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Columbia Pulp Announcement

Columbia Pulp Announcement  (Company news)

On Monday evening, March 23, the Governor of Washington State issued an executive order requiring everyone in Washington to “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” as part of the state’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, with exceptions for “essential activity”. The Company’s management promptly began to plan how to execute an orderly suspension of manufacturing activities. Further clarification indicated that commercial pulp production could be deemed essential activity and a suspension was not implemented immediately. Subsequently, the company was notified that various equipment vendors may not be able to support the operations of its straw pulp facility due to its remote location, travel disruptions and the health status of their workers. Moreover, concern mounted among our workforce, their families and our communities regarding the continuation of operations in this environment.

Therefore, as of March 28, 2020 the Board of Managers of Columbia Pulp I, LLC has made the decision to temporarily suspend regular operations at its Lyons Ferry facility. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Company has experienced supply chain disruptions as well as personnel shortages. In the interest of safeguarding our employees and the facility we operate; it is prudent to follow the Governor’s guidelines to stay at home.

The Company will commenced an orderly shutdown of its wheat-straw pulp mill Sunday morning March 29, 2020 and was completed the curtailment of operations on Tuesday, March 31, 2020. The Company will suspend its current 24/7 production schedule and will prepare the facility for a prolonged shutdown and essential maintenance posture. The company will continue to employ personnel to safeguard the plant in the meantime and to ensure the safety of the community at large.

Most employees were laid off and a small cadre of employees remain. The Company will monitor the pandemic that is impacting not only Washington State but the global pulp and paper market in which the company operates. The Company will also explore various governmental programs to assist its employees and anticipate the restart of the plant once the threat has passed and broad commerce has commenced.

“After careful deliberation and my formal recommendation, the Board of Managers has elected to enact an orderly and temporary suspension of operations at the Lyons Ferry Facility. These are extraordinary times and the circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic are unprecedented. The employees of Columbia Pulp have given tremendous effort and brought incredible leadership to bringing the Lyons Ferry facility into production. Despite the incredible efforts of our employees and dedicated vendors, the Board has determined that following the State of Washington’s Stay at Home, Stay Safe guidance is the best course of action at this time.” John Begley, CEO

The safety of employees and families remains the Company’s highest priority. In addition, the Company will focus primarily on maintaining the Lyons Ferry facility for an efficient re-start of operations in the future.
(Columbia Pulp LLC)

Andritz to supply new dewatering technology for RMP process to Mayr-Melnhof Karton, Austria

Andritz to supply new dewatering technology for RMP process to Mayr-Melnhof Karton, Austria  (Company news)

International technology Group ANDRITZ has received an order from Mayr-Melnhof Karton to supply a Vertical Screw Thickener (VST, photo) dewatering system for the RMP (Refiner Mechanical Pulp) process at the mill in Frohnleiten, Austria.

Start-up is scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2020.

ANDRITZ will install its latest dewatering technology – the Vertical Screw Thickener (VST), an innovative screw press with a vertical design. The pulp is fed in from the top and then compressed and dewatered as it moves downwards. The self-filling and gravity-assisted dewatering principle allows higher throughput and pulp dryness because the available screen area is fully used.

The new ANDRITZ system also comprises a dilution conveyor, MC pump including standpipe and a TurboMix agitator. Automation, instrumentation, engineering, mechanical installation, commissioning and start-up supervision are also part of the scope of supply.

At the Frohnleiten Mill, the RMP with Freeness of 350 ml is dewatered from an inlet consistency of 3.5% to 25% consistency at the discharge in one innovative unit. The pulp is then stored at a consistency of 10% in a new pulp storage tower that feeds the existing board machines.

The existing RMP system was supplied by ANDRITZ in 1996 and processes a mixture of wood chips containing spruce, larch and fir as raw material for the mill’s own board machines producing CRB (Coated Recycled Board).

Mayr-Melnhof Karton is the world’s leading producer of coated recycled cartonboard.
(Andritz AG)

Jet Press 750S investment was the obvious next step for Aries in Fujifilm partnership

Jet Press 750S investment was the obvious next step for Aries in Fujifilm partnership  (Company news)

Spanish print and communications group counts the benefits after taking its digital print capabilities to the next level with Fujifilm Jet Press 750S investment

Founded in 1974, Aries Grupo de Comunicación is today a full-service commercial print business, producing a huge range of products, from books and calendars, to brochures, catalogues and packaging. In the summer of 2019 the company made the decision to invest in a Fujifilm Jet Press 750S in order to keep pace with growing customer demand for high-quality short-run work.

-“We’ve always been storytellers here,” says the company’s CEO Antonio Martin (photo). “And we’re very proud of our own story that has brought us to where we are today – through the good times and the challenges that have shaped who we are as a business along the way.

-“One of the biggest challenges we have ever faced was the 2008 financial crisis, and our response to that challenge changed the course of our story forever. We created the “Union Project”: five print companies under one roof, pooling resources, collaborating and together offering a full, in-house service – from design, to marketing, to production, to storage and logistics.

-“By thinking creatively and working together, we not only weathered the financial crisis and the recession that followed, we set ourselves up to respond much more effectively to the rapidly changing demands of our industry in the long term. We're seeing increasing demands for high-quality short-run work, and customers typically expect to receive orders much faster now than ever before. Delivering all of this, while keeping costs down and prices competitive is an ongoing challenge - and being able to support each other within the Union Project is hugely beneficial.

-“Fujifilm and their distribution partner in Spain, Cyan, have been another major part of our success story, and that of the Union Project, providing us with plates and CTP equipment, and a consistently high level of service and support for more than 20 years. When we saw a need to invest in a new digital print solution to meet growing customer demand for high quality short-run work, the Jet Press was the obvious choice, not just because of the technology – which is second-to-none – but because Fujifilm is a company that we already have complete confidence in. We knew that in making this investment we weren’t just buying a product – but building our already strong partnership.

-“We work with our own customers in the same way,” Martin continues. “They have always been focused on three things: speed, quality and price, and meeting those core requirements has always been critical. In recent times though, we’ve increasingly noticed that these three things alone are not enough. Our customers now want more from us: consultancy, advice and support. We’ve adapted our business to meet those expectations, and in Fujifilm we have a partner who does the same thing for us.

-“The Jet Press is the logical next step in our Fujifilm partnership. The speed with which we can turnaround high-quality short-run work has improved significantly and this opens up the opportunity to reach new customers and new markets.

-“We’ve proven our ability to adapt to life’s challenges over the years and in Fujifilm we have a partner who is with us on that journey for the long haul.”

Luis González Caridad, Director General of Cyan, says: “We’ve been working closely with Aries for many years, and we’re delighted that they have chosen to continue to work with us, and with Fujifilm, to take their digital print capabilities to the next level. We look forward to continuing to work with them for years to come.”
(Fujifilm UK Ltd)

The next level in flexo plate making: Flint Group unveils new Washer and Dryer/Light Finisher ...

The next level in flexo plate making: Flint Group unveils new Washer and Dryer/Light Finisher ...  (Company news)

... as part of its Catena system offering

-Increased productivity thanks to unique plate alignment and advanced plate queuing system

-Sustainable processor due to encapsulated washout zone with very low emissions into work space

-Easy handling of large format plates, no human touchpoint

-Excellent performance due to innovative pin-bar transport system with automated plate punching, fixing and detaching

The newest additions to Flint Group’s Catena product family, the Catena-W , for Washer, and Catena-DL, for Dryer Light Finisher, follow Flint Group’s promise of delivering solutions which are Better.Faster.Easier to use.

Since Xeikon Pre-press joined the Flint Group family in 2015 both Flint Group Flexographic and Xeikon Pre-press were suddenly in the very unique position to have the expertise in plate manufacturing and plate processing equipment in-house. This unique position in the industry resulted in a close collaboration between our R&D departments with the aim to provide a fully optimized Pre-press environment to our customers including equipment and plates. "We believe that no one in our industry can match this level of expertise and the first feedback we got from our beta customers is confirming our view", says Friedrich von Rechteren, Global Commercial VP, Flint Group Flexographic.

The Catena-W is designed to deliver highest productivity through unique plate alignment which avoids plate skew during transport as well as an advanced plate queuing system. This limits the distance between plates being processed and maximizes the throughput. An integrated plate shuttle will enable a single operator to easily handle large format plates, and a minimum gap between queues will increase the number of plates processed per shift.

Xeikon Pre-press R&D Director Bart Wattyn explains: “Right from the beginning our ThermoFlexX imaging systems were designed to help our customers through automation and leading edge technology. By listening to the challenges our customers have to face every day, like handling large size flexo plates that are easy to damage, we developed the Flextray with fully automatic loading and unloading. The positive feedback we received was tremendous! Consequently, we announced the Catena-E LED exposure system in 2019 with a fully automatic plate feed from our imagers. Plate processing (wash-out) gives an extra challenge and we took it as a design goal that an operator should be able to handle large plates, single handed and without ever having to come into contact with their solvent-wet surface”.

Compared to other washers the Catena-W operates in a sealed environment. Its efficient extractions ensure a minimum of solvent fumes reaching the workplace, which benefits the health and safety of operators.

The Catena-DL features an automated lift that can be used to move a plate from the shuttle to the dryer drawers and into the light finishing section while avoiding any human touch point. Stefaan Herman, Site Manager at Miller-Graphics, a Brand Management, Repro and Flexo Plate making company specializing in flexible packaging, paper and foil, corrugated and labels, states: “We have a great deal of experience and pride ourselves on keeping pace with technical innovations. Choosing the right equipment is vital to keep our business ahead. We are always interested in Flint Group and especially ThermoFlexX developments and happy to take the opportunity to be the first customer installing the Catena-W and Catena-DL. We’ve found the Catena-W pin-bar system to be very useful. This avoids the need for punching the plate by using an external spiked clamp system. Not only does this save a step, it also means

there’s no polymer residue from the punch that can sometimes stick on a plate. Furthermore, the distance required for clamping is less and, thus, saves us some plate material. Rather than a drive chain that passes through the solvent, Catena-W uses a leadscrew that’s outside the liquid, this saves a lot of maintenance. For the environment in our plate room, we noticed that special covers limit the solvent evaporation with almost no smell discernable in the room. The systems are noticeably quieter, too. Overall we believe that ThermoFlexX has definitely brought a literally fresh and extremely valuable approach to our business”.
(Xeikon Manufacturing and R&D Center)

Research proves that using BillerudKorsnäs paper for online retail mailing bags reduces...

Research proves that using BillerudKorsnäs paper for online retail mailing bags reduces...  (Company news)

... carbon emissions by 50 percent

Bags made of BillerudKorsnäs’ paper Xpression E-com can reduce fossil emissions by 50 percent compared to virgin plastic, and lead to a net removal of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. That is the result from a new independent study that compares the environmental impact of different types of online retail packaging.

E-commerce is growing rapidly and thousands of plastic mailing bags and corrugated boxes are being shipped every second. As a world-leading provider of sustainable packaging material, BillerudKorsnäs has developed Xpression E-com, a durable and resilient paper for online retail mailing bags. The environmental benefit of using Xpression E-com instead of plastic or recycled cardboard material has now been confirmed in a study performed by RISE, Research Institutes of Sweden.

The study is based on life cycle analyses which considers the environmental impacts from raw material input, production, transport and disposal. The results shows that choosing a mailing bag made of unbleached Xpression E-com paper will reduce fossil emissions by 50 percent compared to virgin plastic. According to RISE, the finding is robust and holds true even across a range of parameters considered in the sensitivity analysis, such as different material specifications, locations and end-of-life assumptions.

- BillerudKorsnäs’ mission to challenge conventional packaging for a sustainable future clearly sets out why we exist and how we view our role in society. Xpression E-com is an example of how we think outside the box to fight climate change and reduce plastic use. We hope that the new study will help online retailers to replace their packaging with a more sustainable alternative, says Malin Ljung Eiborn, EVP Sustainability at BillerudKorsnäs.

Since the paper mailing bag is recyclable and manufactured by BillerudKorsnäs’ near fossil free production units, the overall conclusion from the study is that this variant has a strong advantage over plastic bags and boxes of recycled corrugated material. When biogenic emissions are included, the study shows that 1,000 mailing bags of Xpression E-com removes 50 kilograms of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere across the life cycle. The paper is also better for the environment when considering emissions to air, water and soil that leads to eutrophication.
(BillerudKorsnäs AB (publ))

Zahara Elite: The brand new Verico printing plate for waterless presses

Zahara Elite: The brand new Verico printing plate for waterless presses  (Company news)

Verico Technology LLC has have successfully launched the latest plate in the Zahara family, the Zahara Elite waterless plate.

