The American Forest & Paper Association has released its September 2012 U.S. Paperboard Report.
Total boxboard production decreased by 2.1 percent compared to September 2011 and decreased 6.9 percent from last month. Unbleached Kraft Boxboard production increased over the same month last year but decreased compared to last month. Total Solid Bleached Boxboard & Liner production decreased compared to September 2011 and decreased compared to last month. The production of Recycled Boxboard increased compared to September 2011 but decreased when compared to last month.
Xerox announced today third-quarter 2012 adjusted earnings per share of 25 cents, which excludes 4 cents related to the amortization of intangibles, resulting in GAAP earnings of 21 cents per share.
In the third quarter, total revenue of $5.4 billion was down 3 percent or down 1 percent in constant currency.
Revenue from the company’s services business was up 6 percent in constant currency, partially offsetting a 7 percent constant currency decline in technology revenue, which represents the sale of document systems, supplies, technical service and financing of products.
During the third quarter, upfront investments in new services contracts as well as the impact of government budgetary pressures on existing contracts led to an 8.6 percent operating margin, down 1 point from third-quarter 2011. Gross margin was 31 percent, and selling, administrative and general expenses were 19.4 percent of revenue.
“Our third-quarter performance aligns with shifts in our business as services become a larger proportion of our revenue, and reflects the dynamics of a challenging economy that is creating cost pressures for large enterprises and governments,” said Ursula Burns, Xerox chairman and chief executive officer.
Stora Enso will examine the possibility of selling Corbehem Paper Mill in France. The annual capacity of the mill is 330 000 tonnes of light-weight coated magazine paper. Employee organisations and other stakeholders will be fully involved in any process in compliance with the French regulations.
•Operational EBIT EUR 34 million higher than in Q2 2012 at EUR 175 (EUR 141) million mainly due to lower costs, EUR 50 million lower year-on-year.
•Cash flow from operations EUR 312 (EUR 362) million and liquidity EUR 1 700 (EUR 1 181) million.
•Ratio of net debt to the last twelve months’ operational EBITDA 2.8 (2.7 in Q2 2012).
•New packaging joint-venture to be established in Pakistan.
•New profitability improvement actions planned across all Business Areas, estimated annual cost savings EUR 36 million and 520 employees affected.
•Q4 2012 sales expected to be at roughly similar level and operational EBIT in line with or slightly lower than Q3 2012.
Stora Enso plans restructuring of its operations through the permanent shutdown of paper machine 1 at Hylte Mill in Sweden and the permanent closure of the corrugated packaging plant at Ruovesi in Finland. In addition, Stora Enso plans efficiency improvements at several other mills. The profitability improvement actions are planned to reduce annual costs by EUR 36 million and reduce the number of employees by approximately 520 altogether. Stora Enso will record a restructuring provision and a fixed asset and working capital write-down as non-recurring items totalling approximately EUR 42 million related to the restructuring plans in the fourth quarter 2012 operating profit.
Stora Enso plans the permanent shutdown of paper machine (PM) 1 at Hylte Mill in Sweden with annual capacity 180 000 tonnes of newsprint by the end of the fourth quarter of 2012 due to structural weakening of newsprint demand in Europe. The planned closure and other efficiency improvements would affect approximately 140 employees at Hylte Mill.
Stora Enso plans permanent closure of the corrugated packaging plant at Ruovesi in Finland in the second quarter of 2013 due to decreased demand for offset-printed corrugated packaging in Finland and poor financial performance of the plant. Stora Enso plans to serve Finnish offset customers through its other offset plants in Europe. The planned closure would affect approximately 60 employees at Ruovesi.
It is also planned to streamline operations at the Heinola, Ingerois and Pori board plants in Finland and corrugated packaging operations at all the Swedish units to ensure long-term competitiveness. The plans would reduce the number of employees in Sweden and Finland by up to 100 altogether mostly by the end of the third quarter of 2013.
In addition, Stora Enso plans the permanent shutdown of board machine (BM) 2 at Ostroleka Mill in Poland as announced earlier. BM 2 is reaching the end of its technical lifetime. The shutdown of BM 2 and related technical functions is planned by the end of 2012. Including the effects of an overall review of Polish board and converting operations, the number of employees in Poland would decrease by up to 135 altogether.
The end of September marked the inauguration of the new recovery boiler at Iggesund Mill in Sweden. The €240 million investment is decisive for the mill’s future development. In about six months’ time the company will see the results of yet another huge investment in a mill – a biofuel boiler costing €123 million. At one stroke, this will enable Iggesund’s board mill in Workington, England, to operate without fossil carbon emissions and solely on biomass.
“For us the investments mean that we should be able to stabilise our energy costs,” explains Guy Mallinson, Sales Director at Iggesund Paperboard. “When both politicians and industry organisations emphasise strongly that reduced fossil carbon emissions are the way of the future, it’s a wise idea to listen.
“We know that our product portfolio, both from Iggesund and Workington, will now belong to a small, exclusive group of paperboard products whose manufacture involves extremely small amounts of fossil carbon emissions.”
Iggesund’s goal is to totally eliminate the use of fossil fuels in its own production process. However, this is not the same as having a zero carbon footprint because a number of the company’s input goods, primarily cooking chemicals and latex, are made with relatively high carbon emissions.
Resolute Forest Products has confirmed there will be a two-week shutdown at the local mill starting Sunday (Oct. 28).
