration of Corenso. However, these items are generally in line with or lower than the estimates previously provided and the integration of Corenso is progressing well.

    The second half will be impacted by planned annual maintenance shutdowns in a number of the paper and coreboard mills during which we will complete several complex projects and upgrades that are not without operational risk. However, in the absence of any material production challenges or any significant change in market conditions, we currently expect that the outcome for the full year will be ahead of previous expectations.
    (Powerflute Oyj)
     
    25.08.2015   Valmet to supply analyzers and quality control system for Stora Enso's Varkaus Mill in Finland    ( Company news )

    Company news Valmet will supply pulp mill and board machine quality management solutions for Stora Enso's Varkaus Mill in Finland. The orders are an addition to the extensive rebuild of the Varkaus mill's PM 3 fine paper machine supplied by Valmet to produce lightweight containerboard grades announced on May 13, 2014.

    The order was included in Valmet's second quarter 2015 orders received. The value of the order is not disclosed. Typically, the order value of automation system deliveries ranges from below EUR 1 million to EUR 3 million.

    "After the upgrades of both pulp mill and board machine quality management systems, the Varkaus mill will be able to fully exploit the rebuilt machine's performance potential," says Aki Korhonen, Director of Analyzers, Measurements and Performance Solutions from Valmet.

    The Valmet delivery includes a Valmet Kappa Analyzer for the pulp mill and Valmet IQ quality control system (QCS) for the rebuilt board machine.

    Technical details of the automation delivery
    The Valmet delivery includes a Valmet Kappa Analyzer for the pulp mill. The analyzer will provide all the necessary measurements of fibers, shives and kappa number, for brown unbleached kraft production. Sampling capacity of the mill's Valmet Pulp Expert automatic pulp laboratory will also be expanded with 5 new samplers to accurately follow pulp property development in stock preparation.

    The delivery also includes a new Valmet IQ quality control system (QCS) for the rebuilt board machine. With sensors for basis weight, moisture, caliper ash content and color; the IQ system features state-of-the-art machine and cross direction controls. Additionally four Valmet RM3 sensors will be supplied to measure wet end consistencies with the exclusive ability to monitor both total and true ash consistency from the process for active fines retention management. New modules will also be installed to the mill's existing Valmet Paper Lab and provide automated laboratory testing for key board quality parameters.
    (Valmet Corporation)
     
    24.08.2015   CITO Cushion Crease    ( Company news )

    Company news CITO Cushion Crease is a high-quality creasing rubber for processing corrugated board. The Cushion Crease profile is used at the creasing rule to support compression of the corrugated board and achieve an optimum creasing behaviour, particularly with the curve of the flute.

    CITO Cushion Crease is suitable for use on flatbed and rotary dies.

    Thanks to the good gluability of CITO Cushion Crease it requires no extra stapling that is otherwise normal.

    The self-adhesive version significantly reduces assembly time and simultaneously improves safety at work.
    (CITO-SYSTEM GmbH)
     
    24.08.2015   Paperworks to close Quebec manufacturing facility    ( Company news )

    Company news PaperWorks Industries, Inc., a leading integrated North American paperboard packaging supplier, announced plans today to optimize folding carton production across its network of nine North American converting facilities. As part of this effort, operations at the company’s Baie D'Urfé, Québec, Canada manufacturing facility will close permanently by the end of February 2016.

    “We considered many different options across our folding carton manufacturing footprint in order to improve service levels for our customers, strengthen our competitiveness and support long-term growth. Ultimately, our decision was driven by the desire to position folding carton production closer to geographic areas in which the majority of our customers are located,” said Kevin Kwilinski, president and chief executive officer, PaperWorks.

    Over the next several months, PaperWorks will work with customers serviced by the Baie D'Urfé facility to ensure a smooth transition to other company manufacturing facilities.

    The Baie D'Urfé facility has been in operation since 1979 and currently manufactures folding cartons for a variety of products including dry and frozen food, beverage, pharmaceutical, household goods, personal care and institutional foodservice. The 165,000 square foot location employs 150 people. PaperWorks has developed a comprehensive program to support staff members through this transition, including assistance with securing alternate employment.
    (PaperWorks Industries Inc.)
     
    24.08.2015   SCA to close production plant in France    ( Company news )

    Company news As part of SCA’s ongoing cost-savings program related to the acquisition of Georgia-Pacific’s European tissue operations, SCA will close the tissue production plant in Saint-Cyr-en-Val, France.

    The production plant has an annual capacity of 35,000 tons. Production will be discontinued in October 2015.

    The restructuring costs for the closure of the production plant are expected to amount to approximately SEK 480m, of which about SEK 380m will be recognized as an item affecting comparability in the third quarter of 2015. The remaining SEK 100m will be recognized as an item affecting comparability in 2016. Of the restructuring costs, approximately SEK 260m is expected to affect cash flow.

    Total cost savings related to the acquisition of Georgia-Pacific’s European tissue operations are expected to amount to EUR 125m upon full effect in 2016. Cost savings corresponding to approximately EUR 95m on an annualized basis had been achieved in the second quarter of 2015.

    The cost-savings program related to the acquisition of Georgia-Pacific’s European tissue operations is one of three efficiency programs launched by SCA in 2012. The other two programs have been concluded.
    (SCA Svenska Cellulosa Aktiebolaget)
     
    24.08.2015   HYBRIDPRO: combining the best of both worlds     ( Company news )

    Company news Mondi makes further progress in the evolution of industrial paper bags by launching a bag that offers uncompromising weather protection and significantly extends the shelf life of its contents. The HYBRIDPRO is a technically demanding combination of paper and plastic, and is suitable for many industries and applications, particularly construction materials.

    Conventional industrial bags made of paper tend to be vulnerable to rain and moisture. When exposed to direct rain on an unprotected pallet, a standard paper bag absorbs water and may weaken as a result. Handling may then become awkward, and the shelf life of the contents may be affected. In some cases, a switch to plastic bags is the answer. But this may not be the optimum approach, as the cost of investing in form-fill-seal (FFS) machinery tends to be high. Mondi, ever conscious of its customers’ needs, has come up with a hybrid solution to the dilemma: the HYBRIDPRO bag, offering the advantages of a plastic bag, yet fillable on conventional paper bag filling systems.
    With the HYBRIDPRO, paper combined with plastic really can provide the best of both worlds: uncompromising weather protection thanks to the bag’s outer PE barrier layer, allowing genuine outdoor storage for lengthy periods and extended storage stability, without the need to invest in expensive FFS filling systems.

    The next generation of water-repellent paper bags from Mondi
    The HYBRIDPRO bag, which will be marketed under the slogan ‘Made of PaPEr – combining the best of both worlds’, represents a whole new concept in industrial bag design. Like a hybrid drive in a car, the HYBRIDPRO is an excellent combination of the available options: the inner ply is made of 120 g/m2 Mondi Advantage ONE sack kraft paper; the outer ply is a 40 μm-thick layer of high-density polyethylene (HDPE). The innovative step here is that the HDPE forms a protective layer on the outside of the paper. Other bags also use a combination of paper and plastic, but not in this way. This is a considerable technical achievement that brings a new dimension to industrial bag design.
    The HYBRIDPRO belongs to Mondi’s next generation of water-repellent bags, developed as part of the company’s focus on exciting new solutions achieved through ongoing R&D. The bag – for which a patent is pending – is yet another successful outcome of Mondi’s strategic emphasis on collaboration with customers during the product development process.

    The benefits
    With the HYBRIDPRO, building materials such as gypsum and cement enjoy excellent protection against direct rain during shipping or on site. The HYBRIDPRO also provides excellent protection against gradual moisture ingress during outdoor storage, thanks to the 40 μm thickness of the unperforated HDPE film. This means shelf life is longer than with standard paper bags. For example, according to building materials producer Knauf, who collaborated in developing the HYBRIDPRO, gypsum packaged in the HYBRIDPRO enjoys an eight-month shelf life when stored outdoors with no further protective layer – twice as long as if packaged in a standard paper bag.
    This impressive performance outdoors makes the bag very user-friendly and has benefits when it comes to streamlining the supply chain of fillers and end-consumers: with longer shelf life, order sizes can be larger, for potential reductions in shipping costs.
    Since the bag can be filled on conventional paper bag filling systems, investment in FFS systems, which tend to be expensive, is not required.

    Compelling additional benefits
    The bag’s outer ply – which forms the barrier against rain, moisture and dust – is made of plastic film, giving it an attractive, modern appearance, an important factor in many markets. The HDPE film can be printed in up to eight colours, including on the bottom patches, for a glossy, premium look, and the paper ply is available in a bleached or an unbleached version.
    The HYBRIDPRO allows high-speed filling, with de-aeration twice as fast as with a standard three-ply bag (35 m3/h versus 18 m3 Workplaces, such as construction sites, are cleaner with the HYBRIDPRO, as less of the contents adhere to the outer layer – a benefit sure to appeal to end users.
    The HYBRIDPRO is an eco-friendly solution: the total grammage of material used is less than with standard three-ply designs used for the same purpose.
    Last but not least, the plastic and paper components are easy to separate, for optimum recyclability.

    Applications
    The HYBRIDPRO is a high-quality packaging solution conceived for high-quality contents. It is particularly suitable for building materials, including gypsum and cement, as well as many other moisture-sensitive products. The bag is suitable for filling contents at temperatures of up to 90 °C.
    The HYBRIDPRO was developed alongside Mondi’s showerproof paper SPLASHBAG (launched beginning of 2015) as part of Mondi’s next generation of water-repellent bags, in keeping with Mondi’s strategic orientation to ongoing innovation.
    The brand-new HYBRIDPRO will be presented to the public during upcoming packaging trade shows in Europe and internationally. The first trade show at which visitors will be able to explore the new bag is FachPack in Nuremberg, Germany. Mondi will be exhibiting from 29 September to 1 October in Hall 7, Booth 254.
    (Mondi Europe & International Division)
     
    24.08.2015   Valmet to supply tenth OptiConcept M paper making line for Lee & Man in China    ( Company news )

    Company news Valmet will supply a complete OptiConcept M containerboard production line for Lee & Man in Jiang Xi in China. The new production line is planned to produce high-quality containerboard grades out of 100 percent recycled raw materials. The start-up of the machine is scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2016.

    The order is included in Valmet's third quarter 2015 orders received. The value of the order will not be disclosed. An order of this scope is typically valued around EUR 40-50 million.

    "OptiConcept M has really made its breakthrough as an industry standard for paper and board manufacturing, which is proven by this repeat order from Lee & Man", says Juha Kivimaa, Director, Sales Technology in Valmet's Paper business.

    "This repeat order to Valmet strengthens our long partnership in this business area. With good combination of local and imported know how Valmet has shown its capability in earlier projects. Lightweighting is a trend in containerboard business and Valmet's technology is very suitable for these grades", says Edmond Lee, CEO of Lee & Man.

    The line ordered by Lee & Man will be the tenth OptiConcept M production line to be supplied by Valmet since the first delivery in 2012. In addition to Asia, Valmet has delivered OptiConcpet M lines also in North America and Europe. The compact and efficient OptiConcept M production line concept covers grades from recycled containerboards to cartonboards and fine paper.

