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The preliminary agreement for the 100% acquisition of Barcelona Cartonboard S.A.U. was signed

Reno De Medici has signed the preliminary agreement for the 100% acquisition of Barcelona Cartonboard SAU, a Spanish company and ranked seventh in Europe in the coated cartonboard sector, with the German private equity fund Quantum Capital Partners.

Founded in 1967, Barcelona Cartonboard S.A.U. operates in the business of coated cartonboard produced from recycled fiber (WLC – White Lined Chipboard) and, secondly, from virgin fiber (FBB – Folding Box Board), a business segment developed since the end of 2016. Headquartered and with production plant in Castellbisbal, Catalonia, the company has an annual production capacity of 180,000 tons and it employs approximately 230 people.

The acquisition of Barcelona Cartoboard S.A.U. will allow the RDM Group to strengthen its presence in a well-known market, to optimize its product portfolio and to further improve the level of service to current customers and new ones. In fact, thanks to the proximity of the Barcelona plant to some of the major European converters, strategic customers will be served in a shorter time. This operation fits perfectly into RDM Group’s Vision to become the Partner of Choice for its main stakeholders.

2018-07-05 
iT’s Tissue 2018 An unprecedented success and unique opportunity for the world to discover Made in Italy technology

iT’s Tissue closed its doors on Friday 29th June after a week which surpassed even the most optimistic expectations. The next event in Italy is scheduled for 2021.

Lucca, Italy 3 July 2018. After five intense days from June 25-29, the 12 network members behind iT’s Tissue have reported an overwhelmingly positive response to their innovations for the entire tissue value chain - production, converting, packaging and handling.

A record attendance was recorded for “iT’s Tissue – The Italian Technology Experience” : more than 2,000 highly-qualified visitors came from 85 countries.

This unique global event was created by the 12 leading Italian technology companies in the sector : A.Celli, Elettric80, Fabio Perini, Futura, Gambini, MTC, Omet, PCMC, Pulsar, Recard, TMC, Toscotec. While many of the network members compete directly with each other, they came together in 2012 with the aim of making Italy the international hub for technical innovation in the tissue sector.

“We welcomed all the most important tissue enterprises from around the world, and many clients came for the first time,” said Executive Vice President Marco Dell’Osso. “iT’s Tissue 2018 has proved a very important positive signal for the Italian companies behind this event – consolidating their leadership in mature markets while also opening up new frontiers in emerging markets.”

During each day of the week-long event, tissue experts from around the world valued the opportunity to see and touch innovations across the entire chain of production. They toured 14 open houses – 10 in Lucca, one in Viano-Reggio Emilia, two in Bologna and one in Lecco – to see machines in operation. Presentations and demonstrations revealed the progress of the digital revolution in support of the Smart Factory related to Industry 4.0. At the same time, Customer Service and innovative products designed with sustainability in focus were high on the agenda. For visitors, the networking opportunities were exceptional.

iT’s Tissue has confirmed itself as the leading international event in the sector : “Looking forward to 2021 we know we can do even more,” said Dell’Osso. “Italy’s state-of-the-art technology is recognized worldwide. The network companies never stop seeking innovative technological solutions across the whole chain, to improve performance and productivity, and respond to the needs of the future.”

Dell’Osso concluded : “I would like to take this opportunity to thank our main sponsor Rockwell Automation, Gold Sponsor, Henkel and Silver Sponsor SKF, for their valuable support.”

2018-07-05 
Catalyst Paper completes sale of U.S. operations

Catalyst Paper  announced today that it has completed the sale of the company’s U.S. operations to ND Paper LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Nine Dragons Paper, a Hong Kong Stock Exchange listed company, for proceeds of US$175 million as previously announced on May 25, 2018.

The transaction includes Catalyst’s Rumford, Maine and Biron, Wisconsin mills along with the Company’s U.S. operations center in Dayton, Ohio.

"We’re pleased to have completed the sale of our U.S. operations to ND Paper,” said Ned Dwyer, Catalyst President and CEO. “The net proceeds of the sale will be used to re-pay a significant share of our debt.”

Catalyst’s B.C. operations, including the company’s pulp and paper mills in Crofton, Port Alberni and Powell River, its Surrey Distribution Centre and Seattle sales office, are unaffected by the transaction.

2018-07-05 
Winder upgrade by Voith: 15 percent increase in capacity thanks to SmoothRun damping bearing system

The new SmoothRun hydropneumatic damping bearing system for winders effectively reduces vibrations occurring during the winding process. Hydropneumatic damping allows for higher operating speeds and better winding results. Overall, capacity increases of up to 15 percent are possible. This compact upgrade solution is suitable for Voith and Jagenberg two-drum winders.
In conventional winders without special damping, vibrations can occur at higher production speeds for certain paper grades, and these vibrations can impair winding quality. To minimize the disruptive effect of vibrations during the winding process, the production speed and accelerations rates are reduced below the maximum capability of the winder. The solution : With SmoothRun hydropneumatic damping bearings from Voith the vibrations can be effectively reduced even at high speeds, allowing the equipment to operate at consistently high production speeds. At the same time, SmoothRun improves the winding results and reduces the overall mechanical stress on the machine.
Eliminating bottlenecks through capacity upgrades
Papier- und Kartonfabrik Varel (PKV) based in Lower Saxony, produces high-quality corrugating medium and testliner on its PM 5. Until now, the existing VariFlex M had to be run at a lower speed when producing paper grades sensitive to vibrations. The result is the winder could barely keep up with the production of the paper machine.

The purpose of the hydropneumatic damping bearings was to allow the winder to be operated at the maximum speed. “Following commissioning of the new bearing system we were able to reduce vibrations for all paper grades and increase speeds. We are currently optimizing the settings of the bearing system with intensive support from Voith,” explains Michael Wolff, Line Manager Equipment at PK Varel. “Following this optimization phase we assume that the speed of the winder can be increased. While further enhancements together with Voith are being made the winder can keep pace with the production of the PM 5,” says Wolff. Voith is helping the company achieve this goal by providing intensive support, e.g. by performing vibration measurements.

2018-07-05 
UPM joins Together for Sustainability (TfS) initiative to enhance sustainability in its supply chains

UPM has joined Together for Sustainability (TfS), a chemical industry initiative that promotes and improves sustainability practises within its supply chains. By joining the initiative the member companies share a wide coverage of supplier data, such as audit reports and sustainability assessments performed by independent experts.

"UPM’s traditional businesses are having high exposure to chemical industry supply chain, not only on chemical raw materials but also on equipment and services." says Ilkka Nurmi, Senior Vice President, UPM Sourcing. "While UPM is not a chemical company, we actively work on portfolio transformation and have a great growth potential in biofuels and biochemicals businesses where we are heavily entering the arena of chemistry", he continues.

TfS has established a standard approach for evaluating and improving the sustainabilty performance of suppliers. Evaluation covers key areas such as environmental impact, health and safety, labour and human rights as well as management and governance. The assessments and audits benefit both members and suppliers, who only go through the process once and avoid multiple assessments by different customers.

"We welcome UPM to the TfS Initiative and look forward to working together on our shared vision of improving supply chain sustainability. UPM brings a strong track record in sustainability to the membership base as well as the ambition to work on sustainability together with the TfS members," says Rüdiger Eberhard, TfS President and Senior Vice President, Head of Procurement (CPO) Evonik Industries.