“Due to challenging market conditions, both paper production and kraft pulp production at the Fort Frances mill will be temporarily down from Oct. 28 until Nov. 11,” company spokesperson Seth Kursman said in an e-mail to the Times yesterday.
“This temporary downtime impacts approximately 6,900 metric tons of paper production and approximately 6,000 metric tons of pulp production,” he noted.
In related news, the Boise Inc. paper mill in International Falls stopped regular pulp purchases from the Fort Frances mill as of this month and began using pulp from its Wallula, Wash. mill, public affairs manager Lori Lyman told the Times in an e-mail Friday.
She added the change allows Boise Inc. to improve the efficiencies of both its mills in International Falls and Washington, and ensures the company can continue to satisfy its customer commitments.
Crude dropped below $88 a barrel to the lowest in almost three months in New York while London’s Brent futures fell for a sixth session as companies missed sales forecasts leading to concern about the global economic outlook.
Futures for December delivery tumbled as much as 1.6 percent. Brent fell as much as 0.9 percent to the least since Oct 4. Companies such as Posco, Asia’s third-largest steelmaker, and Faurecia, Europe’s largest maker of car interiors, revised down estimates. The Keystone oil pipeline won’t resume full deliveries until next month after a halt.
“There is a correlation between the equity markets and the oil price,” Michael Hewson, a London-based analyst at CMC Markets, said today by phone. “We’ve had various companies missing price forecasts and these concerns about the future outlook for earnings is keeping a lid on oil prices.”
Crude lost $1.18 to $87.60 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange as of 12:52 p.m. in London. Front-month futures are at the cheapest on an intraday basis since Aug. 3. The November contract fell 1.5 percent yesterday to $88.73, the lowest close since Oct. 3.
The United Steelworkers (USW) today said that workers ratified an agreement this week to integrate about 1,400 workers at 18 former Temple-Inland box plants into the union's master economic agreement with International Paper (IP), with 90% of the ballots cast in favor of the contract.
Overall, the union represents about 4,000 workers at 61 IP box plants, along with some 6,000 hourly employees at 19 IP paper mills. This was the second recent negotiation at IP, where a month ago an agreement to integrate former Temple-Inland mills into the IP master was ratified by nearly the same margin, bringing a total of 80 sites represented by 90 local unions into the IP master agreements.
USW International President Leo W. Gerard credited membership solidarity and shop floor activism at and between the plants for the successful integration of the Temple-Inland locals into the IP system, which began earlier this year when IP purchased its former competitor.
"Especially when bargaining with huge corporations like IP, our members understand that standing together in unity to fight for a fair contract gives us power at the bargaining table," Gerard said.
USW International Secretary-Treasurer Stan Johnson, who chairs the union's IP council, said that integrating workers from Temple-Inland, where pay, benefits and other conditions varied widely by location, into IP's more uniform structure presented a unique challenge in negotiations.
Active Interest Media has announced rate base increases for two of its publications, effective in Jan. 2013. Yoga Journal’s rate base will increase to 375,000 from350,000, and Vegetarian Times' will increase to 315,000 from 300,000. This is the second recent increase for Vegetarian Times—in January 2012, the magazine’s rate base increased from 275,000 to 300,000 from the year prior.
Attributing the increase to the rising trend of consumer interest in healthy living, Bill Harper, vice president and publisher for AIM’s Healthy Living Group says the magazines also “both have loyal and long-term subscribers.” While Harper points out that both of the publications “underlying markets” are growing, only Vegetarian Times, up 9.75% over 2011, has experienced an equally healthy growth in ad pages.Yoga Journal is down 2.89% over last year according to min’s November boxscores.
Oil rose from a two-week low in New York on speculation last week’s losses were excessive. TransCanada Corp. planned to start its Keystone pipeline today after a second delay.
Futures climbed as much as 0.7 percent after falling the most in two weeks on Oct. 19. Prices also advanced after the White House denied a New York Times report that administration officials agreed to one-on-one talks with Iran’s government over its nuclear program. TransCanada originally planned to resume operations Oct. 20 on the line that runs from Alberta to the main U.S. oil-storage hub in Cushing, Oklahoma.
“I would expect a small rebound after heavy losses on Friday, given continued supply risks,” said Carsten Fritsch, an analyst at Commerzbank AG in Frankfurt. Geopolitical tensions in the Middle East and delays in loadings of North Sea Forties crude lent some support to prices, he said.
Crude for November delivery rose as much as 65 cents to $90.70 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange and was at $90.58 at 11:04 a.m. in London. Oil fell 2.2 percent on Oct. 19 to $90.05, the lowest close since Oct. 8.
Continuing operations July-September 2012 compared with July-September 2011
•Net sales EUR 391.7 million (EUR 389.7 million).
•Operating profit EUR 9.4 million (EUR -17.3 million).
•Operating profit excluding non-recurring items EUR 9.3 million (EUR 8.0 million).
•Operating margin excluding non-recurring items 2.4% (2.0%).
•Profit before taxes EUR 0.3 million (EUR -24.4 million).
•Earnings per share EUR -0.16 (EUR -0.47).
July-September 2012 highlights
•Ahlstrom continued to focus its business and announced the demerger of the Label and Processing business area, which will be combined with Munksjö AB to form a new global leader in specialty papers.
•Consistent with the company's growth strategy Ahlstrom announced the acquisition of Munktell Filter AB, which will further strengthen the company's offering in advanced filtration business, particularly in life science and laboratory applications.