    Valmet's delivery will comprise a complete board machine with related process automation solutions, air systems and winder. The annual production capacity of the new machine will be approximately 300,000 tonnes and the design speed 1,200 m/min.
    (Valmet Corporation)
     
    24.08.2015   Verso Announces Plans for Major Reductions in Coated Paper and Pulp Production Capacity    ( Company news )

    Company news Actions at Androscoggin and Wickliffe Mills Will Reduce Production Capacity by 430,000 Tons of Coated Paper and 130,000 Tons of Dried Market Pulp

    Verso Corporation (NYSE: VRS) announced that it plans to make major reductions in its coated paper and pulp production capacity by shutting down the No. 1 pulp dryer and No. 2 paper machine at its Androscoggin Mill in Jay, Maine, and indefinitely idling its mill in Wickliffe, Kentucky. Together, these actions will reduce Verso's production capacity by 430,000 tons of coated paper and 130,000 tons of dried market pulp. Verso intends to implement these capacity reductions beginning in the fourth quarter of 2015.

    Verso's decision to reduce its production capacity was driven by several factors. North American coated paper demand is in secular decline, down 4.7% in the first half of 2015, following declines of 3.4% and 4.3% in 2014 and 2013, respectively, according to the Pulp and Paper Products Council. The effects on U.S. producers have been made significantly worse by a change in the net trade balance due to the strengthening of the U.S. dollar relative to foreign currencies, which has resulted in increased foreign imports from Asia, Europe and Canada and decreased U.S. exports. In addition, high operating costs in Maine, especially high energy costs and local property taxes, were contributing factors.

    "One of Verso's founding principles is to do what's right for the company as a whole," said Verso President and CEO David J. Paterson (photo). "This includes maintaining a balance between Verso's supply of products and our customers' demand for them. Remaining true to this principle, and after a comprehensive review of our assets, inventory and demand forecasts, Verso has decided to make significant reductions in our coated paper and pulp production capacity at our Androscoggin and Wickliffe mills."

    The shutdown of the No. 1 pulp dryer and the No. 2 paper machine at the Androscoggin Mill will reduce Verso's production capacity by 150,000 tons of coated paper and 100,000 tons of dried market pulp. In addition, to help mitigate the high energy and other operating costs in Maine and to make the Androscoggin Mill more competitive in the future, Verso will optimize the mill's pulp, power and recovery assets. The optimization efforts are expected to take place in the fourth quarter of 2015 and the first quarter of 2016.

    The Wickliffe Mill has one machine with the capacity to produce 280,000 tons of coated paper and 30,000 tons of dried market pulp.

    Verso anticipates that the capacity reductions and optimization of the Androscoggin Mill will result in the permanent elimination of approximately 300 jobs. Verso expects that the indefinite idling of the Wickliffe Mill will result in the layoff of approximately 310 employees.

    "Decisions to reduce production capacity are never easy," Paterson stated. "They are especially difficult for the employees and their families who are directly affected by these actions. Verso is committed to treating all of our impacted employees with fairness, dignity and respect and to communicating openly and honestly with each individual about how this decision will affect him or her. Our Human Resources team will begin meeting with our affected employees immediately."

    "Our customers are always top-of-mind as we implement these types of strategic decisions, and we want to assure them that Verso remains steadfastly committed to delivering the high-quality products and services they have come to expect from us," said Michael A. Weinhold, Verso Senior Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Product Development. "Verso's manufacturing system is extremely flexible. Most of the affected paper grades are already qualified to be manufactured on other Verso paper machines, and we are working diligently to qualify the remaining paper grades for production on other Verso paper machines. Our Sales leadership will begin contacting all of our affected customers immediately. Our aim is to ensure that all customer needs are seamlessly met."
    (Verso Corporation)
     
    21.08.2015   Sappi results for 3rd quarter ended June 2015 highlights impact of exchange rates in ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ...seasonally weak quarter

    Summary for the quarter
    -EPS excluding special items 2 US cents (Q3 2014 2 US Cents)
    -Profit for the period US$4 million (Q3 2014 US$17 million)
    -EBITDA excluding special items US$109 million (Q3 2014 US$140 million)
    -Net debt US$1,917 million (Q3 2014 US$2,286 million)

    Commenting on the result, Sappi Chief Executive Officer Steve Binnie (photo) said:
    The third quarter is seasonally the weakest for Sappi. In addition, the pulp mill upgrade at one mill and planned annual maintenance shuts in all three regions reduced profit by approximately US$27 million compared to the equivalent quarter last year. The group generated EBITDA, excluding special items, of US$109 million, operating profit excluding special items of US$43 million and profit for the period of US$4 million. Earnings per share excluding special items for the quarter was 2 US cents, as it was in the equivalent quarter last year.

    The North American business experienced significant pressure as a result of the stronger US dollar, which led to increased imports of coated paper, lower coated paper sales volumes and lower margins for the release paper business. The domestic graphic paper market was also weaker than expected.

    The performance of the European business was adversely impacted by the higher cost of raw materials due to the stronger US Dollar and additional pulp purchases during the upgrade of the recovery boiler at Gratkorn. The market for graphic paper continues to decline in Western Europe. However, the weaker Euro made exports more competitive and profitable.

    In the South African paper business the virgin fibre packaging grades continue to show good demand growth. However, newsprint and recycled packaging paper demand were flat.

    The Specialised Cellulose business continued to generate solid returns during the quarter, with EBITDA excluding special items, of US$56 million. The planned annual maintenance shuts at Saiccor and Ngodwana reduced margins relative to the prior quarter. US Dollar prices for dissolving wood pulp remained constant compared to the prior quarter, though the South African mills benefited from a weakening ZAR/USD exchange rate.

    Net debt of US$1,917 million was flat compared to the prior quarter and US$369 million below that of the equivalent quarter last year as a result of cash generation from operations, debt repayments and favourable exchange rates on the translation of our debt.

    Outlook
    Graphic paper markets remain challenging and currency movements are having a significant impact on trade flows. These negatively affected our US business while improving export margins for our European coated paper business. The European business continues to face pressure from higher pulp prices.

    Dissolving wood pulp prices in China have risen steadily over the past four months and this should translate into higher short term fixed prices with our major customers. The weaker Rand/US Dollar exchange rate will support the profitability of this business in South Africa.

    Capital expenditure in the last quarter of fiscal 2015 is expected to be approximately US$80 million (US$245 million for the full year) and is focused largely on maintenance projects and efficiency improvement investments.

    We expect to reduce net debt levels during the fourth quarter. Any proceeds received from the sale of Cape Kraft, Enstra and/or the Twello forestry assets before year-end would further reduce net debt.

    We expect that the regional operating performance for the year will be broadly similar to 2014 despite a number of significant once-off impacts from various capital projects. At current exchange rates, the translation of Euro and Rand results to US Dollar will adversely impact the group results. Nevertheless, due to lower interest costs, earnings per share excluding special items for the full year are expected to be substantially better than that of the prior year.
    (Sappi Limited)
     
    21.08.2015   NIB funds Brazilian pulp mill    ( Company news )

    Company news NIB has signed a USD 100 million (EUR 92 million) 7-year-maturity loan agreement with Brazil’s Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Econômico e Social (BNDES) for on-lending to finance Klabin S.A.’s greenfield pulp mill project.

    Photo: Construction site of the pulp mill

    The loan is for financing the construction of a greenfield pulp production facility in the municipality of Ortigueira in the state of Paraná, Brazil. The so-called “Puma project” will be implemented by the country’s largest paper producer and exporter, Klabin S.A.

    With an annual production output of 1.1 million tonnes of bleached eucalyptus-based hardwood pulp, destined for both export and domestic sale, and 400,000 tonnes of bleached pine-based softwood pulp, in part to be used for the production of Brazil’s first domestic fluff pulp, the completed “Puma” mill will almost double Klabin’s production capacity.

    The new factory will utilise state-of-the-art technologies and equipment supplied by manufacturers in the Nordic pulp and paper cluster.

    “Participating in large projects such as “Puma” and advancing into growth markets is an efficient way for industry leaders in NIB’s member countries to uphold a high level of their know-how and to strengthen their competitiveness”, says Henrik Normann, NIB President & CEO.

    The pulp mill is expected to be self-sufficient on renewable energy. Its 270 MW biomass power plant, running on by-products of the pulp process, will make the surplus of renewable energy available for sale to the national power grid.

    The project will include the construction of a 42-kilometre 230 kV transmission line to connect the pulp mill to the electricity grid, and a 23-kilometre secondary railway to link it to the rail network.

    The construction of a wastewater treatment plant and the employment of chemical recovery processes to reclaim cooking chemicals spent in the pulping process are included in the project plan.

    Klabin S.A. is Brazil’s largest integrated manufacturer of packaging paper and paperboard. Klabin runs 15 industrial plants and exports to more than 60 countries.

    The state-owned BNDES provides long-term financing to projects that contribute to the development of the country and the competitiveness of the national economy.
    (NIB Nordic Investment Bank)
     
    21.08.2015   Wausau Paper Reports Second-Quarter 2015 Results    ( Company news )

    Company news Adjusted EBITDA of $14.5 million – Above Prior Guidance

    Wausau Paper (NYSE:WPP) announced financial and operating results for the three- and six-month period ended June 30, 2015.

    Second-Quarter Highlights
    Financial Results
    -Second-quarter adjusted EBITDA from continuing operations in 2015 was $14.5 million compared with adjusted EBITDA of $9.9 million in 2014. Second quarter 2015 adjusted EBITDA exceeded the Company’s previous guidance range of $13 to $14 million.
    -On a reported basis, net earnings from continuing operations were $2.5 million, or $0.05 per share, in the second quarter of 2015 compared with a prior-year second-quarter net loss from continuing operations of $3.7 million, or $0.07 per share.

    Case Volume Growth
    -Second-quarter case shipment volume increased 2 percent in 2015 compared with the same period in 2014, resulting in a second-quarter shipment record of approximately 4.4 million cases for the Company.
    -Strategic product shipments – those products sold in conjunction with proprietary dispensing systems or produced from premium substrates – comprised slightly more than 49 percent of the Company’s sales for the second quarter of 2015 and similar to the strategic product shipment mix in the prior-year quarterly period. The improved margin quality of both strategic and support products shipped in 2015 contributed to a 5 percentage point improvement in adjusted EBITDA margin of 16 percent as compared with 11.1 percent for the second quarter of 2014.

    Michael C. Burandt (photo), CEO, commented, “Our second quarter results reflect the continuing above-market demand growth for our premium DublNature® and Artisan™ products lines, the positive market response to our differentiated product portfolio, and the benefits from the significant number of Margin Enhancement Initiative (MEI) projects that are evidenced by ongoing improvement in operating performance, as well as, increased cash generation. We are very pleased with the pace of growth of our premium products and the contributions of our entire team toward improving our operating platform.”

    Third-Quarter 2015 Outlook
    Commenting on the third quarter, Mr. Burandt, said, “Our teams remain focused on furthering the significant performance benefits we are realizing from MEI in the second half of the year. We are pleased with the market’s favorable response to our premium products and the resulting improvement in our strategic mix.
    “Although costs of production have improved through the first half of 2015, we maintain our prior forecast for modest cost pressure related to wastepaper pricing through the balance of the year. As a result we currently expect third quarter adjusted EBITDA of $17 million to $18 million,” Mr. Burandt concluded.
    (Wausau Paper Towel & Tissue Products)
     
    21.08.2015   Smurfit Kappa announces new communication tool for its complete paper portfolio for packaging    ( Company news )

    Company news Smurfit Kappa has launched the Paper Navigator as the new positioning tool for its unrivalled portfolio of paper for packaging. The Paper Navigator signifies the company’s commitment to steer customers through the paper selection process to deliver optimum packaging solutions that drive business value.

