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Newsgrafik #121816

Mrs. Marisanna Jarva - member of the Finnish Parliament - wears Arbron™ on the ....  (Company news)

... Independence Day of Finland on December 6th

Demand for safe and environmentally friendly textile fibers is growing steadily. Total volume of the textile fiber market is already over 100 million tons. Arbron™ is an environmentally friendly textile fiber made of softwood pulp. KaiCell Fibers’ target is to set up the first Arbron™ facility in Paltamo, Finland. KaiCell Fibers has submitted an environmental permit application and is shifting to basic engineering.

The textile fiber market is dominated by oil-based synthetic fibers, such as polyester, with them having up 70% share of total textile fiber market. Synthetic fibers, like polyester, are non-renewable but also among the biggest sources of the prevalent microparticle problem. The second most common textile fiber, cotton, is associated with a number of problems such as high-water demand, use of plant pesticides and the fact that cotton farming competes with food production when it comes to finding suitable land areas.

Wood-based fibers are not unproblematic either. At present, most of the wood-based fibers are based on a 100-year-old viscose technology that uses highly toxic chemicals, the worst being carbon disulfide. Development has led to most of the world's wood-based textile fibers being made in China and elsewhere in Asia. However, now even China has woken up to environmental problems and viscose fiber is actively seeking alternatives.
Arbron™ material is based on technology developed in Finland. Arbron™ material can be used in viscose plants to avoid the use of toxic carbon disulfide, CS2.

"Demand for safe and environmentally friendly textile fibers is growing strongly" says Jukka Kantola, CEO of KaiCell Fibers, and continues: "In such a project, development work has to be carried out through the entire value chain starting from the forests up to the markets. MP Marisanna Jarva’s evening dress is a great example of what can be produced. And best of all – it is safe, sustainable and environmentally friendly."

Kaicell Fibers’ goal is to manufacture Arbron™ material at a plant in Paltamo, Finland. Systematic work is underway both in Europe and in China to scale up production at the commercial level.

The evening dress is a good indication that Arbron™ based textile performs well in practice. “It is pleasant to the skin, beautiful in appearance and tailored easy”, as commented by the designer of the dress, Maija Kumpula. The fabric was woven by Kultavilla and it was colored by Pia Leppänen-Keränen. According to them, the fabric behaved superbly at all stages. Based on this, Arbron™ will fit well in various applications comparable to viscose.
(KaiCell Fibers Oy)

Newsgrafik #121775

Niels Petter Wright appointed as new CEO of Norske Skog group  (Company news)

After the successful completion of an extensive financial restructuring process, the Norske Skog group has been transformed into a financially solid, leading publication paper producer. Having established this solid foundation for the operating business, the Board of Norske Skog AS has appointed Mr Niels Petter Wright (photo) as new President and CEO of the Norske Skog group effective 1st December 2018. Niels Petter Wright’s previous experience includes almost 17 years in Elopak, of which the last ten years serving as the company’s CEO.

“We are pleased to welcome Niels Petter Wright as the new CEO of Norske Skog. Together, we share the ambition to make Norske Skog as competitive as possible in a challenging industry, and to continue to develop the core business and explore new opportunities in a disciplined manner,” says Sven Ombudstvedt, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Norske Skog AS.

“Wright’s strong track record as leader of an international industrial group driven by process and product innovation, along with a constant focus on addressing the evolving demands of customers makes him an excellent choice for Norske Skog,” Ombudstvedt adds.

“I am very motivated to accept this challenge. Norske Skog has many skilled employees with high competencies and drive to improve the business. My priorities will include continuing to strengthen the customer dialogue, making production as efficient and competitive as possible, driving continual process and production innovation, and working constructively with suppliers and other stakeholders to ensure a sound financial and political framework”, says Niels Petter Wright.

Niels Petter Wright will replace Lars P. Sperre who has been acting President and CEO for the Norske Skog group since May 2017. Lars P. Sperre will continue to work for Norske Skog as part of the Corporate management team, as Senior Vice President of Corporate Strategy.

“The Board and the owners of Norske Skog are very grateful for all the efforts Lars has made to lead the group through a very complex financial restructuring, and we are excited that he will continue to play an important role going forward. Lars has kept the operating business stable through very challenging periods and showed great leadership. The change of CEO will allow Lars to devote his efforts fully on the continuing strategic development of the group” says Ombudstvedt.
(Norske Skogindustrier ASA)

Newsgrafik #121779

CymMetrik Receives Grand Printing Award Using Asahi AWP™ Flexographic Plates  (Company news)

Asahi AWP™ flexographic plates continue to reap awards for high quality production around the globe

Asahi Photoproducts, a pioneer in flexographic photopolymer plate development, reported that the Shanghai plant of global label producer CymMetrik was recognized with a Grand Printing award at the 2018 SUN CUP Asia Label Awards for its Head & Shoulders shampoo label. CymMetrik produced the label using Asahi AWP™ flexographic plates with Clean Transfer Technology. The award was granted in conjunction with the All in Print exhibition in Shanghai, China. The Grand Printing Award is one of several awards which the company has achieved using Asahi AWP™ flexographic plates.

Photo: CymMetrik & Asahi Photoproducts at SunCup 2018 Asia Label Award Celebration.

“Our congratulations go out to CymMetrik for its outstanding performance and for being granted this prestigious award,” said Yuji Suzuki, Technical Manager of Asahi Photoproducts in China. “This is another great validation of the extremely high quality Asahi AWP™ plates are delivering for brands and converters around the world. In addition to the many awards CymMetrik has received, Asahi customers have also received a number of Best of Show awards around the globe, such as in the UK and at FTA Europe Diamond Award, as well as in the United States and at FTASA in South Africa.”

“We have been extremely pleased with the overall performance we have gotten from Asahi AWP™ flexo plates,” said Brent Wang, Deputy Chief Engineer for CymMetrik. “We are proud of the awards we have received, especially this most recent Grand Printing award, and we appreciate Asahi’s partnership with us as we continue to strive to achieve even greater heights.”

CymMetrik has 10 manufacturing facilities in China and Vietnam, as well as offices in Hong Kong and California. The company provides a full range of label & packaging services to many well-known brands around the globe. In its pursuit of quality and efficiency, the company has acquired many international certifications to ensure the best in product quality, environmental management, and workplace safety to ensure customer confidence and trust over the long term.

Benefits of AWP™ Clean Transfer Technology
Asahi’s AWP™ Clean Transfer technology provides a viable alternative to conventional flexo printing plates. Its water washable printing plate technology does not require high temperatures or VOC-based solvents. It provides high register accuracy, making it particularly suitable for printing with a fixed color palette and enabling odorless production. In addition to saving time and money and reducing waste, it also supports energy savings, while assuring exceptional quality and brilliant prints with significant improvement in overall equipment efficiency (OEE) as compared to traditional flexo plates. All of this delivers the most efficient flexographic printing plates in balance with the environment resulting high quality printed materials.
(Asahi Photoproducts Europe n.v./s.a.)

Newsgrafik #121780

With Brand Repositioning, GL&V Officially Becomes GLV  (Company news)

Global solutions provider for the pulp and paper industry, GLV, has announced the rebranding of its formal company name and logo. Formerly known as GL&V, the new brand reflects GLV’s venerable history while aligning the company for long-term success in pulp and paper production.

“GLV equipment, parts and service bring together the people and brands that mills have trusted for decades, with the latest innovations that impact pulp and paper today,” explains Drew Humphries, President of GLV. “With projects and customers all over the world, we are committed to growing as ‘one GLV’ so that we can fulfill our mission to deliver long-term, sustainable solutions that create peace of mind forever. That is the promise we make to our customers.”

That brand promise was the driving force behind GLV’s new image, as well as its slogan: “Our Team. Your Performance.” The GLV story is rooted in innovation, expansion and continuous improvement. Founded in Quebec, Canada in 1975, GL&V (Groupe Laperriere & Verreault) grew through strategic partnerships, acquisitions and new developments in equipment manufacturing. Over the next forty years, the firm built up an installed base in over thirty countries, with technical centers now located in the United States, Canada, Sweden, India and Brazil. Today, GLV is pioneering technology that redefines efficiency in pulp and paper making with inventive products such as the Coru-Lok washer deck attachment system, MagTrimTM slitter positioning system and the DF-6000 Deflaker.

GLV’s new look represents a renewed, unified and global approach to delivering a top-of-the-line experience for the current and future generations of pulp and paper customers. The phased roll out of the reimagined GLV brand will be completed by December 31, 2018.
(GLV USA Inc.)

Newsgrafik #121781

Mercer International Inc. Reports Strong 2018 Third Quarter Results and Announces ...  (Company news)

...Quarterly Cash Dividend of $0.125

Selected Highlights
-Third quarter net income of $41.2 million ($0.63 per share) and Operating EBITDA of $86.7 million
-Stable pulp price realizations in the quarter
-Completed majority of 2018 annual pulp mill maintenance and capital spending

Mercer International Inc. (Nasdaq: MERC) reported strong results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2018 due to higher pulp sales realizations. Operating EBITDA in the current quarter was $86.7 million compared to $64.3 million in the third quarter of 2017 and $60.5 million in the second quarter of 2018.

For the third quarter of 2018, net income was $41.2 million, or $0.63 per share, compared to net income of $21.1 million, or $0.33 per basic and $0.32 per diluted share, for the third quarter of 2017 and $16.8 million, or $0.26 per share, in the prior quarter of 2018.

Mr. David M. Gandossi, the Chief Executive Officer, stated: "Our agreements to acquire Daishowa-Marubeni International Ltd. and the Santanol sandalwood business reflect our disciplined approach to acquisitions and capital allocation. Both advance our long-term value creation strategy to deliver sustainable profitable growth. These businesses leverage our core competencies and complement the world-class assets that comprise Mercer’s platform for growth.

Our third quarter performance reflected modestly higher average pulp prices and the absence of the scheduled downtime we took in the second quarter to implement productivity upgrades at Celgar. While the ramp-up of this new equipment negatively affected production early in the third quarter, the mill is now meeting our performance objectives. We also took significant downtime in our lumber business in the third quarter, completing important upgrades to our large saw line and installing a new auto-grader in the existing planer mill. These capital investments have increased production, optimized lumber grading and reflect our commitment to continuous improvements in our plant, equipment and operations.

Global pulp markets remained steady throughout the quarter, while our third quarter lumber realizations were negatively impacted by weaker demand in the U.S. market, where approximately 25% of our lumber is sold.”

Financial Highlights
Consolidated: Stable pulp prices and a focus on continuous improvement
In the third quarter of 2018 our operating income increased to $63.3 million, or by approximately 69% from $37.5 million in the prior quarter of 2018, and approximately 52% from $41.7 million in the same quarter of the prior year. The increase in the current quarter over the prior quarter is primarily due to lower maintenance costs at our pulp mills and higher pulp sales realizations. The increase in the current quarter over the same quarter of the prior year is primarily due to higher pulp and lumber sales realizations partially offset by lower pulp and energy sales volumes and higher maintenance and per unit fiber costs in the current quarter.

In the nine months ended September 30, 2018, operating income increased to $176.9 million or by 74% from $101.9 million in the same period of 2017 as higher pulp and lumber sales realizations more than offset lower pulp and energy sales volumes, higher maintenance and per unit fiber costs and the negative impact of a weaker dollar on our euro denominated costs and expenses.

Segment Results
Pulp: Stable pulp realizations and significant turbine maintenance complete
In the third quarter of 2018 pulp segment operating income increased by approximately 68% to $68.8 million from $41.0 million in the same quarter of 2017. In the current quarter our pulp realized sales price increased by approximately 34% to $852 per ADMT from $638 per ADMT in the same quarter of the prior year as a result of steady demand. Pulp sales volumes decreased by approximately 17% to 319,850 ADMTs in the current quarter from 383,795 ADMTs in the same quarter of the prior year primarily due to lower production and the timing of shipments to China. Our maintenance program was larger in the current quarter which reduced our energy and pulp sales volumes and increased our costs. Included in this quarter’s maintenance was the completion of the final steps of the turbine revision work at each of our Stendal and Celgar mills which we began in Q2. We estimate that planned annual maintenance downtime at our Rosenthal mill in the current quarter adversely impacted our operating income by approximately $10.8 million, and our turbine maintenance this quarter resulted in foregone energy revenue of approximately $5.9 million. Per unit fiber costs increased by approximately 15% in the current quarter from the same quarter of 2017 primarily as a result of strong demand for imported wood from Scandinavian pulp mills and in our Celgar mill’s fiber basket, a decrease in pulp log availability and demand from coastal pulp mills.

Wood Products: Continuous improvements in equipment and operations
In the third quarter of 2018 our wood products segment had an operating loss of $1.8 million compared to operating income of $3.0 million in the same quarter of 2017. In the current quarter we took planned downtime to upgrade our large saw line and to install an auto-grader in the existing planer mill which reduced our production and energy sales and increased our costs. In the current quarter, per unit fiber costs increased by approximately 4% from the same quarter of 2017 primarily as a result of strong fiber demand. Average lumber sales realizations increased by approximately 9% to $409 per Mfbm in the third quarter of 2018 from approximately $375 per Mfbm in the same quarter of 2017 primarily due to increased sales to the U.S. where we realized higher sale prices.

We continue to expect the NBSK pulp market to remain balanced through the fourth quarter due to continued steady demand growth and expected supply limitations. At the end of September world producer inventories are about 33 days' supply. We currently expect fourth quarter lumber pricing in Europe and Japan to remain stable and we feel U.S. prices are near their floor.

In the fourth quarter we will also be focused on closing the Daishowa-Marubeni International Ltd. acquisition and beginning the process of integrating it into Mercer to ensure we maximize our identified synergies. We look forward to working with our new employees as well as our new government and various community stakeholders.
(Mercer International Inc.)

Newsgrafik #121807

Valmet to supply a Valmet IQ Steam Profiler to Luzhou Yongfeng Pulp and Paper in China  (Company news)

Valmet will supply a Valmet IQ Steam Profiler (photo) to Luzhou Yongfeng Pulp and Paper Co., Ltd in China. The solution will enable the mill to increase production capacity as well as improve runnability and the economic efficiency of the pulp production line.

The order is included in Valmet's third quarter 2018 orders received. The delivery will take place in the fourth quarter of 2018.

"We have good long-term cooperation with Valmet, who is a leading supplier in the pulp and paper industry. IQ Steam Profiler has many good references with excellent performance around the world, and we believe the solution will help us improve reliability and product quality," says Zhou Zhengyin, Production Manager, Luzhou Yongfeng Pulp and Paper.

"With industry know-how and extensive application experience, Valmet is able to provide solutions that the customer wants. We are delighted to be able to work closely with Luzhou Yongfeng to improve the mill's production efficiency and achieve the desired end-product quality," states Bevin Li, Account Manager, China, Automation, Valmet.