"Responsible sourcing has been high on UPM’s agenda for years and we have already done a lot of work to ensure the sustainability of our supply chains. However, the global supply networks are so complex that it’s necessary to pool the resources so that everyone can have access for a wider range of supplier sustainability information. This efficiency will enable focus on sustainability improvements in the supply chains. This is what TfS is all about" Nurmi tells. "We are looking forward to start working together with the other TfS members to further develop the initiative, and to make our global supply chains even more sustainable," Ilkka Nurmi concludes.

2018-07-05 
The Helsinki Distilling Company’s luxurious packaging uses Metsä Board’s white kraftliner


Metsä Board, a leading European producer of premium fresh fibre paperboards, is proud that its uncoated white kraftliner has been selected as the packaging material for the launch of a new luxury spirit from The Helsinki Distilling Company called ‘Helsinki White Dog’.

“In the consumer market, the packaging is of huge importance. It creates the first impression of the brand and an expectation for what the product will taste like,” says Kai Kilpinen from The Helsinki Distilling Company.

The Helsinki Distilling Company wanted packaging that combined a true respect for raw materials with an uncompromising attention to detail. The packaging for its newly launched White Dog spirit uses MetsäBoard Natural WKL Bright 120 g/m2 to communicate the brand aesthetics by combining a natural board material with a luxurious finish. The natural quality of the uncoated material gives the packaging a natural feel to the touch. Starcke in Finland manufactured the package.

“The packaging is made from lightweight microflute with all of its layers made from MetsäBoard Natural WKL Bright. No printing was used on the entire packaging - the design details are made entirely of hot foiling – forming a balance between the organic surface and the metallic elements of the foil. The paperboard has the ideal natural qualities to combine with the hot foil emboss details ; it makes for a beautiful 3D effect and visual contrast,” says Ilkka Harju, Metsä Board’s Packaging Services Director.

2018-07-04 
Coral Book Natural 1.2: Lecta’s New Natural White Paper

A new uncoated woodfree paper in a natural white shade for the publishing industry.​

In keeping with the natural theme of its Coral Book ​range of uncoated woodfree papers, Lecta portrays nature as an open book in which the printed word comes to life on its new Coral Book Natural 1.2 paper.

An offset paper manufactured with woodfree pulp, Coral Book Natural 1.2 is designed to offer excellent machine performance and is available in substances of 70, 80, 90, 100, 110 and 120 g/m2. Produced from natural and renewable raw materials, i​t is 100% recyclable and biodegradable and is made using elemental chlorine free pulp (ECF).

With this new product, Lecta expands its range of Coral Book uncoated woodfree papers in white and ivory shades : Coral Book White, Coral Book Ivory, Coral Book Ivory 1.5 and Coral Book Ivory 1.65.

Coral Book Natural 1.2, the natural choice for a more beautiful, sustainable future.

2018-07-04 
Biodegradable fibre packaging could catalyze shift away from black plastic

With packaging producers under pressure to find a replacement for plastic, the latest contender could be Durapulp fibre, which is used to create biodegradable packaging to replace the black plastic trays often used in ready meals and raw beef products, says GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

The producer, Finnish packaging manufacturer Huhtamaki, has been trialling Durapulp fibre in the UK ready meal category since May 2018 up until the end of June 2018. The company hopes that the trial will eventually lead to the adoption of biodegradable packaging in ready meals.

Ryan Choi, Consumer Analyst at GlobalData, comments : “The main issue with black plastic trays is the color. Black is used as it makes pack contents stand out better and appear more attractive on shelves. However, optical sorting equipment in recycling facilities has difficulty detecting black packs and most of the time fails to do so.”

According to a report conducted by Waste & Resources Action Programme (WRAP), most black plastic ends up in landfills rather than being recycled. Several UK-based companies have identified this as an issue and are looking to phase out black packaging despite the high costs involved. Waitrose is looking to phase it out completely by 2019, with Quorn Foods looking to do the same by 2025.

Choi continues : “The main problems facing manufacturers of new packaging materials are the cost of manufacturing and how well the pack can last. Plastic was always the perfect solution, being cheap with a long life cycle – albeit too long.

“Although these packaging trials will highlight the usefulness of the packaging material in practice, ultimately the potential adopters of new packaging materials will always asses how well the new material delivers in these two key areas. If the new pack is not cost effective to produce at the same time as offering a long enough life cycle, it will not be adopted, even if it is more environmentally friendly.”

2018-07-04 
France : FCPP becomes CAP

The French Federation of Cartonboard and Stationery (Fédération française du cartonnage et des articles de papeterie, FFCP) is now called CAP (Cartonnage et Articles de Papeterie – i.e. Cartonboard and Stationery). This announcement was made during the Congress FFCP organized in Le Touquet (Northern France) last June.
As a consequence, the logo has changed with new colors (brown which stands for Material and Green, representing sustainability). The stylish graphic also conveys the ideas of cartonboard and corrugated board.

2018-07-04 
Magnus Kangas new Mill Manager of Ortviken paper mill

SCA has employed Magnus Kangas as new Mill Manager of Ortviken paper mill in Sundsvall. He will take on his new postion as of January 1, 2019.

Magnus Kangas comes to Ortviken from a position as manager of BillerudKorsnäs’ paper mill in Gävle. He has held a number of leading positions in the paper industry and the energy sector.

Magnus Kangas is succeeding Kristina Enander, new President of SCA’s business area Pulp.

“With Magnus Kangas, the Ortviken paper mill will get a very experienced leader with broad experience from Sweden and abroad”, says Mats Nordlander, President of SCAs business area Paper .

Ortviken paper mill in Sundsvall produces coated and uncoated publication paper, has a capacity of 775,000 tonnes per annum and 625 employees.