    Smurfit Kappa offers a highly flexible approach to optimising the composition and performance of paper packaging based on a broad range of paper products and services, using both virgin and recycled fibres. For packaging manufacturers and end customers, it takes into account all possible packaging considerations and constraints – from supply chain to product safety, sustainability and print and finish needs – to deliver cost-effective, quality paper solutions to meet specific needs.

    The Paper Navigator is also rooted in sustainability which is at the heart of Smurfit Kappa’s processes - all paper products are developed with environmental responsibility in mind and produced in socially sustainable manner.

    Intended for use alongside Smurfit Kappa’s unique set of software design tools and services, the Paper Navigator is part of the customer journey that focuses on delivering ‘right first time’ packaging solutions for businesses.

    Alain Baudant, CEO of Smurfit Kappa Paper Division Europe, explains: “Our customers need more than just paper for packaging; they need help to leverage success over competitors. With our reliable and extensive Paper Navigator portfolio, we work collaboratively with businesses from every sector to deliver optimised paper solutions that increase packaging efficiency and performance. It reflects Smurfit Kappa’s wider commitment to maximising value for our customers, and working in a sustainable and innovative way to their benefit.”
    (Smurfit Kappa Group Headquarters plc)
     
    21.08.2015   EUROPAC INCREASES PROFIT BEFORE TAXES BY 42%     ( Company news )

    Company news The Management Board of the Europac Group (Papeles y Cartones de Europac, S.A.) approved the results of the 1st semester of the year this morning in wich we can highlight the 42.7% increase in profit before taxes rising to €18.2M. We must also highlight a 9.2% growth of the consolidated EBITDA and 19.1% of the net profit, after reaching €51.4M and €11.9M, respectively. All this, in a context of a slight increase in the aggregate sales, recorded at €540.7M and which represents a 1.9% increase.

    -The consolidated EBITDA increased by 9.2% compared to the same period of 2014 up to €51.4M, of which €27.1M corresponded to the 2nd semester vs the €24.3M recorded in the 1st quarter.
    -Net profit fot the first six months of the year rose to €11.9M, 19.1% more than a year ago.
    -Reduction of 2.0% of the net debt compared to the 2014 year-end.
    -The improvement of the consolidated EBITDA and the EBIT during the 4 last quarters demonstrate the positive evolution of the activity carried out by the Europac Group.
    -15.6% reduction of the financial cost with regard to the 1st semester of 2014, which is expected to improve in the next quarters by between 30 and 44% after the signing of a new syndicated loan in July 2015

    Both the consolidated EBITDA and the EBIT demonstrated continued growth during the past four quarters. The consolidated EBITDA in the 2nd quarter of the year was €27.1 M compared to the €24.3 M recorded in the 1st quarter, while the EBIT in the 2nd quarter was €15.2 M compared to the €12.2 M of the previous quarter. The growth in this magnitude confirmed the positive evolution of the activity carried out by Europac.

    In this context, a downward trend of the net debt of the Company is recorded, which, at the end of the 1st semester was €288.8 M compared to the €294.7 M at the 2014 year-end.

    Moreover, the novation of the syndicated loan signed in July 2014 entailed a 15.6 % reduction of the financial cost compared to the 1st semester of the previous year, which will improve by between 30 and 44 % based on the 3rd quarter of the year after signing the new syndicated loan on the 10th of July, which replaced the previous one.

    The announced upward trend with respect to the last semester of 2014 is reflected in a 16.2 % increase of the consolidated EBITDA and an increase of the profitability reflected in the growth of the margin on the consolidated EBITDA up to 12.8 % compared to the 11.2 % attained in the last semester of the previous year.

    The Management Board also approved the appointment of Enrique Isidro as Executive Vice President of the Europac Group. The office of Managing Director, which he had occupied to date, disappears from the corporate organisational chart.

    Enrique Isidro, Vice President of the Europac Group indicated "the improvement of the results of the company is in this line with the previsions announced at the beginning of the year, based mainly on the increase in the business lines profitability and the reduction of costs. The context of the current market and the development of internal projects aimed at achieving the objectives defined in the Strategic Plan 2015-2018 enable us to be optimists compared to the 2nd Semester of the year".

    BUSINESS LINES
    In the Paper business line, despite the increases of raw material during the 1st semester of 2015, the EBITDA improved by 17.1 % compared to the 1st semester of 2014 due to the increase in the gross margin, the increase in sales volume and the management improvements that have entailed a reduction of specific costs.

    As far as the Packaging Division is concerned, we highlight the recovery of margins after the minimum recorded in the 2nd semester of 2014. Despite the 35.4 % increase of the EBITDA with respect to the 2nd semester of 2014, the EBITDA fell 26.7% compared to the 1st semester of the previous year due to a one-time increase of the costs linked to the implementation of operational and commercial plans and the development of the Morocco Plan. In this respect, there was an increase in the profitability in Spain and an increase of the volume in Portugal, whereas France only experienced a slight improvement.
    (Europac Papeles y Cartones de Europa S.A.)
     
    21.08.2015   Valmet to rebuild Metsä Tissue's tissue machine in Raubach in Germany    ( Company news )

    Company news Metsä Tissue has chosen Valmet's Advantage DCT concept including the Advantage ViscoNip pressing technology for the upgrade of their tissue machine TM 1 in Raubach, Germany. The start-up of the rebuilt machine is scheduled for the first half of 2016.
    The order was included in Valmet's second quarter, 2015 orders received. The value of the order will not be disclosed.

    "Metsä Tissue is one of the leading suppliers of tissue paper products to households and professional users in Europe. We continuously develop our products, operations and production units to be able to supply high-quality tissue products and to ensure reliable deliveries to our customers. Through this tissue machine renewal in Raubach mill, we aim to enhance the product qualities as well as energy efficiency and process performance in a sustainable way. We have chosen Valmet as our partner because of Valmet's excellent reputation and strong technology know-how in tissue manufacturing," says Christoph Zeiler, Senior Vice President Tissue West Europe, Metsä Tissue.

    "The most important benefits of using Valmet's Advantage ViscoNip technology are both the considerable savings in drying energy consumed and improved tissue paper quality. We are proud that Metsä Tissue has selected our well proven Advantage technology for the upgrade of TM1 in Raubach and look forward to working in close partnership to make this a successful project," says Björn Magnus, Sales Director, Tissue Mills Business Unit, EMEA, Valmet.

    Technical information
    The machine rebuild to be delivered by Valmet includes a new Advantage DCT wet end section with an OptiFlo Tis II headbox and an Advantage ViscoNip press for improved product quality and decreased energy consumption. A new tail threading system and sheet transfer will further advance runnability and performance. The delivery also includes key stock preparation equipment such as an Optislush Pulper and a OptiScreen machine screen.

    An extensive package of services including engineering, installation of the tissue machine, supervision, training, commissioning and start-up is also included in the delivery.
    (Valmet Corporation)
     
    20.08.2015   Mayr-Melnhof: Results for the 1st Half-Year 2015    ( Company news )

    Company news • Good first half-year
    • Profit and sales increase in both divisions
    • High capacity utilization
    • Continuity expected for second half-year

    The Mayr-Melnhof Group was able to successfully assert itself also in the first half-year of 2015. Ongoing high competition characterized the largely stable overall economic environment. Sales as well as profit exceed the previous year’s figures. High capacity utilization and improved productivity considerably contributed to this. Both divisions, cartonboard production and cartonboard processing, succeeded in growing and maintaining the profitability at a good level. With the acquisition of a French folding carton group in the field of packaging for pharmaceuticals and luxury goods, organic and acquisitive growth will continue to complement each other.

    Given the current order situation, continuity at a good level can be expected for the second half of the year, from today’s perspective.

    At EUR 1,069.6 million, the Group's consolidated sales were 3.5 % above the comparative value of the previous year (1st half of 2014: EUR 1,033.1 million). This increase results from the growth in business volumes.

    Operating profit was improved by 8.8 % or EUR 7.8 million to EUR 96.5 million (1st half of 2014: EUR 88.7 million). Both divisions contributed significantly to this. The Group's operating margin was at 9.0 % (1st half of 2014: 8.6 %).

    With unchanged low interests, financial income of EUR 0.8 million (1st half of 2014: EUR 0.9 million) was offset by financial expenses of EUR -3.2 million (1st half of 2014: EUR -2.6 million).

    Profit before tax rose by 9.8 % to EUR 90.8 million (1st half of 2014: EUR 82.7 million). Income tax expense amounted to EUR 23.6 million following EUR 21.7 million in the comparative period of the previous year, resulting in an effective Group tax rate of 26.0 % (1st half of 2014: 26.2 %).

    Profit for the period therefore increased by 10.2 % to EUR 67.2 million (1st half of 2014: EUR 61.0 million).

    DEVELOPMENT IN THE SECOND QUARTER
    With regards to profit, the second quarter was, as expected, below the first quarter of 2015 however above sales and profit of the comparative period of the previous year.
    The cartonboard division recorded again full capacity utilization at 99 % (1Q 2015: 99 %; 2Q 2014: 98 %) and was able to improve the average prices in the course of the quarter. The operating margin reached 8.5 % (1Q 2015: 7.2 %; 2Q 2014: 8.0 %).
    In the packaging division, non-recurring expenses of around EUR 3 million related to the site concentration of MM Packaging Austria on the larger plant in Vienna as well as the slightly lower production led to a decrease of the operating margin from 10.7 % in the first quarter of 2015 to 7.9 % (2Q 2014: 7.9 %).
    The Group’s operating profit amounted to EUR 45.7 million following EUR 50.8 million in the first quarter of 2015 and EUR 42.5 million in the second quarter of the previous year. Thus, the operating margin was at 8.5 % (1Q 2015: 9.5 %; 2Q 2014: 8.3 %).
    The profit for the period totaled EUR 31.7 million (1Q 2015: EUR 35.5 million; 2Q 2014: EUR 28.9 million).

    OUTLOOK
    Without any indications for a sustainable upturn, continuity however characterizes the current market environment in Europe. In contrast, emerging markets continue to face weaker economic dynamics.

    The order backlog in both divisions remains at an overall good level. Therefore, an ongoing satisfying capacity utilization is expected in the Group also during the second half of the year.

    However, with the solid market conditions in Europe, the prices for a number of input factors are gradually increasing. The necessary price adjustment for our products has been implemented. Supported by a wide range of efficiency-raising measures, our aim is to maintain the good level of profitability as best as possible in an unchanged very competitive environment. We will pursue the long-term expansion course risk-consciously as before through organic growth as well as acquisitions.
    (Mayr-Melnhof Karton Gesellschaft m.b.H.)
     
    20.08.2015   Half-Year Results: ALTANA Increases Sales by 9 Percent    ( Company news )

    Company news • Sales reach €1,070 million, with EBITDA margin at 19.6 percent
    • Group benefits from positive exchange rate effects
    • Full-year 2015 growth forecast confirmed

    The specialty chemicals Group ALTANA was able to increase sales by 9 percent to €1,070 million in the first half of 2015 (previous year: €985 million). At €210 million, earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) almost reached the high level of the previous year (€212 million). At 19.6 percent, the EBITDA margin was below the previous year's margin (21.5 percent), remaining, however, at a high level.