Zahara Elite plates are available in most sizes and gauges for waterless newspaper, sheetfed, narrow web label, security printing and CD / DVD applications. Elite is a drop-in product to the existing Zahara CTP settings and in will not require any adjustments in exposures.

Like all Zahara products, the Zahara Elite is a 100% chemical free process plate using simply water for cleanout. No hazardous chemicals or dyes to maintain or dispose. Just expose, rinse and print.

Benefits of the brand new Verico Zahara Elite waterless plate:

- Speed: Increased sensitivity in the CtP system enables higher throughput with wider exposure latitude
- Durability: Extremely durable on any substrate with increased scratch resistance
- Resolution: Reproduction of even finer screens with consistent durability
- Ink transfer: Excellent solids and fast ink roll up, excellent compatibility with UV Inks and increased solvent resistance
- Measurability: Plate is video microscopically measurable
- Drop-in: Uses your existing processing equipment

As the remaining stock of Zahara XP products are depleted, Verico Technology will automatically ship Zahara Elite plates to fill customer orders. Customers will notice the new labeling on the package that will distinguish Zahara Elite plates. Immediate upgrades available on request.

Verico Technology’s Sales and Application experts are available to answer questions and give every necessary support.
(Verico Technology LLC)

Mac Papers Announces the Sale of its Businesses to Monomoy Capital Partners

Mac Papers Announces the Sale of its Businesses to Monomoy Capital Partners  (Company news)

Sale Includes Mac Papers, Mac Papers Envelope Converters and All Square Digital Solutions

Mac Papers, one of the largest merchant distributors in the southeastern United States, announced today the sale of its businesses to Monomoy Capital Partners, a private investment with $1.6 billion in committed capital that invests in the debt and equity of middle market businesses. The sale includes Mac Papers, Inc., Mac Paper Converters, Inc. and All Square Digital Solutions, Inc. (collectively “Mac Papers”). Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

“We have felt privileged to lead the business our fathers Frank and Tom started 55 years ago, and we are confident that it will continue to grow and enjoy a very bright future under Monomoy’s ownership,” said Mac Papers President Sutton McGehee. “Monomoy’s focus on excellent customer service and trusted relationships with customers and supply partners aligns perfectly with the deep-seated culture at Mac Papers. We know Monomoy is fortunate to have the best people in the business as their employees at Mac Papers and we look forward to what the future holds for them as they partner with Monomoy to build upon Mac Papers’ legacy and realize the significant growth opportunities for this business.”

Rick Mitchell, the company’s current Chief Operating Officer, assumes the role of President and Chief Operating Officer of Mac Papers. The rest of Mac Papers’ current management team, including Chief Financial Officer Greg Gay, Executive Vice President of Paper Craig Boortz, Vice President of Packaging Chris McCabe, Vice President and Regional Manager Carter Whiddon, Vice President of Purchasing Steve Collins, and Vice President of Mac National Jeff Harris will continue in their roles under Monomoy ownership. Scott Sipkovsky will continue to lead the MPEC operation and Ash Weekley will continue as the business development lead for the company’s wide format business.

“The entire Mac Papers team looks forward to working with Monomoy,” stated Mitchell. “Their extensive resources and capabilities will allow us to advance the company’s many strategic and operational initiatives. We are excited to begin the next phase in our evolution as a company and to continue growing with our market-leading customer base and best-in-class suppliers.”

Founded in 2005, Monomoy Capital Partners has invested in over 50 middle market businesses in the manufacturing, industrial, distribution and consumer products sectors.

“We would like to congratulate and thank the McGehee family for building a premier, market-leading business in paper and packaging distribution,” said Monomoy Co-founder and Partner Stephen Presser. “Mac Papers is a proven, highly-regarded supplier to its diverse customer base, a true partner with its suppliers and is well-positioned for continued success in the future. Monomoy is excited to work with the Mac Papers management team and to collaborate with the company to drive long-term value for all of its customers, suppliers and employees.”
(Mac Papers)

Hahnemühle Delivers Consumables for New COVID-19 Cartridge-Based Test System

Hahnemühle Delivers Consumables for New COVID-19 Cartridge-Based Test System  (Company news)

The new high-volume COVID-19 cartridge-based test system is capable of rapidly detecting multiple virus infections.

Within one hour, the system is providing positive or negative results for COVID-19, as well as more than 20 other viruses. Large quantities of patients can be tested through this industrial-grade test system, which is currently being deployed in the market via several medical hardware system providers. In this context, authorities classified Hahnemühle in March 2020 as a mission critical (systemrelevant) production facility to ensure continued production and supply chain peace of mind during this difficult period in the fight against COVID-19.

Photo: Consumables for Corona /Covid 19 Tests ©Hahnemuehle

“Hahnemühle has been innovating in the area of life sciences since 1883, and is also known as one of the inventors of pure filtration and analytical systems. We provide these solutions to companies within the healthcare sector, hospitals, and laboratories. We are proud to be a contributor to the global fight against COVID-19”, says Jan Wölfle, President and CEO of Hahnemühle FineArt Group.

This high-volume cartridge-based test system for coronavirus consists of a one-time use cartridge, including agents and substrates from Hahnemühle, plus a computer based analytical system from various hardware vendors. Samples are multiplied within the one-time use cartridge and results are delivered within one hour. The system can detect evidence of more than 20 viruses within the sample and was upgraded and approved in March 2020 to also detect COVID-19. Suspected cases can be tested faster, in higher volumes, isolated and, if needed, treated much more efficiently and with more scalability than in the past.

“Fast testing to detect COVID-19 is essential in the fight to contain and mitigate the coronavirus outbreak. Many manufacturers are increasing their capacity as fast as possible and are requesting these cartridge-based consumables in high volumes from us. To that end, we are deploying additional resources and developing, in tandem with our customers, additional solutions to help fight this global pandemic. By the end of this year, we will increase our monthly capacity to provide consumables for up to at least 20 million COVID-19 tests per month. Special procedures have already been put in place since January to ensure that all guidelines from authorities are proactively followed globally. Our Production and Finishing Departments are in rotating 3-shift schedules, while the Sales and Administration Departments are working in a similar shift schedule both on- and off-site to ensure mission critical business continuity”.
(Hahnemühle FineArt GmbH)

Second-phase preparatory work to begin at Metsä Group’s bioproduct mill in Kemi

Second-phase preparatory work to begin at Metsä Group’s bioproduct mill in Kemi  (Company news)

Metsä Fibre, part of Metsä Group, has completed the first-phase preparatory work as part of the pre-engineering of the Kemi bioproduct mill in the Kemi mill area on schedule in January. The second phase will begin in early April. The purpose of the preparatory work is to enable the construction of the mill and a smooth start for the related earthworks. The investment decision will be made earliest at the autumn 2020, and the construction of the mill is expected to begin right after that.

The second-phase preparatory work includes emptying the buildings in the future mill area in Pajusaari and relocating operations, after which the buildings will be demolished. These buildings include the Botnia Mill Service panel production facilities and a building known as the ‘isolator cabin’, for example.

The relocation and demolition work will begin step by step in the various buildings, and the first buildings will be demolished at the beginning of June. The Kemi town administration issued a demolition permit for these buildings in December 2019. So, this demolition work does not require a building permit for the new mill. The second-phase preparatory work will be completed in November 2020.The buildings will be isolated, and access to the surrounding area will be limited. The demolition work may cause occasional noise outside the mill area, because of the chipping and crushing of concrete. Dust will be prevented from spreading by watering.The buildings to be demolished in connection with the preliminary work are marked in blue in the map that can be found in our databank:

As a whole, the pre-engineering of the bioproduct mill is progressing as planned. The financing negotiations concerning the investment of around EUR 1.5 billion have also progressed. In March 2020, Finnvera provided a guarantee for EUR 500 million in credit with an 80% coverage, provided that Metsä Group invests in the new mill. Financing negotiations with the European Investment Bank and a number of commercial banks continue.Main equipment negotiations and the development of the logistics required for the new mill are also in progress, in addition to preliminary work for the construction phase, the environmental permit application process and the financing negotiations.Metsä Group has signed a letter of intent with AFRY concerning the planning of the possible construction phase, and with Fimpec concerning the construction.Metsä Group’s bioproduct mill in Kemi would be the largest wood-processing plant in the northern hemisphere. If implemented, at EUR 1.5 billion, this will be the largest investment in the history of Finland’s forest industry. Efficient in terms of the environment, energy and materials, the mill would operate entirely without fossil fuels and produce 1.5 million tonnes of softwood and birch pulp and many other bioproducts annually. The mill would use 7.6 million cubic metres of wood per year, representing an increase of 4.5 million cubic metres compared with the current pulp mill. The new mill would have a significant impact on the Finnish national economy: it would employ around 2,500 people throughout its direct value chain in Finland, including 1,500 new jobs.
(Metsä Board Linerboard and Paper Division Kemi Mill)

Valmet IQ takes quality management to the next level by connecting quality data from fiber...

Valmet IQ takes quality management to the next level by connecting quality data from fiber...  (Company news)

... to finished product

Valmet introduces a renewed Valmet IQ Quality Management System for pulp, tissue, paper, board, and converting industries. The renewed system lets papermakers optimize quality through the entire value chain from fiber to finished product, enabling improved process performance and increased savings through the process.

Photo: The renewed Valmet IQ Quality Management System connects the quality data from fiber to finished product and takes a step towards an autonomous mill.

The quality management system takes a step towards an autonomous mill
The renewed Valmet IQ Quality Management System utilizes Valmet’s latest innovations and expertise on pulp and paper quality management. It integrates the quality management of the entire production process and is a step towards an autonomous mill. The new capabilities of Valmet IQ increase the degree of automation and reduce the human role in the process.

“Valmet IQ extends from traditional quality controls to the retention and refining online optimization with wet end analyzers. The new moisture management solution optimizes the drying process from the wire-former section through the press and dryer section to the end of the reel. It will stabilize the process and improve the performance even further,” says Marko Toskala, Director, Quality Management Systems from Valmet.

Valmet IQ consists of all the devices and applications needed to monitor and optimize both process performance and end-product quality: scanners, measurements, profilers, machine vision, and quality control applications.

The new quality scanner family is redesigned for even more demanding production environments. All Valmet IQ scanners now consist of stainless-steel exterior, enhanced diagnostics, and a new flexible sensor platform. New IQ Dryness and IQ Multipoint measurements reveal the true dryness development from the headbox to the reel. The IQ family is completed by the most advanced machine vision system on the market, enabling faster detection of even smaller quality defects. The renewed Valmet IQ is compatible with the previous generations. All Valmet IQ products are developed and manufactured in Finland.

The new Valmet IQ is also compatible with the recently introduced Valmet DNA User Interface, the new web-based user interface of the Valmet DNA automation system. The new structured user interface guides the operators to focus on the situation critical information and make the right decisions instantly – helping to optimize quality faster.

Automatic optimization saves raw materials, chemicals and energy
Valmet IQ connects seamlessly with Valmet’s industrial internet (VII) solutions. With the cloud-based solution, the quality data moves from paper mills to converting, automating the optimization of the entire value chain. Similarly, paper producers can utilize feedback directly from the converting process while optimizing production performance and costs.

“Our customers have moved from reactive to data-driven quality management and witnessed significantly more stable production quality and decreased amount of broke. The automatic optimization of the entire value-chain has increased the production performance while simultaneously saving raw materials, chemicals, and energy”, Toskala continues.
(Valmet Corporation)

Caverion to be responsible for technical maintenance services for buildings at ...

Caverion to be responsible for technical maintenance services for buildings at ...  (Company news)

...Stora Enso's Mill in Varkaus, Finland

Caverion has signed an agreement with Stora Enso Oyj and Efora Oy on the provision of services for the buildings at Stora Enso’s Varkaus Mill. The service agreement involves a transfer of business whereby the persons working in these activities will be transferred from Stora Enso and Efora to Caverion Suomi Oy as so-called old employees.

Caverion is responsible for the technical maintenance of Automation, Cooling, Heating and Sanitation, Ventilation & Air Conditioning, and Electricity systems as well as technical building maintenance and cleaning services of the Varkaus Mill. The Mill’s buildings are located in an extensive area and total nearly 120,000 square meters. Caverion’s service production will start in early May.