2018-07-03 
Great satisfaction for Omet at It’s Tissue event in Lucca

OMET has been one of the protagonist of latest IT’s Tissue, the landmark event for all the tissue industry in the world, with more than 200 visitors during the exhibition week. This time OMET was not in its headquarter on the lake of Como only, but it was also in the center of the tissue industry world with its showroom in Lucca in a great location kindly given from its partner OT Lucca. OT Lucca is a branch of OMET in Lucca that allows to take advantage of their experience and technology in the design and production of complete lines for the converting of towels and facial tissue, and special units also for the paper roll sector.
This year, OMET celebrates its 55th anniversary since its foundation in 1963. From the first napkin machine up to today many years and over 1,500 installations have passed, with a constant technological development that allowed the machines to be more and more automated, simple to use and tailor-made for converters all over the world. Today, OMET is a group of companies operating in different sectors, with facilities in Italy and abroad, with over 400 employees and an annual turnover of more than 100 million euros.
“The trend we saw in last years in tissue industry – said Marco Calcagni, OMET sales & marketing director - especially in the production of folded products such as napkins and towels, is that converters require more and more production automation and product customization. OMET is working hard to satisfy what new trend requires. The continuous innovation and technology of OMET machines allow to our customer to get more production flexibility and an increasing of the automation level.”
The most important innovation of recent years introduced by OMET is the TV503 with Chameleon digital printing. Already launched at It’s Tissue 2015, it has been made more efficient and today already boasts several successful installations on the market. OMET shown a complete line installed in its showroom in Lucca with nice packs of napkins all different inside one from the other. This machine is equipped with the Chameleon variable data inkjet digital printing unit, a revolutionary innovation for the napkin industry. CHAMELEON is the new 4-color digital inkjet printing unit of OMET, a direct-print system in which a computer installed on the machine receives the files, processes them and sends them directly onto the napkins using simple pdf, jpg or other common formats.
The machine is synchronized with the printing unit and the speed depends on the type of resolution set. With this printing technology it’s possible to print on napkins any image without plates and without prepress time and costs : any customization is possible with the on-demand printing for short runs. Chameleon is also a marketing tool that allows to be different on the market with infinite solutions and innovative ideas : infact there are no limits to creativity. Chameleon also allows to print variable data such as barcodes, QR codes and progressive numbers, or any other source of text or image coming from a database : in fact in the machine there is a complex software for the management of variable data, which also allows the creation of prize contests on napkins or to create an extreme personalization.
OMET is always working to create new opportunities for converting companies, both creating new machines for the production of different final products and offering new solutions for existing machines. The ASV Line is the new easy-to-use and highly modular automatic interfolding line for high-speed production of interfolded tissue products. This line is the result of advanced technological research and offer completely innovative operating principles, different from those on the market.
The real heart of this line is the folding unit, thanks to new patents of OT Lucca & OMET allowing the highest production speed on the market, 250 m/min, and to completely eliminate the maintenance of the machine over time. The modularity of this machine allows the addition of various functional modules such as unwinders, embossing units, gluing stations, longitudinal slitting group, bending or integral wrapping modules. The ASV Line by OMET allows production of different products : hand towels, facial tissue and toilet paper, with different folds and 2 or 3 ply. An ASV line being assembled was shown in OMET showroom in Lucca, it is the third machine OMET has in production.
Another news in the OMET products portfolio is the FV Line is the new machine with vacuum folding and complete automation and digitalization of the line for maximum production efficiency with the possibility of making napkins with different sizes and folds, including dinner napkins with 8-fold.
With a video connection live from production factory in Lecco, visitors had the possibility to see a TV840 XP machine in action from remote. It’s fully servo driven and equipped with up to 9 printing units, one per color, which offer the possibility of quick sleeve change for the customization of printed napkins. The absolute novelty is that all the adjustments of these printing units are completely motorized, without manual job. From the easiest touch to the sleeve changes are made automatically from the control panel.
The RFID devices applied on the sleeves allow to memorize and repeat the operations on different runs in an automatic way. The new vision system allows you to register the various colors directly from the operator panel, optimizing production performance and eliminating all waste and setting times.
In Lecco the video cameras shows also a live reel change on OMET No-Stop unwinder, available both on the TV503 and TV840 double lane. It’s a real revolution allowing to reduce waste and production times thanks to the reel change without stopping production. The unwinder can bond single-ply, 2-ply or 3-ply paper rolls with plies jointed independent from each other, by overlapping and connecting them through adhesive tape.
The same machine TV503 was equipped with an embossing system IBT, Improved Bonding Technology, a revolution for the traditional embossing operation, which allows to obtain a better franking of the plies. To the steel-steel standard embossing we have introduced the addition of a very small quantity of glue which ensures, as well as a greater adhesion of the layers, the possibility of using a colored glue to create a napkin with colored embossing.
Another machine in Lecco, a TV840 XP, show the maximum speed of 900 m/min for neutral napkins production.
All OMET machines offer the possibility of remote connection for viewing production data and assistance operations. In fact, it is possible to use a data collection system and viewing all the production data of the line, see the machine in operation from remote with a camera viewing, analyze the trends of the line production speed and stops ; but these are just examples, all the machine data can be accessed remotely to be analyzed through the use of specific tools. It’s a web connection and therefore active all over the world, wherever you are. The same video connection between Lucca showroom and Lecco factory was realized by video assistance software.

2018-07-03 
Insolvency Zanders GmbH: restructuring process continues

After the request of the management of the Zanders GmbH for opening of insolvency proceedings, Cologne District Court had first appointed lawyer Dr. Marc d’Avoine to the appraiser on 22 June 2018 and then to the provisional insolvency administrator in the insolvency opening proceedings Zanders GmbH. In addition, enforcement measures are prohibited.
The restructuring process continues. Restructuring Director Igor Ferlan and external consultants manage Zanders in collaboration with lawyer d’Avoine and his team. Everyone involved is optimistic that they will be able to create a stable future for Zanders.
In 1829 Johann Wilhelm Zanders founded the company in Bergisch Gladbach.
Zanders still operates the Gohrsmühle paper mill there today. The applicant was exclusively a supplier of special papers until the end of the 1980s. As of 2012, there was a reorientation in the area of graphic mass papers. Overcapacities in the paper market and the progressive digitization led to a considerable fall in the price of paper products. In addition, the one-product strategy, under-utilized machinery, over-dimensioned infrastructure and brain drain have been major causes of the company’s crisis.
Following the acquisition of the company by the current shareholder mutares AG in May 2015, with the support of the employees important restructuring successes were achieved, a considerable part of the investment and repair bottleneck was eliminated and processes were significantly improved. Despite sales growth of an average of 12 percent between 2015 and 2017, price increases for the required raw materials (pulp, chemicals and coal for the company’s own power plant) had a negative impact on the way to restructuring. In the past 12 months alone, the cost of these raw materials has risen by more than 40%.
The assets of the capital assets of the Zanders company are currently being collected and evaluated in an objective manner. At the same time, an inventory is being carried out. Claims are recorded, examined and evaluated, which will take weeks to complete. The work on the business plan and the restructuring concept is underway, with an initial interim result expected by the end of July 2018. The mutares AG continues to support the restructuring in the interests of all involved. under-utilized machinery, over-dimensioned infrastructure and brain drain have been major causes of the company’s crisis.
Following the acquisition of the company by the current shareholder mutares AG in May 2015, with the support of the employees important restructuring successes were achieved, a considerable part of the investment and repair bottleneck was eliminated and processes were significantly improved. Despite sales growth of an average of 12 percent between 2015 and 2017, price increases for the required raw materials (pulp, chemicals and coal for the company’s own power plant) had a negative impact on the way to restructuring. In the past 12 months alone, the cost of these raw materials has risen by more than 40%.
The assets of the capital assets of the Zanders company are currently being collected and evaluated in an objective manner. At the same time, an inventory is being carried out. Claims are recorded, examined and evaluated, which will take weeks to complete. The work on the business plan and the restructuring concept is underway, with an initial interim result expected by the end of July 2018. The mutares AG continues to support the restructuring in the interests of all involved.
Wages and salaries secured
Zanders currently employs about 500 employees and 22 apprentices. The business operations are fully continued in order to obtain the possibilities for a reorganization. The management and the workforce as well as key suppliers and customers have already signaled support for the continuation and reorganization. Wages and salaries are secured through the insolvency payments up to and including August 2018. We will inform you soon about further insights and steps.
Insolvency application process at Cologne District Court, docket number : 75 IN 232/18

2018-07-03 
Smurfit Kappa Group is pleased to announce that it has completed the acquisition of Reparenco

The acquisition represents a transaction multiple, pre-synergies, of 6.4x Reparenco’s 2018 expected full year EBITDA of €72million. Reparenco’s strong strategic fit with SKG’s existing European businesses is expected to deliver synergies of in excess of €30 million. Including synergies, the acquisition multiple is less than 4.5x EBITDA.