    The company's sales growth mainly resulted from positive exchange rate effects (8 percent), but also from acquisitions (1 percent). Adjusted for these effects, operating sales in the first six months of 2015 were down by 1 percent, and therefore slightly below the strong previous year's level. "Demand momentum in our markets did not live up to our expectations in the first half of 2015," stated Dr. Matthias L. Wolfgruber (photo), CEO of ALTANA AG. "However, ALTANA is very well positioned for further profitable organic growth."

    Overprint varnishes business posts significant growth due to acquisitions
    The ACTEGA Coatings & Sealants division achieved the strongest growth in the period under review. ACTEGA boosted sales by 16 percent to €195 million, mainly as a result of acquisition effects. Adjusted for acquisition and exchange rate effects, sales increased by 2 percent. The ECKART Effect Pigments division posted the strongest operating sales increase. Due to special factors from the previous year sales were up by 3 percent. Positive exchange rate effects led to a total nominal increase in sales of 10 percent to €179 million.

    Sales in the divisions ELANTAS Electrical Insulation (€242 million) and BYK Additives & Instruments (€455 million) grew by 11 and 4 percent respectively. Adjusted for exchange rate effects, operating sales in both divisions were slightly down by 2 percent respectively.

    The U.S. remains strongest growth market
    ALTANA posted by far the strongest growth again in the Americas region. Especially due to the current U.S. Dollar-Euro exchange rate, sales grew by 23 percent. In the U.S., sales actually rose by 24 percent. Adjusted for acquisition and exchange rate effects, sales in the Americas remained almost unchanged at the high level of the previous year, with a slight decrease of 1 percent. Operating sales in the U.S. were up by 2 percentage points. Nominal and operating sales in Europe stabilized at the previous year's level. Asia contributed 10 percent to growth; operating sales almost reached the previous year's level (-1 percent).

    Outlook
    Adjusted for acquisition and exchange rate effects, sales growth in 2015 is expected to be in the low single-digit percentage range, and therefore at the lower end of the target range of 2 to 5 percent. ALTANA confirms its growth forecast for the full year and anticipates nominal sales growth in the higher single-digit percentage range.
    (Altana AG)
     
    20.08.2015   rlc | packaging highlights Beauty and Healthcare at LEUNISMAN with new 16-unit ROLAND ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... sheetfed press

    The rlc | packaging group is investing in its Hanover site and significantly expanding its printing and finishing spectrum for the Beauty and Healthcare industries. In the first quarter of 2016, the company will be launching operation of a new Manroland R 710 HiPrint sheet-fed offset printing press. This machine is equipped with new cold foil technology and specially combined inking and coating operations for highly effective, eye-catching metallic finishes and new visual as well as tactile coating effects.‬

    Photo: The Manroland sheet-fed offset printing press that will go into operation at rlc in 2016 is equipped with ten printing and two coating units along with a cold foil module. This new investment will further expand the rlc finishing portfolio. ‬

    "Quality standards are increasing, along with the demand for new, high-impact design solutions that can be efficiently implemented – especially in the Beauty segment. This why we rely on state-of-the-art technology resources and continuously optimize our processes," explains rlc | packaging group CEO Hans-Christian Bestehorn. "Investing in the latest technology has enabled us to set another technological benchmark at LEUNISMAN and offer an even wider range of inline design options. This not only gives our customers a sharper competitive edge, it also strengthens our focus as a system supplier of comprehensive packaging solutions."‬‬‬‬

    Equipped with ten printing and two coating units, the offset press integrates a new-generation cold foil module to produce a virtually unlimited selection of finishes. The InlineFoiler 2.0 applies cold foil to the carton and enables multiple printing and coating with conventional or UV inks in a single pass. Embossing, special effects and spot coating can be combined to efficiently produce attractive packaging that is a guaranteed eye-catcher at the POS. Another feature of the InlineFoiler enhances eco-sustainability: The new indexing function advances only enough foil to cover the required image area and thus reduces material consumption.‬

    Maximum productivity, highest quality standards‬‬‬‬
    Maximum productivity and process reliability are two more reasons why the family-managed company is investing in the new printing press. Simultaneous plate loading shortens make-ready times and significantly increases performance compared to other offset presses. The highest quality standards are maintained even at maximum speeds, thanks to an inline color measurement system combined with the InlineInspector. This feature uses an inline high-speed camera to monitor each individual sheet and detect even the smallest defects, including foreign matter, scratches or smearing.‬
    (Manroland Sheetfed GmbH)
     
    20.08.2015   Nationwide Survey Finds that Paper Remains Essential to Learning    ( Company news )

    Company news While technology has spread to virtually every aspect of our lives, the just-released 2015 Annual Back-to-School Report, which surveyed 3,200 students, parents and educators, shows students are still choosing paper. And with good reason.

    The Paper and Packaging Board report sheds light on paper usage habits related to the learning process, finding more than 90 percent of students carry paper items every day. 94 percent of students say it’s easier to concentrate while reading a paper copy than a digital version. Three out of five college students prefer to read on paper than on a digital screen. 80 percent of K-12 teachers say their students comprehend information better when they read on paper.

    Building on recent studies showing that learners retain more information when reading on paper, the report reveals that paper may be even more important to the classroom now than it was before the digital revolution.

    “Print is tailor-made for helping us read continuously, concentate, puzzle out concepts and contemplate the significance of what we have read,” wrote Dr. Naomi Baron, professor of linguistics and research contributor to the 2015 Annual Back-to-School Report. “Students reported multitasking more than three times as often when reading on a screen as when reading print.”

    The report also found that paper led to a stronger connection outside the classroom. 76 percent of parents reported feeling more comfortable helping their children with homework on paper than on a digital screen.

    “With the advent of so much technology that makes learning more interactive and vibrant, we forget that sometimes the best way to remember things is by simply writing them down,” wrote 2012

    National Teacher of the Year, Rebecca Mieliwocki, whose 9 Productive Learning Tips for Kids, Families and Teachers are included in the report. “Unlike typing, the act of writing down information increases retention of that information and stores more of it into working and long-term memory.”
    (The Paper and Packaging Board)
     
    20.08.2015   New: Bellmer JetCoater for Spremberg    ( Company news )

    Company news Hamburger Rieger GmbH forms part of Hamburger Containerboard. One of the leading European manufacturers of corrugated base papers, the company has a production capacity of 1.7 million tons/year of high-quality corrugated base papers across various locations. Hamburger Rieger’s management is now investing heavily in its Spremberg mill in Brandenburg.

    With its product line SpreeWhite, Spremberg paper mill is quality leader in the white corrugated base papers segment. With a total investment of 18 million Euros, paper machine # 1 will be modified for the production of coated white testliner (white top testliner), which will enable an extension of the product portfolio in terms of quality. Hamburger Rieger is particularly keen on innovative technology, so it should come as little surprise that Bellmer was awarded the order for the paper machine # 1 upgrade. Bellmer will supply the TURBOCombiCoater coating unit, which combines proven technology with the highest level of reliability. It is the only jet coater on the market to feature separate base displacement for clear adjustability. The particularly large nozzle opening makes the coater quick and easy to clean. The scope of delivery also includes new parts for the pre-dryer section and the dissolving pulper ahead of the sizer.

    A hard-nip calender will ensure the pre-calendering and profiling of the paper web. Pre- and post-dryer sections will be re-configured, too. There will be made the necessary changes to the air/hood systems, as well as an upgrade the steam and condensate system to the latest technology. Existing elements such as the soft-nip calender and the pope reelerwill be relocated. Bellmer has total responsibility for engineering, project management, dismantling, erection, start-up and training of personnel.

    Andreas Noss, Managing Director of Hamburger Rieger GmbH, said: “We chose Bellmer since they offered the most convincing overall package. That included – right from the offer phase – detailed engineering work way beyond what one would normally expect. We have also come to appreciate Bellmer as a reliable and competent partner over the course of quite a number of rebuild projects which they have undertaken at our second location in Germany.”
    (Gebr.Bellmer GmbH Maschinenfabrik)
     
    20.08.2015   ANDRITZ Ritz to supply pumps and booster stations for a drinking water treatment plant in Iraq    ( Company news )

    Company news Photo: ANDRITZ Ritz is to supply a total of 121 pumps and 18 booster stations for a new drinking water treatment station in Samawa, Iraq

    International technology Group ANDRITZ will supply 121 pumps and 18 booster stations for a new drinking water treatment plant in Samawa, Iraq, on behalf of PWT Wasser- und Abwassertechnik, Germany. The new plant will pump up 220,000 m³ of water from a branch of the river Euphrat, which will then be processed into drinking water, fed to a pipework, and distributed to end-consumers via nine pumping stations.

    After having received the first such order two years ago and the supply of 35 pumps in 2014, ANDRITZ was now awarded this follow-up order, which will be completed by the end of 2015.
    (Andritz Ritz GmbH)
     
    19.08.2015   Pöyry PLC: Martin à Porta appointed President and CEO of Pöyry    ( Company news )

    Company news The Board of Directors of Pöyry PLC has appointed Martin à Porta (M. Sc. Eng., photo), 44, as the new President and CEO of Pöyry PLC. He will take up the position latest on 1 February, 2016. Alexis Fries will continue as President and CEO until Martin à Porta takes up his position.

    Martin à Porta joins Pöyry from Siemens Corporation where he is currently CEO of Siemens Building Technologies in Europe. Previously, Martin held leadership positions at Siemens spanning European, Asian, Middle Eastern and Latin American countries. Martin started his career at Electrowatt Engineering, acquired by Pöyry in 1997. His CV is available on Pöyry's website at www.poyry.com.

    "Martin has a strong track record of leadership in professional organisations. He was selected especially due to his high level of energy and strong teamworking skills", says Henrik Ehrnrooth Chairman of the Board of Directors of Pöyry PLC.

    "I am excited to be rejoining Pöyry. It is an honour to lead the company", says Martin à Porta. "Managing a knowledge organisation is challenging but very rewarding. Our society, markets and clients require ever more environmentally-friendly, cost efficient products and processes; our urban living environment is getting more dense and needs a compact, efficient as well as sustainable infrastructure. The demand for these future products and new forms of energy production will continue and many customers expect it to be based on renewable raw materials and sources. Furthermore, future 'smart infrastructure' is designed for economic recycling of materials and energy. Pöyry's know-how is uniquely relevant to address these new demands. It is our vision to work in even closer collaboration with our clients, developing new concepts that will address these future challenges. It is a privilege to rejoin Pöyry and to continue to build a new future based upon Pöyry's unique knowledge and strong corporate culture."

    Alexis Fries has served Pöyry as a Member of the Board of Directors since 2008. He was appointed President and CEO in September 2012 to restructure and reposition the company. Having successfully completed his assignment, Alexis will continue as a member of the Board of Directors.

    "I want to take this opportunity to thank Alexis Fries for his dedication and commitment to Pöyry during the past three years," says Henrik Ehrnrooth. "He has done an excellent job. While the company was facing various challenges in a difficult business environment, Alexis has refocused the company and established a solid foundation from which to continue."

    "Over the past years we have introduced many changes and improvements", says Alexis Fries. "Today, Pöyry is back on track and looks to the future with confidence. I would like to warmly thank all my colleagues for their support in accomplishing this task. I look forward to continuing to contribute to the company's development and will support Martin during the transition. I am confident that Martin will continue to move the company to the next level."