"We are delighted that our partnership with Stora Enso is now expanding from its previous partnership to comprehensive property management, which is a core business of ours. We provide cost-effective and sustainable building life cycle management services so that our customers can focus on their own operations. I am also particularly pleased that we can welcome professionals transferring to us to complement to our local team of skilled personnel," says Ville Tamminen, Executive Vice President, Caverion Finland.
(Caverion Finland)

Next level Push to Stop: Systematically unlocking OEE potential with intelligent digitization

Next level Push to Stop: Systematically unlocking OEE potential with intelligent digitization  (Company news)

-Focus on the “yellow bar” systematically addresses operator-dependent and process-dependent time losses
-Heidelberg User Experience (UX) makes the Speedmaster a modern and attractive workstation
-New Intellirun software organizes print production on the Speedmaster using an integrated approach
-Other intelligent digital assistants support the operator and control processes autonomously
-Machine operation on the go with the Press Center Mobile app

Photo: A new feature on the 24-inch multi-touchscreen is the extended job queue, which displays all job data from the Prinect print shop workflow in a clear format. The job queue makes it possible to prepare for job changes using the automatically generated process view while production is still underway.

In a global survey of over 1,000 customers, Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG (Heidelberg) identified four key areas that sum up the challenges in the print industry: increasing complexity, skills shortages, competitive pressure, and the expansion of the value chain to include digital platforms. Heidelberg has comprehensive responses for all of these areas. In the area of printing presses, Heidelberg will be presenting the most intelligent and most highly automated Speedmaster yet with the new Speedmaster generation – a smart product that integrates seamlessly into a digitized smart print shop and even into a smart organized printing industry. With the new Heidelberg User Experience (UX) on the Speedmaster, it offers a modern and attractive workstation. In addition, other intelligent assistants ensure that the machine’s productivity potential is unlocked. All models in the new generation also include Push to Stop functionalities and an interface to the Prinect Cloud as standard. This enables more comprehensive navigated and autonomous printing, which increases productivity, process reliability, and profitability. The new Speedmaster generation will go into series production from April 2020.
(Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG)

New, 100% U.S. Sourced Sugarcane Fiber Bowl from Sonoco Answers Demand ...

New, 100% U.S. Sourced Sugarcane Fiber Bowl from Sonoco Answers Demand ...   (Company news)

...from Shoppers and Brands for More Sustainable Packaging Options

Natrellis™ package for refrigerated, frozen and prepared foods launching in April with PRIMAL KITCHEN®

Sonoco (NYSE: SON), recently named to Barron’s 100 Most Sustainable Companies, in partnership with Tellus®, a packaging company based in Belle Glade, Fla. and jointly owned by Florida Crystals Corporation and Sugar Cane Growers Cooperative of Florida, today announced the introduction of its first, 100% U.S. sourced, sugarcane-based fiber bowl for refrigerated, frozen and prepared foods. Branded as Natrellis™, the fiber bowl is dual-ovenable, PFAS-free, and provides an alternative to more traditional rigid plastic packages used by the majority of refrigerated and frozen food products on the market.

“This new sugarcane-based package is further evidence of our commitment to developing more sustainable options for brands and consumers alike,” said Ernest Haynes, Sonoco division vice president and general manager, Rigid Paper and Closures, North America. “High quality refrigerated, and chilled foods continue to grow as a category. Using this novel technology allows us to produce a natural package made from an annually renewable resource, something that more and more shoppers and brands are looking for today. That’s a win, win for everyone.”

Natrellis will debut as the primary package used by PRIMAL KITCHEN® for its new line of frozen bowls and skillet meals, which are currently available at select retailers and coming soon this spring and summer to HyVee, Publix, Natural Grocers, Whole Foods Market and more. The new PRIMAL KITCHEN frozen line, which features meals made with grass-fed beef or cage-free chicken and a variety of vegetables, is their first launch into the prepared meals space. PRIMAL KITCHEN brand focuses on delivering delicious condiments, dressings, marinades, avocado oils and pantry staples, that incorporate fats, simple ingredients and uncompromising flavor.

“PRIMAL KITCHEN products are unlike any others that you’ll find in the grocery store,” said Founder, Mark Sisson. “Developing and offering frozen meals, is a natural extension of our brand promise and great solution for busy families and health-minded individuals alike. We’re proud to use the Natrellis bowl because it aligns perfectly with our mission and values.”
(Sonoco Products Co)

Lecta to increase CWF and UWF prices by 5% to 7%

Lecta to increase CWF and UWF prices by 5% to 7%  (Company news)

Lecta announces a price increase of 5% to 7% on all its 2-side CWF and UWF grades in sheets and reels in all European markets.

The continuous increase in manufacturing costs makes the price increase unavoidable.

The new prices will be effective for deliveries from April 20th, 2020.

Lecta sales teams are at our customers’ disposal to coordinate the price increase implementation.

Antonio Bellante appointed Managing Director (CFO) of LEIPA Georg Leinfelder GmbH

Antonio Bellante appointed Managing Director (CFO) of LEIPA Georg Leinfelder GmbH  (Company news)

Antonio Bellante (photo) has been appointed Managing Director (CFO) of LEIPA Georg Leinfelder GmbH with effect from 1 April 2020 and is responsible for the Finance and Energy divisions.

The graduate economist started his career in a management consulting company in Munich, from which he left in 2012 after several years as managing director to work for LEIPA Georg Leinfelder GmbH.

Mr. Bellante has already enjoyed many years of successful cooperation with his management colleagues Mr. Peter Probst (CEO) and Mr. Christian Schürmann (COO), which will now be continued in the new responsibility.

LEIPA Georg Leinfelder GmbH is the European market leader and transforms over 1.5 million tons of waste paper back into high-quality paper and packaging solutions every year.
With a turnover of about € 700 million and about 1,100 employees, it is the largest company in the LEIPA group of companies.
(LEIPA Georg Leinfelder GmbH)

UPM withdraws its outlook for 2020, operations performed during Q1 as expected

UPM withdraws its outlook for 2020, operations performed during Q1 as expected  (Company news)

UPM withdraws its 2020 outlook and does not provide a new outlook until further notice. The business operations have performed during the first quarter as expected. However, the fast developing corona virus pandemic represents significant uncertainty for the rest of the year.

UPM’s financial position is strong. UPM has net cash in the balance sheet and high liquidity reserves. Liquidity was further strengthened by the EUR 750 million revolving credit facility which was signed on 17 March 2020.

As indicated in UPM’s financial statements release for 2019, UPM identified the risks related to the COVID-19 virus in China in January. Since then the development of the local epidemic to a worldwide pandemic has been fast. Until now the UPM businesses have not been adversely impacted by the pandemic and the customer demand has been on expected level.

UPM is taking extensive precautions to protect the health and safety of its employees and to ensure business continuity. Despite these efforts it is possible that during an extended pandemic the operation of one or more units or the supply chain and logistics could be disrupted. In these circumstances some units would need to limit operations or be temporarily shut down. Although many UPM products serve essential everyday needs, it is likely that the customer demand for some UPM products would deteriorate due to the slowing world economy. These possible impacts can be caused by both the pandemic itself as well as by the extensive public restrictions to limit the spreading of the virus and may differ in various business areas and operating locations.

In order to prepare for different scenarios, UPM is planning to use shift arrangements, temporary layoffs, or reduced working hours to adjust its operations. Employee consultation processes regarding the plans will proceed in line with local legislation to enable fast decision making, would such decisions be needed. Decisions on measures are subject to the impact of the pandemic on UPM’s operations, and also subject to appropriate consultation process being completed in each country.

Koenig & Bauer publishes its annual report for 2019: On Future Track

Koenig & Bauer publishes its annual report for 2019: On Future Track  (Company news)

-Managing the possible consequences of the corona crisis is currently a top priority, professional project organisation already established
-Good order intake in Q4 2019, although not all expected orders were placed in security printing and metal decorating
-Follow-up orders of strategic importance in digital decor and corrugated printing received after the close of the financial year 2019
-Group revenue in 2019 at the previous year’s level
-EBIT margin of 4.6% below target due to some special items
-Significant cash flow improvement in Q4
-Equity ratio of 34.3%
-Suspension of the dividend payment for 2019 in view of the significantly increased uncertainties caused by the corona crisis
-Impacts of the corona crisis on group performance in 2020 are currently completely open

Photo: The service revenue share increased in the group to 28.2% in 2019

With its strategic focus on the growth market of packaging, Koenig & Bauer is on track to reduce the dependency on politically volatile und lumpy security printing business by increasing revenue and earnings in this area. Through the acquisition of Iberica and Duran, the joint venture with Durst as well as various partnerships in the software field, the portfolio for packaging printing markets was expanded further. Following a testing phase of the CorruCUT sheetfed flexo press for analogue direct printing on corrugated board, the prestigious pilot customer and development partner Klingele accepted the newly developed machine after a demanding factory acceptance test. The machine is now producing in two shifts at the Klingele plant in Delmenhorst near Bremen, Germany. With the CorruFLEX order from Thimm Packaging Systems, Koenig & Bauer received a strategically important follow-up order in corrugated board printing. Interprint ordered the third RotaJET for digital decor printing. After the sixth press sale for digital decor printing and the key order from Tetra Pak for digital full-colour beverage carton printing, the RotaJET digital printing platform is particularly successful in the market. The service initiative launched in 2016 is also bearing fruit. The service revenue share in the Koenig & Bauer group increased significantly from 25.9% in the previous year to 28.2%.

CEO Claus Bolza-Schünemann: “The end markets we address are fundamentally intact with packaging printing showing good structural growth. However, growth requires normal business years. Due to the increasing economic uncertainty, we decided to invest significantly in reducing manufacturing costs and to join forces more strongly within the group. With these measures, we aim to position ourselves to a greater extent independent of the economy and more competitively for the future.”

Dr Andreas Pleßke, the Management Board member responsible for the Performance 2024 programme explains further details: “With the Performance 2024 programme, we are currently targeting reducing costs by over €70m by 2024 with one-off costs of €30m to €40m. We expect the package of measures to be expanded further. The focus of the various projects aimed at optimising group-wide structures and processes is on considerably reducing manufacturing costs to achieve a significant improvement in the earnings situation in the new machine business. This includes design-to-cost projects, purchasing optimisations and some further measures. Bundling tasks as shared services as well as the reduction of holding costs and SG&A expenses are also on the agenda.”

CFO Dr Mathias Dähn adds: “In addition to the cost-cutting projects, the efficiency programme aims to reduce lead times in assembly and accelerate customer acceptance. In addition to shorter delivery times, this will lead to a drop in working capital and a cash flow improvement. Moreover, we work with further activities and a sophisticated controlling of all measures with permanent monitoring on the significant reduction in working capital. We see considerable potential for improvement, particularly in security printing in terms of inventories and receivables through optimised sales management and stepping up export financing. The comprehensive package of measures also aims at a more even distribution of revenue over the year in the Sheetfed segment.”

Business performance in 2019 in the Koenig & Bauer group
Not all expected orders in security printing and metal decorating were awarded in 2019, therefore order intake and order backlog of €1,141.3m and €533.7m respectively were below the figures for the prior year (€1,222m and €610.9m respectively) favoured by the major Egyptian order. With €1,218.5m, group revenue reached the level of the prior year (2018: €1,226m). Earning were burdened by high investments in the growth offensive 2023. While a lack of profit contributions due to delayed or shifted contract closings and higher costs in order processing further reduced earnings, one-time income had a positive effect. On balance, a margin of 4.6% was achieved with EBIT of €56m (2018: €87.4m and 7.1% respectively). At €38.4m, group net profit (previous year: €64m) translates into earnings per share of €2.31 in 2019 (2018: €3.86). In view of the significantly increased uncertainties caused by the corona crisis, the Management Board and Supervisory Board will propose to the annual general meeting to suspend the dividend payment for the financial year 2019 and to carry forward the retained profit generated by the holding company Koenig & Bauer AG to new account. The fundamental policy of distributing 15% to 35% of group net profit remains unaffected.

Business performance in 2019 in the segments
In addition to the strong service business, more orders for large- and medium-format presses led to growth in order intake in the Sheetfed segment of 8.9% to €625.3m (2018: €574.3m). Compared to 2018 (€615.9m), revenue increased by 2.6% to €631.8m. The slightly lower order backlog of €183.4m compared to the previous year (€189.9m) remained at a good level. Due to the product and regional mix and higher order processing costs, EBIT of €19.4m was below the figure from the prior year (€35.4m).

In Digital & Web, order intake of €144.9m was 18% below the prior-year’s figure of €176.6m. In addition to the shrinking web offset service business, lower orders in flexible packaging printing were the main reason for this decline. Revenue increased by 7.4% from €153.3m to €164.6m. On balance, the order backlog decreased from €85.8m to €66.1m at the end of 2019. The EBIT of –€16.5m (previous year: –€10.2m) was burdened by high market-entry and growth-related expenses as well as the negative result in flexible packaging printing.

In the Special segment, order intake of €406.7m was below the prior-year’s figure of €505.1m, which was impacted by a major order in security printing. After €491.5m in the previous year, revenue of €463.9m was achieved. Order backlog at the end of 2019 was €287.3m (31 December 2018: €344.5m). As a result of the lower revenue, product mix and unexpected project expenses for the major security printing order, EBIT amounted to €43.9m after €48.2m in the previous year despite one-time income.