Jan Lång, President & CEO
- Combining the Label and Processing business area with Munksjö is a significant step in our strategy execution, allowing us to focus our resources on areas where we see the most attractive growth opportunities. Another recent strategic step is the Munktell acquisition, which is a prime example of our growth ambition. The transaction enables us to broaden our product portfolio and expand our geographical presence.
- We were able to improve our profit margin somewhat in the third quarter, helped by good pricing management despite the weakening market. However, our profit was hurt by the shortfall in sales volumes and adverse currency effects.
Potlatch Corporation today reported financial results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2012.
"We are very pleased with our strong third quarter operating results, which exceeded our expectations. The stronger than anticipated demand for manufactured wood products that began in the first quarter has continued through the third quarter. Our Wood Products segment has now had two consecutive quarters of their highest quarterly operating income in over five years," said Michael Covey, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Potlatch Corporation. "The improved lumber markets are also having a positive effect on prices for our Resource segment, primarily in Idaho. The results from our Resource segment increased in the third quarter due to increased harvest levels related to seasonal factors, along with the improved prices. Our Real Estate segment continues to perform well, having closed 28 sales transactions during the third quarter and 124 on a year-to-date basis," concluded Mr. Covey.
Q3 2012 Financial Summary
• Total consolidated revenues for the quarter were $151.9 million, compared to $152.9 million in Q3 2011 and $117.5 million in Q2 2012.
• Net income for the quarter was $18.6 million, or $0.46 per diluted share, compared to $25.6 million, or $0.63 per diluted share in Q3 2011 and $5.1 million, or $0.13 per diluted share in Q2 2012.
• EBITDDA was $37.0 million for Q3 2012, compared to $44.8 million in Q3 2011 and $22.6 million in Q2 2012.
Gannett Co., Inc. today announced it acquired Rovion, a Boston-based, rich-media advertising company, which is owned by Local Corporation. Rovion's primary product, Ad Composer, includes a self-service technology platform that enables the full development and deployment of rich media and mobile HTML5 ads without requiring coding expertise.
Advertisers and agencies are increasingly demanding mobile rich media ad solutions and self-service ad creation tools, and the Rovion acquisition will enable Gannett's PointRoll, a leading provider of digital marketing solutions and technology, to expand their mobile and self-service platform capabilities.
Rovion will be part of the Gannett Digital organization under PointRoll, with all Gannett divisions leveraging the Rovion platform capabilities.
UPM has received high scores for its climate change disclosure in the Nordic Carbon Disclosure Leadership Index. The index is compiled annually by the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP). UPM was ranked in shared first place in the index with top scores: 98 points out of 100. UPM is featured in the index for the fourth consecutive year.
In the Nordic Carbon Disclosure Leadership Index high scores indicate good internal data management and understanding of climate change related issues affecting the company. The index highlights companies within the Nordic stock exchanges which have displayed the most professional approach to corporate governance in respect of climate change disclosure practices.
As the Biofore company, UPM provides sustainable products made from renewable and recyclable raw materials using low-carbon energy sources. UPM is constantly developing new solutions to respond the growing demand for carbon neutral products and renewable energy sources.
According to Printing Industries of America’s 208 “Print Market Update” survey panelists, printing industry sales have increased by 2.3 percent year-to-date in 2012. By comparison, the U.S. Census Bureau reports year-to-date 2012 shipments on a nominal unadjusted basis declined 2.2 percent. While still a decline, that is an improvement from the first quarter’s 3.9 percent decline.
Since the first quarter of 2011, both our survey panel and the U.S. Census Bureau reported print sales weakening.
For the past few quarters, the majority of industry growth was generated from larger firms. When calculating the percent change in industry sales, Printing Industries of America panel members with more than 100 employees are give a higher weight because these firms generate more than 60 percent of industry sales.
Since the fourth quarter of 2011, there has been a noticeable a trend—larger firms reporting sales growth declining each quarter, from a high of 5.1 percent in the fourth quarter of 2011 to a low of 2.1 percent in the current quarter. This slowdown in sales growth rate for larger firms is the main reason why the panel’s year-to-date sales increase has declined from 2.6 percent last quarter to 2.3 percent this quarter.
2012 is shaping up to be another lousy year for consumer magazines, at least as far as print advertising is concerned. According to the latest quarterly tally from the Publishers Information Bureau, total ad pages fell 8% to 36,059 in the third quarter of this year. That follows similar declines in the first and second quarters of the year; in the first nine months of 2012, ad pages are down 8.6% to 110,843.
Out of 216 titles tracked by PIB, 153 experienced declines in ad pages in the third quarter, including 88 which experienced declines of 10% or more, and 41 which experienced declines of 20% or more.
Women’s interest titles were especially hard hit. In the domestic category, Ladies’ Home Journal fell 33.3% to 155; Martha Stewart Living 32.3% to 153;Good Housekeeping 16% to 277; and Family Circle 12.2% to 299. In women’s lifestyles, Redbook fell 29.5% to 238, while Cosmopolitan slipped 10.8% to 355. In the celebrity category, In Touch Weekly fell 20.9% to 135; Life & Style Weekly 19% to 97; Entertainment Weekly 12.5% to 231; and People 11.7% to 719.Glamour was down 16.7% to 320, and shopping mag Lucky tumbled 27.4% to 214.
Newsweeklies also took their hits, with Time down 15.4% to 244, The Economist down 12.5% to 325, and Newsweek (whose print edition will close at the end of the year) down 9.4% to 165. Among business titles, Entrepreneur slid 15.7% to 171;Bloomberg Businessweek 14.3% to 292; Inc. 12.4% to 146; Fortune 11.7% to 371; and Money 11.4% to 123.