    "We are confident that Pöyry is in good hands and succeeds under Martin's leadership", comments Henrik Ehrnrooth.
    (Pöyry Plc, Forest Industry Business Group)
     
    19.08.2015   Intec announces presence at The Print Show 2015 with new product launch    ( Company news )

    Company news After an immensely successful new product launch at IPEX in 2014, Intec Printing Solutions, which has distributors located across the globe, is delighted to announce its presence at The Print Show 2015 and will be launching an upgraded CP3000 series of digital colour presses with new feature sets you will not want to miss! This re-enforces Intec in its position in the UK print marketplace as one of the forerunners for ground breaking new products for the graphic arts and commercial print industry.

    As a UK based company, Intec will be showcasing its product portfolio and invites UK printers to come and see how we can make a difference to their business with solutions for: digital colour envelope printing, high speed creation of personalised print, booklet to banner production, quick and easy packaging production, as well as label printing solutions for short to medium production runs onto die cut matrix removed or retained and continuous roll media, with label finishing equipment to digitally die-cut any shape label, laminate, matrix remove and slit and finish rolls of labels.

    “Our digital colour printing presses continue to offer industry leading print solutions for graphic arts professionals and the on demand production market place, solving complex production issues for companies who require heavier stock and unique label applications within the growing on demand arena”, states Ian Melville, managing director of Intec Printing Solutions.

    The ColorSplash range includes the CS4000 – 4 colour professional print production system and ground breaking CS5000 model – a radical new 5 colour print production system that will offer stunning digital colour for multi-media printing, with the added benefit of clear and white printing. In addition to offering white and clear toner printing onto thick boards of up to 400gsm/micron and beyond, Intec will also offer the models with specialist feeders and media stackers for greater productivity and the handling of a wide range of medias from heavy stocks, envelopes, packaging boards, labels, polyesters and much, much more. With the addition of the Fiery® XF for Intec RIP, greater colour accuracy and stunning prints can be achieved through colour management and workflow tools such as 64 specific Intec colour profiles, page creep, nesting, imposition, variable data and more!

    Offering the lowest cost of print per page in its class, the CP3000 series will launch with new multi-function features so printers can be more productive in their day to day activities when supporting client needs such as copying, scanning, on line print finishing and booklet making to name but a few new features.

    All of the Intec digital sheet fed print solutions at the show will be driven by the highly successful Fiery XF for Intec colour management and workflow RIP that offers users stunning, precise and predictable quality output on all manner of substrates from any of the Intec printer range.
    Intec offers complete digital colour solutions for on demand production printing. Come and see label production, streamlined envelope printing and flat sheet to finished booklets, banners etc. from its range of unique printing presses.
    (Intec Printing Solutions Limited)
     
    19.08.2015   Fiskeby's biogas production has started    ( Company news )

    Company news In early August Fiskeby´s biogas production started, after nearly a year of planning and construction. The start-up went very well and we are now producing climate neutral gas from the plant's wastewater.

    During the process remains of cellulose and starch from the recycling of cartonboard become nutrients for anaerobic (oxygen-free) bacteria in the new biogas plant and the waste water is purified.

    The expanded waste water treatment capacity reduces the company's environmental impact and offers the potential for increased cartonboard production.
    (Fiskeby Board AB)
     
    19.08.2015   Valmet and Australian Paper sign a multi-year maintenance technical support agreement for ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... Maryvale Mill

    Valmet and Australian Paper have signed a multi-year agreement for Valmet to provide maintenance technical support at the Maryvale Mill in Victoria, Australia. The new technical support agreement (TSA) which will focus on providing onsite maintenance technical advice and expertise to the mill's maintenance organization, replaces the old maintenance agreements between Valmet and Australian Paper. The agreement came into effect on August 1, 2015.

    Photo: Peter Williams, COO of Australian Paper, and Pierre de Villiers, Vice President Sales, Australia and New Zealand from Valmet.

    The Maryvale Mill has three pulp lines, five papermaking machines, an elemental chlorine free bleach plant, pulp lapping machine, deinked pulp line, finishing facility and a waste paper processing plant. Valmet's TSA resources will be located within the mills power and recovery, fibre lines, paper mill and central maintenance areas.

    "The new agreement builds on the partnership between Australian Paper and Valmet, providing long term technical input into Australian Paper's maintenance operation allowing for continuous improvement and development programs to be identified and implemented along with specific Pulp & Paper knowledge and knowhow," says Peter Williams, COO of Australian Paper.

    "Australian Paper has developed continue to develop the Maryvale Mill to ensure its long term sustainability and profitability as a domestic producer of fine paper and packaging grades. The Technical Service Agreement provides the needed alignment to meet these objectives, reinforces the high level cooperation and commitment between our organizations and provides the platform to move our customer's performance forward," says Pierre de Villiers, Vice President Sales, Australia and New Zealand, Valmet.
    (Valmet Corporation)
     
    19.08.2015   Asia Pulp & Paper commits to the first-ever retirement of commercial plantations on ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ...tropical peatland to cut carbon emissions

    -APP partners with Deltares to develop peatland best management practice model – Greenpeace is monitoring its development
    -In the largest exercise of its kind, a quarter of Indonesian peat landscapes is mapped with LiDAR technology
    -APP builds on FCP commitment of a moratorium on all peatland development since 2013

    Asia Pulp & Paper Group (APP) announced it is committing to retire around 7,000 hectares of commercial plantation areas to protect threatened carbon-rich peatlands, the first time that plantations on tropical peatland have been retired for conservation purposes worldwide.

    Peatland development in Indonesia represents one of the single largest terrestrial sources of greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) in the world1. Retiring these plantation areas will help support the Government of Indonesia’s target of a 26 per cent reduction in emissions by 2020.

    The land marked for retirement is spread across five individual acacia plantation areas in Riau and South Sumatra which have been identified as requiring immediate rehabilitation following recommendations from the applied research institute Deltares. In line with APP’s Forest Conservation Policy (FCP), a Free and Prior Informed Consent (FPIC) process will be conducted for the five areas, before any retirement proceeds.

    Today’s announcement is part of APP’s commitment to establish a science-based landscape approach for best practice peatland management that can be used by the Indonesian Government and plantation companies. It builds on the conservation pledges in the company’s FCP, which placed an immediate moratorium on all natural forests and new peatland development in February 2013.

    As part of this approach, Deltares is working with APP to carry out the largest mapping exercise ever carried out on tropical peatland areas using LiDAR remote sensing technology. LiDAR, deployed from aircraft, allows Deltares to map around one quarter of all Indonesian peatland where APP’s suppliers are located. The area totals 4.5 million hectares, which compares to an area the size of Switzerland or the State of Pennsylvania. The resulting maps will be finalised in 2016.

    The mapping will provide unprecedented insight into the hydrology and environmental conditions of a number of critically important peat landscapes. Analysis of the data will enable Deltares to provide further recommendations on how APP can minimise the impact of drainage in peat landscapes, making a significant contribution not only to reducing forest loss but also to reducing greenhouse gas emissions that lead to climate change.

    Aida Greenbury, Managing Director Sustainability, APP said:
    “APP’s decision to retire these areas of commercial plantation is an important milestone in the delivery of our Forest Conservation Policy and we believe it is an unprecedented commitment. The retirement of active plantations is not an easy decision for any business to take, but we believe that taking urgent steps to protect remaining areas of peatland forest, as well as reducing and avoiding climate emissions from peatlands, must be a priority. While there is still a long way to go, and we have much to learn, this announcement today represents a major breakthrough.
    “However, the reality of protecting peat landscapes is that no one company like APP can do it alone. APP’s goal of supporting the conservation of forest and peat landscapes needs to be a shared objective, and one supported by meaningful actions from both the Government and other plantation companies. This should include addressing the systemic barriers to forest and peatland protection, supporting forest restoration and ensuring development opportunities for communities.”

    Dr Aljosja Hooijer, programme leader at Deltares, said:
    “APP has a unique opportunity to support peatland forest conservation and emission reduction. The progress announced today is a first step in a process towards the development of a new model to define best management practices in peatlands. The pioneering approach to collecting LiDAR data has allowed the technology to be deployed at an unprecedented scale economically, and will advance the science of peat and peat management not only in Indonesia, but also globally.”
    (APP Asia Pulp & Paper Headquarter)
     
    19.08.2015   Sustainability at Iggesund: A key factor in all decisions     ( Company news )

    Company news Picture: “A wooden bridge within an industrial site must of course be suitable for its purpose and good from a sustainability and durability perspective. But the fact that it is also beautiful is an added plus,” says Anna Mårtensson, Environmental Manager at Iggesund Mill, Iggesund Paperboard’s Swedish production facility.©Iggesund

    Many small steps add up to large ones. That’s a simple way to sum up Iggesund Paperboard’s environmental work. It is easy to give examples of Iggesund’s multi-million euro investments and their importance. But the company also makes many smaller investment decisions which have important environmental aspects. One of these is the wooden bridge that links the mill at Iggesund with the wastewater purification facility on the adjacent island of Skälön.

    “Long-term environment work is less about making a few big decisions and more about making many small decisions which include the environmental aspects,” explains Anna Mårtensson, Environmental Manager at the company’s Swedish paperboard mill, Iggesund Mill. “In this case a wooden bridge was a better environmental choice than a concrete one.”

    For over a century bridges in Sweden have primarily been built of steel and concrete. But now wooden bridges are gaining ground again. They are as durable as concrete and are also beautiful. When their environmental aspects are also considered, wooden bridges are a serious alternative.

    The modern history of wooden bridges in the Nordic region really began in the 1990s. At that time Sweden, Norway and Finland agreed to develop common standards and technical solutions for wooden road bridges which would have the same performance and lifespan as bridges made of steel and concrete.

    The longest wooden bridge built in Sweden to date is a 230-metre-long pedestrian and cycling bridge in the northern city of Umeå. The oldest wooden bridge in the country dates from 1737 and spans the Skellefteå River.

    As architects and engineers learn more about how to use wood as a building material, more and more wooden bridges are being built.

    Iggesund Paperboard has joined the trend. When Iggesund Mill expanded its wastewater purification facility on the island of Skälön outside the mill, the company decided to replace the old bridge with a stronger one. The new bridge would allow heavy trucks heading for the island to avoid making a nine-kilometre detour.

    “We quickly calculated that a new bridge would pay off, both financially and environmentally,” Environmental Manager Anna Mårtensson remembers.

    Wood was chosen as the material for several reasons. First, the Holmen Group, which includes Iggesund Paperboard, is a forest industry group so using wood is an obvious choice. A wooden bridge is also cheaper and faster to build.

    “But above all, wood makes less of an environmental impact than steel and concrete,” Mårtensson says.

    An engineering thesis from Uppsala University concludes that a lifecycle analysis of a concrete bridge, based on a lifespan of 40 years and including investment costs, construction process and maintenance, results in twice the carbon dioxide emissions as a bridge built of wood. In 1915 a long hollow pipe was built of wood in order to supply the mill with process water. That pipe still exists and still functions perfectly today – a hundred years later. So there is no doubt that wood is a durable material.

    At Iggesund Paperboard, sustainability is a cornerstone of the company’s work. The environmental aspects – large and small – are considered when making every decision. The company’s environmental work is not separate from its main business because good investments always go hand in hand with a better environment.