Technical information about Valmet's delivery
The delivery includes a Valmet IQ Steam Profiler for a pulp production line with electro-mechanical actuators, full diagnostics features and actual position feedback. In addition, most of the auxiliary components, such as pneumatic retraction equipment and its control, main steam system components and an operator interface will be supplied by Valmet.
(Valmet Corporation)

Newsgrafik #121705

Essity awarded for innovation and sustainability  (Company news)

Essity has won the awards ‘Technical Innovation of the Year’ for Tork EasyCube® (photo) and ‘Best Practice - Sustainability’ at the 2018 European Cleaning & Hygiene Awards. The awards were announced on November 15 in Berlin.

New connectivity, customer insights and proven customer value convinced the jury to see Essity’s Tork EasyCube as an innovation that just keeps innovating. Tork EasyCube®, launched in 2014, is the world’s leading facility management software for data-driven cleaning. Sensors in facilities measuring visitor traffic and refill levels allow facility managers and cleaning teams to do exactly what’s needed, when and where it's needed.

Using aggregated data and insights from customers, such as amusement parks, shopping malls, airports and office buildings, Essity can demonstrate 24 percent less cleaning rounds needed, 20 percent less hours spent whilst increasing the quality of cleaning and employee satisfaction. Read more about our insights here.

The company´s commitments and activities on well-being, more from less and circularity were named best in class by the jury, awarding Essity with ‘Best Practice-Sustainability’. The introduction of Tork PaperCircle™, world’s first recycling service for paper hand towels, is so far launched on parts of the European market and was mentioned as an example of leadership in circularity.

Tork PaperCircle™ enables customers to decrease their environmental footprint and work circular by collecting and recycling used paper hand towels locally into new tissue products. The result cuts the carbon footprint by 40 percent compared to current waste handling options, verified by IVL, Swedish Environmental Research Institute Ltd, where the avoided processes have been taken into account.
(Essity Aktiebolag)

Newsgrafik #121766


Schweitzer-Mauduit International, Inc. ("SWM" or the "Company") (NYSE: SWM) reported earnings results for the three month period ended September 30, 2018 and announced a 2% increase of its per share quarterly cash dividend rate to $0.44 from $0.43.

Third Quarter 2018 Financial Results Summary
-Total sales grew 1% to $260.3 million (no acquisition benefit)
-GAAP operating profit was $31.1 million, or 11.9% of sales, down 21%; adjusted operating profit was $36.7 million, or 14.1% of sales, also down 21%
-GAAP earnings per share was $1.33, up 58%, and included a $0.43 per share favorable tax adjustment related to the 2017 Tax Act in the U.S.; Adjusted EPS was $0.77, down 23%

Third Quarter 2018 Business Highlights
-AMS segment sales increased 4% (no acquisition benefit) with filtration leading the portfolio
-AMS GAAP and adjusted operating profit margin contracted 340 and 440 basis points, respectively, compared to strong segment margin in the prior year period, due primarily to escalating resin costs and expenses associated with the Austin site closure
-EP segment sales decreased 1%; positive price/mix performance of 5% nearly offset a 6% volume decline
-EP GAAP and adjusted operating profit margins contracted 370 and 400 basis points, respectively, due primarily to higher wood pulp costs
-The Company issued $350 million of unsecured notes and refinanced its credit facility, provided increased financial flexibility and extended debt maturities

Dr. Jeff Kramer (photo), Chief Executive Officer, commented, "Third quarter results reflected continued organic top-line growth, which was overshadowed by the challenges of an inflationary raw materials cost environment and the inherent timing lag for price recovery. That said, we are still tracking close to our full year plan, and we expect margin pressure to subside in the coming quarters following the closure of an AMS site in November and additional price increases in both operating segments."

"AMS sales increased 4%, with continued momentum in filtration led by double-digit growth in our RO water business. We are also seeing our infrastructure and construction business resume normalized growth rates after poor weather conditions caused a slow start to the year. Consistent with 2018 trends, higher sales were offset by elevated resin costs and anticipated expenses related to the Austin site closure, which created a challenging comparison to strong segment adjusted operating margin in the prior year period. While we had previously raised prices in response to higher-than-expected polypropylene resin costs, the continued escalation of those costs have made it challenging to balance the timing of additional pricing actions. We have recently implemented another round of price increases, effective during the fourth quarter, across a large portion of the AMS portfolio."

"EP segment sales declined 1% as continued positive mix and selective price increases nearly offset the tobacco-driven volume decline. Higher pulp costs continued to pressure margins, but we believe price increases in several product lines and pricing resets on several large paper contracts in early 2019 will provide some offsets."

Dr. Kramer concluded, "In September, we completed a significant balance sheet initiative, refinancing our credit facility and issuing $350 million of senior unsecured notes. By introducing unsecured debt into our capital structure and extending the term of our credit facility, we have improved our financial flexibility. In a rising interest rate environment, and with increasing global uncertainties, we were pleased to complete this transaction, achieve our objectives in an attractive manner, and welcome our new credit investors to the SWM story. The expected incremental interest and certain one-time transaction expenses in 2018 from the recent financing activities total approximately $0.05 per share and were not contemplated in our original 2018 Adjusted EPS guidance of $3.30 to $3.45. Despite substantial raw materials increases, we believe we are in position to the finish the year at the lower end of our original guidance range, excluding the impact of the financing activities, due to a combination of operational improvements, increased pricing, favorable currency, and a lower tax rate."

Third Quarter 2018 Financial Results
Advanced Materials & Structures segment sales were $120.8 million, up 4%, with no acquisition benefit in the quarter. Double-digit growth in filtration, with particular strength in RO water, was the key driver. Infrastructure and construction, transportation, and medical sales also increased, while industrial declined. GAAP operating profit was $11.9 million, down 23%. Adjusted operating profit was $17.5 million, down 20%, with margin contracting 440 basis points to 14.5% compared to strong segment profitability in the prior-year quarter. Significantly higher resin costs and certain site closure expenses related to the Austin facility were the primary factors of the margin decline. Recently implemented price increases and the closure of the Austin site are expected to drive improved results in the fourth quarter of 2018.

Engineered Papers segment sales were $139.5 million, down 1%, with 5% positive price/mix combining to nearly offset a volume decline of 6%, with most product lines lower versus last year. Currency provided a 1% headwind (% changes of volume/price/mix/currency do not sum to sales growth due to rounding). GAAP operating profit was $27.5 million, down 17%, and adjusted operating profit was $27.5 million, down 18%; adjusted operating profit margin contracted by 400 basis points, due primarily to higher pulp costs and other inflationary pressures and reduced manufacturing efficiencies and overhead absorption as a result of lower volume. Favorable currency movements resulted in a $1.3 million benefit to operating profit due to lower local currency costs at certain sites.

Unallocated GAAP and adjusted expenses were each $8.3 million, down 10% and 11%, respectively. Adjusted unallocated expenses were 3.2% of total sales, down 40 basis points.

Consolidated sales were $260.3 million, up 1% (no acquisition benefit). GAAP operating profit was $31.1 million, down 21%, and GAAP operating profit margin was 11.9%, down 330 basis points. Adjusted operating profit was $36.7 million, down 21% and adjusted operating profit margin was 14.1%, down 380 basis points. Adjusted EBITDA was $46.5 million, down 17%, and adjusted EBITDA margin was 17.9%, down 370 basis points.

GAAP income was $40.9 million, up 59%; this equated to GAAP EPS of $1.33. Adjusted income was $24.5 million, down 20%; this equated to Adjusted EPS of $0.77. Interest expense was $7.3 million, as lower outstanding debt balances essentially offset higher effective interest rates and a $0.5 million write-off of unamortized debt issuance costs as a result of the credit facility refinancing. Other income was $11.2 million, up from $3.3 million, and included a $10.2 million gain from the revaluation of a contingent consideration liability related to the Conwed acquisition. The Company reported an income tax benefit of $5.6 million during the third quarter, due to a $13.0 million favorable adjustment related to the 2017 Tax Act in the U.S.; adjusting for this item, tax rate was 21.2%, down from 27.0%, due primarily to the impact of new tax legislation in the U.S. The Chinese JVs generated a $0.01 gain for both GAAP EPS and Adjusted EPS, versus a breakeven result in the prior year period. Net currency movements had less than a 1% negative impact on sales and a $1.5 million positive impact on operating profits; the translation impact of net currency movements was negative $0.01 to both GAAP EPS and Adjusted EPS.

Non-GAAP Adjustments reflect items included in GAAP operating profit, income, and EPS, but excluded from adjusted operating profit, income, and EPS. The largest item was a $0.43 non-cash per share benefit from to a favorable tax adjustment to the Company's initial estimated impact of the 2017 Tax Act in the U.S. Other significant items included a $0.25 per share non-cash gain related to the revaluation of a contingent consideration liability related to the 2017 acquisition of Conwed, and purchase accounting expenses of $0.11 per share (purchase accounting expenses reflect the ongoing non-cash intangible asset amortization, as well as any non-cash one-time inventory step-up charges, associated with AMS acquisitions). Restructuring and impairment expenses were $0.01 per share.

2018 Year-to-Date Financial Results
Advanced Materials & Structures segment sales were $360.1 million, up 8%, including the 3-week partial period benefit from the Conwed acquisition in 2018. Pro forma (assuming SWM had owned Conwed for the full first quarter of 2017) organic growth was 5%. Strong sales increases in filtration, medical, and transportation products were key drivers while infrastructure and construction was flat and industrial declined slightly. GAAP operating profit was $39.5 million, down 3%. Adjusted operating profit was $56.3 million, down 10%, with margin contracting 310 basis points to 15.6%. Accelerated depreciation and anticipated manufacturing inefficiencies related to the Austin site closure and higher resin costs were the primary negative factors.

Engineered Papers segment sales were $432.5 million, up 5%, with favorable currency movements of $16.5 million, or 4%. Overall volume decreased 3%, driven by lower reconstituted tobacco volumes while cigarette and non-tobacco papers were down less than 1%. Price and mix combined for a 4% sales increase. GAAP operating profit was $94.7 million, up 2%, and adjusted operating profit was $94.9 million, up 1%; adjusted operating profit margin declined 100 basis points. The decrease was primarily driven by higher pulp costs and other inflationary pressures, which offset improved manufacturing efficiency versus a prior year period that was negatively impacted by certain production issues (during first quarter 2017). Favorable currency movements resulted in a $6.4 million benefit to operating profit.

Unallocated GAAP and adjusted expenses were each $26.0 million, down 1%. Adjusted unallocated expenses were 3.3% of total sales, down 20 basis points.

Consolidated sales were $792.6 million, up 6%, and 5% on an organic basis (pro forma assuming SWM had owned Conwed for the full first quarter of 2017). GAAP operating profit was $108.2 million, up 1%, and GAAP operating profit margin was 13.7%, down 70 basis points. Adjusted operating profit was $125.2 million, down 4%, and adjusted operating profit margin was 15.8%, down 170 basis points. Adjusted EBITDA was $155.1 million, down 1%, and adjusted EBITDA margin was 19.6%, down 150 basis points.

GAAP income was $87.6 million, up 42%; this equated to GAAP EPS of $2.84. Adjusted income was $80.1 million, up 3%; this equated to Adjusted EPS of $2.58. Interest expense was $20.1 million, as lower outstanding debt balances essentially offset higher effective interest rates and a $0.5 million write-off of unamortized debt issuance costs as a result of the credit facility refinancing. Other income was $10.4 million, up from $0.6 million, and included a $10.2 million gain from the revaluation of a contingent consideration liability related to the Conwed acquisition. The Company reported a year-to-date effective tax rate of 10.6%, driven by a $13.0 million favorable adjustment related to the 2017 Tax Act in the U.S.; adjusting for this item, the effective tax rate was 23.8%, down from 30.2%, due primarily to the impact of new tax legislation in the U.S. The Chinese JVs generated a $0.02 loss for both GAAP EPS and Adjusted EPS, versus a $0.01 gain in the prior year period. Net currency movements had a 3% positive impact on sales and a $7.4 million positive impact on operating profits; the translation impact of net currency movements was positive $0.06 to both GAAP EPS and Adjusted EPS.

Non-GAAP Adjustments reflect items included in GAAP operating profit, income, and EPS, but excluded from adjusted operating profit, income, and EPS. The largest item was a $0.43 non-cash per share benefit from to a favorable tax adjustment to the Company's initial estimated impact of the 2017 Tax Act in the U.S. Other significant items included purchase accounting expenses of $0.39 per share, down $0.05 (purchase accounting expenses reflect the ongoing non-cash intangible asset amortization, as well as any non-cash one-time inventory step-up charges, associated with AMS acquisitions) and a $0.25 per share non-cash gain related to the revaluation of a contingent consideration liability related to the 2017 acquisition of Conwed. Restructuring and impairment expenses were $0.03 per share, down $0.06.

Cash Flow, Debt, & Dividend
Year-to-date 2018 cash provided by operating activities was $93.0 million, flat with prior year. The Company's working capital-related cash outflows were $31.3 million, up $9.5 million, due mainly to higher receivables associated with higher sales. Capital spending and capitalized software totaled $20.9 million, down $9.2 million, due mainly to timing of capital projects. Free cash flow increased to $72.1 million, from $63.1 million in the prior year period, due mostly to lower capital spending. Year-to-date, the Company has paid dividends to stockholders totaling $39.7 million.

Total debt was $640.8 million on September 30, 2018, down $43.4 million from year end 2017; net debt was $550.3 million on September 30, 2018, down $27.0 million from year end 2017. At the end of the third quarter, the Company issued $350 million of senior unsecured notes and refinanced and extended its credit facility. Pursuant to the debt covenants, the Company's net debt to adjusted EBITDA was approximately 2.6x as of September 30, 2018, down from 3.0x at year-end 2017.

The Company announced a 2.3% increase of its quarterly cash dividend per share to $0.44 per share from $0.43. The dividend will be payable on December 21, 2018 to stockholders of record as of November 30, 2018.

2018 Financial Outlook
In February 2018, the Company issued Adjusted EPS guidance of $3.30 to $3.45, which equated to $2.73 to $2.88 of GAAP EPS. Due mainly to significant raw material cost increases throughout the year, the Company expects 2018 Adjusted EPS to finish at the lower end of guidance, excluding the impact of the debt refinancing. The impacts of the incremental interest and other related expenses associated with the debt refinancing were not contemplated in initial guidance, and are expected to reduce 2018 GAAP and adjusted EPS by $0.05.
(Schweitzer-Mauduit International Inc.)

Newsgrafik #121767

The Ricoh Pro™ VC70000  (Company news)

The Ricoh Pro VC70000 is the newest addition to Ricoh’s continuous feed family. It joins the Ricoh Pro™ VC60000, Ricoh Pro™ VC40000, Ricoh Pro™ VC20000, Ricoh Pro™ V20000 and InfoPrint 5000 in our high speed production inkjet portfolio developed to support operations in their conversion from offset to digital production.