P. H. Glatfelter announced today that it has completed a preliminary assessment of the damage resulting from an October 14th fire at its paper mill in Scaer, France. The fire damaged the electrical system primarily servicing paper machine #3 and certain mill infrastructure. There were no injuries or environmental impact to report. While the initial inspection of the mill’s two paper machines indicates there was no damage, it may take several weeks to restart the machines following the restoration of electrical equipment and completion of clean up activities. Paper machine #4 is expected to be down approximately 3-4 weeks and paper machine #3 approximately 6-8 weeks.
The finishing and shipping operations were not impacted by the incident. Shipment of customer orders resumed within 24 hours and on site inventories are adequate to satisfy orders through mid-November. Given the flexibility of its assets and mill production systems, and available capacity at other Company facilities to meet production needs, the Company expects no interruption in its ability to supply customers.
An assessment of the costs for the impact of inventory loss, equipment damage, and clean up costs is underway. Based on its preliminary assessment, the Company expects no significant financial impact from this incident as it is expected to be covered by insurance, subject to a deductible of $0.5 million. However, there may be an impact to fourth quarter results due to downtime and the timing of recording costs associated with the fire versus recognition of the insurance recovery under the applicable accounting standards.
The Scaer mill produces specialty papers and wet-laid nonwovens on two inclined wire paper machines for the food and beverage markets as well as technical specialty paper grades. Approximately 130 Glatfelter employees work in this mill.
Electronics For Imaging, Inc., a world leader in customer-focused digital printing innovation, today announced its results for the third quarter of 2012.
For the quarter ended September 30, 2012, the Company reported revenue of $154.1 million, up 5% compared to third quarter 2011 revenue of $147.3 million. Third quarter 2012 non-GAAP net income was $13.3 million or $0.28 per diluted share compared to non-GAAP net income of $11.6 million or $0.25 per diluted share for the same period in 2011. GAAP net income was $13.4 million or $0.28 per diluted share, compared to $6.1 million or $0.13 per diluted share for the same period in 2011.
For the nine months ended September 30, 2012, the Company reported revenue of $478.0 million, up 12% year-over-year compared to $428.5 million for the same period in 2011. Non-GAAP net income was $41.7 million or $0.87 per diluted share, compared to non-GAAP net income of $36.4 million or $0.76 per diluted share for the same period in 2011. GAAP net income was $26.7 million or $0.56 per diluted share, compared to GAAP net income of $16.0 million or $0.34 per diluted share for the same period in 2011.
AAA’s Fuel Gage Report as of 10/19/12
National Unleaded Regular:
Current Average - $3.715/gallon
Month Ago Average - $3.854/gallon
Year Ago Average - $3.474/gallon
Highest Recorded Average - $4.114/gallon on 7/17/08
Current Average - $4.131/gallon
Month Ago Average - $4.123/gallon
Year Ago Average - $3.838/gallon
Highest Recorded Average - $4.845/gallon on 7/17/08
Current Exchange Rates as of 10/19/12
American Dollar to Canadian Dollar = 1.012667
American Dollar to Chinese Yuan = 0.159885
American Dollar to Euro = 1.304319
American Dollar to Japanese Yen = 0.012630
American Dollar to Mexican Peso = 0.077734
Oil headed for a second weekly gain in New York after TransCanada (TRP) Corp. shut its Keystone pipeline for repairs, disrupting crude supplies to the U.S. Midwest.
Futures rose as much as 0.2 percent, extending the longest run in more than a decade of daily price moves of less than 25 cents. Crude pared a decline of as much as 1.6 percent yesterday after TransCanada shut the 590,000 barrel-a-day link for three days, saying it found a “small anomaly” in a section running from Missouri to Illinois. Improving U.S. fuel demand is being met by rising local supplies, a government report this week showed. The latest U.S. growth data were mixed.
“The macro-economic side is not showing big enough figures to pull the market up significantly,” Thina Saltvedt, an analyst at Nordea Bank AB, said by telephone from Oslo. “Any move upwards will be driven by the political risk increasing or further supply disruptions such as the pipeline in the U.S. having to close for three days.”
Crude for November delivery was little changed at $92.09 a barrel, in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange at 12:09 p.m. London time.
Over the course of their discussions on the future direction of Gruner + Jahr, Bertelsmann and the Jahr holding have arrived at a mutual agreement that they will continue to jointly develop Europe's largest magazine publishing house going forward. The proportion of shares in the Gruner + Jahr AG & Co KG will remain unchanged.
Thomas Rabe, Bertelsmann's CEO, said: “Bertelsmann will continue its over 40 years of successful cooperation with the Jahr family. We will expand G+J’s strong position in the media business, promote the digitization of its content and brands, and provide the necessary resources. Bertelsmann remains committed to quality journalism as a core business.”
Winfried Steeger, Managing Director of Jahr Holding GmbH & Co. KG, says: “In our intensive and constructive talks with Bertelsmann, we came to the conclusion that the challenges ahead for G+J can best be mastered together. Both partners have known the publishing house for a long time, trust each other, and will lead G+J into a good and successful future.”