    “Many small improvements lead to major environmental gains, with lower emissions and a greater likelihood that Iggesund Paperboard will continue to lead the process industry’s sustainability league tables in the future too,” Mårtensson says.

    Iggesund Mill’s environmental work to date has led to a fifty per cent reduction in the amount of sulphur and particulate emissions within only a couple of years. In addition, the mill’s major investments in water purification have resulted in a radical reduction of emissions of nutrients into the Baltic Sea outside the mill. This in turn has resulted in improved water quality and clear signs of recovery in the marine ecosystem.

    Even more important, though, may be the focus which is being placed on the human factor – to get every employee to think about what he or she is doing so there is no relaxation of the joint environmental effort.

    “Of course, all our work towards greater sustainability also includes the 128-metre-long, red-painted wooden bridge over to Skälön as one of many small but important steps,” Anna Mårtensson concludes. “And it’s very beautiful, too.”

    Facts: The bridge to Skälön is 128 metres long and has a single one-way lane which is 4.5 metres wide and equipped with traffic lights. The bridge rests on glulam beams bolted together.

    Using wood as a building material has two major fundamental environmental advantages: first, the wood is produced from a renewable resource and with minimal energy input, and, second, the photosynthesis process in growing trees binds carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. It is also often both easier and cheaper to build in wood than in other materials. From a lifecycle perspective, wood is therefore an advantageous choice in terms of efficient resource usage, energy consumption, carbon dioxide emissions and waste.
    (Iggesund Paperboard AB)
     
    18.08.2015   Metsä Board Corporation Interim Report 1 January - 30 June 2015    ( Company news )

    Company news Metsä Board Corporation’s operating result excluding non-recurring items was EUR 90.2 million in January–June 2015

    Result for the first half of 2015
    • Sales were EUR 1,047.7 million (Q1–Q2/2014: 995.2).
    • Operating result excluding non-recurring items was EUR 90.2 million (64.4). Operating result including non-recurring items was EUR 110.3 million (75.7).
    • Result before taxes excluding non-recurring items was EUR 72.3 million (40.8). Result before taxes including non-recurring items was EUR 90.2 million (49.9).
    • Earnings per share excluding non-recurring items were EUR 0.19 (0.10), and earnings per share including non-recurring items were EUR 0.24 (0.12).

    Result for the second quarter of 2015
    • Sales were EUR 522.0 million (Q1/2015: 525.7).
    • Operating result excluding non-recurring items was EUR 47.0 million (43.2). Operating result including non-recurring items was EUR 67.2 million (43.1).
    • The result before taxes excluding non-recurring items was EUR 40.0 million (32.3). Result before taxes including non-recurring items was EUR 58.0 million (32.2).
    • Earnings per share excluding non-recurring items were EUR 0.10 (0.09), and earnings per share including non-recurring items were EUR 0.15 (0.09).

    Events during the second quarter of 2015
    • Paperboard deliveries continued to grow, and the price levels were stable.
    • The conversion of paper machine 8 to board machine 2 at the Husum mill was completed as planned.
    • Metsä Board divested the Gohrsmühle mill, including all related liabilities, to the German mutares AG’s wholly owned holding company and its partner company.
    • Moody’s Investors Service raised Metsä Board Corporation’s credit rating by two notches from B1 to Ba2. The outlook of the rating is stable.

    Near-term outlook
    • Metsä Board’s operating result excluding non-recurring items is in the third quarter of 2015 expected to increase slightly compared to the second quarter of 2015.

    Mika Joukio (photo), CEO:
    “The second quarter of 2015 met our expectations. The transformation of Husum into a paperboard mill is progressing as planned. The training of the mill personnel has begun, which will ensure the successful production of high-quality folding boxboard once the new machine starts up.
    A large share of the Husum mill’s production will be directed to the North American market. Production optimisation enables us to grow the sales of our other mills’ products as well. Our target is to continue to grow globally.
    The divestment of the Gohrsmühle mill improves our annual operating result excluding non-recurring items by approximately EUR 20 million compared to the previous year. Slightly over half of this will materialise this year.
    We are increasing our emphasis on product development. Our customers increasingly highlight the importance of sustainability. We will be the first company in the world to start testing foam forming on a production scale. Foam forming technology makes it possible to further lower the weight of products and reduce the use of raw materials, energy and water.
    The successful implementation of the investment programme at Husum, the full-scale sale of the new volumes globally and, at the same time, finalising the exit from the paper business are our most important targets from now on.”
    (Metsä Board Corporation)
     
    18.08.2015   Ahlstrom January-June 2015 interim report: Continued operating profit margin improvement driven ...     ( Company news )

    Company news ...by better pricing and product mix

    April-June 2015 compared with April-June 2014
    -Net sales EUR 281.1 million (EUR 253.0 million), showing an increase of 11.1%.Comparable net sales at constant currencies remained flat.
    -Operating profit EUR 15.7 million (EUR 9.6 million).
    -Operating profit excluding non-recurring items EUR 16.8 million (EUR 13.4 million).
    -Operating profit margin excluding non-recurring items 6.0% (5.3%), the seventh consecutive quarter of year-on-year improvement.
    -Profit before taxes EUR 20.8 million (EUR -0.4 million), including a EUR 11.1 million capital gain booked from the sale of Munksjö Oyj shares.
    -Earnings per share EUR 0.29 (EUR -0.07).
    -Revolving credit facility refinanced in June.
    -Outlook for 2015 revised.

    January-June 2015 compared with January-June 2014
    -Net sales EUR 552.9 million (EUR 502.2 million), showing an increase of 10.1%.
    -Operating profit EUR 28.4 million (EUR 14.0 million).
    -Operating profit excluding non-recurring items EUR 28.8 million (EUR 20.6 million).
    -Operating profit margin excluding non-recurring items 5.2% (4.1%).
    -Profit before taxes EUR 34.6 million (EUR 4.8 million), including a EUR 17.1 million capital gain booked from the sale of Munksjö Oyj shares.
    -Earnings per share EUR 0.46 (EUR -0.02).

    Marco Levi (photo), President & CEO:
    "We had a record quarter and achieved the highest operating profit margin in the current structure of the company. This was primarily driven by our efforts to improve commercial operations through enhanced pricing and product mix management. The quarter was also characterized by lower demand in some of our main markets and continued increase in net sales driven by currencies.
    The Filtration business area improved profits despite the slowdown in its markets, and the Food business continued on its path of steady improvement. The Building and Energy business area also reported a welcome increase in sales, while profitability still suffered from low demand for wallcovering products as well as adverse currency effects.
    We are moving ahead with the key priorities of our roadmap - commercial excellence, go-to-market process, simplification and building up the new Ahlstrom - to improve performance. While we have made progress towards our long-term financial targets, we still have a way to go to uncover the full competitive potential of this company."

    Outlook for 2015 revised:
    Ahlstrom revises its outlook for net sales and operating profit margin excluding non-recurring items in 2015.

    New outlook:
    Ahlstrom expects net sales in 2015 to be in the range of EUR 1,025-1,125 million. The operating profit margin excluding non-recurring items is expected to be 3.85-4.5% of net sales.
    (Ahlstrom Corporation)
     
    18.08.2015   Announcement Regarding the Shut Down of Oji Paper's Facility    ( Company news )

    Company news Oji Holdings Corporation (hereinafter “Oji Holdings”) hereby announces that in its considerations of constructing the optimum manufacturing system which responds to changes in demand structure of printing and communications paper, which were referred to in the press release entitled Announcement Regarding the Formation of the Business Alliance with Chuetsu Pulp & Paper Co., Ltd. and the Executive of Subscription for the Third-party Stock Allocation, it has now decided to permanently close the No. 7 Machine at the Tomioka Mill of Oji Paper Co., Ltd.

    Overview of facility to be shut down
    No. 7 Machine: Tomioka Mill, Oji Paper Co., Ltd.
    Major products: Converting paper and wood-free paper
    Production capacity: 44,000 tons/year
    Time of closure (scheduled): March 2016
    (Oji Holdings Corporation)
     
    18.08.2015   Verdú Digital installs first Esko Kongsberg C64 cutting table in Spain    ( Company news )

    Company news Production streamlined with integrated software solutions

    Photo: Vicente Verdú with Esko Kongsberg C64

    Leading Spanish large format print production company Verdú Digital is the first in the region to streamline operations with the Esko Kongsberg C64 multi-functional large format digital finishing system. With an annual production of more than 180.000 m2 of canvas, vinyl and textiles, Verdú Digital has also invested in several Esko design and workflow software solutions to help it better service customers across Europe, including key clients in France, Portugal and Italy.

    Vicente Verdú, Commercial Director of Verdú Digital, explains the positive impact implementing the Esko solutions has made: "In the past, we've completed large format sign and display production manually or by subcontracting. Installing the Esko Kongsberg C64 Kongsberg cutting table, meant a radical change for the company. It not only brings time and cost savings, but we can now also accept more projects than we’ve ever been able to before.”

    To service its portfolio of over 8.000 clients, Verdú Digital has a 2.500 m2 facility in Barcelona and 45 employees. These clients are looking for services in digital printing on canvas, vinyl and textiles but they are also seeking graphic communication support for the production and installation of all types of advertising elements, decoration of spaces, events and scenery.

    Pioneering installation

    Verdú Digital was only too pleased to be the first in Spain to install the Esko Kongsberg C. "Esko is a brand with an impeccable reputation and a wide range of installations worldwide, so we knew it was a company we could trust. In addition, it offers complete solutions and has a great support and service team overseeing the installation which has worked accurately from day one. Esko fits with our company so we had no doubts. Our decision proved to be the right one because the Esko team has always been there when we needed it. With this installation, we wanted to become a leader in the market and we are getting there!"

    The Esko solution installed at Verdú Digital includes the Kongsberg C64 for cutting sheets and rolls but also a range of software solutions: ArtiosCAD 3D structural design software, workflow solution Automation Engine, connectivity management with Automation Engine Connect and optimization of the cutting work with i-Cut Layout. "ArtiosCAD allows us to design structures, develop products and prototypes, Automation Engine is a modular workflow server with dynamic workflows. Both solutions are easy to set up and operate, and offer a new standard for prepress workflow automation. I-Cut Layout is a software program that allows us to make projects more profitable. It enables us to save on material and preparation time but also helps us to reduce delivery time. With this program we can optimize production from fitting the designs to create cutting strokes, bleeding, adding grommet marks, etc.," explains Verdú.

    Thanks to the combination of these solutions, Verdú Digital production is smoother, more structured and better organized. Verdú says: "By automating production management we can process more orders in a time of declining run volumes. In addition, the i-Cut software allows us to reduce material waste. All these benefits translate into better service, faster delivery and an increased capacity to process more orders."

    Wide variety of materials

    The Esko Kongsberg C64 (with working area of 3.210 mm x 3.200 mm) always provides the same performance – even on the most demanding materials or complex jobs. Verdú comments: "We already cut all sorts of materials, both flexible and rigid and have also made some spectacular applications on cardboard, wood and methacrylate. We are very satisfied. The table works perfectly with a wide range of materials and that allows us to do absolutely everything. And the additional advantage is that we can do it much faster. Today, we can handle any kind of job!”