The Pro VC70000 prints at speeds up to 150 metres per minute, producing nearly 12,000 duplex B2 sheets per hour. It is capable of running multiple millions of impressions per month which is perfect for clients who have high peak volumes in a month or seasonally.

Our latest state of the art piezo drop on demand print heads print at a resolution up to 1200x1200 dpi on uncoated, offset coated, inkjet treated or inkjet coated papers. They run the new Ricoh-developed inks that rival the output of offset inks with their media versatility and compatibility with gloss, silk and matt coated stocks.

The Pro VC70000 features multiple elements that contribute to its exceptional performance including the new entrance and exit modules and a unique dryer unit.

Unique Dryer Unit Supports Broad Applications
The dryer unit, patent pending, supports a wide range of media and high coverage applications in the commercial market.

The objective of the new dryer is to produce flat sheets on all media but in particular with offset coated media.

The small footprint module comprises a heat drum with small heat rollers (sHR) that support up to 120mpm printing on offset coated papers ranging from 40gsm to 250gsm and up to 150 m/m from 64gsm to 157gsm.

The dryer can be operated through the Ricoh Digital Front End (DFE) and each of the front and rear engines (Printer 1 and Printer 2) have their own settings.

Predefined dryer temperature settings can be preset and stored.

Eliminating Cockling
With its unique design the dryer significantly reduces cockling on all media. Cockling occurs when paper becomes distorted by ripples or wrinkles in areas of high ink coverage. There are two main causes of cockling – the use of too much ink, particularly on lightweight grades, and too much moisture and humidity in the paper.

The Pro VC70000 can eliminate cockling on lighter weight coated papers with a two-stage correction process:
-The paper is dried on the large heat drum evenly.
-The dryers in the two engines use the small heat rollers to dry and condition the paper. They are tuned to ensure the correct drying on side 1 and side 2 with the aim of eliminating cockling of the paper.

This is achieved by new dryer technologies that include the:
-Reduction in the diameter of the heat roller to stretch any paper wrinkles.
-Removal of cockling by heating at wrapping position.
-Prevention of re-cockling during the heating process with repeated “Wrapping on small Heat Roller and Release”.
-Increased heating capacity before the first contact with the printed face.

Both the Pro VC70000 and the Pro VC60000 run our newly developed inks and the Pro VC70000’s dryer supports a faster print speed with greater ink coverage. It also allows the use of higher ink limits. The system boasts a typically lower running cost with lesser coverage applications and is highly efficient at switching jobs through its ability to handle dynamic variable data.

Ideal uses are direct mail, books, brochures, post cards, inserts, coupon books, education material including books and course packs, as well as critical communications documents.
(Ricoh Europe PLC)

Newsgrafik #121769

New Trend – Digital print coating appeals from beginning to end  (Company news)

More and more customers all over the world are making the most of this flexibility and shortened time-to-market. They have the assistance of Steinemann Technology AG, a proven specialist in the development and manufacture of efficient and high-quality machinery for industrial print enhancement. Steinemann paved the way even back in 2014, when the company dedicated itself to the digital world. The first coup is an offline coating machine with advanced industrial inkjet coating technology. Since 2017, this machine, the «dmax», additionally integrates «dfoil» digital foil blocking with gloss foil – rounding off digital enhancement.

Gallus Ferd. Rüesch AG, a manufacturer of label presses, has entered the field of digital coating as well. As an ideal complement to the company’s digital technology, they integrated the Steinmann module into their digital flagship, the «Gallus Labelfire». This way, gloss and matt coatings, as well as tactile relief effects, can be created inline and in a single run. What is new is that this module can also be used to create this relief effect in a metallic look through the use of metallic foils. This marks the first time a digital label press has been able to perform this task in this way.

Both machine types operate on the basis of the diVarâ coating technology developed and patented by the coatings specialist Schmid Rhyner AG. The diVarâ brand stands for «Digital Varnishing Technology». This technology can be used to create effects in new dimensions. With it, different coating depths can be used to achieve a variety of tactile experiences in a single run. Schmid Rhyner keeps its finger on the pulse of the times and is constantly developing new, innovative effect coatings for digital applications.

Systems by Steinemann and Gallus are already successfully in industrial use by customers with entrepreneurial vision. Druckhaus Mainfranken, for instance, has been working with the associated online platform, Flyeralarm, since 2014, with a «dmax»; the same is true of Insignis, a Vienna-based label-printing company that recently integrated the digital coating module DEU («Digital Embellishment Unit») in its Gallus Labelfire. As these successes confirm, digital enhancement has the capability to make the best possible use of the benefits of digitalisation.
(Schmid Rhyner AG)

Newsgrafik #121772

Hua-Chuan Group and A.Celli Paper for two E-WIND® P-100 rewinders  (Company news)

A.Celli Paper has been awarded the supply of two rewinders, establishing a new partnership with the important Chinese Group.

A.Celli Paper signed an order for two E-WIND® P-100 rewinders with Yiwu Yinan Paper Co., Ltd., a wholly owned subsidiary of the Hua-Chuan Group.

The rewinders have a design speed of 2500 mpm, support a mother roll width of 6760 mm and are used in the production process of high-strength medium board paper. This type of product, having a minimum weight of 60 gsm, requires an extremely high precision control of the web tension and stability of the machine.

A.Celli Paper has distinguished itself among the various competitors, obtaining the assignment of the order and thus becoming a new partner of the important Hua-Chuan Group.

The design of the two rewinders has already been completed and production is underway. The two machines will become operational in the second half of 2019.
(A. Celli Paper S.p.A.)

Newsgrafik #121729

Wood fiber costs for the pulp industry have trended upward in most regions of North America ...  (Company news)

...throughout 2017 and 2018, with the biggest increases occurred in British Columbia and US Northwest, according to the North American Wood Fiber Review

Pulpmills in five of the nine major pulp-producing regions of North America have seen their wood fiber costs go up over the past year, reports the NAWFR. In the 3Q/18, average market prices for wood chips and pulplogs were highest in Interior BC and US Northwest, while pulpmills in the US South, Quebec, and the Maritime provinces had the lowest wood costs.

Wood fiber costs for pulpmills in North America remained generally unchanged from the 2Q/18 to the 3Q/18 but were higher than in the 3Q/17, according to the latest issue of the North American Wood Fiber Review. The biggest increases yearover-year came in British Columbia and the western US where prices for wood chips (the major fiber source for the two regions’ pulp industry) increased by 25% and 23%, respectively.

US South
Prices for hardwood chips and pulplogs in the South Central sub-region were up about five percent quarter-over-quarter in the 3Q/18, while the price increases were more modest in the Southeastern region. Low inventories and reduced harvests of hardwood stands have contributed to record high hardwood chip prices and hardwood pulplog prices being close to their highest levels in two years.
Softwood chip prices have remained practically unchanged for more than a year throughout the South due to increasing supply of residuals from the region’s sawmills. Prices for sawmill chips in both South Central and Southeast are currently among the lowest in North America.

US Northwest
There was an uptick in the price of Douglas-fir and hardwood pulplogs in the 3Q/18 in coastal Washington and Oregon, with the price for Douglas-fir reaching a high last seen in the 1Q/12. The current price equals the price of hemlock/fir, which was unchanged from the 2Q/18.
There was a noticeable decrease in residual chip prices due to multiple factors, including plentiful residual supplies at the region’s sawmills, log buyers building sawlog and pulplog inventories because the forests remained opened in spite of the wildfire threat, and more logs becoming available for domestic mills due to US-China trade tensions. The average softwood chip price in the 3Q/18 was down 25% from the same quarter in 2017.

US Lake States
Dry summer weather resulted in log contractors maintaining full production schedules and a robust supply of fiber for the region’s pulpmills. In the 3Q/18, softwood and hardwood roundwood prices were unchanged from the previous quarter.
Although there remains an oversupply of softwood logs, prices have remained stable throughout most of 2017 and 2018, while prices for hardwood logs have inched downward. Sawmill chips were plentiful, but suppliers reported little to no difficulty in moving their residuals. However, this plentiful supply did result in the price of softwood chips dipping slightly from their 2Q/18 levels.

US Northeast
There was no change in softwood pulplog prices from the second to the third quarter, marking the third consecutive quarter with steady pricing. Hardwood roundwood prices edged downward slightly due to the cessation of a temporary price increase which was in place for the first half of the year. Although hardwood-consuming pulpmills in Maine reported low fiber inventories during the summer, by late August, the inventory levels had recovered.

Canada West
The price for chips rose across all regions of British Columbia in the 3Q/18. In the Northern Interior, residual chip pricing increased significantly based on increases of the NBSK pulp prices to which they are linked. Prices in Canadian dollar terms have gone up for four consecutive quarters to reach their highest levels since the 1Q/96.
Sourcing fiber to meet demand remains a concern for most of British Columbia, particularly for the Coastal region. High prices continued due to the imbalance between supply and demand. Lack of wood supply on the coast resulted in fiber buyers reaching into the Interior of the province or sourcing fiber from the US Northwest to supplement their fiber inventories.
Alberta saw a slight increase in residual chip prices in the 3Q/18, a continuation of an upward trend that started in the 2Q/17.

Canada East
In Eastern Canada, growing lumber production has created ample supplies of residual chips while demand for the fiber has stagnated. The imbalance, building over the past 18 months, resulted in significant price declines when 2018 annual price negotiations were concluded earlier this year. Eastern Ontario and Quebec now have the lowest softwood chip prices in North America. In contrast to the plunge in softwood residual chip pricing, hardwood roundwood pricing in Eastern Ontario/Quebec has remained flat for all of 2018. Hardwood and softwood pulplog prices in the Maritime provinces were unchanged in the 3Q/18 at levels similar to price levels seen earlier in 2018.
(Wood Resources International LLC)

Newsgrafik #121732

BillerudKorsnäs appoints CFO  (Company news)

BillerudKorsnäs announced that Ivar Vatne (photo) is appointed Chief Financial Officer (CFO). Ivar will be part of BillerudKorsnäs Group Management and will take up his post by 1 June 2019 at the latest.

Ivar Vatne has more than 16 years’ experience of different roles within finance, mainly focusing on Fast-Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) from Procter & Gamble (P&G), Fiskars and Arla. At P&G Ivar’s roles have included Group CFO for one of P&G’s divisions, with responsibility for 19 markets. For the past three years he has been employed in the Arla Group, where he has served as CFO of Arla Foods Sweden AB and then around two years as CFO of Arla UK Ltd, with net sales of around EUR 2.2 billion. Ivar has an M.Sc. of strategy and management from the Norwegian School of Economics, along with a degree in philosophy from the University of Tromsø (UiT).

“I’m convinced that Ivar’s strong commercial profile and broad experience of major investment projects, innovation-driven growth and his solid international background will make a very positive contribution to the development of the entire company and bring valuable expertise to Group management,” says Petra Einarsson, President and CEO of BillerudKorsnäs.

“I’m delighted and honoured to have been offered the role of CFO at BillerudKorsnäs. The combination of world-leading expertise and innovation with a sharp focus on sustainability mean that BillerudKorsnäs’ direction and offering are fully in keeping with the times. I greatly look forward to taking on this task and supporting the company as it continues to develop,” says Ivar Vatne.

Ivar will be part of BillerudKorsnäs’ Group management and will take up his post by 1 June 2019 at the latest. Kristina Schauman, Board member at BillerudKorsnäs, took up her post as acting CFO as of 1 November 2018.
(BillerudKorsnäs AB (publ))

Newsgrafik #121756

Resolute Appoints Remi Lalonde as Chief Financial Officer  (Company news)

Resolute Forest Products Inc. (NYSE: RFP) (TSX: RFP) announced the appointment of Remi Lalonde (photo) as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. Mr. Lalonde succeeds Jo-Ann Longworth, who will be retiring after a distinguished career, including the past seven years as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at Resolute.

Mr. Lalonde had been serving as Vice President, Strategy and Corporate Development, since May 2018. Previously, he was General Manager of Resolute's pulp and paper mill in Thunder Bay, Ontario. Before taking a leadership role in operations, Mr. Lalonde was Treasurer and Vice President, Investor Relations. He initially joined the company as Senior Counsel, Securities, following six years at Sullivan & Cromwell LLP in New York. Mr. Lalonde holds bachelor's degrees in both law and civil engineering from the University of Ottawa.

"Remi has distinguished himself as a leader and built a strong record of achievement since joining Resolute almost a decade ago. He has broad-based knowledge of the company and depth of financial acumen," stated Yves Laflamme, President and Chief Executive Officer. "The promotion of Remi to this critically important role reflects well on the development of internal talent here at Resolute. As part of our Executive Team, Remi's diversity of experience, rigorous approach and commitment to excellence will support the company's ongoing transformation."

"On behalf of the Board of Directors and employees of Resolute, I would like to thank Jo-Ann for her years of service and valued counsel. She has played an important role in building a stronger, more profitable and sustainable Resolute," added Laflamme.

Ms. Longworth will serve as a special advisor to Mr. Lalonde until January 31, 2019.
(Resolute Forest Products Inc.)

Newsgrafik #121758

Ahlstrom-Munksjö: Changes in the Executive Management Team  (Company news)

Executive Vice President, CFO and Communications & Investor Relations Pia Aaltonen-Forsell has informed that she will leave Ahlstrom-Munksjö to take up new responsibilities outside the company. She will continue in her current role until end of February 2019.

Sakari Ahdekivi (photo) appointed Deputy CEO and CFO as of March 1, 2019
Sakari Ahdekivi, currently Deputy CEO and Executive Vice President Corporate Development, is appointed Deputy CEO and CFO as of March 1, 2019, in addition to his current role. He continues as a member of the Group Executive Team. Sakari has previously held CFO positions in publicly listed companies Ahlstrom Oyj, YIT Oyj and Huhtamäki Oyj. In addition he has acted both as CFO and Managing Director of Tamro Oy as well as interim CEO of Ahlstrom Oyj during the merger process with Munksjö Oyj.