MeadWestvaco Corporation, a global leader in packaging and packaging solutions today announced a definitive agreement with Mr. Alibhai Nathani and family to purchase Ruby Macons Limited (“Ruby Macons”), India’s top producer of corrugated packaging materials and a leader in the country’s growing industrial packaging industry. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
“The acquisition of Ruby Macons extends our participation in India, strengthening our presence in a market that we have targeted for profitable growth,” said John A. Luke, Jr., chairman and chief executive officer, MWV. “The Nathani family and the Ruby Macons leadership team have built a very successful business and established a best-in-class operation that boasts advantaged operational and technical leadership, strong brand awareness and reputation among converters and brand owners, a highly efficient capital model and an advantaged geographic location within India in Vapi, Gujarat. The addition of Ruby Macons boosts our ability to grow profitably in India by bringing their leading local position and capabilities in packaging materials together with our global expertise and innovation capabilities.”
“We are pleased to welcome Ruby Macons to the MWV family and are very excited about the profitable growth opportunities this acquisition creates,” concluded Luke.
Ruby Macons is the market leader in corrugated packaging materials in India, producing greater than 150,000 tons annually with significant capacity expansion underway. Founded and managed by the Nathani family since 1986, Ruby Macons’ revenues were approximately $80 million over the last 12 months with double digit operating margins and strong return on capital. The company has achieved greater than 20 percent average growth over the last several years and is poised for significant future profitable growth through the expansion plans underway.
Saying that "we have reached a tipping point at which we can most efficiently and effectively reach our readers in all-digital format," editor Tina Brown announced this morning that Newsweek's Dec. 31 issue will be its last print edition.
Going forward, she said: "Newsweek will expand its rapidly growing tablet and online presence, as well as its successful global partnerships and events business.
"Newsweek Global, as the all-digital publication will be named, will be a single, worldwide edition targeted for a highly mobile, opinion-leading audience who want to learn about world events in a sophisticated context. Newsweek Global will be supported by paid subscription and will be available through e-readers for both tablet and the Web, with select content available on The Daily Beast."
Brown closes by saying: "Exiting print is an extremely difficult moment for all of us who love the romance of print and the unique weekly camaraderie of those hectic hours before the close on Friday night. But as we head for the 80th anniversary of Newsweek next year we must sustain the journalism that gives the magazine its purpose—and embrace the all-digital future."
It was just two years ago that entrepreneur Sidney Harman bought Newsweek from The Washington Post Co. at effectively no cost. It was then merged with The Daily Beast. As news analyst James Fallows told NPR at the time, news magazines "were invented to fill a need that no longer exists — to try to connect readers across the country who didn't have access to good, daily newspapers."
The cash-strapped U.S. Postal Service has reached its $15 billion debt limit as capped by Congress and is barred from borrowing more.
The Postal Service hit the cap on Sept. 28, a spokesman confirmed, reinforcing the fact that its cash reserves are running dangerously low.
To run its business, the Postal Service can only borrow money from the U.S. Treasury, as opposed to private banks. Congress has barred the Treasury from lending it more than $15 billion at one time.
With people cutting back on snail mail, the post office has faced a survival crisis in recent years. If Congress doesn't act soon, the service could face insolvency this spring.
"Our liquidity concerns are ongoing now, and especially as we get into the second half of the current fiscal year," said David Partenheimer, a spokesman for the Postal Service. The crunch time could kick in sometime between next April through the end of September 2013.
The Postal Service has been borrowing billions of dollars from taxpayers in recent years to make up shortfalls caused by declining mail volumes and a 2006 congressional mandate to prefund retirement health care benefits. It reported a $5.2 billion loss for the quarter ended June 30.
The agency will have enough money to keep running and pay its employees and contractors for a few months due to the influx of election mail and holiday season mail.
The expansion of UPM Kymi mill’s converting department has now been concluded, and the production of coated fine paper sheets has started. The new sheeting line was taken into use 25 September and the first sheets have already been delivered to customers.
The aim of the new sheeting line is to serve UPM’s customers in close-by markets faster, better and more flexibly than before, and to support the production efficiency of the integrated mill site. The investment has also positive employment effects since the new sheeting line has created 24 new jobs.
“Our customers value consistent quality, therefore the quality and the interchangeability with UPM Nordland paper mill’s products is crucial for Kymi mill’s new sheeting production. Also the wrapping is of great importance; it has to protect the paper during handling and transportation,” commented Matti Laaksonen, Production Director, UPM Kymi paper mill.
The product portfolio consists of UPM Finesse gloss, premium silk and silk in 90-150 g/m2. The coated UPM Finesse fine paper sheets are excellent for various graphic printing purposes, such as magazines, prestigious catalogues and advertising materials.
Sonoco, one of the largest diversified global packaging companies, today reported financial results for its 2012 third quarter, ending September 30, 2012.
Third Quarter Highlights
•Third quarter 2012 GAAP earnings per diluted share were $.57, compared with $.76 in 2011.
•Third quarter 2012 GAAP results include a $.02 per diluted share net benefit stemming from gains on the sale of previously closed facilities and insurance recoveries, partially offset by charges related to previously announced restructuring activities. Third quarter 2011 GAAP results included a $.10 per diluted share gain from a net release of valuation allowances on deferred tax assets, partially offset by restructuring charges and acquisition expenses.
•Base net income attributable to Sonoco (base earnings) for third quarter 2012 was $.55 per diluted share, compared with $.66 in 2011. (See base earnings definition and reconciliation later in this release.) Sonoco previously provided reduced third quarter base earnings guidance of $.51 to $.53 per diluted share.
•Third quarter 2012 net sales were a record $1.20 billion, up 6 percent, compared with $1.12 billion in 2011.
Crown Holdings, Inc. today announced its financial results for the third quarter ended September 30, 2012.