    Amadeu Maurel, Esko Area Sales Manager, adds: “The large format printing market needs large format cutting equipment that still offers the same quality, speed and flexibility for a wide variety of materials. To meet this demand, the Esko Kongsberg features an extremely rigid beam allowing high accuracy and avoiding vibrations at high speed on large formats ensuring the highest precision and performance.”

    Vicente Verdú agrees: “Since we made the investment, we have become more productive and efficient. We have managed to profitably manufacture small production runs quickly and for a wide range of materials, with the highest quality results. With the software solution, we have been able to expand our capacity to manage and quickly produce a larger number of orders.”

    The industry crisis in Spain has prompted Verdú Digital to invest in new equipment to enable it to meet new market demands. The purchase of the Esko cutting table responds to this strategy and may soon result in another purchase. "At the moment we are running our Kongsberg table 15 hours a day. If the production rate continues at this level, we may purchase a new machine in the middle to short term,” concludes Verdú.
    (Esko Belgium)
     
    18.08.2015   KBA: Well-filled order books – clear sales and earnings rise expected in second half-year    ( Company news )

    Company news First half-year report for Koenig & Bauer

    -At €607.5m order intake up 33.2% y-o-y
    -Sales of €426.9m still behind annual target of over €1bn
    -Group pre-tax profit of €6.9m in Q2 improves EBT to –€10.8m
    -Positive results in all business areas within reach
    -Fit@All programme almost complete with cost savings
    -Earnings outlook for 2015 unchanged with EBT margin of up to 2%

    In the second quarter of 2015 Koenig & Bauer (KBA) came significantly closer to achieving its target of positive results in all business segments. In the first six months the printing press manufacturer was able to greatly increase its order intake with a plus of 33.2% year-on-year to €607.5m. At €597.9m group order backlog on 30 June was around 43% higher than at the beginning of the year. In contrast, at €426.9m sales at the mid-year mark were below the previous year (€517.8m) and thus proportionally behind the group’s annual target of over €1bn. The disproportionate distribution of sales to the second half-year was previously announced by the management board. Although KBA’s cost base has been substantially reduced by Fit@All, the lag in sales impacted on earnings. President and CEO Claus Bolza-Schünemann: “Group profit before taxes of €6.9m in the second quarter led to an improvement in our EBT from –€17.7m after three months to –€10.8m mid-year. We are particularly pleased with the major improvements in earnings in Sheetfed and Digital & Web. Despite this half-time shortfall, with catching-up in mind we continue to target an EBT margin of up to 2% of sales for 2015.” After tax deductions, group results were –€9.3m (2014: –€3.4m). This corresponds to earnings per share of –€0.55 compared to –€0.20 in 2014.

    High net liquidity offers strategic flexibility
    Notwithstanding redundancy payments of over €15m as part of personnel adjustments, cash flows from operating activities increased from –€33.7m the previous year to –€28.9m. This was mainly due to reduced receivables (–€31m) and a rise in customer prepayments (+€24.8m). Although inventories rose in preparation for the upcoming sales catch-up in the third and fourth quarter, KBA was able to reduce working capital by around €100m in the last twelve months. The free cash flow improved greatly to –€25.2m following –€43m the year before. Funds at the end of June 2015 stood at €191.6m. Solid net liquidity of €172.8m after deducting limited bank loans of €18.8m offers the group’s management board strategic flexibility in a shifting market. Equity of €226.5m represented 22.8% of the balance sheet total.

    Positive segment development
    The Sheetfed Solutions segment was particularly successful in the first half of 2015 with order intake up 40.3% on the previous year (€262.4m) to €368.1m. This was predominantly a result of strong demand from the packaging sector. Sales in KBA’s sheetfed segment were up 1.8% to €239m year-on-year and are expected to increase more strongly in the second-half of this year. Order backlog mid-year came in at €310.6m, the highest figure since 2007. Progress made with regard to costs and prices led to a massive earnings improvement from a segment loss of €8.4m in 2014 to a profit of €3.8m. The KBA management board anticipates a further significant earnings increase in the course of the year.

    New contracts for digital and newspaper presses drove order intake in the Digital & Web Solutions segment up from €45.6m in 2014 to €69.2m. Given low order backlog at the start of the year, at €36.7m revenue remained significantly below the previous year’s figure of €71.3m. In contrast, order backlog of €83.4m at the end of the second quarter stood well above the corresponding figure from 2014 (€69.1m). The segment posted a loss of €8.9m for the first half-year (2014: –€11.5m). With a segment loss of €0.2m in the second quarter the turnaround was almost achieved due to the improved order situation and capacity utilisation. Earnings are expected to improve gradually in the following quarters triggered by higher sales and more effective savings.

    Along with growing success in the relatively young field of flexible packaging, more orders for metal-decorating, security printing and coding systems boosted the total volume of incoming orders in the Special Solutions segment by 21% to €199m. At €169.9m sales were distinctly lower than the previous year (2014: €227.8m) that benefitted from large security press orders. KBA anticipates a significant rise in revenue in the third and fourth quarter in particular. Order backlog stood at €224.5m (2014: €238.5m) at the mid-year mark. Given the lower margin product mix compared to the first half-year 2014, segment profit fell to €3.6m compared to the prior-year figure of €33.9m.

    Export level rose to 84.9%
    The export level climbed to 84.9% (2014: 83.4%) after six months. At 29.7% the proportion of deliveries to other parts of Europe was significantly down on last year’s figure (2014: 40.4%). In contrast, business in North America which was up from 10% to16.6% was boosted by market success with sheetfed offset and flexo presses. The proportion attributable to sales market Asia and the Pacific also rose from 24.3% to 29.3%. Latin America and Africa generated 9.3% (2014: 8.7%) of group sales.

    Group payroll on schedule
    At the end of June 2015 there were 5,266 employees on the KBA group payroll, 844 fewer than twelve months earlier. Excluding apprentices, trainees, employees exempted from their duties and staff on phased retirement schemes the group workforce sank to 4,599. As previously mentioned, this total is expected to fall to around 4,500 at the end of 2015. With a training rate of 6.3% securing the next generation of skilled workers remains a high priority.

    Management board confirms spring outlook
    The economic and political environment for the export-driven engineering industry remains volatile. Nevertheless, the KBA group kicks off the second half-year with considerably fuller order books and capacities than in 2014. Completing the raft of existing orders on time poses a substantial challenge. This is especially true of KBA’s Sheetfed Solutions business unit which is operating at a very high level of capacity utilisation and contributes to around half of group sales. As demand remains strong in this segment special measures have been introduced to increase production output.

    In the first half-year capacities at KBA-Digital & Web in Würzburg have been sustainably adjusted to the severely shrunken web offset market. Higher order intake for digital and conventional web presses currently contributes to the segment’s sound level of capacity utilisation. KBA expects the turnaround in quarterly results also for this segment in the course of the year.

    The companies consolidated in the Special Solutions segment will have to considerably increase output in the second half-year in order to achieve their sales and earnings targets.

    According to the group’s CEO and president, greater transparency and market focus expected from the group realignment with the parent as a holding and new operating business units is already noticeable. He is therefore confident that KBA will be able to deploy the capital available in an even more targeted manner in future.

    The product mix to be delivered in the second half-year will be more profitable than in the first. Overall, the management board continues to target an EBT margin of up to 2% of sales. The implementation of the Fit@All restructuring programme will be completed by the end of 2015. KBA management currently does not expect any impacts on earnings from upcoming measures beyond the provisions made.
    (Koenig & Bauer AG (KBA))
     
    18.08.2015   Paper ME: Dead Line of participation Will Be 15 September 2015    ( Company news )

    Company news Paper ME: the 7th international Exhibition for paper industries, From 22 -24 October, 2015, (Hall 1)
    Tissue ME: the 2nd international exhibition for Tissue Industry & hygiene products, From 22 -24 October, 2015, (Hall 2)
    Pack2Pack: the 4th international exhibition for packing & packaging industry, From 22 -24 October, 2015, (Hall 3)

    We are looking forward for the active participation of your luxurious company at our exhibitions.

    Paper ME: Emerging markets are increasingly becoming the source of growth in the complex global economy. The rate of return on foreign investment is higher in the MENA region than in any other emerging market. Egypt has one of the most developed and diversified economies in the region.
    Global executives and investors must pay heed.
    The Middle East & Africa markets for paper is expected to continue to grow in the near future, with recent figures indicating that the region would need at least 28 million tons of paper to fulfill its needs by 2020.
    Citing the same promising future aspects, the foreign investors in paper sector are looking to strengthen their business in the MENA as well as domestic investors who seek to uplift their production capacity to meet the local needs. Generally, the paper industry is investing heavily in its future.
    This has been the drive of PAPER-ME’s growing importance, making it the awaited event for prominent International and local exhibitors to meet face to face with manufacturers, professionals and suppliers interested in the latest products, equipment, paper manufacture machinery, pulp , paper, cardboard, tissue, chemicals, printing and packaging technologies.
    Since its launch in 2009, success of PAPER-ME accumulated through years. In its 6th edition, PAPER-ME 2014 success surpassed all expectations putting the show ahead from any other specialized exhibition in the region.PAPER-ME 2014 Post–Show Report
    PAPER-ME will continue to serve as your trusted business partner in Africa and Middle East to make sure your company accomplishes its goals, thrive, and expand your business in the MENA.
    Experience our success yourself and be part of PAPER-ME 2015 to Increase your profits, Develop business network, Meet paper industry key players, Capture market share and Gain media exposure.

    Tissue ME: The show offers its exhibitors the chance to meet with regional traders and manufacturers who consider TISSUE-ME as a "must-attend event".

    Pack2Pack: It is a vibrant commercial channel through which suppliers of Machinery, Equipment, High Quality Products, Materials & Logistics services meet global buyers to strike up partnerships and secure crucial business deals.
    (Nile Trade Fairs)
     
    18.08.2015   Valmet supplies main equipment to the pulp mill project of Huanggang Chenming Pulp & Paper ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... Co. Ltd. in China

    Valmet will supply main equipment to Huanggang Chenming Pulp & Paper's new pulp mill located in the city of Huanggang in Hubei province, China. The pulp mill is designed for flexible production to respond to market developments. The pulp line can be run to produce softwood kraft pulp and dissolving pulp depending on the market needs. The new mill is expected to start up in 2017. Valmet's delivery includes the main equipment excluding only some specific process parts.

    The value of the order is about EUR 110 million. The order is included in Valmet's third quarter orders received.

    "Huanggang will be our new business location, where we plan to have a three-phase investment. This pulp mill investment is the first phase. We have been cooperating with Valmet close to 20 years. Our people trust Valmet's know-how and its service spirit. We are happy to select Valmet as the main equipment supplier to this project," says Mr. Chen Hongguo, Chairman of Chenming Group.

    "Huanggang pulp mill project offers both our engineering and production personnel work in the Nordics, Asia Pacific and China. This pulp mill will be the world's largest dissolving pulp producer, and the order shows the customer's trust on Valmet's know-how in pulp and dissolving pulp technology," says Bertel Karlstedt, President of Valmet's Pulp and Energy Business Line.

    Details of Valmet's delivery
    Valmet's delivery presents state-of-the art technology in optimizing mill production, tailor making of dissolving grades, maximizing energy efficiency and minimizing environmental impact. The delivery includes specific equipment and services for wood handling and pulp drying areas, hardwood and softwood multi-grade fiber line (excluding cooking), high dry solids evaporation plant, high power recovery boiler with integrated crystallization system, biomass gasification, lime kiln and recausticizing.