Smurfit Kappa, CEO, Europe, Saverio Mayer, said : “We are very pleased to complete the acquisition of Reparenco and to welcome their 315 employees to Smurfit Kappa. There is a strong cultural fit between our businesses and we are excited about the potential for Reparenco within the Smurfit Kappa integrated system.

Reparenco represents early delivery of a central element of our Medium Term Plan – to increase our European recycled containerboard capacity. It is ideally situated in our core European operating region where we continue to see strong demand driven by growth in e-commerce and increased substitution of plastic with paper-based packaging. The mill is also very well placed on the cost curve and specialises in producing basis weights from 80 to 120 grams which caters for the market’s growing demand for lighter-weight materials.”

Laurent Sellier, Smurfit Kappa COO, Paper Europe, added : “The acquisition of Reparenco will strengthen our integrated business model and adds 405,000 tonnes of recycled containerboard capacity to our system.We are also pleased to have acquired a high quality graphic paper machine very well positioned in its market. While the machine offers the potential for conversion to containerboard over the medium-term, our intention is to continue to produce graphic paper for our customers for the foreseeable future.

The 750,000 tonne recycling operation increases our security and quality of raw material supply and also ensures we can provide our customers with greater certainty about the quality and performance of our products.”

2018-07-03 
LignoTech Florida Plant Officially Opened

Rayonier Advanced Materials Inc. and Borregaard ASA announced today LignoTech Florida, owned 45 percent by RYAM and 55 percent by BRG, officially begun operations at the new lignin plant in Fernandina Beach. The plant has production capacity of 100,000 dry metric tons of lignin with the option of a second phase that can later expand production by an additional 50,000 dry metric tons

“We are excited to complete construction phase of the plant, on time and within $110 million combined budget,” said Paul G. Boynton, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Rayonier Advanced Materials. “This investment provides new jobs for the Fernandina Beach community, diverse and environmentally-friendly products for Rayonier Advanced Materials, and a solid return on capital for our investors.”

Lignin, a natural component of wood, is a co-product of Rayonier Advanced Material’s sulphite cellulose manufacturing process inFernandina Beach. The new operation will process the lignin into value-added products that provide environmentally-friendly alternatives to fossil fuel-based products used globally in construction, agriculture and other industrial applications.

LignoTech Florida has received unwavering support from the City of Fernandina Beach, Nassau County and the State of Floridathroughout the evaluation and construction process. The economic and logistical support provided by local and state governments helped to bring this investment into the community and created more than 50 new high-paying jobs at the plant.

2018-07-03 
Paperboard is replacing plastic to reduce climate impact

“When our card supplier, Megacard, suggested we could make our gift cards from paperboard and thereby drastically reduce their environmental impact, it was self-evident to us to switch,” explains Anna Marcusson, product manager for gift cards at SF Bio.

“In plain language, it means we’re phasing out the use of 10 tonnes of PVC a year by phasing out the plastic and replacing it with cards made of Invercote from Iggesund Paperboard,” she continues.

Replacing plastic with a non-fossil material is a clear trend, not least in the packaging industry. Switching from fossil plastic to an alternative material such as paperboard reduces companies’ climate impact. Changing an established infrastructure takes time, though, especially if it means that the packaging must be redesigned, the packing equipment modified or replaced, and the distribution from manufacturer to consumer is affected. The UK food company Iceland has attracted widespread attention with its pledges to eliminate plastic in its packaging within five years. Many people with packaging experience say five years is a fairly short time given the challenges faced by Iceland.

In light of these factors, the switchovers by IKEA and SF Bio have occurred very quickly, and there is reason to believe that many more companies will follow their example.

“Because the cards’ format is identical, it’s easy to make the switch. Apart from the actual production process for making the cards, very few other components of companies’ existing equipment need to be modified. So this is a very simple step to take compared with redesigning a plastic packaging solution, where complex and fully automated packing lines must be modified,” explains Johan Granås, Head of Sustainability at Iggesund Paperboard, who was closely involved in developing the solution that IKEA finally chose.

Another example of this packaging industry trend is Apple, where packaging developers are focusing on reducing the use of plastic. This is clear from Apple’s Paper and Packaging Strategy, which the company published in October 2017. Among other things, the report details how Apple succeeded in reducing the plastic content of the iPhone 7 packaging by 84 per cent compared with that of the iPhone 6s.

Apple’s smart speaker, HomePod, launched at the beginning of 2018, is a clear example of this approach. An incredibly complex paperboard construction with closures holds the speaker cord in place and there is also a setup to secure the plug.

“Ten years ago, any manufacturer would have solved this issue with plastic,” Granås says. “But now we’re seeing time and again how companies are investing strongly to create alternative solutions in paperboard – not only Apple but many, many others.”

Granås is careful to say that plastic is still an important material in both today’s and tomorrow’s packaging market. Traditional paperboard packaging for food often needs a plastic barrier to create a seal that protects against grease, moisture and aromas. Making the packaging’s construction out of paperboard and then creating the barrier with the thinnest possible plastic coating is already a good example of good materials management.

“The development of fossil-free plastic materials is happening very quickly and I predict we will soon have bioplastics with less and less fossil content, which will significantly reduce the climate impact of food packaging in particular,” Granås concludes.

2018-07-03 
Production restarts in Lenningen Valley - Focus on Bioeconomy

After five months of intense efforts a solution for the continuation of traditional German Paper producer Scheufelen, Lenningen (Germany) has been found.
Thanks to a strong partnership of investors Green Growth Fund 2 / Wermuth Asset Management, Nordia Invest and Scheufelen Equity Partners, the newly established „Scheufelen GmbH“ will initiate operations with staff of 100 on July 2nd, 2018.
Scheufelen had declared insolvency end of January 2018. „Even though production had to be stopped in April 2018, we never gave up hope or stopped our efforts to find a solution for Scheufelen to survive,” insolvency administrator Tibor Braun, Stuttgart, declared today. Especially the new Scheufelen grasspaper products and the respective exclusive production know how served as motivation to explore all possibilities for the restart of Scheufelen operations.
Scheufelen started in 2017 with grasspaper, made from grass fiber and pulp, a small revolution in the German paper markets, not the least in order to try and gain some independence from the global pulp markets. Scheufelen grass paper is an especially sustainable and cost effective fresh fiber paper, with massive savings on water, chemical and energy requirements in fiber production. Compared to recycled papers, Scheufelen grasspaper avoids issues with consumer protection standards stemming from mineral oil migration from recycled paper fibers. Grass fiber also regrows quickly – different than wood fiber – and can therefore compensate CO2 emissions from its harvesting and production process almost immediately.
„Big international brands, smaller clients, but also many end consumers continued to show their huge interest in our product notwithstanding the difficult position Scheufelen found itself in over the last few months,” notes Stefan Radlmayr (CEO of Scheufelen also in the new set up). This fact encouraged the investors to believe in the first mover advantage and the extensive know-how of Scheufelen staff as a solid base for quick growth for the new company and its green product. Special thanks are given by Stefan Radlmayr to the entire staff at Scheufelen : “Without their efforts and belief in a future for Scheufelen we would not have reached this turning point.”
The insolvency administrator is glad that the continued operations maintain in a first step at least a staff of 100 in Lenningen valley and can serve as a rallying point for new job opportunities in the future. “Our efforts were supported diligently by the German federal agency for employment and the industry union Mining, Chemicals and Energy (IGBCE). The agency helped especially with the establishment of a transfer company which will initiate operations also on July 2nd, 2018. The transfer company Refugio offers the staff who could not continue in Scheufelen GmbH opportunities to retrain and to use its network for quick relocation. At least 100 employees in the transfer company will have a job for 5 months, avoiding unemployment during such time. While Scheufelen staff in 2017 counted 340 heads, the number had already been reduced to 264 heads after the temporary production stop.
The investor concept involves other than a strong focus on Scheufelen grass paper also the continued production of the globally respected Scheufelen premium paper products, especially the high white packaging board Phoenolux, but will not count on standard wood free graphical papers, the main reason for the insolvency. Development of Scheufelen products will continue to be supported by Packaging Campus Lenningen in cooperation with Hochschule der Medien, Stuttgart and other partners. The innovative Packaging Campus can now strengthen its activities and further research and development institutes covering the areas of resource efficiency and alternative fibers are expected to follow soon.
Stefan Radlmayr is optimistic that thanks to the restart the site in Lenningen is now an ideal location for multiple projects with a focus on bio economy as supported by the government of Baden-Württemberg. Considering the importance of the Scheufelen site for the regional economy, it will be helpful if such ideas develop quickly in addition to the classical paper production. Tibor Braun is already grateful for the strong political support during the insolvency procedure. “The environmental ministry of Baden Württemberg, especially the minister Franz Untersteller has done an admirable job, not only helping in identifying possible investors, but also supporting in complex administrative matters.”