Above-average balance sheet ratios
In addition to the high investment expenditures and the dividend payment, cash flows were influenced by one-time effects such as the significant capital lock-up resulted from the major Egyptian order. Accordingly, cash flows from operating activities of –€7.9m and free cash flow of –€52.3m were below the prior-year figures (€66.3m and –€19.5m respectively). The long-term credit facility syndicated by renowned banks is strengthening the group’s stability. In terms of balance sheet ratios, the Koenig & Bauer group is well-positioned with an equity ratio of 34.3%.

Guidance für 2020
CFO Mathias Dähn: “Even before the outbreak of the coronavirus, global economic conditions were demanding. Given the daily worsening global economic situation due to the coronavirus, the impacts on our company and the achievement of our planning are currently completely open. For 2020, we are planning to achieve a largely stable group revenue compared to the previous year and the prior year's EBIT level without the around €10m in special expenses from the efficiency programme. Managing the possible consequences of the corona crisis is currently a top priority.”
(Koenig & Bauer AG (KBA))

Voith supplies extension of recycled fiber plant for JSC Yarpaper

Voith supplies extension of recycled fiber plant for JSC Yarpaper  (Company news)

-Contract for extension of existing recycled fiber line
-Boost in quantity and improved quality for PM 1
-Highest efficiency and operational reliability in combination with low energy consumption

JSC Yarpaper, specialist in the production of paper and cardboard in Russia, signed the contract with Voith for the extension of existing recycled fiber line. A precedent plant audit was carried out by Voith in order to decide for the best solution in regard to final product quality, operating and investment costs.

Photo: JSC Yarpaper site, Russia.

Boost in quantity and improved quality
The order includes Voith BlueLine stock preparation components such like protector system, HiClean HCL5 EcoMizer cleaner system, thickener EFK and several IntegraScreens for coarse screening, fractionation and fine screening. The extension will boost quantity of recycle fiber (270.000 BDT/day) and improve quality and stability of waste paper for PM 1 which produces testliner and fluting in the range of 90 to 160 gsm. Basic engineering, process pumps and site services are completing the scope of supply of Voith.
The protector system based on InduraHiClean high consistency cleaners is removing heavy contaminants in a two stage system. In the first stage, two cleaners are operating with a continuous reject flow into a sedimentation tank. Discharge of the contaminants is done with a heavy reject trap.

The remaining heavy contaminants are removed by a second stage cleaner, which is operating with an inlet stock consistency of approximately 1,3%. Besides the heavy contaminants also smaller particles such like sand or stones are removed in a safe way. With the protector system subsequent equipment in the process line will be protected from wear resulting in reliable and sustainable operation of the plant.

Highest efficiency and operational reliability in combination with low energy consumption
As low consistency cleaner, the HiClean HCL5 EcoMizer cleaner system is foreseen. The innovative EcoMizer backflushing technology from Voith enables inlet consistencies up to 3% resulting in reduced energy consumption, lower investment costs and reduced fiber losses.
IntegraScreens will be used at different screening and fractionation stages. For the different technological requirements at the various screening tasks and stages Voith will supply the most appropriate type of rotors and screen baskets. This will result in highest efficiency and operational reliability in combination with low energy consumption. For thickening, economical EFK drum folding thickeners will be installed for the long and short fiber fraction. This equipment is characterized by ease of installation based on a reliable and simple function. Stainless steel wires embedded in glass fiber reinforced plastic frames are offering clear advantages towards low maintenance efforts.
(Voith Paper GmbH & Co KG)

Water-resistant eco box challenge plastic packs on building sites

Water-resistant eco box challenge plastic packs on building sites  (Company news)

Arvid Nilsson and BillerudKorsnäs join forces to reduce plastic waste on construction sites with a new innovative, water-resistant box made of super-strong cartonboard. The box packs and dispenses nuts, bolts and screws and is a sustainable alternative to plastic boxes.

- We are constantly reminded of the threats to the environment posed by plastic trash, not least to the oceans and ocean life. We decided not to be part of that problem. Conventional packs of screws, bolts and nuts on construction sites are made of plastic and we set out to do something different: to introduce a durable and environmentally friendly box, says Josefin Nordlöw, Marketing Manager at Arvid Nilsson, a major supplier of fastening elements to the construction industry.

The material used instead of plastic is CrownBoard Craft™, a stiff and exceptionally strong cartonboard made of 100% primary Nordic wood fibre, with a multiple-layer structure. The board is made by BillerudKorsnäs and sourced from responsibly managed forests and produced in state-of-the-art, energy-efficient processes. BillerudKorsnäs is ranked by Dow Jones Sustainability Index as the world’s most sustainable packaging company.

To replace plastic boxes, a priority for Arvid Nilsson was water resistance. The box made of CrownBoard Craft can in fact be left outside in the rain for several weeks without collapsing or letting in water. This is due to the strength of the board, the laminated surface, and the converter’s clever packaging design without gaps at the bottom corners of the box. Tests for water resistance, compression strength and converting properties were carried out by the Carton Solutions team at BillerudKorsnäs.

- CrownBoard Craft is one of our new products, engineered especially to offer exceptional strength in demanding applications. This is a fine example of how quality cartonboard can be a sustainable alternative to conventional plastic packaging, says Clas Dahlin, Packaging Engineer, BillerudKorsnäs.

Why cartonboard from BillerudKorsnäs outperforms plastic:
• It is renewable – more trees are planted than harvested, forests keep growing
• It is recyclable – a wood fibre can be recycled up to 4–6 times
• It is water resistant (with surface treatment)
• It is tolerant to low temperatures
• It is strong and durable – holds heavy and sharp objects
• It is stiff and sturdy – stackable, for space efficient transport
• It is strong – for repeated opening/closing of click lock
(BillerudKorsnäs AB (publ))

Cancellation of the ZELLCHEMING-Expo 2020 due to the Corona Pandemic

Cancellation of the ZELLCHEMING-Expo 2020 due to the Corona Pandemic  (ZELLCHEMING-Expo)

We have been closely monitoring the development of the coronavirus pandemic for many weeks and regularly consulted with the responsible authorities on the possibility of holding the ZELLCHEMING-Expo.

The increasing spread of the virus and the associated planning uncertainty ultimately left us with no choice but to cancel this year's event. The decision was made jointly by Mesago Messe Frankfurt GmbH and the ZELLCHEMING e. V. association.

It is our shared aim to ensure that exhibitors and visitors feel comfortable and safe at our events. Unfortunately, due to the recent developments, it is currently not possible for us to guarantee this and protect the health of all those involved.

We hope that we have acted in your interest with the cancellation and thank you for your support.

ZELLCHEMING-Expo will take place again in 2021.
(Verein der Zellstoff- und Papier-Chemiker und -Ingenieure e.V. - Verein ZELLCHEMING)

Business Continues Despite COVID-19

Business Continues Despite COVID-19  (Company news)

The COVID-19 remains a rapidly developing and unforeseen global health crisis. As a reaction, Nilpeter carefully follows the directions and recommendations of local authorities.

All Nilpeter facilities around the world are still operating with ongoing production, observing local government and health services guidelines. Spare parts handling is fully active in normal opening hours, and Customer Care is performing 24/7 remote support and trouble-shooting from all global Call Centers.

All inquiries for visits in our Technology Centers in Denmark, USA, Thailand, Brazil, and India are welcomed and handled in compliance with local travel regulations.

Our focus is to achieve “business as usual" with the health and well-being of our employees and partners safe and secure under current conditions in all markets.
For inquires please contact your local Nilpeter Partner.
(Nilpeter A/S)

Asahi Photoproducts Announces New AFP™-Leggero Flexographic Plate for ...

Asahi Photoproducts Announces New AFP™-Leggero Flexographic Plate for ...  (Company news)

...Corrugated Board Applications

Asahi Photoproducts, a pioneer in flexographic photopolymer plate development, announced the availability of a brand-new flexographic plate. Asahi AFP™-Leggero CleanPrint plates have been specifically designed for printing on lower quality low-liner corrugated board. This super-soft plate delivers kiss-touch printing without board crush, good ink density with reduced washboard effect, and is ideal for simple brown-box corrugated applications such as fruit trays and single-colour logo type printing.

“With the growing use of corrugated board packaging around the globe, brands and retailers increasingly seek ways to increase quality appearance and protect their goods at the same time,” said Dieter Niederstadt, Asahi Photoproducts’ Technical Marketing Manager. “Asahi’s AFP™-Leggero flexographic printing plates deliver both higher quality and better protection of the product by not damaging the corrugated box flute structure. This is a very new approach inside Asahi, not only to focus on print quality aspects, but also to add value for protection of the packaged goods. Our ‘Just Kiss. No Crush.’ tagline reinforces this quality and protective result delivered by Asahi AFP™-Leggero CleanPrint plates. In addition, as with all of our CleanPrint plates, the Leggero plates ensure less waste, fewer press stops for plate cleaning and consistent exceptional quality throughout the run, the hallmark of Asahi’s CleanPrint flexo plates. We expect packaging converters will be able to achieve up to 15% improvement in Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) when they use these plates for corrugated post-print, delivering a solution in harmony with the environment.”

CleanPrint plates from Asahi Photoproducts have been specifically engineered to transfer all remaining ink to the printed substrate. The AFP™-Leggero CleanPrint effect is achieved because of the soft plate base material. The result is very clean printing. Another important benefit of Asahi’s CleanPrint plates, including AFP™-Leggero, is that they do not need to be cleaned as often as conventional digital solvent plates. Reduction of plate cleaning stops creates a significant productivity improvement as well as more consistent quality.

“With AFP™-Leggero’s soft-touch kiss printing,” Niederstadt added, “not only is the historical problem of board crush and washboarding virtually eliminated due to the softness of this plate, but there is also virtually no dot bridging and good ink laydown. That means that areas of solid colour as well as highlight areas are clean and crisp, as are fine lines and smaller type. This is the ideal plate for corrugated board post-print and will enable packaging converters to broaden the range of applications they can produce for customers, especially those that are not willing to sacrifice quality.”
(Asahi Photoproducts Europe n.v./s.a.)

Canfor Pulp Products Inc. Announces COVID-19 Response Measures

Canfor Pulp Products Inc. Announces COVID-19 Response Measures  (Company news)

Canfor Pulp Products Inc. (TSX:CFX) is announcing actions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting economic uncertainty.“Our top priority is working to protect the safety and well-being of our employees,” said Canfor Pulp Chief Executive Officer Don Kayne (photo). “At the same time, we are responding to volatility in the marketplace and reduced fibre availability, and taking necessary steps to protect the business.”

Health and Safety Response
The health and safety of Canfor Pulp employees and contractors, their families and our communities are our primary focus.

At our offices, facilities and work sites, we have implemented significant measures grounded in the recommendations of public health officials. These include restricting all travel, mandating self-isolation for returned travellers and any employees exhibiting symptoms or exposed to the virus, implementing physical distancing parameters between individuals, increasing cleaning and sanitization in workplaces, and where possible, instructing employees to work remotely to reduce interpersonal contact.

In addition to steps focused on physical health, we recognize that many people are experiencing stress and anxiety related to the COVID-19 virus and public health response. We have expanded our outreach and communication regarding mental health support services available to Canfor Pulp employees and their families.

Operational Response
The Company is postponing the planned extended spring maintenance shut at Northwood Pulp Mill until later this year, and instead will curtail the mill for three weeks during the period the turnaround was originally scheduled to occur. This will result in a reduction of approximately 35,000 tonnes of Northern Bleached Softwood Kraft pulp production.

In addition, Canfor Pulp is reducing its planned capital expenditures for 2020 by $15 million to $25 million, representing a $78 million decrease from 2019 capital expenditures. This reduction will be realized through the deferral of planned projects and suspension of in-progress initiatives that can be paused without significant impact.

Given the rapidly evolving COVID-19 situation, Canfor Pulp is closely monitoring potential staffing shortages, customer demand and volatility in the financial markets. There is the potential that further adjustments to operating plans may be required as a result.
(Canfor Pulp Limited)

Collection and recycling of used paper more important than ever in times of health crisis

Collection and recycling of used paper more important than ever in times of health crisis  (Company news)

The Covid-19 sanitary crisis is unprecedented. The industry associations supporting the European Paper Recycling Council (EPRC) are saddened to see that so many people have lost their lives due to the pandemic. The lockdown measures taken to slow down contamination are deeply impacting our lives as well as business operations.