Hans Sohlström, President and CEO: ”I want to thank Pia for her valuable contribution as CFO in an intense period of transformation and strong growth and wish her all the best in her new responsibilities. I am pleased that Sakari has agreed to take up Pia’s responsibilities in addition to his current responsibilities. Sakari’s broad experience is valuable for the company during our path of profitable growth and value creation.”
(Ahlstrom-Munksjö Corporation)

Newsgrafik #121760

drupa 2020 generates positive stimuli   (Company news)

-Messe Düsseldorf registers impressive booking figures at the closing date for registration
-Highlight topics reflect the innovative power of the industry

drupa will provide decisive stimuli to the global print technology industry from 16 to 26 June 2020. Messe Düsseldorf is experiencing a strong demand for exhibition space. Shortly after the official registration deadline, 96 percent of the planned 160,000 square meter space is already booked. Companies from more than 40 countries have already confirmed their participation, including the large global players as well as many smaller companies and promising start-ups. A current list of exhibitors is available on

Werner Matthias Dornscheidt, President and CEO of Messe Düsseldorf, is pleased about the positive booking status. "The companies in the print industry know that every four years they find the perfect platform to highlight innovation. They count on the world's leading trade fair to launch new products and engage with clients and prospects effectively. We already see that key players will display their products in identical or even larger areas. The entire drupa team is already looking for the world’s product premieres to come”.

drupa 2020 will again occupy the entire Düsseldorf Exhibition Center. The offer profile ensures clear structures and encompasses the following product groups:
-Prepress / Print
-Premedia / Multichannel
-Post press / Converting / Packaging
-Future Technologies
-Equipment / Services / Infrastructure

Sabine Geldermann, Director drupa and Global Head Print Technologies of Messe Düsseldorf, is convinced that the trade fair will demonstrate the dynamism and innovative capabilities of the entire print industry. "drupa stands for cutting-edge technologies and solutions that reach target groups in a wide range of markets. It has become very clear that the fascination of print products increases with the constant development of technical possibilities. Print conquers new dimensions with haptic elements, innovative materials and embellishments opening a bright new world of customer experiences. In addition, future and cross-sectional technologies and in particular global megatrends have a major influence on our industry: applications for organic and printed electronics, nanotechnology and all further developments resulting from ‘industry 4.0‘ which will intervene in a large number of processes.

In 2020, in addition to printing and converting processes, the focus will be on package printing, industrial and functional printing as well as additive manufacturing. Especially the growth potential of inkjet and expansion into new areas drives fast changing innovation. The drupa hotspots touchpoint packaging, Touchpoint 3D fab + print, dna - drupa next age and drupa cube will provide forums for knowledge transfer and dialogue that reflect the innovative spirit of the industry.”

touchpoint packaging
touchpoint packaging covers the entire spectrum of packaging production, from design to new materials, from printing to converting, from amazing embellishments to security and track & trace features. The special forum, which received its much-acclaimed premiere at drupa 2016, will be realised in cooperation with the European Packaging Design Association (epda), Europe's leading association of brand and packaging designers. A steering committee composed of well-known exhibitors such as Agfa, BOBST, Esko, Heidelberg, HP, Kurz and Siegwerk, as well as international brand owners Danone and Nestlé will contribute to a rich visitor experience. Touchpoint packaging is built on the global megatrends changing our lives and impacting packaging production. The drupa touchpoint packaging experience area will showcase multiple packaging applications in a tangible way providing inspiration for brand owners, designers and converters. It will be a drupa 2020 ‘must see’ with guided tours, short lectures, panels and tangible samples.

touchpoint 3D fab + print
The enormous potential of additive manufacturing will be an outstanding topic at drupa 2020. The touchpoint 3D fab + print in Hall 7A will complement the exhibitors' offerings and reflect the entire spectrum of 3D technologies. State-Of-The-Art innovations and Best-Practice-Cases will be presented. The special show will be a meeting place with visionary opportunities for 3D printing. Visitors will be able to engage and be inspired by the tremendous economic potential of additive manufacturing.

dna - drupa next age
dna stands for drupa next age. The special show is dedicated to the long-term future topics of the industry and stimulates productive exchanges between global players and start-ups aiming at innovation in a fast changing world. The special show builds on the start-up area of ​​the previous drupa innovation park (dip!) and is embedded in a new hall concept. Innovators from the start-up scene have the opportunity to present new product ideas, services and new approaches addressing future technologies to facilitate communication around print.

drupa cube
drupa cube, the conference and event programme for drupa 2020, will focus on the innovative power of print and the exciting potential of diverse print applications in a wide variety of industries and areas of life. This involves new technologies such as printed electronics and creative multichannel applications or the use of digital printing techniques in conventional sectors like packaging or in in a myriad of vertical markets. At the same time, the drupa cube’s interdisciplinary approach bridges the gap between creative agencies, marketers and brand owners across numerous markets. The design of the programme and its implementation on site are the responsibility of the British based brand agency FreemanXP.

drupa 2020 takes place throughout all halls of the Messe Düsseldorf fairgrounds. It is open from Tuesday, 16 June to Friday, 26 June 2020, every day from 10 am to 6 pm, Saturdays and Sundays from 10 am to 5 pm.
(Messe-Düsseldorf GmbH)

Newsgrafik #121747

Smurfit Kappa's TOPPSafe™ adds a new sustainability dimension to the supply chain  (Company news)

Smurfit Kappa has invented a sustainable new alternative for the heavy wooden, chipboard and plastic boards that are used to protect palletised products during transport and storage.

A team of Smurfit Kappa designers in its Hexacomb operations collaborated to identify a food-safe and innovative solution that would be suitable for a range of sectors including those which have stringent hygiene regulations.

Made from 100% paper-based material, the innovative TOPPSafe™ is crafted from Hexacomb material which is lightweight and strong due to its honeycomb structure.

A number of Smurfit Kappa’s customers were struggling with the weight and inflexibility of the more traditional wooden, chipboard and plastic pallet tops that are currently used in supply chains and often dropped causing risk of injury. As TOPPSafe™ is significantly lighter, it is easier to handle making it more suitable for manual handling.

The TOPPSafe™ pallet top offers a number of benefits, including the fact that it is supplied flat to reduce storage space and the material is fully recyclable.

Wim Peeters, MD of Smurfit Kappa Hexacomb, said: "We are very excited about launching TOPPSafe™ because it has the potential to have a transformative effect on the supply chain. The feedback from the customers who have been using it already has been unanimously positive.

“At Smurfit Kappa, we aim to come up with solutions that score highly when it comes to safety, sustainability and innovation.”

Smurfit Kappa’s SupplySmart service has gathered insights from over 60,000 supply chains which it uses to identify opportunities to make sustainable changes.
(Smurfit Kappa Hexacomb)

Newsgrafik #121748

Orchids Paper Products Company Announces Amended Agreement With Its Creditors And ...   (Company news)

...A New Ultra-Premium Customer Win

Orchids Paper Products Company (NYSE American: TIS), a national supplier of high-quality consumer tissue products, announced that the Company has reached an agreement with its creditors, amending its credit agreement. The Company also announced that it has won a significant bid with a new customer, to supply 100% recycled ultra-premium quality tissue.

Jeff Schoen, President and Chief Executive Officer, stated, "Our lenders continue to support and maintain access to the liquidity needed to operate our business. On November 20, we executed modifications to our credit facilities to increase the amount available under our revolving line of credit by $5.9 million and to defer future principal and interest payments to December 31, 2018. In addition, the amended agreement extends the milestone dates to execute a transaction to December 31, 2018. At the end of the third quarter, the Company had $5.1 million of cash on hand.

"Additionally, we recently won a significant bid from a national supercenter retailer as the sole supplier of 100% recycled ultra-premium kitchen towel and bath tissue supporting the sustainable product channel, which will be serviced out of our Barnwell facility using QRT paper. We expect this business to begin shipping in March 2019 and to make a significant contribution to the overall profitability of the Company."
(Orchids Paper Products Company)

Newsgrafik #121750

BaglessPlus disc filter sectors: The basis for efficient and resource-conserving dewatering ...  (Company news)

...for 20 years

-Optimum filtrate quality minimizes consumption of fresh water
-Significant cost savings due to greater machine availability and lower maintenance requirement
-New development FloWing offers even higher capacities and longer service lives

Twenty years ago, Voithlaunched its first disc filter sectors that operated entirely without filter bags and substantially improved machine availability. Low maintenance requirement, long service lives and a consistently excellent filtrate quality have made the products of the BaglessPlus family a market leader. To mark this anniversary, Voith is once again setting the benchmark for filter segments with its new development FloWing. Existing machines can be adapted to the BaglessPlus family, including the new generation product FloWing.

Photo: Since its introduction 20 years ago, more than 6,500 filter discs, consisting of 130,000 BaglessPlus sectors from Voith, have been installed worldwide.

When it tested the first prototypes of the BaglessPlus disc filter sectors in 1998, Voith revolutionized the dewatering process in the stock preparation unit. Since then, the Heidenheim technology group has installed more than 6,500 filter discs, consisting of more than 130,000 BaglessPlus sectors, and is the undisputed market leader in this area. Worldwide, disc filters with BaglessPlus sectors have paved the way for efficient and resource-conserving dewatering.

Prior to the launch of BaglessPlus, filter discs were regarded as wear parts that paper manufacturers had to replace after around two to four years in operation. For filter discs from the BaglessPlus family, on the other hand, service lives of more than 15 years are usual. Overall, about 93.5 percent of all first generation filter discs installed are still in operation today. In the first ten years after their introduction, there was not a single failure due to wear. At Leipa, where BaglessPlus filter discs have been used since 2004, Voith only had to replace a few of the total 67 discs installed so far. The first BaglessPlus sectors, which Voith installed in 1998, are also still being used today. These long service lives allow manufacturers to significantly reduce the operating costs of their machine.

Superclear filtrate reduces fresh water consumption
The filter bags commonly used in conventional disc filters are responsible for a lot of shutdowns in the stock preparation unit. They repeatedly tear during operation, which results in corresponding fiber losses. The filtrate, which is usually used at various spray nozzles on the paper machine, is also contaminated by fibers and fines, which clog up the nozzles and result in the system having to be shut down for cleaning.

BaglessPlus technology from Voith introduced filter discs without high-maintenance filter bags to the market for the very first time. This resulted in a reduction of downtimes, because the BaglessPlus discs reliably maintain the high quality of the filtrate over the entire service life. At the same time, paper producers can save fibers and fillers. The cost efficiency of the system is also improved because spray water with low solids content has a positive impact on felt service life. Thanks to the high filtrate quality, the fresh water requirement for the entire plant is also reduced. Ideally, a closed loop system is achieved.

FloWing: the latest addition to the product range
To coincide with the 20th anniversary of the BaglessPlus system, Voith presents FloWing, the logical development of the proven technology. Practical experience with BaglessPlus over the last two decades enabled Voith engineers to gain crucial insights for the development of the new generation FloWing. Among other things, they investigated the effects of different disc surfaces and topographies on the capacity. At the same time, the new development needed to retain the excellent knock-off properties and high filtrate quality of the BaglessPlus sectors. This resulted in a geometry that allows the formation of a thick fiber mat but also ensures ideal fiber separation.

Same dimensions, more surface
Thanks to a unique wing design, the FloWing filter sectors have a 56 percent larger surface than conventional systems. Compared with BaglessPlus discs, the surface has increased by around 30 percent. Depending on raw material quality, there is therefore an increase in throughput of 20 to 30 percent. FloWing disc filter sectors are even stronger at critical positions and therefore allow for longer service lives than the previous BaglessPlus sectors.

In July 2018, the first FloWing filter discs were installed in a European testliner facility. The initial reaction from the Managing Director for Production and Technology has been positive: “Since start-up, we have had no more capacity problems, even in the event of high tonnage at the PM. This was not the case in the past.”

Thanks to optional adjustments, FloWing filter discs, like all Voith products from the BaglessPlus family, can be used in existing disc filters, including those from other manufacturers.
(Voith Paper GmbH & Co KG)

Newsgrafik #121752

UPM Raflatac offers extreme-strength for durable labeling  (Company news)

UPM Raflatac is introducing a new solvent-free RX adhesive family for durable labeling applications. The RX family is made up of two high-tack products: RX15 for polar surfaces such as metal and glass, and RX18 for non-polar surfaces such as PP and PE plastics. As these adhesives have been specially developed for these specific substrates, they ensure the highest bonding and durability performance - even in the challenging conditions experienced in automotive, industrial, and consumer electronics applications.

Both materials in the RX family work hard to ensure that vital information stays in place for the entire lifetime of the label. These extreme-strength adhesives withstand extreme conditions and are resilient to chemicals, and UV light. Furthermore, this high performance is achieved without solvents, making RX adhesives a safer, more sustainable choice for durable labeling applications.

"The adhesives in our new RX product family provide extremely strong and enduring adhesion without resorting to solvents, which not only reduces the environmental impact of producing the labels, but also makes them a more ecodesigned choice for product labeling," explains Jouni Iiskola, Segment Manager, UPM Raflatac. "With RX15 for polar surfaces like metal and glass and RX18 for non-polar surfaces like PP and PE plastics, a targeted adhesive can be chosen according to the substrate, leading to excellent product performance, extreme bonding, and life-long durability."
(UPM Raflatac Oy)

Newsgrafik #121754

Vinda Personal Care (China) starts up two AHEAD-2.0M tissue machines supplied by Toscotec  (Company news)

On November 19th Vinda Personal Care (China) Limited started up two Toscotec supplied AHEAD-2.0M tissue machines in Xiaogan city, Hubei, China. With the start-up of these production lines, Vinda inaugurates its second production base in Xiaogan, located in the vicinity of its existing mill.

Both AHEAD-2.0M lines feature a second generation large diameter TT SYD, Toscotec’s shoe press technology TT NextPress and the energy-efficient TT DOES solution (Drying Optimization for Energy Savings). This new configuration will grant additional improvements of the finished product’s quality in terms of softness and basis weight uniformity, and an additional reduction of steam consumption. The two AHEAD-2.0M machines will increase the group’s annual production by over 60,000 tons.

Anna Wang, Chief Operating Officer (COO) of Vinda International Holdings says, “This is what we count on when we work with Toscotec, our long-term partner: a successful start-up, on time and on budget. Vinda Personal Care (China) is a very strategic production base for the Group, we are investing on its operations and therefore we expect efficient performances and very low consumptions on these new Toscotec’s lines.”

Stefano Raffaelli, Toscotec’s Customer Care and Project Manager, comments, “We achieved an important objective today. At Vinda’s new Xiaogan mill, we started up the first two of Toscotec’s machines with advanced technological features in China. We also delivered on the mill’s requirement to start up both machines at the same time, thanks to the great coordination of Toscotec’s and Vinda’s teams during the entire installation and commissioning period. We continuously support Vinda’s growth with our most advanced technology. We are currently installing another two tissue machines at Xiaogan mill that will feature significant upgrades both in the forming and pope reel sections.”

Toscotec is installing other two tissue lines at Vinda Personal Care (China), scheduled for start-up over the next few months.
(Toscotec S.p.A.)

Newsgrafik #121734

New Case Paper Converting and Distribution Facility Opens in CA  (Company news)

On October 1, 2018, the California branch of Case Paper moved into a new converting facility and office space (photo) in Rancho Cucamonga, CA; paper and board inventory is expected to be onsite by November 16.

“Our former office in Arcadia, CA was too small for our needs,” explains CMO of Case Paper Simon Schaffer. “So we created a new, 103,250 sq. ft. converting and distribution center that can more efficiently serve the needs of all our West Coast customers.”

The move allows Case Paper to not only provide greater warehousing options but also streamline production. The installation of a new, state-of-the-art Marquip twin-knife sheeter will provide stock custom-sized paper and board grades, and a new guillotine cutter will be able to trim folio sheet sizes down to smaller paper sizes. A slitter-rewinder will be installed over the coming months that will be able to trim rolls down to narrow widths.