Regarding the investors :
Wermuth Asset Management (WAM), Berlin, is a family office focused on impact investments in resource efficient companies through its green gateway funds (please also see attached press release)
Nordia Invest, Hamburg ist an investment company which selectively acquires participations in companies in restructuring situations. The focus lies on companies with a significant industrial base and which offer products with sustainable success opportunities.
Scheufelen Equity Partners is an investment holding for the traditional swabian industrial families Schaeff and Scheufelen for investments in the area of pulp and paper.

2018-07-02 
Valmet to supply a Valmet Pulp Analyzer to UPM in China

Valmet has received an order for a Valmet Pulp Analyzer (Valmet MAP) from UPM in China. The Valmet MAP with freeness module and optional Fiber Image module will be installed with six sampling devices for UPM’s PM 2 in Changshu.

"We have been using the previous generation Valmet online freeness analyzer on PM 2 for ten years. With technological upgrading and innovation, we again selected the latest Valmet Pulp Analyzer for its fast and precise online fiber and furnish measurement to improve runnability and productivity," says Mr. Zhou Long, Production Manager for PM 2. Installation and start-up is scheduled for the third quarter of 2018.

The Valmet Pulp Analyzer provides paper, board and tissue makers with fast and precise online updates of key fiber and papermaking furnish properties. It represents the state of the art in online fiber analysis, built on continuous advancements by Valmet for the past thirty years. Rather than waiting for infrequent, time-delayed laboratory tests, fast and decisive control actions can be achieved to manage furnish properties for better paper and improved production.

"Valmet MAP will be the ideal tool at PM 2 for furnish management, screening, blending and improving refining operations while providing energy savings as well," according to Jackson Sui, Senior Automation Sales Manager for Valmet in China.

2018-07-02 
Two new Toscotec’s PRODERGY tissue machines start up at APP OKI mill, Indonesia.

Toscotec fired up other two AHEAD-2.0L PRODERGY tissue machines at APP’s OKI mill, in South Sumatra, Indonesia.

Following the start-up of two AHEAD-2.0L PRODERGY at Perawang mill earlier this year, these two OKI machines started production in less than 3 months after the start-up of the first of a series of Toscotec’s PRODERGY machine ordered by Asia Pulp & Paper (APP) for its Perawang and OKI mills in Indonesia. In the next few months, other four machines will start up at the same site.

The AHEAD-2.0L PRODERGY is Toscotec’s top of the line tissue machine, featuring 5.6 m width, 2,000 m/min operating speed, a second-generation steel Yankee dryer of 22 feet diameter and steam-heated hoods. Toscotec’s TT SYD-22FT is the biggest steel Yankee dryer ever manufactured in the world for tissue application. Toscotec’s energy saving innovations consolidate OKI mill’s optimized green process : the paper mill is fully integrated with a massive pulp mill of 2.8 million ton/yr estimated output.

Equipped with the most advanced environmental technology presently available, OKI production base is very much green-oriented. The mill will be powered by clean and self-sufficient energy generated from the pulp production process and wood bark gasification. Tissue production guarantees the highest standards in terms of tissue machine’s efficiency and energy consumption reduction, thanks to PRODERGY’s technological advantages.

Toscotec’s Chief Customer Service Officer Valter Di Nardo commented, “The erection, commissioning and start-up of OKI tissue machines was completed in record time. Toscotec’s technical team on site installed the first foundation plate on January 4. After just over one hundred days, we fired up the first AHEAD-2.0L PRODERGY, and after one week, the second start-up followed suit.
The mill expressed satisfaction for tissue quality starting from day one”.

2018-07-02 
A.Celli Paper has presented FROM TISSUE TO TISSUE

Evolution, innovation and ongoing research.
These are the main elements on which the clear vision of A.Celli Paper is based.
During the third edition of iT’s Tissue (Lucca, 25-29 June 2018), A.Celli Paper welcomed visitors to discover the great path it has chosen, inviting them to see for themselves the 11 technology stations representing the same number of system solutions for complete turnkey plants.
The FROM TISSUE TO TISSUE tour was a unique experience, offering a special opportunity to view a complete Tissue production line.
It was an occasion to present the new generation of the iDEAL® Tissue Machine, the E-WIND® winders and the innovative R-WAY® Roll Handling & Packaging system.
But this was just the beginning, because the journey planned for the visitor also included a look at Research and Development and the new solutions in the context of the Yankee Dryer, with our FORGED YD® ; the revolutionary iREEL® data traceability and analysis system ; and the latest RWAY ® reel management system with automated guided vehicles (AGVs) : all in the name of efficiency, safety and automation.
The visitors were impressed by this direct contact with the world of A.Celli equipment solutions, which is all about the best in production efficiency, reduced consumption and costs, and excellence in terms of both quality and technology.
We would like to thank all those who came, and hope to see you again next time.
A.Celli is on a roll !

2018-06-30 
Opengate Capital completes sale of Norpaper Group to Gemayel fFreres & Chaoui Industriel Group

OpenGate Capital, a global private equity firm, has announced that it has completed the sale of one of its legacy, pre-fund investments, NorPaper Group (“NorPaper”), to Gemayel Freres & Chaoui Industriel Group, a Lebanon-based business specialized in recycled corrugated cardboard and packaging products. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Gemayel Group acquired Papeterie du Doubs (now known as Gemdoubs) in 2013. Three years later, in 2016, Gemayel Group signed a partnership with Chaoui Group concerning Gemdoubs. Chaoui Group, headed by Zafer Chaoui, is a Lebanese family Group involved in recycled paper production among others activities.