The paper value chain committed to keep its operations to deliver all essential paper products, such as hygiene products, packaging for food or pharmaceuticals while taking all necessary measures to protect workers, suppliers and customers.

The EPRC asks all authorities to enable crucial industries such as paper to continue production and to facilitate transport and cross border shipments for the supply of these goods. “In these critical times, it is more than ever important to keep the supply for our industry running, in order to secure packaging for essential products” said Angelika Christ, chairwoman of the EPRC.

The new circular economy action plan recently published by the European Commission recognizes separate collection as a prerequisite for the circular economy. With a recycling rate of 71,9% and even 84,6% in packaging, the paper and board value chain depends on paper for recycling.

Separate collection of paper for recycling from households and supermarkets, but also its sorting and transport to paper mills are an essential part of this supply chain.

Recently, individual cities in some Member States have announced they might have to reduce separate collections or close sorting centers due to the current crisis.

People’s health must be the first priority along with supplying our society with essential goods for everyday life.
(EPRC The European Paper Recycling Council)

Willamette Falls Paper Company Earns Certification to SFI Chain-of-Custody Standard

Willamette Falls Paper Company Earns Certification to SFI Chain-of-Custody Standard  (Company news)

Willamette Falls Paper Company is pleased to announce that it has added Sustainable Forestry Initiative® (SFI) chain of custody certification (SFI-01924) to its full line of paper products.

Growing numbers of consumers want assurance that their buying decisions represent a sound environmental choice. They are asking for proof that wood, paper and packaging products are made with raw materials from certified forest content, certified sourcing or recycled content. SFI's Chain-of-Custody Standard and associated labels deliver a reliable and credible mechanism so businesses can provide this assurance to customers.

By becoming SFI certified, Willamette Falls Paper Company is one step closer to achieving its sustainability goals.

"Willamette Falls Paper is committed to offering a full range of sustainable paper products," states Brian Konen, CEO of Willamette Falls Paper Company. "Providing customers with certification options allows them to choose which system works best for their projects."

The SFI 2015-2019 Chain-of-Custody Standard is an accounting system that tracks forest fiber content (certified forest content, certified sourcing and recycled content) through production and manufacturing to the end product. Companies can use chain-of-custody certification to track and communicate forest fiber content using one of three optional approaches for chain-of-custody: physical separation, average percentage and the volume credit method. To be certified, companies must be audited by an independent third party to the SFI 2015-2019 Chain-of-Custody Standard.

"By choosing to certify to the SFI Chain-of-Custody Standard, Willamette Falls Paper Company is telling forest managers it values their commitment to sustainable forest management, and it is telling its customers they can be part of the solution," said Kathy Abusow, President and CEO of SFI Inc.
(Willamette Falls Paper Company)

ABB to upgrade paper machine drives, motors and electrical control systems at WestRock mill...

ABB to upgrade paper machine drives, motors and electrical control systems at WestRock mill...  (Company news)

... in Washington, USA

WestRock Company—a leading provider of differentiated paper and packaging solutions—has selected ABB to replace its dry end drive system. This includes upgrades to its PM12 paper machine drives, motors and the installation of the ABB Ability™ System 800xA control system (photo) at its mill in Longview, Washington, USA. Installation and commissioning of the project is planned for completion by year-end 2020.

“ABB was chosen for this project based on the customer’s positive experience with our drives systems at its Longview mill and other WestRock sites,” said Steve St. Jarre, Head of Business Development, Pulp and Paper, Process Industries, ABB. “We were able to provide a cost-effective, phased approach to this upgrade project. We set up a new 800xA system to control both existing and new drives. The existing drives can be replaced as needed and use the same control platform as the mill evolves.”

The new ABB drive system will have a smaller footprint and require minimal parts. The modular drives are extremely compact, but with all of the parts easily accessible. This not only reduces interruption to production for planned and unplanned maintenance, but also reduces spare part inventories.

“With our aim of improving reliability and productivity, without the need for extensive downtime during installation, ABB offered a practical approach to achieve our goals,” said Rick Siragusa, Project Manager at WestRock. “We look forward to moving forward with the replacement.”

technotrans comfortably achieves 2019 forecast

technotrans comfortably achieves 2019 forecast  (Company news)

Revenue target exceeded, EBIT at upper end of forecast/Dividend proposal represents EUR 0.44 per share/Board of Management launches strategic reorientation

Thanks to a strong fourth quarter, technotrans exceeded its most recent revenue target for the 2019 financial year despite non-recurring effects. Consolidated revenue showed a moderate decline of 3.9 percent on the previous year, to EUR 207.9 million. Notwithstanding the muted economy and exceptional charges, the Group achieved a positive result (EBIT) of EUR 8.3 million, at the upper end of the forecast range; this represents half the prior-year figure. The Board of Management and Supervisory Board propose a dividend of EUR 0.44 per share for the past financial year. Under the slogan of “Shaping the future through development!” the Board of Management is launching a Group-wide strategic reorientation.

“Cyclically related downturns in revenue and unexpected productivity restrictions at our Group company gwk following the ERP changeover were behind the marked downturn in revenue and earnings. This obliged us to adjust our forecast on two occasions. Thanks to the healthy volume of deals closed in the final quarter, we ultimately exceeded the revenue target and achieved EBIT at the top end of our expectations. Nevertheless, we are not satisfied as a whole with the business performance,” remarked Dirk Engel, Chief Executive Officer of technotrans SE, at the presentation of the audited figures for 2019.

The 2019 financial year saw the technotrans Group achieve consolidated revenue of EUR 207.9 million and a consolidated operating result (EBIT) of EUR 8.3 million. These figures meant the Group improved on the adjusted revenue forecast of EUR 205 million and achieved EBIT at the top end of the expected range of EUR 7.6 to EUR 8.4 million.

Compared with the previous year, revenue was down 3.9 percent. EBIT was halved, in particular as a result of negative non-recurring effects. The EBIT margin correspondingly fell from 8.0 to 4.0 percent. Net income of EUR 6.1 million was around 51 percent down on the prior-year figure.
“At the end of the year we had to absorb unexpected charges amounting to EUR 1.4 million. Disregarding these effects, the EBIT margin for the Group would have been 4.7 percent,” explained Engel.

The Technology segment accounted for EUR 148.4 million of consolidated revenue. This represents a share of 71 percent. Compared with a result for the segment of EUR 8.1 million in the previous year, the 2019 financial year brought a merely balanced result. The Services segment achieved revenue of EUR 59.5 million, almost on a par with the previous year. Its sub-segment of Technical Documentation equally made a positive contribution. The segment’s lower cyclical dependency is reflected in its EBIT figure of EUR 8.3 million.

Growth markets defy economic weakness
In the price-sensitive, highly competitive markets for lasers and machine tools, technotrans maintained its revenue at the prior-year level thanks to market share gains. However the printing industry faced adverse conditions. The muted economic situation and ongoing consolidation in end customer markets led to a slight drop in revenue. Developments in the plastics processing industry weighed more heavily on the figures. Over the year, the structurally related declines in the market for auto-related injection moulding technology were largely made good by the focus on other technologies and application areas as well as the positive revenue contribution of Reisner Cooling Solutions GmbH. However this did not suffice to compensate for the economic impact of the unscheduled delays to the ERP rollout at gwk Gesellschaft Wärme Kältetechnik mbH. The consequence was a clear fall in revenue coupled with a one-off negative profit contribution by this business area. There was scant evidence of the ailing economy in the growth markets. This area achieved double-digit growth rates and now brings in 12 percent of consolidated revenue. Service business, too, performed satisfactorily in the 2019 financial year.

Solid economic conditions
The balance sheet structure of the technotrans Group remains orderly. The balance sheet total grew by 7.3 percent as a result of investment spending. At EUR 75.1 million, equity was unchanged from the previous year. The equity share came to 51.4 percent. Net debt rose by EUR 4.8 million to EUR 24.2 million as a result of the raising of low-interest, long-term loans as well as the first-time recognition of lease liabilities in accordance with IFRS 16.

Net cash from operating activities amounting to EUR 16.8 million was up EUR 10.5 million on the previous year. This change reflected positive working capital effects and lower tax payments. After deduction of the cash outflows for investing activities, there remained a comfortably positive free cash flow of EUR 7.6 million (previous year: EUR -3.8 million).
The financial position is correspondingly orderly with a comfortable gearing ratio of 1.5 (net debt/EBITDA).

Strategic reorientation
technotrans will again need to hold its ground in a challenging environment in the 2020 financial year. To put the Group on an even stronger footing over the next five years, the Board of Management has launched a strategic reorientation process under the slogan of “Shaping the future through development!”. This process includes for example adopting an industry emphasis for sales, expanding the skills profiles of each location, unlocking extra synergies and building on the Group’s development and innovative capability. The Board of Management expects that the package of measures will already deliver a positive earnings effect in the middle single-digit millions by the 2021 financial year.

Leading forecasting institutes expect slower global economic growth in 2020. The Board of Management believes technotrans will continue to face a challenging environment.
It expects the growth markets to show a continuing positive trend. Conversely it does not anticipate any economic impetus in the remaining markets and anticipates a muted to slightly downward business development. The forecast based on these expectations envisages consolidated revenue in the range of EUR 204-214 million and a consolidated operating result (EBIT) of between EUR 6.0 and EUR 10.7 million. This already includes the costs of the structural reorientation. Possible consequences of the coronavirus epidemic are not factored in. In view of current economic forecasts, the Board of Management approaches the new financial year with caution. If the capability and potential of the technotrans Group are anything to go by, it can be optimistic about the future and stands by its medium-term targets of consolidated revenue in the order of EUR 250-300 million and a double-digit EBIT margin.

The Board of Management and Supervisory Board will again propose to the Annual General Meeting on May 20, 2020 that half of the consolidated net profit be distributed. This represents a dividend of EUR 0.44 per share.
(technotrans SE)

PMP New Engineering Office in Łódź, Poland, has been launched!

PMP New Engineering Office in Łódź, Poland, has been launched!  (Company news)

To ensure continuous development of technology, which is a distinguishing feature of PMP products, in October 2019, PMP (Paper Machinery Producer) launched a new engineering office in Łódź, Poland. A new entity is dedicated mainly to support tissue business. Sebastian Grabowski has been nominated as Director of Design and Application Office.

Łódź is a big city, located in central Poland. It is a large, rapidly growing industrial and technological hub, also named as engineering and scientific center of papermaking, as Politechnika Łódzka (University of Technology in Łódź) educates students in papermaking and polygraphy.

The employment target of the new office is 40 engineers – experienced experts as well as young professionals, also from outside of the paper industry. Such a blend ensures a fresh point of view and creates a proper synergy effect so that it will be possible to develop innovative solutions, which will guarantee the competitive advantage both for PMP and customers.

Most activities of the new branch will be focused on technology development in tissue sector of PMP. Moreover, there is a project & application team responsible for technical management and projects leadership, starting from sales support to full execution of process in a broad sense.

“An opening of the new office in Łódź is a significant step in PMP development process that has been going for years. It will strengthen a leadership position of PMP as well as contribute to a perception of PMP as the preferred leading supplier of solutions for the Paper Industry” –Sebastian Grabowski said, Director of the Design and Application Office.
(PMPoland S.A.)

Valmet to supply a hard nip sizer to Asia Paper Manufacturing in the Republic of Korea

Valmet to supply a hard nip sizer to Asia Paper Manufacturing in the Republic of Korea  (Company news)

Valmet will supply a new sizing section with a hard nip sizer to Asia Paper Manufacturing at Sihwa Mill in the Republic of Korea. The main target for the rebuild of paper machine PM 1 is to increase strength properties of produced container and gypsum board grades. The start-up of the rebuilt paper machine is scheduled for the second half of 2021.

Photo: OptiSizer Hard sizer

The order is included in Valmet's orders received of the first quarter 2020. The value of the order will not be disclosed. The total value of an order of this type is typically around EUR 5-10 million.

“Valmet was able to offer technical advantages to produce high quality gypsum and testliner board grades with low raw material cost. We were able to get proof for those targets as we run pilot trials at Valmet’s Paper Technology Center in Finland. We also visited a reference mill, which has an OptiSizer Hard sizer. It is important to have a supplier who we can trust and who has a good reputation,” says Kyoung-Taek Lee, Vice Mill Manager of Asia Paper.

“We came up with a solution where the customer is able to reduce basic weight without sacrificing strength properties. Asia Paper was very interested in a non-contact starch application method for recycled board because it reduces the wear of consumables, and thus improves time efficiency of the machine. There is no competing technology at the moment,” says Kwon Tae-Yeon, Sales Manager, Valmet.

Technical details of the delivery
Valmet's delivery will include an OptiSizer Hard sizer with hard nip and spray application, a TurnFloat web turning device, surface size preparation and supply systems, Valmet DNA machine control and Valmet IQ quality control systems.