“A capital investment of this magnitude demonstrates Case Paper’s exceptional commitment to our valued customers, throughout California and beyond, as well as to our staff and their families,” explains Tim Resser, General Manager of Case Paper CA.

Case Paper’s investment in state-of-the-art technologies has positioned the company as one of the only paper and board distributors in the U.S. that can convert and deliver skids or rolls, usually within 48 hours or less.

Customers on the West Coast can now place orders by calling (909) 476-1500. The new facility is located at9168 Hermosa Ave., Rancho Cucamonga, CA 91730.
(Case Paper Company Inc.)

Newsgrafik #121736

Fifth Valmet-supplied Advantage DCT tissue line successfully started up at ICT's Iberica mill ...  (Company news) Spain

Valmet-supplied Advantage DCT 200HS tissue production line including an extensive automation package was successfully started up at ICT Iberica's mill in Burgo, Spain, in September 2018. The new tissue line meets the company's intention to adopt state of the art technology for highest quality tissue production. Valmet has previously delivered four tissue lines to ICT companies in Italy, France and Poland.

Image: Successful startup in Burgo, Spain on September 12, 2018.

"Thanks to the teamwork between Valmet and ICT technicians, the project achieved all the objectives, both in terms of quality and timing. The capability to manage the main planning of all the phases - engineering, installation and commissioning - in a flexible way, the final tuning of the on-site activities, joined with the skills of the team members involved in the project, were the keys to achieve a regular and smooth start-up," says Silvano Marcelli, Technical manager at ICT and Antonio Jordan, Project manager at ICT Iberica.

"Despite all the work, all people involved did a great job. Together we managed to achieve a very good result and a start-up according to the plan. It was one of the smoothest start-up's I have ever seen," says Stefan Ziegel, Project manager at Valmet.

The production line was optimized to save energy and enhance final product quality. The new line will add 70,000 tons a year of high-quality toilet, towel, facial, and napkin grades for the European market. The raw material for the new line will be virgin fiber. The flexibility of Valmet's Advantage ViscoNip press makes it possible to adjust the production to fit current and future market needs, from production of tissue with high bulk and softness to energy- and cost-efficient products with high quality, only within minutes.

Technical information of the delivery
Valmet's scope of delivery comprised a complete tissue production line including a stock preparation system and an Advantage DCT 200HS tissue machine. The delivery also included a two-layer OptiFlo Headbox, Advantage ReTurne energy recovery system, Advantage ViscoNip press and Advantage SoftReel reel, as well as Advantage AirCap hood, steam generator and a complete mill equipment system from bale handling to fan pumps.

Complete engineering, training, start-up and commissioning were also included in the delivery as well as an extensive Valmet automation package.
(Valmet Corporation)

Newsgrafik #121737

Bobst Group continues its transformation and investments for the future, and announces changes...  (Company news)

... in the Group Executive Committee

Bobst Group continues investing for the future and confirms its strategic priorities based on growth, innovation for digital printing, IoT and digitalization of its core business processes. The Group Executive Committee is evolving and Erik Bothorel will leave the Group Executive Committee by end of 2018. Stephan März (photo), current Head of the Business Unit Services, will take on responsibility for Business Unit Web-fed as of January 1, 2019, while Julien Laran, current Head of the Supply Chain and Operations within the Business Unit Services, will be appointed Head of Business Unit Services as of January 1, 2019.

Bobst Group is continuing on its path of transformation and growth for its flexible and label business. The Business Unit Web-fed faces various challenges linked to its strategy implementation, market penetration and profitability improvement and the Group is therefore implementing changes in this Business Unit.

Erik Bothorel will lead the BU Web-fed until the end of 2018 and then effective January 1, 2019, Stephan März will take over the responsibility. Erik Bothorel will take on an internal mandate for the Group and therefore will be leaving the Group Executive Committee. “We warmly thank Erik Bothorel for the important contribution he brought to the Group since 2004, first heading Italy operations and since 2009 as Group Executive Committee Member. He devoted all these years to the business with passion, high professionalism and deep machinery business expertise.”

Effective January 1, 2019, the Board of Directors of Bobst Group has appointed Julien Laran, a French national, born in 1977, as Head of Business Unit Services and member of the Group Executive Committee. Julien Laran has been with the Group since 2013 in various managerial positions within the Business Unit Services. He is currently in charge of Supply Chain and Operations.

Bobst Group confirms the guidance for the full year 2018 communicated on July 25, 2018 which is an increase of full year sales by 5-7% compared to 2017 and an operating result (EBIT) higher than CHF 90 million. As previously announced, the conference for financial analysts and the media will take place on November 8, 2018 in Zurich.
(Bobst Group SA)

Newsgrafik #121739

IMPS 2019 - 28th International Munich Paper Symposium  (Company news)

For the 28th time, the major annual European conference in paper technology, the IMPS - INTERNATIONAL MUNICH PAPER SYMPOSIUM, is going to take place in the modern Sheraton Munich Arabellapark Conference Center from March 27 - 29, 2019.

The theme of the meeting is “Progress in Board and Paper Technology”, and while many of the papers will be presented by board mills and paper mills, it is clear that papermaking equipment and innovations designed to improve the performance of tissue, paper, board and printing machines, play a very important role.

The symposium is a technical conference and always focused on topics related to the paper and board manufacturing and supply industry, with an unusually high number of field reports from the mills. It is intended to provide an international platform for people working in the field of board, paper and printing technology.

In contrast to many larger conferences, the IMPS intentionally hosts no more than about 400 participants in order to maintain the personal first class atmosphere. With over a quarter century of success in knowledge transfer, the International Munich Paper Symposium is one of the most significant international technical conferences for the paper, board and tissue industry in central Europe. The symposium has been completely booked out since 2013! The conference is bilingual (English & German) with superb simultaneous translation. In this way the conference offers its participants an ideal platform for discussions and encounters among international producers, suppliers and developers.

The symposium offers always a full programme including the following: internet access to abstracts, printed proceedings, a digital release of the abstracts, presentations and proceedings, head-phones for the simultaneous translation, snacks and drinks during the breaks, superb lunches as well as a gala dinner on Wednesday evening. As far as places are available, it also includes a fascinating cultural event on Thursday evening and an interesting mill tour or a visit to the well known paper institute of Munich University of Applied Sciences on Friday.
(IMPS Management Ltd & Co. KG)

Newsgrafik #121762

Another PMP Intelli-Jet V® Hydraulic Headbox at Australian Paper's (Australia) has been ...  (Company news)

... successfully brought on stream!

In July 2017, PMP (Paper Machinery Producer) signed a contract for a delivery of wet end rebuild with a new Intelli-Jet V® hydraulic headbox (photo), fourdrinier and reel rebuild for Australian Paper’s paper machine (PM4) located in Morwell, Australia.

It is a big pleasure to announce that PM4 with new PMP Intelli-Jet V® hydraulic headbox, fourdrinier and reel has started up smoothly on September 10th at 4:12 am of local time. First jumbo roll appeared on the reel at 4:54 am. Two days later, machine started to produce saleable paper.
The scope of supply covered new 4-channel Intelli-Jet V® hydraulic headbox of 7 m pondside. This unit ensures excellent formation and production flexibility for the mill (basis weight from 110 to 270 g/m2). Headbox technology is a part of PMP’s Intelli-Paper® platform for papermakers. Over the years PMP Intelli-Jet V® hydraulic headbox has become an iconic solution in the Pulp & Paper Industry. Currently, there are over 150 PMP’s headboxes working successfully on 6 continents.

The scope of delivery included also stock approach equipment (attenuator, LS Screens – 3 units), fourdrinier and reel rebuild.
The project goal was to improve CD profile, tensile ratio and formation of the final product and increase the machine speed to 750 mpm. It is worth to mention that it is already second PMP Intelli-Jet V® hydraulic headbox working in Australian Paper Maryvale mill. The first one was implemented on PM2 on April 2018. This is a good example of a solid partnership between PMP and Australian leader in paper making.
(PMPoland S.A.)

Newsgrafik #121765

Temporary management arrangements in UPM Biorefining Business Area  (Company news)

Executive Vice President of UPM Biorefining Business Area, Heikki Vappula (photo) is believed to have died in a plane crash while on a private trip in Zimbabwe on Friday. The authorities have confirmed that his name appears on the passenger list of the crashed plane.

Heikki Vappula was 51 years old. He joined UPM in 2006 as Senior Vice President of Global Sourcing. During 2010-2013 he acted as the President of Energy & Pulp Business Group. Since 2013 he held his current position. He was also a member of the Board of Finnish Forest Industries Federation. Before joining the forest industry Heikki had a successful career in Nokia Corporation for 13 years.

"We owe a debt of gratitude to Heikki who was a visionary and inspiring executive, always hungry for results. His insights and energy will be greatly missed by colleagues as well as business partners around the world," says Jussi Pesonen, President and CEO of UPM.

"On behalf of the Board of Directors and the entire Executive Team, I wish to extend our heartfelt condolences to Heikki's family. We wish everybody to respect the privacy of Heikki's family. This tragedy escapes all words."

Temporary management arrangements in UPM Biorefining Business Area
Jussi Pesonen, President and CEO of UPM, will assume, on top of his regular duties, temporary responsibility as the Head of UPM Biorefining. The businesses and the transformative growth initiatives in Uruguay and biofuels formerly reporting to Heikki Vappula, will continue operations with existing resources and plans.

UPM will initiate a process for permanent management arrangements in due course.

UPM Biorefining consists of pulp, timber and biofuels businesses. UPM has three pulp mills in Finland and one mill and plantation operation in Uruguay. UPM operates four sawmills and one biorefinery in Finland. The main customers of UPM Biorefining are tissue, specialty paper and board producers in the pulp industry, fuel distributors in the biofuel industry and construction and joinery industries in the timber sector.

Newsgrafik #121712

PMP Group Opens New Facility in USA  (Company news)

PMP has recently spread its wings in North America, as part of its January 2018 Project Everest development strategy.

On the 8th of November 2018, a solemn ribbon cutting ceremony took place at the new location of PMP Americas in South Beloit, Illinois, USA. The facility was dedicated to PMP America’s late co-founder and Chairman of the Board Aaron Braaten.

The event was combined with PMP’s Fall Management Meeting and gathered an international delegation from the company’s (6) global locations as well as Braaten’s closest family and PMP America’s employees to celebrate a significant milestone in PMP’s development in North America. The entire event was led by PMP America’s long-standing General Manager, Rocky Matuska, who invited Ronna Braaten (a Supervisory Board Member) and Miroslaw Pietraszek (President of PMP Group) to open a new chapter in PMP America’s history.

PMP Americas was originally established in 2001 in Machesney Park, Illinois as a part of the PMP Group, not far away from the former headquarters of well-known Beloit Corporation. Recent years have brought very active growth and brand recognition in North America through successful execution of a number of capital projects for leading papermaking companies in the USA. A year ago, the company decided to invest over 1 mln USD to double the size of its facility in USA, increase employment, widen its product portfolio, expand service capability and to grow its locally produced Build-To-Print business. The facility will accommodate both Pulp & Paper as well as the Build-to-Print business units.

The North American market is one of the key markets for PMP. Through the opening of the new facility the company wants to send a powerful message that its agile approach and dynamic growth will continue and its employees will proudly continue to build strength in the P&P business in the USA.
(PMPoland S.A.)

Newsgrafik #121717

technotrans SE maintains growth trajectory  (Company news)

EBIT margin improved to 8.4 percent / Revenue grows 4.7 percent to EUR 162.7 million / Board of Management confirms annual targets

technotrans SE seamlessly maintained its positive business performance in the first nine months of the current financial year. The company increased revenue by 4.7 percent to now EUR 162.7 million, with the growth markets serving as the main drivers of this development. Operating profit at EBIT level climbed six percent to EUR 13.6 million, and the corresponding margin edged up to 8.4 percent. With business developing according to plan, the Board of Management confirmed the earnings and revenue targets for the full year.

“So far, the current financial year has passed off positively for almost every area of the company,” commented Dirk Engel (photo), Chief Executive Officer of technotrans SE. The growth rates achieved in the laser and machine tool industry as well as in the growth markets, which bracket the activities involving electric mobility and also semiconductor, medical and scanner technology, were especially notable in that regard. Revenue growth from those markets reached double figures, thanks in part to production starts and the concluding of several blanket and project orders.

The activities in the plastics processing industry equally exhibited strong growth, which was supported among other things by the market launch of the new multi-circuit temperature control system. OEM business in the printing industry remained stable, while end customer business contracted slightly. Total revenue of EUR 62 million was generated in that area, representing a revenue share of 38 percent.

The positive overall development is reflected in the figures for the third quarter. technotrans stepped up the pace of growth: revenue climbed six percent to EUR 55.4 million, and EBIT grew to EUR 4.5 million (previous year: EUR 4.4 million). Below the line, profit after tax for the first nine months came to EUR 9.8 million, representing a gain of 4.2 percent. The net margin was 6.0 percent.

Confident about full year
The Technology segment maintained its positive revenue and earnings performance in the first nine months. Revenue rose by 5.2 percent to EUR 118.3 million. EBIT improved from EUR 6.0 million to now EUR 6.5 million, and the corresponding margin climbed 0.2 points to 5.5 percent.

Revenue for the Services segment rose by 3.3 percent to EUR 44.4 million. The segment result was slightly higher at EUR 7.1 million (previous year: EUR 6.8 million), with the margin remaining at 15.9 percent. The main positive contributors were follow-on business in the technology markets outside the printing industry and technical documentation.

“We are confident about the further development thanks to the large number of new, forward-looking projects and also the continuing high level of capacity utilisation,” explained Engel. The Board of Management is confident of achieving revenue in the order of EUR 212 to 220 million in the current financial year. The operating result (EBIT) is expected to lie within a range of EUR 18 to 20 million. The recently acquired activities are likely to contribute revenue in the low single-digit millions. However in view of their start-up character they are not yet expected to turn a profit in the 2018 financial year. As matters stand, consolidated revenue for 2018 is therefore expected to come in towards the upper end of the range and the operating result at the lower end of its range.
(technotrans SE)

Newsgrafik #121718

Sappi delivers solid full year and improved fourth quarter results while completing ...   (Company news)

...higher margin conversion and dissolving wood pulp debottlenecking projects

Commenting on the results, Sappi Chief Executive Officer Steve Binnie (photo) said: “I am very satisfied that we have delivered results for the year in line with that of the prior year, notwithstanding the downtime related to the completion of several large strategic growth projects. These projects facilitated a further shift in the product mix of the group towards higher margin and growth segments.”

Reflecting on the 4th quarter, Binnie indicated: “We delivered increased earnings having resolved the 3rd quarter production challenges and benefited from higher graphic paper prices and stable demand across most product categories. To further build and strengthen our market leading position, during the quarter we launched the Verve brand as the umbrella brand for our DWP products, emphasising Sappi’s commitment to producing a natural fibre sourced from sustainably managed forests.”