OpenGate Capital acquired NorPaper from Canadian paper conglomerate, Cascades, in 2011. NorPaper is a leading producer of white top testliner paper that is sold to European packaging manufacturers. Realizing an opportunity to increase capacity within NorPaper, OpenGate completed an accretive, add-on acquisition in February of 2015 of DS Smith Packaging Papeterie de Nantes SAS (“Nantes”), a division of DS Smith, Plc. Integrated into NorPaper, Nantes broadened the product portfolio and added 50kT per year of production capacity through its white top testliner paper made from 100% recycled fiber with best in class quality and printability. The Nantes mill also addressed growing market demand for paper products in a wider grammage and trim range. Combined, NorPaper and Nantes have an annual capacity of 200kT, making it the leading white top testliner paper producer in France and among the top five in Europe. The 2 sites employ more than 250 people. Fady Gemayel, chairman of Gemdoubs, will also be the President of the two companies.

Andrew Nikou, OpenGate’s Founder and CEO stated, “We are incredibly proud of OpenGate’s investment in NorPaper from sourcing the acquisition through our relationship with Cascades, to the add-on acquisition from DS Smith. As we transfer the business to Gemayel & Chaoui Industriel Group, we recognize that under the new leadership, NorPaper has many new exciting years ahead. I want to thank the entire NorPaper team led by CEO, Laurent Glachant, for their dedication and hard work in driving this business forward.”

Julien Lagrèze, Partner at OpenGate’s Paris office, oversaw the entire lifecycle of the NorPaper investment from acquisition through add-on acquisition and realization. Lagrèze commented, “NorPaper is a reflection of OpenGate’s lower middle market investment strategy and we are proud of all that has been accomplished. From executing a complete carve-out to implementing a multi-faceted operational improvement plan, which included the development of a cooperative paper swap agreement with several European corrugated cardboard manufacturers, NorPaper sales and margins greatly improved since acquired by OpenGate in 2011. Throughout our investment period, NorPaper grew its paper product offerings that drove increased volumes and end-use applications. Given all that has been accomplished, NorPaper is at the right point in its evolution to be acquired by Gemayel & Chaoui Industriel Group so that it can progress further under new leadership.”

NorPaper’s CEO, Mr. Laurent Glachant stated, “Working with the team at OpenGate Capital has been a rewarding process over the past several years. NorPaper has grown into a highly regarded business, recognized for producing a variety of white top testliner and recycled paper materials for our customers. I want to thank Julien Lagrèze and his team at OpenGate for all of the support we received that enabled us to achieve the growth and improvements at NorPaper. As we look ahead, we are excited to enter into the next phase of our evolution with Mr. Gemayel and his partners.”
This is the second legacy, pre-fund realization for OpenGate in the past six months following the sale of Benvic, a European PVC compounding business that was sold to Investindustrial in December of 2017.

2018-06-29 
The shape of sustainable labels is circular: UPM Raflatac announces APR-recognized wash-off film labels with recycled liners for Americas and Asia Pacific

UPM Raflatac is taking another step forward in its drive to label a smarter future by announcing that it has developed a range of wash-off film labeling solutions for a variety of end uses that can help brands create a circular economy and also meet or even accelerate their ambitious sustainability targets.

These clear, white and metalized film label stocks - featuring UPM Raflatac’s RW85C wash-off adhesive and a PET liner made from 90 percent post-consumer recycled (PCR) content - have been recognized by the Association of Plastic Recyclers (APR) as exceeding their strict standards for recyclable label products. Now available in the Americas and Asia Pacific market regions, the labels are ideal for labeling PET containers in the food, beverage, home care and personal care segments.

Thanks to the RW85C wash-off adhesive, the labels are able to undergo common PET recycling processes without contaminating any of the PET flake by-products. During the caustic washing process, the polypropylene labels easily separate from PET containers and float, allowing more high-value, clean PET flakes to be recovered. The clean flakes can then be converted back into PET containers, which promotes a circular economy and reduces the amount of plastic pollution in landfills and the environment.

"As the global drive to reduce plastic waste continues to gain speed, more and more packaging companies are looking for new and innovative solutions to maximize the recyclability of their PET containers," says Junion Zhao, Director, Films Business, APAC, UPM Raflatac. "We are pleased to bring these wash-off labeling materials to market for our customers and brand owners aiming to achieve their sustainability targets."

"Exceeding the APR’s standards for recyclable label products on PET packaging was very important for us when we developed these new film labels with RW85C adhesive," adds Daryl Northcott, Director, Films Business, Americas, UPM Raflatac. "UPM Raflatac recently became an APR Recycling Demand Champion, which means we are committed to boosting circular packaging solutions and incorporating post-consumer recycled content into our materials, and these new label materials do exactly that."

2018-06-29 
Lenzing and Duratex plan to build 450,000 t dissolving wood pulp plant in Brazil

Lenzing Group, world market leader in specialty cellulosic fibers and Duratex, the largest producer of industrialized wood panels of the Southern Hemisphere, announce that they agreed on the terms and conditions to form a joint venture to investigate building the largest single line dissolving wood pulp (DWP) plant in the state of Minas Gerais, close to Sao Paulo, Brazil. This decision supports the backward integration and the growth in specialty fibers, defined in Lenzing’s corporate strategy sCore TEN.

The joint venture will investigate the construction of a 450,000 t DWP plant, which is expected to become the largest and most competitive single line DWP plant in the world. Dissolving wood pulp is the key raw material for the production of Lenzing’s bio-based fibers. For the future operation, the two companies have secured a plantation of 43,000 hectares that will provide the FSC® certified biomass. The plantation is fully in line with Lenzing’s wood and pulp sourcing policy. The basic engineering and the application for required permits and merger clearances will now be started.

Lenzing will hold 51 percent of the joint venture which will operate the mill, while Duratex’s share will be 49 percent. The estimated cash investment by the joint venture for the construction of the DWP mill is expected to be somewhat above USD 1 bn (based on current FX rates, net of generic tax refunds and the outcome of the basic engineering study). The joint venture will supply the entire volume of dissolving wood pulp to the Lenzing Group. This step is an essential milestone in the group’s ambition to grow its specialty fibers business.

“Specialty cellulosic fibers are an important contribution to make the global textile industry more sustainable. In line with our corporate strategy sCore TEN we are committed to strong organic growth in this field. We are pleased that with Duratex, a recognized leader in sustainable forestry management, we have a strong partner in this joint venture. Together we will create a very sustainable and competitive raw material base for Lenzing’s global expansion plans”, says Stefan Doboczky, Chief Executive Officer of Lenzing Group.

“Projects of this nature are the result of our strategic plan and of our team’s effort towards drawing Duratex’s future. The Company is known for its financial solidity, high quality, innovation and sustainability ; the results of a history spanning over six decades. The partnership with Lenzing for the construction of the largest single line dissolving wood pulp plant in the world is an honor for Duratex. Working with Lenzing, a global benchmark in technology, high quality and corporate governance makes us very proud. We are sure that this joint venture is going to be successful”, affirms Duratex’s Chief Executive Officer Antonio Joaquim de Oliveira.

The final investment decision to build the dissolving wood pulp plant is subject to the outcome of the basic engineering studies and the approval by the respective supervisory boards.

2018-06-29 
Borregaard and Rayonier Advanced Materials announce intention to invest in a new 150,000 tonnes lignin operation in the US

Borregaard and Rayonier Advanced Materials (RYAM) have entered into a non-binding letter of intent regarding the establishment of a new lignin operation adjacent to RYAM’s Fernandina Beach pulp mill in Florida. The new company will be owned 55% by Borregaard and 45% by RYAM.