    In addition to the delivered equipment, the delivery includes process and basic engineering, detail engineering services and virtual site training simulator for selected areas as well as installation and start-up advisory services.
    (Valmet Corporation)
     
    17.08.2015   MAFEX - PACK2PACK 2015: A unifying event for the food processing and packaging industry    ( Company news )

    Company news -A unifying event for the food processing industry and, Packaging and all related process technologies
    -The 4th MAFEX to take place from 9 to 11 December 2015 in Casablanca Expo Center (OFEC).

    MAFEX is Morocco’s most successful trade fair for the agro-industry, packaging and all related process technologies.
    With the outstanding success of the past edition We are pleased to announce the 4th MAFEX to take place from 9 to 11 December 2015 in Casablanca Expo Center (OFEC).
    Mafex/Pack2Pack will be hosting 200 exhibitors and 4000 trade visitors.
    Mafex/Pack2Pack covers the whole food-processing network Particularly: drinks, food ingredients, organic products, seasoning, Meats, confectionery, chocolates, local products, canned vegetables and sea products, flavorings, processing and packaging equipment.

    Mafex /Pack 2Pack 2015 offer to:
    -Provide the exhibitors with an invaluable platform to share Their products and to develop and increase their business
    -Bring together local and international producers and brands
    -Offer a tempting opportunity to meet large numbers of targeted visitors in a short space of time
    -Attract more national pavilions and supporting SME in their Development
    -Welcome major agri-food and decision makers: institutional and trade associations, agro industry operators, producers, Services suppliers, buyers.
    (Nile Trade Fairs)
     
    17.08.2015   The forest-based sector in January-June: pulp and paperboard production continues to grow    ( Company news )

    Company news Production of pulp and packaging paperboard grew in the first half of the year. The volume of printing and writing paper production remained almost unchanged from the previous year's level, but softwood sawn timber production contracted. Upcoming industrial policy decisions will have a significant impact on the competitiveness of Finland's forest-based sector.

    “A comprehensive societal agreement is needed alongside very moderate pay rises in the next few years if we want Finnish competitiveness to recover. This would enable us to narrow the gap that has developed between Finland and our key competitor countries. Promoting favourable operating prerequisites for the forest-based sector, the most important component of the bioeconomy, makes it possible to realise the expectations that have been placed on the bioeconomy as a driving force for overall economic activity,” says Timo Jaatinen, Director General of the Finnish Forest Industries Federation.

    Long-term and consistent industrial policies are a prerequisite for the realisation of the forest-based sector's numerous investment projects.

    “Concrete action is needed to spur the bioeconomy. Measures with rapid impact must be taken in order to get timber flowing and safeguard the industry's raw material supplies. The emissions trading compensation included in the Programme for Government should also be introduced quickly. In addition, infrastructure investments must target basic road maintenance, the lower-level road network and boost the efficiency of track transports that strengthen the bioeconomy,” Jaatinen adds.

    Production of packaging paperboard and pulp growing strongly
    The forest-based sector plays a significant role in the generation of export revenues for Finland. Forest industry products accounted for 21.7% of national exports in January-May.

    Some 5.3 million tonnes of paper and paperboard was produced in Finland in January-June, just under one percent more than in the corresponding period of 2014.

    About 3 million tonnes of printing and writing paper was produced in Finland during the first half of the year. Output was almost unchanged from the corresponding period of 2014.

    Production of paperboard for packaging applications continued to grow steadily. Some 1.6 million tonnes of paperboard was produced in January-June, over 5% more than one year earlier.

    Pulp production increased in the first half of the year. Finnish pulp production totalled 3.6 million tonnes in January-June, almost 3% more than in the corresponding period of 2014.

    Softwood sawn timber production in January-June totalled 5.5 million cubic metres. First-half production was down 4% compared to the previous year.
    (Metsateollisuus ry - Skogsindustrin rf / FFIF Finnish Forest Industries Federation)
     
    17.08.2015   Schumacher Packaging showcases trailblazing innovations at FachPack    ( Company news )

    Company news Digital printing in series production – the future for printed packaging

    The Schumacher Packaging Group will be presenting several revolutionary innovations at FachPack in Nuremberg (29 September-1st October 2015, Hall 7A, stand no. 128/228). The company will show an entirely new generation of digital print technology for producing large series runs in cardboard. Also on display will be something unique to the market for logistics – a tube section made of paper for the modular assembly of transport packaging. Not only is it easier to use, it is also extremely stable. Schumacher’s latest plant in the Dutch town of Breda is now producing highly creative display material and promotional packaging. And for packing foodstuffs, the company will also show ecological fruit and vegetable punnets made from corrugated and solid cardboard printed on both sides. From folding boxes and transport packaging to cardboard presentation boxes right through to floor-standing and counter-top displays – as a supplier of paper-based packaging solutions, Schumacher Packaging has the most extensive portfolio on the market.

    Digital printing for the first time: for rapid series production
    The most impressive feature of the latest digital printing machine is its high printing speed of 100 to 200 metres per minute, that’s up to 24,000 sheets per hour. It enables large print runs of various types of packaging in corrugated or single face corrugated board and it can customise them in in sequence: photos, graphics, text, QR codes or tamper-resistant features can be varied from one sheet to another. Visitors to FachPack can receive further exclusive details on the variety of options in digital printing by visiting the Schumacher Packaging stand in Hall 7A, stand no. 128/228.

    New type of tube section made of paper for tailor-made packaging solutions
    Schumacher Packaging presents its latest material innovation, a world first: its paper tube section. This hollow section is made of paper and offers maximum stability with minimal weight and is also completely recyclable. At FachPack, Schumacher will be showing prototypes of finished products made from this tube section, such as a lightweight pallet covering frame with rounded edges to facilitate handling and improve strapping. And compared with conventional pallets, its paper transport pallets are much lighter and equally stable, plus they can be used for transporting foodstuffs without pre-treatment and can be disposed of with waste paper.

    Displays and shop decorations from the creative hotbed in the Netherlands
    The newest member of the Schumacher Group, Schumacher Packaging & Display in Breda, Netherlands, specialises in laminating, die-cutting and printing large format sheets up to 1,700 x 2,500 mm (larger than Xb format). Alongside a variety of displays, promotional packaging, shop decorations and printing techniques, the Breda factory offers particularly stable and durable display products known as V boards. Some of the well-known customers who use these are Coca Cola, Ferrero and Villeroy & Boch. Schumacher produces some amazing golden displays for Ferrero, for example, and these will be available to view at FachPack, alongside a host of other creative products made in Breda.

    Ecological fruit and vegetable punnets
    Supermarkets and discount stores are increasingly looking to cardboard instead of plastic when it comes to packaging fruit and vegetables. It is easier to recycle and takes into account consumer demand for eco-friendliness and sustainability. In response to this, Schumacher Packaging is making fruit and vegetable punnets in mainly F flute corrugated or solid cardboard, or alternatively out of recovered paper or pure white primary fibre, and can cater for small order volumes upwards. This means that agricultural enterprises and producers’ associations can pack their produce in an ecological way and add custom printing to both the inner and outer side of the containers to advertise their company name.
    There are a number of other new developments from Schumacher Packaging that visitors to FachPack can look forward to: cushioning material in corrugated board made up of two layers of mega flute corrugated plus edge protectors, also produced in-house.
    (Schumacher Packaging KG)
     
    17.08.2015   Steve Blasczyk Joins Fox River Fiber as Production Manager    ( Company news )

    Company news Blasczyk (photo) Also Serves on Company’s Leadership Team

    Paper industry veteran Steve Blasczyk is the new Production Manager for Fox River Fiber, the industry leader in the deinking of post-consumer wastepaper to produce premium recycled pulp.

    Blasczyk, who brings more than 30 years of leadership and operational experience to his role, also serves on the company’s Leadership Team. He provides leadership, guidance and direction to the production teams, and works closely with the Process and Maintenance teams to ensure the plant meets total manufacturing objectives in a timely, safe and efficient manner.

    A graduate of the University of Wisconsin with a degree in Mechanical Engineering, Blasczyk earned his Lean Manufacturing Certification and Six Sigma Green Belt from Milwaukee School of Engineering.
    (Fox River Fiber Co)
     
    17.08.2015   WestRock Reports Strong Fiscal 2015 Third Quarter    ( Company news )

    Company news WestRock Company (WestRock) (NYSE:WRK) announced results for its fiscal third quarter, which ended June 30, 2015. On July 1, 2015, Rock-Tenn Company (RockTenn) and MeadWestvaco Corporation (MeadWestvaco) completed a strategic combination of their respective businesses. After completion of this transaction, RockTenn and MeadWestvaco became wholly owned subsidiaries of WestRock. In this release, the Company has presented selected financial results for the quarter ended June 30, 2015, for RockTenn and MeadWestvaco and has shown combined results for certain metrics.

    Photo: Steve Voorhees, chief executive officer of WestRock

    Net sales for RockTenn for the quarter ended June 30, 2015, were $2.54 billion and segment income was $295 million compared to $263 million in the prior year quarter. RockTenn earnings were $1.10 per diluted share, including $13 million of restructuring and other costs. RockTenn adjusted earnings were $1.15 per diluted share. MeadWestvaco net sales were $1.42 billion and segment income was $207 million compared to $193 million in the prior year quarter.

    During the pre-merger integration planning period, we made substantial progress in developing WestRock's post-close synergy capture activities and go-to-market strategies, and beginning on July 1, WestRock was able to immediately begin executing its plans. WestRock highlights to date include the following:
    -Previously identified $300 million of merger-related synergies. The Company has established a total productivity and cost reduction goal that incorporates these merger-related cost reductions with the ongoing productivity efforts across the entire company. This combined merger-related synergy and performance improvement goal is $1.0 billion, before inflation, to be realized by September 30, 2018.

    -Established a stockholder-friendly capital allocation strategy with which to manage the business:
    #A target normalized Leverage Ratio of 2.25x – 2.50x;
    #Announced an annualized dividend of $1.50 per share; and
    #Announced a share repurchase authorization of up to 40 million shares.

    -Merged the U.S. qualified defined benefit pension plans of RockTenn and MeadWestvaco on July 2, 2015, resulting in expected contribution savings of approximately $550 million cumulatively through 2024.

    "WestRock's combined performance in the June quarter was outstanding. The progress we have made over the past several months to become one WestRock organization provides us with great momentum to achieve our strong business, earnings and cash flow potential for our stockholders," said Steve Voorhees, chief executive officer of WestRock. "The WestRock team is executing well as we create a global industry leader in consumer and corrugated packaging."

    The financial results below illustrate the combined performance of RockTenn and MeadWestvaco for the quarter ended June 30, 2015, and June 30, 2014 (in millions, except leverage ratio).
    (WestRock Companies)
     

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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
    Drives, gears and motors
    Energy production, energy management
    Machine knives and accessories
    Machines and plants for the wood and pulp industry
    Machines and plants, misc. and printing machines
    Paper and board converting machines
    Paper and board machines and plants
    Paper machine felts and wires, woven wires, screens
    Planning, development and organisation, trade services
    Plants for preparation, dissolving, combusting, recovery
    Pumps all kinds
    Rollers and cylinders
    Test, measuring and control equipments
    Trade journals, magazines
    Ventilation systems; Drying plants
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