Third Quarter Highlights: •Income per diluted share $2.20; Before Certain Items $1.00 •Global beverage can volumes up 5% •Beverage can production begins at new plant in Heshan, China
Net sales in the third quarter were $2,302 million compared to $2,423 million in the third quarter of 2011 and reflect a decrease of $106 million due to unfavorable currency translation.
Third quarter gross profit was $369 million compared to $396 million in the 2011 third quarter, reflecting $16 million of unfavorable foreign currency translation.
Positive growth in Asia, Latin America, Oceania and the Middle East allowed global paper and board production to reach a new record level of 399 million metric tonnes in 2011, despite declining production in North America, Europe and Africa, according to the 2012 Annual Review of Global Pulp & Paper Statistics published by RISI.
"For the third year in a row, China took the top spot for both demand and production of total paper and board, with the US remaining in second place. China accounted for 24% of world demand and 25% of global production of total paper and board in 2011," said Kevin Conley, Senior Economist of World Graphic Paper at RISI.
"In terms of pulp production, however, the United States remained the top pulp producing country in the world with 49.7 million metric tonnes in 2011. China came in second producing 19.5 million metric tonnes," Conley added.
Most consumers will take a conservative approach with their holiday gift-giving budgets, according to NRF’s holiday consumer spending survey conducted by BIGinsight. The average holiday shopper will spend $749.51 on gifts, décor, greeting cards and more, up slightly from the $740.57 they spent last year. NRF forecasts that holiday sales will increase 4.1% to $586.1 billion.
According to the survey, consumers will spend a considerable amount of time in stores and online this year looking for the best deal. Nearly two-thirds (65.3%) will shop at discount stores and more than half (57.8%) will shop at department stores. Clothing stores (36.2%), electronics stores (31.8%) and specialty stores (16.7%) will be popular with holiday shoppers as well. Grocery stores will also see increased foot traffic – 51.8% will shop at a grocery store for holiday items, up from 48.8% last year.
While the tipping point was predicted a few years ago, 2012 is the year. For the first time, half of Forbes, Inc.’s revenues will come from its digital businesses, according to Meredith Levien, the business media company’s chief revenue officer.
In a conversation at the American Magazine Conference, Levien was quick to point out that this proportional increase isn’t a result of shrinkage on the print side. Forbes' print revenues are also up, thanks to a 12.5% increase in ad pages in the first nine months of the year, per the Publishers Information Bureau.
That compares favorably with rivals in the business category like Fortune, down 2.4% in the same period; Inc., down 6%; and Money, down 6.4%. (For the magazine business as a whole, ad pages are down 8.6% in the first three quarters.)
Forbes’ digital revenues are up 27% through the month of August.
The U.S. Postal Service will test same-delivery of products from selected e-retailers, according to a recent filing with the Postal Regulatory Commission. The test of the Metro Post will take place in an undisclosed metropolitan area, start around Nov. 12 and could last a year or more.
To receive same-day deliveries, consumers would have to make purchases from participating online retailers between 2 p.m. and 3 p.m., with USPS personnel picking up the packages after 3 p.m., the filing says. Delivery to consumers will take place between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. The filing says the postal service plans to deliver no more than 200 packages a day during the “initial period of the market test.” The USPS did not name the retailers that would participate.
Nor did the filing disclose pricing, but it did note that the charge would be more than $2.70, or six times the price of a first-class stamp, which is 45 cents. The filing also stated, “The prices offered by competitors for same-day delivery typically fall within the price range that the Postal Service intends to test.”
Despite the pains Mary Berner, the MPA’s new CEO, took to defend magazines' place in the content hierarchy, speakers on day two of the American Magazine Conference (AMC) offered a grim future for print.
One of the first speakers of the day—Ben Horowitz, technology entrepreneur and co-founder of venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz—suggested that print will likely vanish completely as today’s younger consumers become the dominant generation.
“Babies born now will never read anything in print,” he told the audience of publishing executives. “At the same time, people in their 40s and 50s will never stop reading print.”
“Face the reality that print will eventually go away," he added.
Horowitz, who was being interviewed by Norman Pearlstine, chief content officer for Bloomberg LP and chairman of Bloomberg Businessweek, said that older audiences are passing away and people born in 2012 and beyond, will never be print enthusiasts, essentially cementing the end of an era.
“There is going to be a new business for us,” said Horowitz. “Anytime you change businesses, or go into the innovation business, the horrifying thing about it is you think you’re right but you don’t really know—you may well fail.”
Due to the extreme rate of change, Horowitz said, there is a great deal of room for innovation, something the media industry is just beginning to grapple with, since, he says, there hasn’t been a large change in print media since the introduction of the printing press.
CROWN Beverage Packaging North America, a business unit of Crown Holdings, Inc., received the ‘Most Cantacular Award’ for 2012, from Sly Fox Brewing Co., of Pottstown, PA. The award salutes the companies, people and places that help advance the packaging of craft beer in cans and was presented at the Sly Fox Brewing Company’s Can Jam festival.
“As craft brewing continues to expand in the United States, so do the opportunities brands have to use packaging to stand out on the shelf,” said Brian O’Reilly, Brewmaster, Sly Fox Brewing Company. “Cans enhance the quality of beer, and they give brewers a chance to differentiate their brand through packaging. Crown has demonstrated enthusiasm and professionalism when it comes to helping breweries convert to cans and leverage the format to create new drinking occasions and help grow sales.”