The Fernandina Beach mill manufactures specialty cellulose and lignin raw material as co-products from softwood. Utilising Borregaard’s know-how and technical expertise, the new company will initially manufacture lignin products suitable for concrete admixture and similar applications targeting primarily the North and South American markets. The products will be marketed through Borregaard’s international sales network and will represent a 30% increase in the lignin sales volume at full capacity.

It is anticipated that the project will be completed in two phases over 5 years. The parties estimate an aggregate USD 110 million for a capacity of 150,000 metric tonnes dry substance per year. The first phase is expected to commence commercial operations in 2017.

The new operation will benefit from the development work in the BALI project, and takes priority over a first BALI plant. Longer term, the BALI technology remains a strategic lignin raw material option for Borregaard.

Completion of the new operation is subject to board approval by both companies and conclusion of definitive agreements, as well as final engineering, refinement of capital estimates, and obtaining required permits and other approvals.

"The Fernandina Beach project represents an excellent growth opportunity for our lignin business in a global market which for some time has been supply constrained", says Per A. Sørlie, President and CEO of Borregaard.

"Pursuing this opportunity with the leader in lignin-based chemistry significantly enhances the prospects for success while reducing operational and market-based risk," says RYAM CEO Paul Boynton.

2018-06-29 
Sofidel CEO Luigi Lazzareschi presented the most recent group’s investment in the US at the 2018 Selectusa Summit

The speech has taken place before a wide public composed by institutions and international economic players.

Last Friday in Washington D.C., Sofidel’s most recent greenfield investment in the United States has been presented as part of the SelectUSA Investment Summit, the most important event for the promotion of direct foreign investments in the US. The investment will lead to the opening of a new large manufacturing plant in Inola, Oklahoma within two years.

During the final session, promoted by the Secretary of Commerce of the Federal Government Wilbur Ross and aimed at showcasing the foreign investments generated in the last year by the program, Luigi Lazzareschi has been the only entrepreneur on the stage, being introduced by the Governor of Oklahoma Mary Fallin with a thankful speech for Sofidel’s investment in Inola, that has been recognized as a rural economic development success story.

A first-class value stage, before a wide audience of institutional representatives and international economic players, that have been made aware of the new investment that Sofidel launched in March to further expand its business in the United States.

In Inola, about 30 miles from the city of Tulsa, Sofidel will build a new integrated plant combined with the installation of two paper machines for a total production capacity of 120,000 tons per year and with the related converting lines for the finished product (toilet paper and paper towels). The manufacturing plant is expected to start running by the end of 2020. The investment will amount to $ 360 million over three years (2018-2019-2020), resulting in a plant that will combine a focus on sustainability with technological innovation.

2018-06-29 
Mondi supports e-commerce growth with the upcoming launch of its latest corrugated packaging solution in Russia

According to recent statistics, the Russian e-commerce market is expected to grow to 21.82 billion US dollars by 2020.[1]

2018-06-28 
Stora Enso evaluates development opportunities at its Oulu Mill in Finland

Stora Enso has started a feasibility study and an environmental impact assessment (EIA) for a possible investment in Oulu.

2018-06-28 
More volume and less fiber for tissue converters with Gambini

As a member of the Tissue Italy network, Gambini has open its doors to welcome customers during It’s Tissue 2018 and present live demonstrations of the combined Airmill and Touchmax concepts.

2018-06-27 
What's next at Toscotec?

During It’s Tissue 2018, the Lucca-based tissue making expert Toscotec is presenting its ambitions and actual realizations in terms of process, energy savings and services.

2018-06-27 
Another milestone for Valmet IQ Fiber with installation at Irving Tissue

May 2018 saw the installation of the 200th Valmet IQ Fiber Measurement Sensor on Irving Tissue’s tissue machine #1 in Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada.

2018-06-27 
Impressive digital journey at Fabio Perini's open house during It's Tissue

Everything is made to impress customers visiting Fabio Perini during It’s Tissue 2018. And it does.

2018-06-26 
Dimona WLM1: Voith and Trützschler make the efficient manufacture of eco-friendly nonwovens a possibility

• Production of nonwovens from renewable cellulose
and from 100% biodegradable products
• Consistent sheet formation for high-quality end products

2018-06-26 
Andritz to acquire Xerium Technologies, Inc.

Andritz AG headquartered in Graz, Austria, announces that it has signed a merger agreement to acquire Xerium Technologies, Inc., headquartered in Youngsville, North Carolina, USA.

2018-06-26 
A new president for Pro Carton

At the Pro Carton AGM on 8th June 2018 Roland Rex formally stood down as President of the association after eight years in the role and Horst Bittermann was duly elected as his replacement.

2018-06-25 
A.Celli Paper and Blue Tissue team up to design a turnkey tissue plant

A.Celli Paper is delighted to confirm its collaboration with the Mexican group for the supply of a complete turnkey tissue plant.

2018-06-25 
Valmet signs long-term mill maintenance services agreement with Asia Symbol in China

Valmet and Asia Symbol (Shandong) Pulp and Paper Co., Ltd. have signed an agreement for the maintenance services for the company’s board machines and pulp mill in China.

"Valmet manufactured the main equipment in our mill, and we are looking forward to good cooperation with Valmet in the next few years. Valmet’s maintenance services combine its daily maintenance expertise with support from product, process, and automation specialists worldwide. Professional people can do professional things - we believe that !" says Wang Bo, Mill Director of Asia Symbol Pulp and Paper.

"This is Valmet’s first maintenance outsourcing order in China, and it shows the trend of mill maintenance services as well. This customer is showing strong trust in Valmet’s professionalism by choosing us to supply their maintenance services. Valmet’s services team will help the mill to improve performance and product quality while lowering costs and risks," says Jiang Bo, Senior Manager, Maintenance Outsourcing and Agreement Management, Services business line, China, Valmet.

Valmet will provide maintenance services and maintenance development for the board machines and the pulp mill, including chip handling, fiber lines, pulp dryers, recovery boilers, evaporation, and recausticizing, as well as a power plant, chemical plant and water treatment facility. Valmet will be responsible for the leadership, management and development of the mill’s maintenance.

2018-06-25 
Expanded Östrand pulp mill in operation

Production at the expanded Östrand pulp mill began according to plan during the midsummer holiday (i.e. this weekend). SCA is investing SEK 7.8bn in the operation and the project is on budget and schedule.

SCA decided in 2015 to invest in an increased production capacity at the Östrand pulp mill – from 430,000 tonnes to about 900,000 tonnes of bleached softwood kraft pulp (NBSK). Following an extended maintenance stop, which began in April of this year, the expanded pulp mill is now in operation. 

Production capacity in the expanded pulp mill is expected to increase successively during 2018 and 2019. 2020 is therefore expected to be the first year with full production, corresponding to 900,000 tonnes. 

“Just over 1,000 days after starting the project on August 28, 2015, after a great effort from all involved to deliver the project according to the plan, the new plant is in operation ”, says Project Director Ingela Ekebro. “Our focus now is on calibrating the plant to quickly achieve full production and high product quality.”

“We are in the process of completing one of the largest and most important industrial investments in Sweden,” says Ulf Larsson, President and CEO. “Östrand will be one of the most competitive and environmentally sound mills for northern bleached softwood kraft pulp in the world. The investment will help us to meet growing demand in a strong pulp market.”