Compared to conventional sizer, OptiSizer Hard has a pair of hard covered nip rolls. Starch is sprayed on the nip rolls. In addition to increased surface strength, OptiSizer Hard improves also the internal strength values of produced board. Starch is dosed in the roll nip with higher nip pressure, which increases the density of fibers. This leads into better strength properties.

“Asia Paper is expecting a lot of product quality improvement based on Valmet’s new technology and wishes to continue good cooperation with Valmet for further development,” says Dong-Kyu Kim, Production Manager of Asia Paper.

The 5,900-mm-wide (wire) PM 1 produces testliner and gypsum board grades with a basis weight range of 80–300 g/m2. The design speed of the new parts will be 850 m/min. The daily design capacity will be approximately 1,100 tonnes depending on the produced grade.
(Valmet Corporation)

Syntegon Technology brings interpack booth to customers' desks

Syntegon Technology brings interpack booth to customers' desks  (Company news)

-After interpack is postponed, Syntegon Technology launches virtual booth
-Digital presentation of the latest processing and packaging technology and the new Syntegon Technology product design
-Syntegon Technology experts provide information about intelligent and sustainable technologies

Photo: Syntegon Technology launches its interpack booth online (“Picture: Syntegon”)

Following the announcement by Messe Duesseldorf that interpack 2020, which was scheduled for May, will be postponed to next year, Syntegon Technology will present its latest processing and packaging technology on a virtual exhibition booth from 7 to 13 May 2020. The online presence will cover digital product presentations and individual contact opportunities with the experts from Syntegon Technology, who will inform both customers and media representatives about the company’s intelligent and sustainable solutions.

On this occasion, Dr. Michael Grosse, CEO of Syntegon Technology, says: “We regret the postponement of interpack, but consider this to be the right decision under the given circumstances. As a reliable partner for processing and packaging technology, we of course have an alternative plan: our customers can look forward to our virtual exhibition booth. Here, they will soon be able to learn all about our latest technologies, get to know our new product design and experience the new Syntegon brand.”
(Syntegon Technology GmbH)

Roland DG showcases water-based ink innovation with new EJ-640 DECO printer

Roland DG showcases water-based ink innovation with new EJ-640 DECO printer  (Company news)

Roland DG EMEA introduces the new EJ-640 DECO printer, using ecological water-based ink, designed for digitally printing stunning interior décor applications.

Eco-friendly and economical
Developed specifically to meet the demands of the thriving interior décor market, the new EJ-640 DECO can produce customised wallpaper, lampshades, blinds, posters, exhibition graphics, outdoor promotions* and so much more - supplying the ever-growing consumer appetite for eco-friendly products and designs that stand out from the crowd.

“With low production costs and impressive versatility, the EJ-640 DECO delivers exceptional quality and durable print on a range of materials. It’s the printer the industry has been waiting for." says Paul Willems, Director of Business Development and Product Management at Roland DG EMEA.
Vibrant, versatile applications

The EJ-640 DECO combines the creativity of the design world with the technical possibilities offered by wide-format printing.

Rachael Taylor, surface pattern designer, creative stylist and co-founder of Make it in Design, comments: "The EJ-640 DECO printer is perfect for bespoke wallpapers – a great way to showcase my own designs. Roland DG has really understood what designers and consumers want from décor. I especially love the more natural look of the prints alongside its environmentally friendly credentials. I can't wait to see more of my designs printed on the EJ-640 DECO."

The high-density water-based inks are compatible with a wide range of media including coated, uncoated, PVC free and even standard wallpaper from sustainable sources. EJ-640 DECO inks deliver bold, light-fast and washable prints with the highest AgBB rating of A+ for indoor air quality. The fast-drying inks require no outgassing to allow same-day print, finish and supply. Along with durable printheads, low temperature drying and reduced ink costs of up to 50% compared to similar printer systems, the EJ-640 DECO is the only choice for customers serious about décor.
(Roland DG (UK) Ltd)

Stora Enso launches sustainable premium packaging for pellets

Stora Enso launches sustainable premium packaging for pellets  (Company news)

Product development based on design and usability: households benefit from handy and renewable pellet boxes by Stora Enso. A product that is sustainable through and through.

Stora Enso has taken another step forward by replacing plastic packaging with an eco-friendly solution and launching a new cardboard packaging box designed for pellets. With this new packaging, Stora Enso plays a pioneering role in the pellets industry and places sustainability, innovation and customer orientation at the centre of its developments.

This goes hand in hand with the company’s vision of creating a sustainable future by using renewable materials. The new premium box format offers clear advantages for households when it comes to transporting and storing the pellets. In addition, cardboard is fully recyclable, in contrast to the market standard plastic bag solution. The focus entry market will be Italy, being the largest pellet heating market in Europe.

Product development: sustainability, innovation & customer orientation take centre stage
Until now, the offer to customers has been limited to pellets sold in 15 kg plastic bags, 500 kg bags and in bulk. “Market tests have shown the exact pain points of pellet stove users. With the insights gained, we have been able to develop a completely new product that meets all the practical needs of households. The pellet box is now available in the smaller size of 12 kg – easier to carry home from the shop, easier to pour into the stove and easier to store at home,” explains Marion LeRoy-Loikala, Pellets Product Manager for Stora Enso. “The new product is therefore sustainable through and through - our renewable heating fuel is now also supplied in packaging that can be reused or simply recycled after use.”

The new product is also a good example of what cross-divisional collaboration can achieve within a global company. In the Packaging Solutions Division, specialists were involved in designing and supplying the new packaging materials for the Wood Products Division, while the fresh, high-quality graphic design of the box was developed by the Finnish branding & design agency Aune Creative.

Two-phase product launch: Italy as key target market
After an extensive pilot testing phase at the Estonian Näpi sawmill, the launch will focus on the Italian market, which is the largest European market for pellets for private households. Further customer feedback will be collected over the next one to two years, after which the product will gradually become available on other European markets as well.

“Our main objectives are to increase our brand awareness and market share in Italy and other relevant household markets, while diversifying our customer base and contributing to the reduction of overall plastics consumption”, says Joachim Colliander, Vice President and Business Director of Stora Enso’s Pellets Business Line. “The European demand for heating pellets as a renewable and sustainable source of energy is forecast to increase steadily by 5 % CAGR in the coming years.” (2018-2023 forecast period)

Why start in Italy? Italy is the leading European country in terms of recycling, with a rate of 77 % of all waste recycled*. 86 % of the Italians are motivated to adopt a sustainable lifestyle in order to preserve the planet and its resources. When it comes to renewable energy sources and low energy consumption, the number is even higher – this is important for 96 % of Italians. Stora Enso is therefore launching its new premium pellet box in a market that will appreciate the material and the sustainability aspect of the packaging equally.
(Stora Enso Oyj)

Segezha Packaging starts the warehouse logistic optimization

Segezha Packaging starts the warehouse logistic optimization  (Company news)

Segezha Packaging, which consolidates the European paper packaging production facilities of Segezha Group (part of Sistema JSFC) continues the implementation of the digital industrial technologies into the production processes.

As a part of this transformation process, a special SAP module for warehouse management was integrated at Segezha Packaging production plants in Germany and Denmark. The development and implementation was successfully completed by Serkem company (Germany).

The new module allows to perform every warehouse operation, including arrival of raw materials, processing along the technological chain, storage and shipment, via any operator mobile device (tablet PC or smartphone) and place the corresponding information in the general database. In addition, the integration of the barcode scanners will significantly facilitate the information workflow including shipments status within the facility.

“At both our production facilities in Germany and Denmark warehousing operations have been fully integrated with SAP, and will now be performed quickly and transparently,” said Michael Amann, Manager for Development and Support of Business Systems at Segezha Packaging. “A simple and intuitive operation algorithm will not require any special knowledge of the SAP platform. The probability of any mistakes has been reduced to a minimum, because less data will be entered manually.”
(Segezha Packaging GmbH)

Kruger Announces the Temporary Shutdown of Its Brompton Mill for an Indefinite Period of Time

Kruger Announces the Temporary Shutdown of Its Brompton Mill for an Indefinite Period of Time  (Company news)

Kruger Specialty Papers announced the temporary shutdown of its Brompton facility (photo), effective Friday, April 3, for an indefinite period of time. The Company came to this difficult decision due to unfavorable market conditions that deteriorated very rapidly with the COVID-19 outbreak, affecting the Mill’s operations and financial performance

The production of both newsprint and specialty papers for the flexible packaging industry will be curtailed, and the facility’s biomass cogeneration plant will also be shutdown.

The Brompton Mill shutdown will affect 272 employees.
(Kruger Publication Papers Inc.)

Pro Carton Press Statement

Pro Carton Press Statement  (Company news)

Following calls from the packaging industry, the European Commission has confirmed that the transportation of packaging materials, including paper-based cartons and cartonboard, for essential industries such as food and pharmaceuticals, will be able to use its ‘green lanes’ and has updated its ‘Guidelines for Border Management’ to reflect the recommendation.

Short term demand for cartonboard has increased by around 30% as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, with particular spikes in demand for production of packaging for dry foods, confectionery, frozen food and pharmaceuticals.

To secure the supply chain during the crisis hauliers need to be able to transport raw materials to packaging converters or finished packaging manufacturers working in the pharmaceutical and food sectors without unnecessary delay.

The European Commission agreed with packaging associations across Europe that ‘green lanes’ should remain open for packaging delivery. They are now urging EU countries to allow vehicles to transport goods between countries via these fast-track lanes, which should take no longer than 15 minutes to pass through, including checks and health screenings of drivers.

The ‘Guidelines for Border Management’ also state that ‘Member States should act immediately to temporarily suspend all types of road access restrictions in place in their territory’ and ‘transport workers, irrespective of their nationality and place of residence, should be allowed to cross internal borders’.

To support the European Commission’s move, ECMA, the European Carton Makers Association and Pro Carton, the European Association of Carton and Cartonboard manufacturers, have issued a document in 11 languages for hauliers to display when transporting printed cartons and cartonboard.
(Pro Carton)

International Pulp Week 2020 cancelled

International Pulp Week 2020 cancelled  (Company news)

Given the uncertainty facing a large number of events around the world due to the progression of COVID-19, International Pulp Week 2020 has unfortunately been cancelled.

We have been closely monitoring the development of COVID-19 and its global impacts, which has resulted in travel restrictions, hotel shuts and the prohibition of larger gatherings worldwide. The Fairmont Hotel in Vancouver is currently shut for an 8 week period and they could offer no guarantee that the hotel would be operational come June 14th. We have come to the conclusion that it is in the best interest of everybody involved to cancel the conference for 2020.

We are very disappointed to miss out on the opportunity to connect with our industry colleagues and partners this year and would like to thank all our speakers, sponsors, attendees, and event partners who have supported the event so far – we really appreciate it.

The Fairmont Hotel has agreed to cancel all rooms under our room block for the event. If you have booked accomodation elsewhere, you will need to cancel your rooms separately.

More information on the next steps regarding cancellations and refunds will go out in the next days to our registered attendees, sponsors and partners.

We look forward to reconnecting at International Pulp Week 2021!
(Pulp and Paper Products Council)

Third RotaJET for decor printer - Interprint invests in yet another digital press from ...

Third RotaJET for decor printer - Interprint invests in yet another digital press from ...  (Company news)

...Koenig & Bauer

-Third RotaJET for Interprint
-Web width up to 225 cm
-Company fully committed to digital print
-Continuation of a successful investment strategy

Interprint GmbH from Arnsberg, Germany, since October 2019 a member of the Toppan Group, is continuing its successful investment strategy in digital print. The company recently ordered yet another RotaJET digital web press from Koenig & Bauer. The new press is scheduled to enter production in the first half of 2021. With the RotaJET 225, Interprint will be able to process web widths up to 225 cm.

“We are convinced that the future belongs to digital. And with the digital printing technology offered by Koenig & Bauer, we can both accelerate product development and extend our design flexibility. For our customers, variable job volumes, longer repeat lengths and previously impossible colour combinations are becoming ever more important,” says Robert Bierfreund, managing director of Interprint GmbH.

Barely half a year has passed since Interprint last decided to expand its digital printing capacities with the installation of a second RotaJET, and now the company is back once more with the order for its third industrial digital printing press from Koenig & Bauer.

Koenig & Bauer executive board member Christoph Müller: “We view it as a sign of particular appreciation for our work when Koenig & Bauer is not only successful with new customers for its digital presses, but also convinces companies like Interprint, the pioneer of industrial single-pass inkjet printing in the decor industry, to return for a further RotaJET investment.”