Sly Fox became the first craft brewery in the Mid-Atlantic region to package its beer in cans in 2006 and the awarding of a Gold Medal to Sly Fox Pikeland Pilsner at the 2007 Great American Beer Festival in Denver marked the first time a GABF medal of any sort was won by a canned craft beer.
Events like Cantacular reflect the craft brewing industry’s increasing awareness of the benefits that metal packaging has to offer. Cans do not shatter, providing better physical protection for the craft beer versus alternative formats, as well as protecting the flavor of the beer by not allowing light or air to enter the package. Cans help protect the integrity of the brand and are also easy to pack, portable, and take up less space than packaging alternatives. In addition, environmentally-conscious shoppers can rest easy, knowing that metal is 100% and infinitely recyclable.
Haynes Publishing is launching its first range of eBooks, and interestingly is bypassing the ‘traditional’ means of selling them such as Amazon and Kobo, opting to sell them independently through its own website, reports The Bookseller.
While the UK-based publisher produces books across a broad range of subjects, it has carved a sizable niche for itself since the 1960s, with its range of illustrated Haynes Manuals aimed specifically at those seeking to do a little bit of DIY car-maintenance.
Now, the company will be coming into the 21st century with a range of titles published in the open eBook standard ePub format, and will see the books landing on iPads, Sony e-readers, Android and other compatible devices.
At launch, available titles will include Bernie Ecclestone biography, Bernie; and Formula 1 title Memories of Senna, though a range of non-fiction titles are available now.
Oil traded close to a one week-high after industrial output and retail sales accelerated last month in China, the world’s second-biggest crude consumer.
West Texas Intermediate futures were little changed after closing at the highest since Oct. 9. China’s industrial production increased 9.2 percent in September and retail sales rose the most since March, the National Bureau of Statistics said in Beijing today. The physical oil market is tight, according to Goldman Sachs Group Inc.
“The China numbers are in line with what people expected, so that’s the good news,” said Andy Sommer, a senior oil analyst at Axpo Trading AG in Dietikon, Switzerland, who predicts Brent crude will trade at $112 a barrel by year-end. “Chinese officials suggested fourth-quarter growth would be better, which is hopeful for demand.”
Crude for November delivery was at $92.01 a barrel, down 11 cents, in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange at 11:34 a.m. London time. The contract closed yesterday at $92.12.
In an email this week, Jack Widener, ABM’s postal counsel, advised that the Postal Service filed price changes for 2013 with the Postal Regulatory Commission, including an overall price increase of 2.56 percent for periodicals. The increase, pending approval, will take effect on Jan. 27. Widener notes that a publication’s actual increase will vary due to the more than 100 rate cells used to determine periodical postage (many cells receive different percentage increases).
Periodicals consist of two subclasses. The first subclass includes Outside County publications (increasing, on average, 2.55 percent), which Widener says most ABM members fall into. The second subclass includes Within County publications (which will report a 2.91 percent increase). To qualify for Within County rates, a publication must publish less than 10,000 copies or have more than 50 percent of its circulation distributed within the county of publication. Within County revenues account for only about $70 million of the $1.8 billion in periodical revenues.
“The Postal Service, in its rate filing to the Postal Regulatory Commission, recognized the value of periodicals to the public,” says Jack Widener. “They went on to say that in spite of being underwater (not covering its costs) the Postal Service was cognizant of periodicals’ value to the public when making its pricing decisions.”
The USPS is encouraging efficiency and containerization. Widener notes that smaller publications have more challenges using containerization, such as pallets, but says “USPS is being sensitive by keeping rate increases within a reasonable level for smaller publications who can’t fully utilize those efficiencies.”
Amazon.com, Inc. today announced “Whispercast for Kindle,” giving schools and business customers a simple, scalable online tool for deploying Kindle devices and Kindle content. Whispercast provides a single access point to easily purchase and distribute Kindle books and documents for educational, marketing and employee incentive programs across Kindle devices and free Kindle reading applications for iPad, iPhone, Android phones and tablets, PCs and Macs. In the coming months, Whispercast will support distribution of Kindle Fire applications. Whispercast works with Kindle e-readers and Kindle Fire tablets, including the recently announced $69 Kindle, Kindle Paperwhite, Kindle Paperwhite 3G, Kindle Fire, Kindle Fire HD, Kindle Fire HD 8.9” and Kindle Fire HD 8.9” 4G LTE. To learn more about Whispercast, visit http://whispercast.amazon.com.
“Hundreds of thousands of students around the world are already reading on Kindle,” said Dave Limp, Vice President, Amazon Kindle. “Today, we are announcing Whispercast, a free, scalable solution for school and business administrators to centrally manage thousands of Kindles and wirelessly distribute Kindle books as well as their own documents to their users. Organizations can also design bring-your-own-device programs at school or work using personally-owned Kindles, Kindle Fires, and other tablets using the free Kindle reading applications for receiving content.”
The American Forest & Paper Association released its September 2012 U. S. Containerboard Statistics Report today.
Containerboard production fell 4.8 percent over August 2012 and 2.2 percent compared to same month last year. The month-over-month average daily production decreased 1.6 percent. The containerboard operating rate for September 2012 lost 1.5 points over August 2012, decreasing from 97.5 percent to 96 percent.
The American Forest & Paper Association has released its September 2012 Kraft Paper Sector Report.
Total Kraft paper shipments were approximately 130,100 tons, a decrease of 2.2 percent compared to the prior month. Total inventory was approximately 77,900 tons in September. Unbleached Kraft shipments decreased, but bleached Kraft shipments increased year over year for the eighth month in 2012.