2018-06-25 
Ence begins the assembly of the boiler of its new 40 MW plant in Huelva

Ence-Energía y Celulosa started the assembly of the boiler of its new 40 MW plant in Huelva yesterday, with the first pillar and the frame of its metal structures set up. The process of assembling the structure begins hours after GBS, responsible of the production of the components of the boiler, made a new delivery of parts in the energy complex, which contained the modules of the pressure parts of the boiler.

The assembly process of the pieces will be carried out by sections of ten meters, forming plants from the base, on the pillars of the foundation slab. The execution times of the construction project of the new plant, which the company is fulfilling at a good pace, require that the delivery of new components of the boiler be produced as the assembly work progresses.

On June 9, Ence received a first delivery of the components of the boiler, which included the walls of the modules and the tying beams of the same, fundamental elements to ensure this structure the necessary rigidity for its operation. Until the start of the assembly work yesterday, these were stored in the facilities of the Huelva energy complex.

A boiler for the future of biomass generation

The boiler is one of the most important components of the plant, since the combustion process of the agroforestry biomass for the generation of energy will take place inside it. To ensure that this main player in the process of generating energy with biomass develops the maximum respect for the environment, Ence will provide this infrastructure with the best available technologies. Thus, it will incorporate a filter of sleeves and modern systems that will guarantee an optimum combustion of the biomass in its interior and an adequate environmental behavior.

The construction process of the new plant, which will have a production capacity of 40 MW and an installed capacity of 110 MWt, will be developed until the end of 2019, when the new boiler will be operational. This will have an estimated annual production of 260,000,000 kWh per year, considering the 6,500 potential hours of operation.

2018-06-25 
Ilim Group Management and Irkutsk Oblast Governor Launch the Big Ust-Ilimsk project

Earlier today Ilim Group Chairman Zakhar Smushkin and Irkutsk Oblast Governor Sergey Levchenko took part in the official launch of the integrated investment project Big Ust-Ilimsk at Ilim’s Mill in Ust-Ilimsk.

The Big Ust-Ilimsk project includes construction of a new line for production of kraftliner and other packaging materials with a capacity of 600 thousand tons per year. Total investments in the project will be around USD 1 billion with implementation to be completed by the end of 2021. The Company will also perform a large-scale upgrade of the existing operations in order to increase pulp output by 130 thousand tons per year.

Project implementation will drive the Mill capacity up to 1.5 million tons of finished products per year with an initially installed capacity of 550 thousand tons per year. The Ust-Ilimsk Mill will thus become one of the leading pulp and paper manufacturers in the world. Ilim Group is currently preparing a set of documents required to classify the Big Ust-Ilimsk as a priority investment project in terms of forest management.

“We consistently build our production development strategy with a focus on market demand, said Zakhar Smushkin, and our new investment project will allow us to produce the products which the market needs. Our investment project perfectly fits one of the key goals set forth by the President of the Russian Federation for the domestic industry, that is boosting of non-commodity exports. Meanwhile, such large-scale projects involve not only production but also social investments. The launch of the new KLB line will create 600 new jobs. Therefore, implementation of this project should be linked with a comprehensive development of the infrastructure in the region. We are working together with the Irkutsk Oblast Government to resolve this issue”.

Ilim Group CEO Kseniia Sosnina said : “The Big Bratsk project drove a step change in softwood pulp output volumes while the delivery of the Big Koryazhma project resulted in higher production volumes of high-quality white papers. Delivery of the Big Ust-Ilimsk project will help us to reinforce our presence in the packaging segment, primarily in the growing Asian markets. Upon completion of the project in Ust-Ilimsk and upgrade of the Bratsk Mill, Ilim will become one of the largest manufacturers of unbleached packaging materials globally with a total board output of 1.5 million tons per year, bringing an aggregate production output of Ilim Group to over 4.3 million tons per year”.

“This is an example of a robust partnership between the community and a large industrial company. And a forestry company at that.” - emphasized Irkutsk Oblast Governor Sergey Levchenko. “This partnership has already delivered its results : a new training center, a woodyard, and a sports center which is currently under construction. And last but not least, implementation of a large-scale Big Ust-Ilimsk project is now underway. In a few years, there will be a new modern mill, new jobs, and higher production volumes. Big Ust-Ilimsk also involves a big joint effort to develop the social and transport infrastructure, and therefore improve the quality of life for the Ust-Ilimsk community.”

2018-06-22 
Glatfelter to acquire Georgia-Pacific’s European nonwovens business for $185 million

Glatfelter, a global supplier of specialty papers and engineered materials, today announced it has signed a definitive agreement to purchase Georgia-Pacific’s European nonwovens business (the “Business”) for $185 million, subject to customary purchase price adjustments.

The proposed transaction includes Georgia-Pacific’s operations located in Steinfurt, Germany, along with sales offices located in France and Italy. The Steinfurt facility produces high-quality airlaid products for the table-top, wipes, hygiene, food pad, and other nonwoven materials markets, competing in the marketplace with nonwoven technologies and substrates, as well as other materials focused primarily on consumer based end-use applications. The Steinfurt facility is a state-of-the-art, 32,000-metric-ton-capacity manufacturing facility that employs approximately 220 people.

“Glatfelter’s agreement to acquire the European nonwovens business demonstrates our commitment to building leading positions in global growth markets for engineered materials,” said Dante C. Parrini, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Glatfelter. “Steinfurt’s products and technologies complement our current airlaid business very well and the acquisition provides synergistic capacity increase opportunities and an improved cost structure to support our ability to serve customers in growing consumer and industrial markets. From a financial perspective, the investment provides an attractive return on capital, is immediately accretive and will deliver attractive EBITDA margins in a growing market.”

In 2017, the Business generated net sales of $99 million and EBITDA of $18 million. The Company expects to realize synergies in excess of approximately $6 million per year within three years, and expects to incur one-time costs of approximately $7 million for transaction fees and integration.

Glatfelter plans to finance the acquisition through a combination of cash on hand and borrowing under its existing revolving credit facility.

The proposed transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including receipt of required regulatory approvals. Credit Suisse acted as the financial advisor in connection with the transaction, and Shearman & Sterling LLP as legal advisor. The closing is expected to occur during the fourth quarter.

2018-06-22 
Buckman introduces Echowise™ at Zellcheming-Expo 2018

Buckman, a global company that specializes in innovative chemical and smart solutions for the pulp and paper industry, will introduce ECHOWISE™, its newest non-invasive technology, at Zellcheming-Expo 2018 in Frankfurt, Germany. From 26 to 28 June, many of Buckman’s global experts will be on-hand at the show to discuss the company’s groundbreaking solutions for the pulp and paper industry.

Included in the group is Mark Conyngham who will discuss Buckman’s focus on developing industry-leading chemistries that can be used seamlessly with Buckman’s problem-solving expertise and smart technology, like ECHOWISE. In addition, Rosy Covarrubias, Buckman’s Global Technology Director for Packaging, will discuss the benefits of Buckman’s third generation Maximyze®, and Stefan Pohl, Tissue Industry Technology Manager, will talk about Buckman’s full line of Yankee creping chemicals for Yankee cylinder protection.

Please visit Buckman’s booth F49 at Zellcheming to learn more about its innovative chemistries, like Vybrant® enzymatic bleaching technologies, Busperse® calcium stabilization technology, tissue softeners and more.

2018-06-21 

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