Binnie confirmed that: “Strong market demand for dissolving wood pulp (DWP) and speciality and packaging papers ensured our production capacity in these grades was fully utilized, further supporting our decision to invest in additional capacity in these business segments. We were also able to reduce net finance costs by 15% due to lower average debt levels during the year.

I am also pleased that we have been able to declare an increased dividend of 17 US cents.”

Turning to the next quarter, Binnie stated: “Having completed the significant projects in 2018 to convert paper machines to higher margin and growing packaging grades, in addition to the debottlenecking of both Saiccor and Ngodwana Mills, we expect EBITDA in the first quarter of financial year 2019, given current exchange rates, to be comfortably higher than that of 2018.”

Financial summary for the quarter and full year
-EBITDA excluding special items
---For the quarter US$224 million (Q4 FY17 US$221 million)
---For the year US$762 million (FY17 US$785 million)
-Profit for the period
---For the quarter US$107 million (Q4 FY17 US$102 million)
---For the year US$323 million (FY17 US$338 million)
-EPS excluding special items
---For the quarter 19 US cents (Q4 FY17 19 US cents)
---For the year 60 US cents (FY17 64 US cents)
-Net debt US$1,568 million (FY17 US$1,322 million)
-Dividend of 17 US cents declared (FY17 15 US cents)

The major factors which influenced the fourth quarter’s results include:
-Dissolving wood pulp (DWP) demand and market pricing remained healthy;
-Sales volumes were impacted by low inventory levels due to lost production volumes in the third quarter following start-up issues after mill upgrade projects;
-Demand for specialities and packaging papers continued to grow in each region and across all major product categories. EBITDA margins were impacted by higher raw material prices and delayed price increases due to long-term contracts typical in this market;
-The qualification process of the paperboard grades at the Somerset and Maastricht mills is underway, with positive customer response to date. This process did however negatively impact average pricing and costs for the quarter.
-The European business delivered a good result in a seasonally stronger quarter.
-The Cham integration continues to exceed expectations, with EBITDA contribution ahead of expectations after seven months.
-Higher coated paper and DWP prices and the ramp-up of sales volumes from Somerset PM1 led to an improved result for Sappi North America.
-In South Africa, an increase in Rand selling prices offset variable costs pressures. Sales volumes were in line last year.
-European and export printing and writing papers markets were stable, allowing for the implementation of coated paper price increases that have offset much of the rise in paper pulp costs. In the US, sales volumes increased in all product categories and higher graphic paper prices were achieved;
-The potential benefits of a weaker Rand/US Dollar exchange rate in the quarter were reduced by currency hedges on DWP sales entered into earlier in the year when the exchange rate was much stronger.

The debottlenecking of Saiccor, Ngodwana and Cloquet as well as fewer production disruptions in 2019 should lead to increased DWP sales volumes to meet growing demand. DWP spot prices are forecast to remain range-bound at current levels in the coming year as VSF prices are expected to be under pressure from excess VSF capacity, while paper pulp prices which are forecast to remain at high levels should provide support.

Demand for speciality and packaging papers continues to grow, driven by increasing consumer preference for paper based packaging and legislative changes promoting recycling and the use of recyclable materials. The completion of the conversion projects at Somerset and Maastricht in the past year will allow us to increase production of paperboard grades to serve this growing market.

Industrywide conversion and closure of graphic paper machines in the US and Europe are expected to keep the markets balanced in the coming year should demand contract at similar levels to those of the past few years. Recent European data however, indicates that a potential downturn may be realised in 2019. Cost control measures will be implemented in order to support margins as we manage the price elasticity in our paper markets.

Capital expenditure in 2019 is expected to increase to US$590 million as we proceed with the Saiccor 110kt expansion having recently received initial EIA approval for the project, complete the Saiccor woodyard upgrade, convert Lanaken PM8 from coated mechanical to woodfree paper production and upgrade the Gratkorn Mill.
(Sappi Limited)

Newsgrafik #121719

Nalco Water Announces Price Increase on Paper Solutions in Europe  (Company news)

Nalco Water, an Ecolab company, is applying price increases on solutions provided by its Paper division in Europe. The increases, driven by substantial inflationary factors, including rising raw material and transportation costs, are effective December 1, 2018:

-Coagulants 10-15%
-Flocculants 10-20%
-Defoamers 5-15%
-Biocides 5-15%
-Alkaline cleaners 10-20%

These price adjustments will enable Nalco Water to continue to provide its customers with the highest quality products, services and technology.
(Nalco Europe B.V.)

Newsgrafik #121722

Metsä Board invests in a new sheeting line at its Äänekoski mill  (Company news)

Metsä Board, part of Metsä Group, has started construction of a new sheeting line at its Äänekoski board mill. The investment will increase the annual capacity of the sheeting plant by 35,000 tonnes to a total of 120,000 tonnes. The value of the investment is EUR 11 million. The new sheeting line will help ensure that the mill can continue to respond to increasing demand.

In addition to the new sheet cutter the investment includes additional automation to the existing sheet cutters as well as equipment for cutter reel handling and storage. The new sheeting line will be located in the existing sheeting plant and production is planned to start during September 2019.
(Metsä Board Corporation)

Newsgrafik #121745

ANDRITZ receives order to supply tissue machine to Berli Jucker Cellox, Thailand  (Company news)

International technology Group ANDRITZ has received an order from Berli Jucker Cellox Ltd. to supply a PrimeLineCOMPACT VI tissue machine with shoe press, including stock preparation and automation systems, for their mill in Prachinburi, Thailand.

The machine is designed for grammages from 13 to 40 g/m2 used for all kinds of high-quality tissue and towels.

The tissue machine has a design speed of 1,800 meters per minute and a paper width on reel of 2,800 mm. It is equipped with the ANDRITZ PrimeControl automation system for an optimized production process.

The combination of a 16 ft. PrimeDry Steel Yankee and the latest PrimePress XT Evo shoe press technology enables a high drying capacity and achieves remarkable cost savings and operational flexibility as well as improved product quality.

The scope of supply also includes the stock preparation system, with two lines in order to process both short-fiber and long-fiber pulp, and the option of adding recycled fiber. Additionally, it is equipped with an approach flow system and Dissolved Air Flotation (DAF) for fiber recovery. The installed water system is designed to minimize water consumption, thus ensuring highest efficiency.

“Due to the intensive R&D activities at the new ANDRITZ PrimeLineTIAC tissue pilot plant in Graz, we believe that ANDRITZ is the right partner to provide the expertise and equipment for a high-quality tissue production line, for example the latest shoe press technology PrimePress XT Evo that provides high productivity and product quality as well as the PrimeDry Steel Yankee that enables high efficiency of resources,” says the senior management of Berli Jucker Cellox Ltd.

This order once again confirms ANDRITZ’s strong market position as one of the leading suppliers of machines and systems to the Asian tissue industry.
(Andritz AG)

Newsgrafik #121671

Drytac reveals new advertising product - perfect for food environments  (Company news)

Drytac®, an international manufacturer of self-adhesive materials for the large format print and signage markets, announces the launch of the ArmourPrint™ Emerytex® and ArmourGrab™ combination counter mat solution. Having been previewed successfully at recent trade shows, the products are now available globally.

ArmourPrint Emerytex is a clear, heavy-duty, slip-resistant monomeric 15 mil (381μ) PVC film with a matte pebble textured finish on one side and a smooth printable surface on the other. It has been approved by the FDA for incidental food contact, making it ideal for advertising applications in hospitality and retail environments. ArmourGrab is an 8 mil (203μ) co-extruded white anti-slip film coated with a heavy coat weight, permanent, pressure sensitive clear acrylic adhesive. Used together, the two products create a food-safe counter mat solution ideal for eye-catching POP advertising.

Thanks to the slip-resistant qualities of both ArmourPrint Emerytex and ArmourGrab, these products can also be used for applications such as placemats and mouse pads. Their UV protection also enables outdoor use, while a moisture barrier protects the printed image and aids hygiene. No white ink is needed to create vivid and eye-catching counter mats as the white ArmourGrab backs the ArmourPrint Emerytex to eliminate the extra cost of printing with white.

The ArmourPrint Emerytex and ArmourGrab dual-product counter mat solution was previewed at the SGIA Expo 2018 in Las Vegas in October to over 25,000 registered delegates.

"The combination of ArmourPrint Emerytex and ArmourGrab creates a solution that is both safe and effective as counter-top advertising in fast food outlets, convenience stores, bars and more," says Shaun Holdom, Global Product Manager at Drytac.

"It's an innovative new design that attracted a lot of attention at the recent SGIA show and we're delighted to offer it to our customers worldwide."
(Drytac Europe Limited)

Newsgrafik #121704

Security fibers used at Ahlstrom-Munksjö to assure greater product traceability  (Company news)

Ahlstrom-Munksjö supplies fiber-based and custom-made specialized industrial materials including a range of abrasive backings.

An increasing number of producers of coated abrasives are being confronted with the challenge of global counterfeiting. Ahlstrom-Munksjö’s solution to the counterfeit challenge within the abrasive backings industry is the use of security fibers. The technology is registered under the label BE SECURE TM.

Counterfeiting is a global problem that in recent years has been estimated to account for 2-3 per cent of world trade. The publicity for counterfeit retail consumer products may create a perception that counterfeiting only results in brand erosion and revenue losses, but counterfeit products can also be found as replacement parts or as components in different applications in many industries.

Security fibers are added to the coated abrasive backing paper to secure that it is easy for producers to identify the quality of the product and avoid counterfeits. The fibers are embedded in the backing paper during manufacturing and include both colored and fluorescent fibers.

Security fibers can be used to assure product traceability, without affecting either the mechanical or chemical characteristics of the backing paper. This limits the risk of counterfeiting and enables producers to clearly identify the requested product quality, when the material is further processed in the value chain. By using the requested quality, the users of the abrasive product can protect themselves from potential breaks or damages in the production process and potential health injuries when the product is used in industrial sanding.

“Offering our customers a solution that assures product traceability is a clear differentiating factor for us. Our Chinese customer Zibo Riken, a manufacturer of coated abrasive, chose a custom-made fluorescent fiber to be used in the products we supply them. Through this unique product specification, they were able to secure a stable product quality and were able to increases their sales volume significantly” says Daniel Qiu, Sales Manager at Ahlstrom-Munksjö.

Abrasive backings are specialty papers that are used as a substrate for abrasive products used both in industrial and do-it yourself (DIY) sanding applications ranging from grinding to super fine finishing operations. Ahlstrom-Munksjö is well positioned in this market and offers a complete range of backings, including a variety of grades tailored for each application. The abrasive business is part of Ahlstrom-Munksjö’s Industrial Solutions business area.
(Ahlstrom-Munksjö Corporation)

Newsgrafik #121724

A prosperous future for Mondi Bupak and e-commerce customers in the Czech Republic  (Company news)

Mondi Corrugated unveils modernisation plans to position its Czech production site as a state-of-the-art e-commerce hub and innovation centre

Mondi plans to further invest in its Corrugated Packaging facility in Bupak, Czech Republic, which has already benefitted from significant investments in recent years. Once completed, the upgrade will make the Czech production facility another flagship plant for Mondi Group’s corrugated board segment.

“The digital transformation is rapidly changing society, and the way we consume. The rise of e-commerce in particular has radically transformed the packaging industry. Driven by a growing consumer demand, the competitive Czech market calls for a strong footprint in corrugated packaging,” Armand Schoonbrood, COO Mondi Corrugated Packaging, says. “After investing in our Central and Eastern European facilities Mondi Świecie and Mondi Simet in the recent past, the expansion of our Czech capabilities is simply the next logical step.”

Partner with customers for innovation
The €30 million investment - scheduled for completion in 2020 - includes the installation of a state-of-the-art corrugator in response to customers’ calls for more innovative and efficient packaging solutions. Mondi Corrugated Packaging currently stands out for winning numerous packaging innovation awards in 2018. “We want to continue this trend and work with our customers to challenge their existing packaging and find more innovative, cost-efficient and sustainable solutions,” Schoonbrood says.

Mondi Bupak will mainly focus on e-commerce customers, so the plan is to also set up a customer experience centre. A team of dedicated design experts will offer tailored consultancy services to customer, including high-quality simulations of the entire value chain: from paper to board, from board to box, and from box to transport. Armand Schoonbrood explains: “This investment will enable Mondi Bupak to deliver solutions for every packaging challenge our customers could possibly face and will make it the first port-of-call for e-commerce customers in the Czech, German and Austrian markets. By investing in our production facility today, we start perfecting the packaging of tomorrow.”

The investment will double the the plant’s production capacity, aiming to produce over 200 million sqm of corrugated board per year.
(Mondi Europe & International Division)

Newsgrafik #121731

Valmet to supply OCC and containerboard lines for Mondi SCP Ružomberok in Slovakia  (Company news)

Valmet will supply Old Corrugated Container (OCC) and OptiConcept M containerboard making lines (photo) with a winder for Mondi SCP's mill in Ružomberok, Slovakia. The start-up of PM 19 is expected towards the end of 2020.

"During the concept development phase, Valmet was actively promoting technical solutions. We are confident of Valmet's technical competence and concept. In addition to the well proven technology of Valmet, we also appreciate the continuous development and innovations of Valmet giving us further development opportunities in the future," says Herbert Hummer, Project Director at Mondi SCP.

PM 19 including Valmet's automation solutions will be designed to produce a new and unique environmentally sound containerboard grade, kraft top white, which combines the strength, printability and appearance benefits of a white virgin fibre top layer with the economic advantages of a recycled fibre bottom layer.

Technical details about the delivery

Valmet's delivery for stock preparation line will include a hardwood stock line, a save-all and broke system, an approach flow system and a complete Old Corrugated Container (OCC) line. The OCC line, which is called an OptiRefiber recycled fiber line, contains pulper feeding and vertical pulper systems, high and low consistency (HC and LC) cleaning systems and coarse and fine screening systems with fractionation, thickening disc filters for short and long fiber lines and long fiber dispersion system.

The delivery for the new high-capacity containerboard machine will include an OptiConcept M containerboard machine from headbox to reel followed by an OptiWin Drum two-drum winder. The winder will be equipped with Dual Unwind giving even higher capacity due to a one-minute parent roll change. The delivery will also include an OptiAir high humidity hood and other related air and ventilation systems, a surface starch preparation system and supply system for sizer.

The automation delivery includes Valmet IQ Quality Management System with web monitoring and inspection systems, Valmet DNA Automation System for process and machine controls, Valmet Retention Measurement (Valmet RM3) and Valmet Wet End Analyzers (Valmet WEM). The delivery also includes Valmet Advanced Process Controls with strength properties optimization and Valmet Performance Center on-demand expert support for solving any process or automation related issues.
(Valmet Corporation)

Newsgrafik #121746

The Allure of Contrast in Lecta's New Book 'Divergence'  (Company news)

A creative concept presented on Lecta’s premium coated papers

“Divergence”, the latest edition of Lecta’s yearly publishing project, once again showcases the end print results that can be achieved on its range of publishing papers.