More than 15 industrial single-pass digital presses from Koenig & Bauer (including HP PageWide T1190 and T1100 models), with web widths up to 2.8 m and production speeds up to 305 m/min, are currently already in use or else sold and awaiting installation.
(Koenig & Bauer AG (KBA))

Case Study: How 'Moisture Gates' improve paper quality, transparency and yield

Case Study: How 'Moisture Gates' improve paper quality, transparency and yield  (Company news)

Our Rouen and Dueñas Paper Mills have successfully implemented a new Microwave Measurement System, enabling us to efficiently and accurately measure moisture content in Paper for Recycling (PfR) arriving at our mills.

DS Smith is Europe’s largest cardboard and paper recycler, so we understand the opportunity for packaging to play a powerful role in a changing world. This is why our purpose is Redefining Packaging for a Changing World. We think differently, innovate and put sustainability at heart, developing strategies to increase recycling, reduce waste and understand our customer and supplier needs.

Following positive results in France and Spain, we are beginning the pan-European rollout of the new quality control system. It will allow us to accurately measure moisture content in PfR, improve the quality of raw materials and increase transparency with DS Smith suppliers to ensure fair market price.

The challenge: measuring moisture content in PfR
Accurately measuring the moisture content in a truckload of paper has always been challenging. Existing methods, such as moisture meter plates, ovens and other manually operated systems only measure a ‘spot’ or a small percentage of the overall volume. The same load, measured by these methods, often produces conflicting moisture readings. In addition, paper yield can vary by as much as 6% between summer and winter as a result of moisture content variation alone.

Another factor is overcoming the frustrations felt by some suppliers that are caused by unreliable data and old technology. When high moisture content is detected in bales, suppliers understandably seek reliable, transparent data, to support the credit that DS Smith offers.

DS Smith has met challenges like this before. In our Customer Surveys, suppliers have requested more data-driven insight and auditable solutions to help them improve their quality and increase their financial returns. In response in 2019, DS Smith introduced Near Infrared Technology (NIR) to more accurately measure fibre quality and identify contaminants such as metal and plastic. Now, an equally accurate and transparent solution is required to measure moisture content.

Moisture Gates: The measurement solution to moisture measurement in the paper industry
All trucks arriving at our mills pass through a scanner called a ‘Moisture Gate’ which allows us to accurately identify the average moisture content of the load, not just the surface area of the delivery. Around 75% of the truckload is scanned within 30 seconds and, in less than one minute, a reading for the entire truck is calculated, recorded, and the truck is free to proceed. As the process is so efficient, vehicles aren’t delayed at the mill. ­

What are the benefits?
At DS Smith, quality is at the heart of our operations and we are continually seeking ways to keep PfR in the supply cycle as long as possible. Through driving innovation, we have found a way to increase the quality of raw materials entering our mills and cut waste using no more material than necessary by improving our yield.

Our suppliers now have transparency, access to accurate data, and are paid a fair market price for their EN643 specified material. As Moisture Gates involve no moving parts, our suppliers’ drivers need no additional training.

To further strengthen our supplier relationships, our new system enables us to share moisture content data in an easy-to-read format and via weekly reports. This data can help suppliers to identify and address any issues and help them advise customers whose waste management processes may need to be adjusted to meet targets.
(DS Smith Rouen Mill)

UPM signs a EUR 750 million revolving credit facility with a margin tied to ...

UPM signs a EUR 750 million revolving credit facility with a margin tied to ...  (Company news)

...long-term biodiversity and climate targets

UPM is one of the first companies to link the pricing mechanism of a syndicated revolving credit facility (RCF) to both biodiversity and climate targets. The margin of the RCF is tied to two key performance indicators (KPIs):
-achievement of a net positive impact on biodiversity in the company’s own forests in Finland
-a 65% reduction of CO2 emissions from fuels and purchased electricity by 2030 from 2015 levels, in line with UPM’s commitment to UN Business Ambition for 1.5°C

“Connecting UPM’s sustainability performance to our financing demonstrates the importance of responsible business practises to our long-term value creation. Sustainable forest management plays an important role in mitigating climate change, as it ensures material long-term CO2 sequestration and improves adaptation to global warming. Enhancing biodiversity is not only about preserving forests, but is also a crucial element in sustainable industrial use, taking into account a wide range of flora and fauna. UPM is committed to achieving a net positive impact on biodiversity and we have developed indicators and methods to monitor it,” says Tapio Korpeinen, CFO, UPM.

BNP Paribas acted as a sustainability coordinator for the facility. “Promoting biodiversity through finance is an essential lever in tackling the climate crisis. As a bank committed to innovation towards the transition, we are proud to support UPM in their strategy to accelerate sustainable forest management through finance. This transaction highlights the positive role of sustainable finance to link to progressive decarbonisation targets, which can jointly protect ecosystems,” says Marjo Liukkonen Lazaro, Head of BNP Paribas Finland.

The EUR 750 million credit facility is the first step in building the funding base for UPM's significant transformation projects. The five-year facility has two one-year-extension options.

BNP Paribas, Handelsbanken and Nordea acted as Coordinating Mandated Lead Arrangers and Bookrunners for the facility and Citi, Commerzbank AG, Crédit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank, Danske Bank A/S, DBS Bank Ltd., London Branch, DNB Bank ASA, HSBC France, J.P. Morgan Securities plc, OP Corporate Bank plc, Santander, SEB and Swedbank AB acted as Mandated Lead Arranger and Bookrunners.

Norske Skog: Operational update

Norske Skog: Operational update  (Company news)

Norske Skog ASA closely monitors the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak and continuously implements new measures to reduce the risk for employees and to ensure continuity of operations. Each country has imposed different measures in connection to the outbreak of the coronavirus. Norske Skog will adhere to the individual recommendations and measures taken by the different national authorities.

Sven Ombudstvedt (photo), CEO of Norske Skog, comments: “Our top priority is to ensure the health and safety for our employees. We are now registering some effects on our operations because of lower economic activity and restrictive measures taken by national authorities due to the coronavirus. We will do our utmost to secure raw material supply and maintain production to secure customer deliveries. We continue to monitor the situation day-to-day and will over the coming weeks communicate closely with suppliers, customers, other stakeholders and the financial market."

Under the current circumstances, Norske Skog will do the utmost to maintain the continuity of business operations. The challenge in the forthcoming weeks will be to secure both in- and outbound logistics of raw materials and finished goods under the current cross border transportation restrictions. However, Norske Skog is confident that we will meet customer needs and expectations also in this situation.
Norske Skog has and will closely monitor the development of the coronavirus, and corresponding effects on our supply chains and markets. As earlier communicated, Norske Skog will adjust operational activity to market response, and will therefore implement the following necessary actions as a result of the corona virus situation:

-In France, the Golbey mill has temporary ceased production at one paper machine (PM2) due to one confirmed case of coronavirus at the PM2 line, which required a 14 day quarantine for co-workers. The PM2 is planned to start production again on 1 April. The scarce availability of recovered paper in Central Europe may cause further business interruptions.
-In Norway, Saugbrugs will cease production on one paper machine due to negative market developments as a result of the corona virus restrictions. As a result of this, there will be given notice of temporary layoffs. In addition, administrative personnel at headquarters has been temporarily laid off as a result of the corona situation. The Skogn mill will delay temporary layoffs as earlier announced.
-In Australasia, the production at the Tasman mill in New-Zealand has been deemed an essential industry by the national government for a limited period of 9 days production, out of the current period of four weeks with lock down restrictions. Nature’s Flame pellets production has been deemed essential for domestic, industrial and public heating. However, there may be uncertainty about supplies of raw materials as local saw mills ceased their operations. We are currently rearranging our supply chain in the entire Australasian region to reflect the situation.

In general, the corona situation will not affect our strategy and the on-going tasks to improve the core business, convert certain of the group’s paper machines and diversify the business within bioenergy, fibre and biochemicals.
(Norske Skogindustrier ASA)

Valmet and Orora's Botany Mill renew the Mill Maintenance Outsourcing agreement in Australia

Valmet and Orora's Botany Mill renew the Mill Maintenance Outsourcing agreement in Australia  (Company news)

Valmet and Orora Limited have signed a multi-year Mill Maintenance Outsourcing (MMO) agreement to continue taking care of the site maintenance of Orora’s Botany B9 board making line in New South Wales, Australia.

In addition to the MMO agreement, Valmet and Orora have signed a Performance Agreement targeting clear and systematic production and maintenance improvements. Both agreements include Valmet Industrial Internet (VII) solutions to provide a live link between customer and Valmet experts for process optimization. The value of the agreements will not be disclosed. The renewed MMO agreement will be effective as of July 1, 2020.

“Valmet is one of our key performance development partners, supporting B9’s operation and improvement since the start up in 2012. We have worked collaboratively since then with progressive improvements and achievements in key areas such as productivity and cost reduction. This is the second renewal of our MMO and Performance Agreements and we look forward to further success in our cooperation with Valmet. Our objective is to ensure the B9 facility becomes an industry benchmark in all areas of efficiency and cost,” says Craig Nicol, General Manager Operations, Botany Mill.

“We are fully engaged and integrated into the B9 Operations team and have been working side by side to deliver progressive development since the machine’s start-up. The renewal of the MMO agreement is the best acknowledgement for the achievements over the years together with Orora. We’re delighted to be able to share the journey forward with the B9 team and to help continuously optimize the performance of our teams and our equipment and processes,” says Jaegen Peet, Director, Australia and New Zealand region, Valmet.

The long-term relationship further strengthened by Performance Agreement

Valmet has previously supplied the complete B9 containerboard line to Orora, started up in 2012. After the start-up, Valmet took full responsibility of the establishment of maintenance operations, site maintenance services including utilities and management of specific improvement projects.

The ongoing Performance Agreement was renewed for a second time in 2019 with targets and objectives focused on cost outperformance and targeted machine efficiency improvements. The results of the collaboration have been positive considering the previous annual production record was exceeded in 2019 and a new 24-hour production record was set in mid-January 2020.

The Performance Agreement includes access to the Valmet Customer Portal, that will provide an interface for both parties to easily and quickly access visualized data and VII solutions. Although Valmet’s remote services have been utilized since the machine’s start-up, the Valmet Performance Center will now offer the customer a new channel to reach Valmet’s specialists for remote support and case studies. The new agreement also includes comprehensive and expanded automation services.
(Valmet Corporation)

Roland DG announces launch of VS-300iS GO

Roland DG announces launch of VS-300iS GO  (Company news)

Experience the new Roland VS-300iS-GO, a collaboration between two leaders in their respective areas of expertise, Roland DG EMEA and ink manufacturer Marabu GmbH & Co. KG. A purpose-built digital flatbed solution for the printing of graphic overlays and membrane switches, the new VS-300iS-GO is compatible with a huge range of products, including consumer electronics, vending machines, office equipment, medical devices and more.

A safe, agile and durable alternative to pure analogue
As part of a unique, hybrid workflow, the new VS-300iS-GO prints colour accurate images, text and logos on to media before a layer of white ink is screen printed on top. Users enjoy all the advantages of digital print technology with low set-up costs, fast set-up times, easy re-prints, superb proofing capabilities, variable data printing, extra durability and an incredible quality finish. Moreover, Marabu’s virtually odour-free water-based inks achieve the highest levels of safety, meeting the EN71-3 standard.

Impressive colour gamut and accurate colour reproduction
The new VS-300iS-GO is perfect for multi-coloured and highly detailed images with smooth gradients. The easy-to-use software and wide colour gamut enable users to match colours quickly and accurately – ideal for corporate branding, hitting PANTONE™ or RAL© shades, or reproducing colours from a previous job.

Huge potential across a wide range of markets
Paul Willems, Roland DG’s Director of Business Development and Product Development EMEA comments: "Roland DG EMEA and Marabu have combined their considerable specialist industry knowledge to bring to the graphic overlay market this innovative purpose-built solution. The new VS-300iS-GO offers the best possible results in terms of quality, durability and efficiency and enables easy access to this profitable market with low investment costs and compact, easy operation. The VS-300iS-GO offers huge potential to PSP’s, servicing a wide range of markets, from medical, aerospace and defence, to gaming, appliances and consumer electronics."

Matthias Schieber, Marabu´s Product Manager for Inkjet Products: "Marabu and Roland DG joined forces to provide a dedicated solution for applications demanding the highest quality images and durability. The ink series Maqua® Jet DA-RGO is a technically validated ink solution for industrial printing and at the same time it’s designed to be combined with Marabu screen printing inks. Maqua® Jet DA-RGO completes Marabu´s technological leadership in industrial applications as a complementary digital ink solution for hybrid workflows."
(Roland DG (UK) Ltd)

Greif Inc. provides update on second quarter to date results

Greif Inc. provides update on second quarter to date results  (Company news)

Greif, Inc. (NYSE: GEF, GEF.B), a world leader in industrial packaging products and services, currently plans to participate in upcoming virtual investor meetings. Given anticipated questions related to the impact of COVID-19 on the company's operations, Greif announced a narrow update on recent company performance. The company's consolidated financial performance for second quarter to date (Feb. 1 through March 17, 2020) is in line with to slightly better than internally forecasted results.

While the ultimate financial impact of COVID-19 is uncertain, difficult to project and could negatively impact the company's consolidated financial performance during the rest of the fiscal year, to date COVID-19 has not had a material adverse effect on Greif that would cause a modification of its Fiscal 2020 financial guidance ($3.55 to $3.91 Class A earnings per share before adjustments) that was published on February 26, 2020. As noted by management on the investor call on February 27, 2020, the guidance range was deliberately wide given continued macroeconomic uncertainty and the still unquantifiable impact of the coronavirus on our global operations.

Greif continues to monitor COVID-19 events closely and is taking appropriate actions at the global, regional and local levels to support our colleagues and customers during this time of uncertainty.
(Greif Inc.)

Jumping Across the Plata River

Jumping Across the Plata River  (Company news)

With the acquisition of an Alegro perfect binder from Muller Martini, Argentine full-service company Arcángel Maggio has created the basis for a successful branch in neighboring Uruguay.

Photo: CEO Sebastián Maggio (right): “We chose an Alegro for our new plant in Uruguay based on our excellent experience with the Acoro in Barracas.” Left: Carlos Rojas, Managing Director of Muller Martini Argentina.

A wide estuary formed by the confluence of two South American rivers divides Argentina and Uruguay. But the Plata River is no barrier to the company in Buenos Aires on its way to becoming the largest exporter of books in the region. It opened a production complex in Colonia del Sacramento that occupies 4,000 m2, half the size of the company’s facility in Barracas, a neighborhood in the Argentine capital. An important part of the investment volume in Uruguay is a Muller Martini Alegro perfect binder with an 18-station 3694 gathering machine, a Book Data Center, a Frontero front trimmer, a Solit three-knife trimmer and a CB18 book stacker.

“We chose an Alegro for our new plant in Uruguay based on our excellent experience with the Acoro in Barracas,” says Sebastián Maggio, praising the proven partnership with Muller Martini. The CEO is confident that his company has one of the most modern perfect binding lines in Latin America. As is the case in Barracas, the company's new location also has a Frontero front trimmer that ensures the economical production of brochures with flaps. The Argentine family-run company hopes to serve customers throughout all of Latin America from its Uruguay location.

Sebastián Maggio appreciates the high net output and level of automation of the Muller Martini systems his company uses. But he is also impressed with the quality of the end products. This quality has won the company a number of major awards in recent years. The Alegro at the company’s facility in Uruguay serves as additional motivation because the 7,000-cycle perfect binder is very user friendly and can be changed over very quickly. The high expectations of Arcángel Maggio have also been met in terms of product quality.
(Müller Martini Marketing AG)

Lecta Distribution Group, New Branding and Communication

Lecta Distribution Group, New Branding and Communication  (Company news)

Lecta aims to strengthen its position in the Spanish, French, Portuguese and Italian distribution markets.

Lecta's merchants are grouped under the Lecta Distribution Group name, comprising four companies: in Spain –Torraspapel Distribución–, in France –Torraspapel Malmenayde–, in Portugal –Torraspapel Portugal– and in Italy –Polyedra. As a leader in the largest markets in Southern Europe, Lecta Distribution Group offers a wide portfolio of products aimed at the Graphic, Digital, End of Line Packaging and Visual Communication markets, among others.

More than 20,000 active customers, 650 brands and nearly 23,000 references provided by prestigious industry suppliers –including the full range of the well-known Lecta products – are our best reference. Our portfolio includes environment-friendly products certified to the strictest standards.

With 13 warehouses in four countries, Lecta Distribution Group offers its customers comprehensive, fast and efficient service through its expert sales teams and its e-commerce platforms, available 24/7.

In order to further strengthen its identity, and move closer to existing and future customers, Lecta Distribution Group has updated the look and content of its website, which also offers access to the websites of its four merchants.

We invite you to discover Lecta Distribution Group's extensive range of customized solutions: Infinite Solutions, offered by a partner that is always committed and worthy of the highest trust.

Corrugated Box Industry Keeps Supply Chain Moving Amid COVID-19 Challenges

Corrugated Box Industry Keeps Supply Chain Moving Amid COVID-19 Challenges  (Company news)

The manufacturers of corrugated cardboard boxes are working to keep transport packaging flowing to makers of essential products including packaging for food and other consumer products, medical and pharmaceutical products, tissue and hygiene products and more amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Corrugated cardboard packaging is the backbone of the American supply chain,” said Fibre Box Association President and CEO Dennis Colley (photo). “As COVID-19 changes our daily lives, we want to assure consumers that the box industry is continuing to operate and to deliver needed packaging to our customers who supply grocery stores, pharmacies, doctor’s offices and hospitals with food and medical supplies to keep us all healthy and safe.”

Disruption in the availability of these goods would cause significant hardships to consumers across the country who depend on steady and stable supplies. Corrugated cardboard manufacturers are dedicated to continuing to operate box plants under the guidelines of Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to ensure products continue to flow to market.

Fibre Box Association joins American Forest & Paper Association in encouraging Federal, State and local governments to recognize the corrugated packaging industry as “essential” when drafting “Shelter in Place” orders. We ask for clear exclusion of our manufacturing operations to limit disruptions to the supply chain.

“We are grateful for the dedication and commitment of all people working in the corrugated packaging industry,” said Colley.
(FBA Fibre Box Association)

Rayonier Advanced Materials Announces Lumber and Newsprint Downtime in Response to...

Rayonier Advanced Materials Announces Lumber and Newsprint Downtime in Response to...  (Company news)

... COVID-19 Market Demand Impact; Other Facilities to Operate Normally

In response to the COVID-19 outbreak and its impact on certain business markets, Rayonier Advanced Materials Inc. (the “Company”) (NYSE:RYAM) announced curtailed production at seven Canadian locations. Starting this week, the Company will cease or reduce operations at all softwood sawmills located in Ontario and Quebec as well as halt production at the Company’s newsprint plant in Kapuskasing, Ontario. These curtailments will last at least two weeks and may be extended longer depending on market conditions. Existing sales orders will continue to be fulfilled from current inventory and reduced production at the Kapuskasing sawmill.

All other facilities, including the four High Purity Cellulose (HPC) facilities in the U.S., Canada and France and the Pulp and Paperboard facilities in Temiscaming, Quebec, are expected to operate at normal levels. These facilities, each deemed an “essential business” in its given country, produce a variety of products including many that are critical raw materials for pharmaceutical, food and cleaning products.

Additionally, the Company is taking precautions to protect employees and their communities against the spread of COVID-19, including office personnel working remotely, travel restrictions, robust cleaning and disinfecting of high touch areas, and appropriate social and physical distancing at all sites.

“The safety of our employees, their families and our communities is of highest concern. We will continue to operate all staffed facilities in a safe and fiscally responsible way to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak while supplying customers with critical materials required to support the battle against the virus,” stated Paul Boynton (photo), Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer. “Additionally, we are providing key raw materials to state agencies to produce hand sanitizer due to severe supply constraints for this product. While it’s a very difficult situation for everyone, our employees will manage through this crisis safely and productively and are proud to play a small but critical role in mitigating the impact of this virus.”
(Rayonier Advanced Materials Inc.)

Valmet to supply key containerboard machine technologies to Sri Andal in India

Valmet to supply key containerboard machine technologies to Sri Andal in India  (Company news)

Valmet will supply key board making technologies to Sri Andal Paper Mills for its new containerboard making line, located in Tamil Nadu, India. The start-up of the machine is scheduled for the first half of 2021.

Photo: OptiFlo Foudrinier headbox for excellent profiles and good formation

The order is included in Valmet's orders received of the first quarter 2020. The value of the order will not be disclosed. The value of a project of this type and scope is typically around EUR 12-15 million.

“It was vitally important for us that the management-level relationship with Valmet was very good. Valmet has a strong reputation, and we trust that Valmet’s technology will help us to reach our high-quality targets,” says Mr. P. Subramaniam, Managing Director of Sri Andal.

Containerboard segment in India is quite fragmented and largely utilizes Asian technology for board making. Sri Andal is aiming at producing high-quality containerboard with tangible efficiency improvements to enhance its competitiveness.

“Valmet offered suitable solution for achieving Sri Andal’s targets. With this technologically advanced project, we are setting our footprint in the Indian containerboard segment. We are looking forward to the successful start-up of this project, which will be a game changer in the containerboard segment,” says Varun Jain, Director of India Region at Valmet.

Technical details about the delivery
Valmet's delivery will include three OptiFlo Foudrinier headboxes for excellent profiles and good formation, an OptiPress Linear press section to achieve excellent end product properties, high dewatering capacity and good runnability, and an OptiSizer Film size press with a supply system. The delivery will also include a start-up package of spare parts and consumables, a Valmet DNA machine control system, Valmet IQ quality measurement system and Valmet Performance Center connectivity.

The 4,800-mm-wide (reel) will produce recycled liner, recycled fluting, corrugated kraft (kraft top recycled liner) grades with the basis weight range of 70-300 g/m2. The design speed will be 750 m/min and annual capacity 200,000 tonnes.
(Valmet Corporation)

Corrugated: Circular by nature - what else?

Corrugated: Circular by nature - what else?   (Company news)

FEFCO welcomes the new Circular Economy Action Plan recently published by the Commission. The circular economy is vital for achieving the Green Deal ambition for climate neutrality, preserving natural resources and supporting the competitiveness of the European economy.

The sustainable product policy framework could be a real driver for circularity which starts with the right selection of raw materials and the efficient use of resources. The bioeconomy plays a key role by providing renewable fibre-based materials as a sustainable alternative to other finite resources. FEFCO is pleased with the Commission initiative to support the “sustainable and circular bio-based sector”.

Recycling gives valuable materials like paper and board a long-life span. The circular economy needs recycling as much at it needs waste prevention and re-use to keep the materials in the loop and to minimise the use of resources.

Designing sustainable products is key and should be a requirement for all packaging. The paper and board industry already issued “Paper-based packaging recyclability guidelines” to support the industry and its customers in building circularity into their products.

Corrugated cardboard packaging is a real example of circularity and sustainability. Paper comes from a renewable source and we use recycled paper as a major raw material, optimising the use of natural source and reducing the environmental impact. “On average corrugated packaging contains 89% recycled content and is circular by nature”, says Angelika Christ, FEFCO Secretary General.

Packaging plays a key role in protecting products and ensuring safe delivery and storage, maintaining the quality of the product and often extending shelf life of fresh food. While overpackaging should be reduced, underpackaging can have a hugely negative impact on the environment. Packaging fit for purpose can prevent food waste and support the EU ambition and the UN Sustainable Development regarding food loss and waste.

It is essential to maintain the competitiveness of the EU industry and to support its growth while protecting the environment and building a new circular economy.
(FEFCO I.A. Fédération européenne des fabricants de carton ondulé)

Verso Corporation Announces Senior Leadership Changes

Verso Corporation Announces Senior Leadership Changes  (Company news)

Adam St. John (photo) - President and Chief Executive Officer
Aaron D. Haas - Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing

Verso Corporation (NYSE: VRS) announced that its Board of Directors has elected Verso's Chief Executive Officer, Adam St. John, to serve also as the company's President, effective immediately.

In addition, the Board has elected Aaron D. Haas to serve as Verso's Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing, effective immediately. In this position, Mr. Haas joins the Company's senior leadership team, with responsibility for leading the company's strategic and tactical sales and marketing initiatives.

"On behalf of our senior leadership team, I am extremely pleased to have Aaron lead our Sales and Marketing organization," said President and Chief Executive Officer Adam St. John. "Aaron has a proven exceptional ability to lead various teams within Verso and has extensive paper industry knowledge and sales and marketing experience. We expect a smooth transition for our employees and customers, as Aaron is already deeply engaged with our Sales and Marketing and senior leadership teams and is very familiar with many of our customers from prior roles."

Mr. Haas's previous leadership experience at Verso and its predecessor companies includes Director of Product Management; Vice President, Marketing Services; Vice President, Commercial Print; Vice President, Marketing; and most recently Vice President, Supply Chain Management.

Mr. Haas holds a master's degree from the University of Wisconsin in Madison, Wisconsin, and a bachelor's degree from Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin.
(Verso Corporation)

Last database update: 03.04.2020 15:39 © 2004-2020, Birkner GmbH & Co. KG