This year’s book features an original concept that explores the beauty of opposites through image. The project juxtaposes evocative color and black-and-white photos that show us how contrast and difference enable us to distinguish one thing from another.

The notion of differentiation is also reflected in the selection of the two different 2-side coated papers on which the book was printed: GardaPremium Natural, a silk paper with a smooth surface and a natural shade, and GardaPat 13 BIANKA, a matt paper with a pure white shade, high bulk (volume 1.3) and a velvet surface. Two extremes of surface, color and volume each of which add value - like all of Lecta’s premium publishing papers – to the end print result in different ways.

Newsgrafik #121757

Tarsus Group unveils new Brand Print portfolio  (Company news)

The organizer of the Labelexpo Global Series, Tarsus Group has unveiled a new portfolio of trade shows targeting the branded print market, which aim to connect the whole print supply chain.

There are four Brand Print events planned: Brand Print Thailand – Bangkok; Brand Print Turkey – Istanbul; Brand Print China – Guangzhou; and Brand Print Mexico – Mexico City. The first of these will be Brand Print Thailand, scheduled to take place over 7-9 May 2020 in Bangkok.

Aimed at printers/converters of all types of promotional materials and collateral for brands, Brand Print Thailand 2020 is intended to be the one-stop shop for all their wide format and digital printing needs. This includes point of purchase (PoP) displays, fleet graphics, in-store hanging banners, posters, signage, direct mail, promotional items, wall decorations, murals, and exhibition graphics. Show floor exhibitors will in the main be manufacturers of wide-format printing machinery and materials.

Tarsus Group has been active in the Southeast Asia region for 20 years and holds numerous leading exhibitions there, including the extremely successful Labelexpo Southeast Asia, which launched in Bangkok earlier in 2018; the 2020 event is already almost sold out. Brand Print Thailand 2020 will be co-located with Labelexpo Southeast Asia 2020 in Bangkok, so extending the whole brand print visitor experience to labels and packaging.

Lisa Milburn, managing director Brand Print and Labelexpo Global Series, said: “We are delighted to be launching our new Brand Print portfolio, which will bring together for the very first time the whole supply chain in the region – printers, manufacturers brand owners – all under the one roof.

What we are offering is a unique and fantastic business opportunity for them to explore the endless possibilities of wide format and digital print, against the backdrop of a rapidly growing consumer market in Southeast Asia.

This will be complemented by an exhibition of the latest equipment for labels and package printing on show next door. This will give brand owners access to a huge platform for exploring all of their promotional needs.”
Tarsus Group already has a deep knowledge of the wide format print industry through its other events, including an established event in Turkey, with the next one taking place in September 2019. It also has established relationships with label and package printing companies through its Labelexpo portfolio of events, many of whom are also actively engaged in brand printing. These include Agfa, Avery Dennison, Canon, Durst, Epson, Fujifilm, HP, Mactac, Ricoh, Roland, Xeikon and Xerox.

Milburn added: “Our objectives for Brand Print are two-fold. Firstly, it forms an important part of Tarsus Group’s longer term vision for future growth in rapidly emerging markets such as Southeast Asia, and will strengthen our foothold as portfolio owners of world-class trade shows in the region. Secondly, it is a natural evolution of our hugely successful Labelexpo Global Series of events for the labels and package printing industry.”

Ms. Prapaporn Narongrit, president, Thai Screen Printing & Graphic Imaging Association (TSGA), said: “TSGA is once again honoured to be supporting the event in May 2020. The show, which is organized by Tarsus, has proven to be a very professional event and beneficial for the Thai printing industry, especially in the applications of label and package printing.”

The other Brand Print events will take place as follows:
• Brand Print Turkey – Istanbul, September 2020;
• Brand Print China – Guangzhou, December 2020; and
• Brand Print Mexico – Mexico City, April 2021.

Further details, including dates for these, will be announced in due course.
(Tarsus Group)

Newsgrafik #121691

Esko appoints Mattias Byström to succeed Udo Panenka as President  (Company news)

Esko announced that Mattias Byström (photo) has been appointed President, effective January 1, 2019. Byström succeeds Udo Panenka, who is leaving the company to pursue new opportunities.

“We thank Udo for his excellent service to Danaher over the past ten years, including leading Esko since 2015,” reflected Joakim Weidemanis, Executive Vice President of Danaher, Esko’s parent company. “Under Udo’s leadership, Esko repositioned the flexo plate production business through innovation and moved to a new site in Itzehoe. Udo also built up Esko’s business serving brand owners, including the acquisitions of MediaBeacon and BLUE, and initiated Esko’s software migration to software-as-a-service (SaaS).”

Mattias Byström brings with him over twenty years of general management experience. Most recently he was CEO of FlexLink, a global $300 million factory automation solutions business with headquarters in Gothenburg, Sweden. Byström has eight years of prior Danaher experience in different leadership roles in what was then known as Danaher Motion. This included leading the Automated Guided Vehicle business, primarily a software systems enterprise. Earlier in his career, Byström co-founded and led two digital start-ups.

“With his unique management and technology background, Mattias is ideally suited to lead Esko now. I am very happy to welcome him back to Danaher and excited to place him at the head of this important business that is simplifying the packaging value chain,” adds Weidemanis.

Commenting on his new appointment, Mattias Byström says, “Esko has incredible potential because digitization, automation and connectivity have gained momentum in the packaging industry in the past few years. It is my priority to ensure that Esko delivers stronger innovation that is increasingly valuable to our customers.”
(Esko Belgium)

Newsgrafik #121693

FlexLiner Closes Major gap  (Company news)

Thanks to the FlexLiner inserting system, Germany’s well-established Fr. Ant. Niedermayr now carries out inserting in-house, which has given it planning and financial flexibility.

The FlexLiner rounds off the production process for the high-volume printing plant for direct advertising, which has long relied on Muller Martini solutions. It fits in seamlessly with the company’s existing machines, including a sheet-fed offset and four web printing presses. The inserting solution, which is also used for inserts in inserts, enables the company to help its key customer carry out its marketing strategy, which requires three-shift operation with a high level of flexibility and speed. Niedermayr produces up to three million inserts and some 16 million flyers each week for the discount retailer.

Photo: In the “Blue Salon”: Michael Kretschmann (left), Print Finishing Manager at Fr. Ant. Niedermayr, and Frank Skorna, Area Sales Manager at Muller Martini Germany.

Niedermayr uses the FlexLiner to produce products with 8 to 112 pages, and typically operates the machine at the maximum speed of 30,000 cycles per hour. “Sometimes even the Muller Martini engineers are a little amazed by the volumes we handle,” says Michael Kretschmann with a grin. Standing in the hall with the Muller Martini equipment – which is referred to internally as the “Blue Salon” – the Print Finishing Manager, speaks enthusiastically about the systems for saddle stitching and compensating stacking: “The machines do exactly what the manufacturer promises.”

The inserting machine at Niedermayr – which boasts sophisticated mechanics thanks to the Connex data and process management system – has, as an additional option, extended grippers in the conveyor. The fact that employees no longer need to get their hands dirty during changeovers represents major progress. Entering settings is simple and clear thanks to the touchscreen, which makes the FlexLiner a perfect solution for the printing company, as the only constant in its operations is change.
(Müller Martini GmbH)

Newsgrafik #121696

Rengo Subsidiary Tri-Wall Invests in Manufacturer of Heavy Duty Packaging in the United Kingdom  (Company news)

Rengo Co., Ltd. (Head Office: Kita-ku, Osaka; Chairman, President & CEO: Kiyoshi Otsubo) announces that its consolidated subsidiary Tri-Wall (Head Office: Hong Kong, Chairman: Yuji Suzuki) has made an investment through Tri-Wall’s wholly-owned subsidiary to acquire a 51% stake in Rosewood Manufacturing Holdings Limited (referred to hereafter as “Rosewood”), which has its Head Office in the United Kingdom.

Rosewood has three operating companies as its subsidiaries, and it has factories in northern England (North Shields and Gateshead) and central England (Manchester and Wolverhampton), where it conducts manufacturing and sales of heavy duty and general purpose corrugated boxes and timber packaging.

Rengo has developed its packaging materials business related to heavy duty corrugated packaging globally through the Tri-Wall Group, but business in the United Kingdom until now has mainly been conducted at the site in Wales. Now, with the addition of Rosewood, which covers all of England, to the Rengo Group, Rengo will further promote the expansion of business by strengthening the supply system in the United Kingdom while also responding to more far-reaching packaging needs.
(Rengo Co. Ltd)

Newsgrafik #121697

Kemira calls for tougher implementation of EU water treatment legislation   (Company news)

Securing a clean water supply will be one of the greatest challenges our world faces in the next century. Despite the fact that water treatment plays a central role in efficient and sustainable water use, much of the current European legislation on water treatment dates from the 1990s. Furthermore, the majority of Europe's water treatment infrastructure was designed and commissioned decades ago. Since then technology has advanced significantly, enabling improvements in water treatment efficiency of as much as 20%. In a recently published position paper, Kemira calls on the EU to address these challenges from a regulatory perspective in order to ensure that future needs are met.

The Urban Waste Water Treatment Directive, a central instrument of EU water legislation and a tool to improve water treatment, is currently under review. At present, water legislation is not implemented consistently in EU member states, resulting in potential risks to both the environment and human health. It is Kemira's position that the requirements of the Directive must be implemented fully and equally across all member states.

Kemira's proposal addresses many aspects of this challenge: full implementation of requirements, utilization of technology, tightening the pollutant limit values, and including new emerging pollutants in the legislation, as well as putting the tools in place for public procurement to drive innovative and sustainable solutions.

Achieving equality is a first step
In some countries water treatment is much more ambitious and efficient than the Directive requires, while in others there are significant implementation gaps. Kemira recognizes an urgent need for full and equal implementation of the Directive's requirements. For example, it is our opinion that the excessive transitional periods for implementation granted to new member states are unacceptable. Environmental protection should not be a subject for negotiation. Kemira firmly believes that it is the fundamental right of each and every EU citizen to have access to a clean water supply, regardless of their geographical location.

In addition to more efficient implementation of the Directive in its current form, there is also other low-hanging fruit in the form of existing solutions that can and should be implemented in order to enhance wastewater treatment. One of these solutions relates to climate change and the increasing frequency of extreme weather conditions. Storm-water overflows are a major concern as they often contain untreated wastewater from both municipal and industrial sources, resulting in pollution and the spread of pathogens and diseases. Cost-effective solutions for the safe disinfection of overflows already exist and should be made mandatory at EU level.

"Lack of technology is not a barrier. Treatment methods already exist and should be adopted. With the technology available today we can achieve much better treatment results without increasing costs," says Riikka Timonen, Marketing Director at Kemira.

Political will should favor sustainable means
Further optimization of the Directive is easy to achieve. The limit values of different pollutants in the current Directive are not strict enough, and limit values in water discharges, in particular for biological oxygen demand (BOD), chemical oxygen demand (COD), total suspended solids (TSS), and phosphorus (P), should be tightened.

"It is not a question of ability, but of political will. For example, the current limits for phosphorus - 2 mg, or 1 mg of per liter of water depending on the population - should at minimum be halved. Nearly all wastewater treatment plants in Sweden and Finland achieve a maximum level of 0.5 mg P/l, and many plants have even stricter limits in place," Timonen says.

It is also Kemira's opinion that emerging pollutants such as pharmaceuticals, endocrine disruptors, and microbiological contaminants should be included in the legislation. "There are already solutions available to address these pollutants and the Directive needs to be updated accordingly," she emphasizes.

Public procurement should be the driver for a more sustainable future
Kemira is calling for regulation that fosters innovation and supports sustainability-driven public procurement for water treatment. Rather than having a short-term focus on securing the cheapest unit price, public procurement processes should instead favor innovative and sustainable solutions that can reduce total cost of ownership.

"The European Commission needs to develop and publish clearer and more binding guidance on how member states should implement the Public Procurement Directive in national legislation. this would create a win-win situation for all, with industries and nations collaborating to invest in sustainable solutions together," Timonen concludes.
(Kemira, Paper Segment)

Newsgrafik #121698

Attractive new paperboard cups for dairy packaging  (Company news)

Renewable materials are making a strong entry into dairy packaging. One company that is heavily expanding in that business is Haifa-based Copy Center, which now delivers dessert packaging cups to Tnuva, the largest dairy in Israel. The cups are made from Stora Enso’s Cupforma Dairy 2PE board.

The new cups were introduced last year for the brand Yolo (which is also an acronym for ‘you only live once’), which is Tnuva’s premium product line of various chocolate puddings, and one of the country’s biggest-selling dessert brands.

“Tnuva had asked us to create a totally new packaging concept for Yolo, aiming to become the leading dessert brand. Paperboard stands out as a modern option for dairy packaging, and it has environmental benefits over plastic. The look and feel of paperboard give a high-end impression, especially with sophisticated finishing effects such as the embossing and foil that we see in the cups for Yolo. The introduction was highly successful and exceeded everyone’s expectations,” says Uri Drori, CEO of Copy Center.

Since then, Tnuva has been consistently increasing their order quantities and switching more products from plastic to paperboard cups. Copy Center has respectively invested in its production, design and service capacities to meet the high delivery, safety and quality demands of food companies.

“We believe that board-based food packaging will be a growth engine for us, so we have invested in the latest cup machines as well as state-of-the-art printing, digital cutting and foiling technology. Cups can be made in different shapes and sizes and can be used in many other products such as, ice cream, cereals and soups packaging, as well,” Mr Drori says.

According to him, Cupforma Dairy is working great in all the processes. It has good strength, formability and print result, and the machines are running very efficiently. Cupforma Dairy is a packaging board specially developed for dairy cups, so it provides optimal protection for the contents, with safety and freshness guaranteed throughout the product’s shelf life.

The lids for Yolo are also made from paperboard, which requires excellent formability of the board and a specific forming machine. The flat rim of the cup is another outstanding feature of the design.
(Stora Enso Oyj)

Newsgrafik #121702

Hammer-Lübeck packaging plant kicks off second century with Rapida 145  (Company news)

-Company’s first Koenig & Bauer press
-Maximum automation for fast job change
-Perfect colour management
-More blanks per sheet
-Print capacity almost doubled

In spring 2019 the Hammer-Lübeck packaging plant celebrates its 100th anniversary. The traditional company, which specialises in folding carton for the food and luxury food industry, commissioned a Rapida 145 with coater and extended delivery just in time for its big celebration. The new press produces up to 18,000 sheets per hour in 106 x 145cm (41.7 x 57in) format and is equipped to meet the needs of printing operations down to the last detail. Its high level of performance has proven itself even in the first few months of operation.

Photo: The Rapida 145 in Hammer's pressroom is tailored exactly to the needs of the packaging industry in every detail

Whereas printing time was 70% with previous technology and around 30% was spent on makeready, now more than 93% of the time can be planned for the printing process. Unproductive makeready times have fallen to 6.8%. The press often goes back into operation after job changeover times of just 10 minutes. A whole range of automation solutions, which have meanwhile become indispensable to the company, contribute to this.

Inline control considerably reduces waste
Inline ink density measurement and control with QualiTronic ColorControl has delivered huge improvements. It has halved waste during production and reduced it to a quarter or less than 100 sheets during makeready. Production can often start right after the first print. This was a different story in the past. Today, electronic systems support the register-accurate setup of each individual job via register marks. The press is also extremely stable during production thanks to permanent measuring and control. The use of the digital colour databases has greatly changed the process of printing spot colours. The Lab targeted colour range is always the same, no matter the board type. Thanks to the measuring and control technology, it can be quickly achieved using ink density values dependent on the substrate. Both Lab target colour coordinates and target colour densities are managed in the colour database.

The company mixes its own special inks. Cutting-edge measuring technology simulates the required illuminant ensuring that all specifications are met in order to get as close as possible to the colour range required. The CXF files provided by the customer not only determine the Lab colour range, but also provide all information about the ink.

Colour measurement even on the rear sheet edge
QualiTronic ColorControl can also measure and evaluate measuring strips at the trailing edge of the sheet so that existing cutting dies, creasing plates and blank separators can continue to be used. Thanks to an extended sheet guide, this works up to substrate thicknesses of approx. 350g/m² (225lbs), depending on the material.

Plate stretching is also possible on the Rapida 145. When using simple types of board, dimensional changes occur repeatedly during the printing process at the rear sheet edge. This can have a particularly negative effect on the display of small reverse type, which is almost standard for folding carton for food. Whereas in the past the plates were pressed into the correct position with a wrench, patience and skill, this process can now be conveniently controlled from the press console with ErgoTronic PlateStretch.

The enlarged 145 format, combined with small measuring strips only 5mm high, has an effect on the number of blanks per sheet. Output per hour thus increases significantly. Due to the short job changeover times and the high production output, B3 jobs also run on the large press. Despite the smaller sheet format in the large-format press, this can be effective as makeready and production run faster than on the existing B3 press.

A relief for employees
In addition to the press’ equipment for high performance, it was important to production manager Steffen Klingbeil that the operators of the Rapida 145 were relieved of routine tasks and physically heavy work. As a result, the press has particularly wide galleries with unusually large storage areas. The plate carriage loaded with the printing plates for 3-4 jobs is delivered directly to the press and lifted to the gallery level. At the delivery there is also a lift system for the pallet cage with waste paper. The press crew only has to cover short distances with the large sheets. In addition, DriveTronic SFC enables the coating plates to be changed automatically and extremely quickly.

The Rapida 145, the company’s first ever Koenig & Bauer press, automates a whole range of tasks that had to be carried out by the operators on the previous press. Therefore it is no wonder that the company soon realised that no one wanted to go back to the old technology.

Print capacity almost doubled
Today, the Hammer-Lübeck packaging plant processes 20,000 tons of cartonboard per year into 750 million folding cartons. In addition to the plant on the outskirts of Lübeck, which was built on a greenfield site in 1981, it has had a further production facility in Poznan, Poland, since 1995. The production and storage area in Lübeck covers an area measuring 10,000m² (107,639ft²) with 7,500 pallet spaces added for logistic companies. Everything is equipped to meet future challenges in packaging production. From substrate logistics on sheetfed offset presses to robots on folding box gluers and driverless transport systems, everything is designed to enable the plant to respond quickly and flexibly to all customer requirements. These are predominantly brands that operate throughout Europe.

The new Rapida 145 is the perfect solution. It was configured together with the print management system and meets the requirements of the packaging company in every detail. No wonder the company produced as many large-format sheets in the first seven months as they used to within a year. And there is extra capacity to print even more.
(Koenig & Bauer AG (KBA))

Newsgrafik #121728

Metsä Board's comparable operating result in January–September 2018 was EUR 192 million  (Company news)

January–September 2018 (1–9/2017)
• Sales were EUR 1486.1 million (1397.3).
• Comparable operating result was EUR 191.9 million (139.1), or 12.9% (10.0%) of sales. Operating result was EUR 186.3 million (152.7).
• Comparable earnings per share were EUR 0.44 (0.27), and earnings per share were EUR 0.43 (0.30).
• Comparable return on capital employed was 14.7% (10.6%).

July–September 2018 (4–6/2018)
• Sales were EUR 475.1 million (518.7).
• Comparable operating result was EUR 63.7 million (59.2), or 13.4% (11.4%) of sales. Operating result was EUR 63.7 million (53.6).
• Comparable earnings per share were EUR 0.16 (0.13), and earnings per share were EUR 0.16 (0.12).
• Comparable return on capital employed was 15.0% (13.9%).

Events in July–September 2018
• Profitability improved due to the higher average prices of paperboard and market pulp as well as associated company Metsä Fibre’s increased pulp production and delivery volumes.
• Paperboard delivery volumes fell below the record-high delivery volumes of the second quarter.
• The optimisation of the sales mix was continued in Americas and partly in Europe.
• Wood costs remained fairly stable compared to the previous quarter. The result continued to be burdened by the expensive imported wood purchased for the Husum mill. Wood deliveries to mills were normal and production was not curtailed.
• Planned maintenance shutdowns were held at the Kemi and Husum integrated mills. The maintenance shutdown at Husum began at the end of September and ended at the beginning of October.

Result guidance for October–December 2018
Metsä Board's comparable operating result for the fourth quarter of 2018 is expected to improve compared to the third quarter of 2018.

Metsä Board’s CEO Mika Joukio (photo):
“Profitability in the third quarter improved due to the increased average prices of folding boxboard, white kraftliner and market pulp. The average price of paperboard rose due to successful price increases and the optimisation of the sales mix. The pulp market remained strong and the increased production and delivery volumes of pulp improved the result of our associated company Metsä Fibre.

Our paperboard deliveries were at a record-high level during the first half of the year and particularly during the second quarter. We estimate the high delivery volumes during the first half of the year to have increased customers’ stocks, which had an effect on our delivery volumes during the third quarter. The changes in the delivery volumes of market pulp were mainly due to theincrease in our own pulp consumption from growing paperboard production at the Husum mill in Sweden.

Exchange rate fluctuations during the third quarter had the expected negative effect on results compared to other quarters this year. Planned maintenance shutdowns were held at the Kemi integrated mill and partly at the Husum integrated mill. The maintenance shutdowns’ effect on results was at the same level as in the previous quarter.

Wood costs remained fairly stable compared to the previous quarter, but the result continues to be burdened by the expensive imported wood purchased for the Husum mill. General cost inflation has been rapid this year, in addition to which transport costs in the United States have increased. Recently, however, cost inflation has slowed down, and we do not expect significant changes to our production costs in the near future.

Growing concern over the use of non-renewable natural resources and ensuring product safety particularly in food packaging increase demand for ecological and lightweight fresh fibre paperboard. In addition, sustainability and actions against climate change are increasingly important prerequisites for operations and competitive factors for companies. Thanks to long-term work, the energy efficiency of Metsä Board’s production has improved year after year. Fossil-based carbon dioxide emissions and water consumption have been reduced to a significant degree. Our sustainable way of working has won plenty of external recognition, of which I am particularly proud. The thanks for these achievements belongs not only to our competent and committed personnel, but our customers, for whom a responsible way of working has been an important starting point and requirement for cooperation for many years now. Our goal is to continue this development in the future.”
(Metsä Board Corporation)

Newsgrafik #121741

Paperworld China 2018 opens today with support from leading industry players  (Company news)

Paperworld China, Asia’s leading trade fair dedicated to the stationery and office supplies industries, is opening its door from 22 November for the highly anticipated 2018 edition. The three-day fair will feature 442 exhibitors, with a strong international contingent coming from the 16 countries and regions of China, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Israel, Italy, Japan, Lithuania, Poland, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey, and the United States.

Held across 23,000 sqm of exhibition space in Hall 1 of the National Exhibition and Convention Center (Shanghai), the fair welcomes some of the industry’s leading companies to showcase their latest stationery and office supplies under the theme of “Stationery trends. Tomorrow’s office”. Key industry players taking part this year include AKASHIYA, Beifa, CASIO, Comix, EDU³, Fila, Guangbo, International Paper, Monami, Morning Glory, M&G, Pilot, Platinum, Schneider, Shanghai Marie, Simbalion, Ultrahard, Umajirushi, Uni, Zebra, ZIPIT, and many more.

Original designs and innovation to spearhead the future of the Chinese stationery industry
As is always the case at Paperworld China, visitors to the fairground will find a berth of stationery and office supply products in one place. Everything from original designs, time tested products and glimpses into future trends can be found at the fair at four distinct zones: Stationery and Hobby, Tomorrow’s Office, Quality Suppliers, and Oriental Products.

A snapshot of modern stationery retail can be found at the Small yet Beautiful showcase, which returns to the Stationery and Hobby zone with an upgraded structure and expanded scale. The showcase functions as a mock retail store that spans 250 sqm and includes a cafe area and an interactive art workshop. Adaptations of Zakka, a Japanese concept that describes a wide variety of consumer lifestyle goods, are also on display at the zone alongside Chinese stationery and products for home and office environments. The zone’s wide variety of items and unique methods of display truly reflect the new buying patterns of China’s modern consumer market.

Fairgoers will also find modern and forward thinking products at the Tomorrow’s Office zone. In cooperation with Sunon Group and Zhejiang Growin International Exhibition & Convention Co Ltd, a special showcase will be dedicated to demonstrating new and modern settings for office, lifestyle and learning which align with future technological changes such as the upcoming 2019 launch of a 5G network in China. Among many highlights at the zone are office electronic appliances and desktop devices from Cixi and Shenzhen.

On top of showcasing the latest trends, Paperworld China 2018 will also shine a light on originality and intellectual property protection. The Design area is a new spot that promotes original brands and producers of unique products to showcase their creations and enhance their brand image. The originality concept has been highlighted through all of Paperworld China's promotional channels, including WeChat and Weibo. The line-up of brands include AIT, Card Lover, Douban, Ggem, Happihood, Honorscent, Maru, Orange Creation, Sozen Design, Tom Horse, Tsnow Stationery, Whitehole, Xiaolin Creative and more. Having so many original stationery brands together at the fair is expected to help inject new energy into the Chinese stationery industry.

Another way through which the fair provides a platform for local brands to shine is through the ‘Best Stationery of China BSOC’ awards. The awards are organised to discover excellent stationery design work from China and around the world and are also intended to show appreciation towards the increasing standard of design in the local industry. The awards have received over 300 designs from around the globe, more than 200,000 votes and over 1,000,000 followers on WeChat and Weibo. The entries and the winning designs will be showcased during the fair.

Fringe programme to share trends and updated market information
In addition to the ‘Best Stationery of China BSOC’ awards, a series of seminars and interactive events will provide plenty of opportunities for learning and information exchange.

Among many highlights is the ‘Sino-Japanese Book Stationery Industry Summit Forum’. The forum will be led by industry leaders from Japan and China and will address the merging of the book and stationery industries. Attendees will also learn about the evolving retail landscape through examples of Japanese stationery stores and new retail environments that function as open, cultural spaces.

Another highlight is the ‘Hobby Town DIY Workshop’, where famous handicraft lecturers from China and Japan will teach and interact with handicraft lovers. The workshop will include classes about Japanese style ‘Hamanaka’ knitting, ‘Marusho’ paper cutting, freestyle DIY and much more.

Meanwhile, the ‘Time Will Tell-Chenzao Book Club Shanghai Meeting’ will be held in cooperation with the renowned women’s brand and journal supplier ‘Chenzao’. The meeting will focus on how journals can be used to achieve personal goals and improve time management.
(Messe Frankfurt HK)

Newsgrafik #121913

Marbach Academy enters 2019 - New training catalog now available  (Company news)

Marbach opened its training center earlier this year. Under the name Marbach Academy, the company now offers practical training courses for participants from the packaging industry. The new training catalogue for 2019 is now available.

Marketing Manager Tina Dost: "We are very pleased with the positive feedback from previous course attendees. The great benefits our training courses have had for participants has encouraged us to expand the Academy yet further. Our new training catalog contains some already established training courses as well as new ones. We have implemented trainee suggestions and extended our program."

Marbach presented its training catalog for 2019 at FachPack. Visitor interest was high with training registrations being received directly after the trade fair. Marbach expects there to be continued lively interest in training courses next year as well.

Dost continues: "The concept of the Marbach Academy has been developed in such a way that participants are ensured the greatest possible benefit. Because the training courses take place in small groups. With a lot of practice. But of course some theory too. The great advantage of small groups: the trainer can respond to the participants individually and can design the training individually as well. For the attendees, this means they can get the greatest possible benefit out of their training."

The training catalog 2019 is available at or You can also find an overview of the training courses on the company's homepage

Marbach's extensive range of services includes not only training but also packaging services. The focus of the Heilbronn-based company is always on customer performance.
(Karl Marbach GmbH & Co. KG)

Newsgrafik #121683

Sun Chemical makes SunLit Publish ink series available globally  (Company news)

After successfully introducing SunLit® Publish in a number of European countries, Sun Chemical is now extending the availability of its series of premium sheetfed offset process inks to commercial printers throughout the rest of Europe and the world.

Formulated for high-speed printing and high mechanical resistance on a wide variety of paper stocks, SunLit Publish improves both bindery handling and productivity, thereby reducing turnaround time. For the highest quality commercial and publication print work, such as business reports, art catalogues, four-colour books and brochures, SunLit Publish delivers balanced colour reproduction and high print gloss, especially on matt or semi-matt paper that doesn’t require a water-based or oil-based coating.

Ensuring natural colours are printed when reproducing human faces, furniture, textiles and luxury articles, such as watches and jewellery, SunLit Publish is fully compliant with ISO 2846-1 (colour and transparency standards) and enables printers to achieve ISO 12647-2 (Process Standard Offset) standard tolerances. As an additional benefit, SunLit Publish also provides perfect grey tonal neutrality (grey balance).

Thanks to the hard-drying characteristics of the ink series, SunLit Publish does not scuff or smear during finishing operations, ensuring that when trimming the bleed, for example, the edges of books and brochures remain uncoloured, even with adjoining dark images.

Dr. Bernhard Fritz, Product Manager Sheetfed Systems Europe, Sun Chemical, comments, “We’ve been delighted with the feedback we’ve received from customers in the countries in which SunLit Publish has been available. It therefore made clear commercial sense to offer the ink series to the rest of our customers across the world, so that they can also enjoy the productivity benefits of using SunLit Publish.”
(Sun Chemical European Headquarters)