R. R. Donnelley & Sons Company today announced that it has been awarded a $25 million multi-year agreement by Parke-Bell Ltd, Inc. to provide prepress, printing, binding, and logistics services for the company's Touch of Class catalogs. Touch of Class is a leading multi-channel merchant of home décor and furnishings products. The agreement renews and expands the companies' relationship.
"Our customers trust Touch of Class to present a broad array of high quality products that will enhance the beauty, convenience and functionality of each room in their homes, so color reproduction in our catalogs is especially important," said Fred Bell, the company's CEO. "We believe that RR Donnelley's craftsmanship, prepress expertise and logistics resources will deliver exceptional value to Touch of Class as they help us bring our distinctive offering to our customers."
Under the terms of the agreement RR Donnelley will help to drive postage efficiencies for Touch of Class through its co-binding and co-mailing capabilities, both of which are designed to help customers take maximum advantage of the discounts offered by the USPS.
In response to the recent increase in reporting that electronic media is more environmentally friendly than print, Printing Industries of America is fighting back, rebutting these statements, and expanding its efforts to actively promote the value of print.
Now more than ever, it is vital to communicate that printed products are both environmentally and socially responsible. To advance the core message that printing is vital and a sustainable form of communication, Printing Industries of America has developed and provided information and resources to help increase awareness about print.
These tools and resources can be found on this website. Learn more about how Printing Industries of America is championing print by clicking the link.
Japs-Olson Co., one of the country’s leading commercial printing and direct mail production companies, has dramatically expanded its direct mail commingling and mail tracking capabilities. The expansion is part of the company’s postal logistics program designed to help clients reduce their postage costs and improve mail delivery.
Japs-Olson’s commingling postal optimization platform automatically combines multiple direct mail streams into a single mail stream to provide the best postal savings.
“Postage is the single largest cost of any direct mail program and our clients expect us to manage these costs in the most effective manner possible,” said Japs-Olson’s CEO Mike Beddor. “Our expanded postal optimization program will enable more clients to enjoy greater postal savings with greater saturation, enhanced speed-to-market and in-home delivery. We continue to improve our systems in order to track client mail through the postal system to the point of delivery.”
The Eastern Bag and Paper Group said that they have changed the company name and now operate as EBP Supply Solutions.
"The rebranding — which includes the renaming, a new logo and an all-new website, EBPsupply.com — was more than a year in the making," the company said in a statement.
"We evolved our name to better convey the broader scope of our product base and to underscore our dedication to provide a range of unique solutions that help businesses thrive," said Meredith Reuben, CEO of EBP.
The new brand platform reinforces the customer-centric approach that EBP focuses on making supplies work harder, so customers can work smarter. The company not only offers supplies, but delivery, consulting, training, and equipment repair services as well.
The Newark Group today announced its 2020 Sustainability Goals. The goals, part of the company’s sustainability project that began in late 2010, align The Newark Group with AF&PA's Better Practices Better Planet 2020 goal and with the company’s personal objectives.
“The Newark Group was founded on the concept of sustainability so it is only natural that we continue to do our part to align with the goals of the AF&PA as well as live up to our own standards,” said Frank Papa, President and CEO.
“Our commitment to sustainability is unwavering and encompasses not only the sustainability of the environment, but also a commitment to sustainable business practices,” Papa added.
Among the stated goals of The Newark Group are:
a 10% reduction in energy use and Greenhouse Gas Emissions;
a 12% reduction in Water Use; a 15% reduction in Solid Waste and;
a 30% reduction in Incident Rate to lead to improved employee safety.
Boise Inc. announced today it will permanently cease production on the company’s one remaining paper machine (H2) at its St. Helens, Oregon, paper mill. The decision will reduce Boise’s annual uncoated freesheet capacity by almost 60,000 tons and result in a loss of approximately 100 jobs, primarily at the mill.
"This is a difficult but necessary decision to focus our efforts and resources on the products and machines elsewhere in our system that drive the financial performance and cash flow of our paper operations," said Alexander Toeldte, president and chief executive officer of Boise Inc. "Despite the dedication and hard work of our employees, we have concluded the machine cannot compete in the marketplace over the long-term. We thank all of our employees, customers, suppliers, and the community who have supported this operation over so many years. We will work closely with our customers and suppliers to ensure a smooth transition."
The company expects to stop production on the machine by December 31, 2012. Eligible salaried employees will be offered severance packages and outplacement assistance. Negotiations will be scheduled with the Association of Western Pulp and Paper Workers Union (AWPPW) Local 1 to determine the effect for union employees.
Oil traded near the highest level in a week in New York on signs Germany may ease its resistance to a Spanish bailout and after industrial production rose more than forecast in the U.S., the world’s biggest crude consumer.
Futures were little changed after rising as much as 0.7 percent today. Two German lawmakers said the country is open to Spain seeking a precautionary credit line. Output at U.S. factories, mines and utilities rose 0.4 percent in September, twice as much as the median forecast of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News, data from the Federal Reserve in Washington showed yesterday.
“All the measures taken to show some progress in the European debt crisis should improve sentiment for commodities and for crude as well,” said Hannes Loacker, an analyst at Raiffeisen Bank International AG in Vienna, who predicts Brent crude will trade at about $114 a barrel at the end of the year.
Crude for November delivery was at $92.25 a barrel, up 16 cents, in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange at 11:33 a.m. London time.
Last week, SourceMedia’s Health Data Management brand premiered the Healthcare Innovation Center, a virtual experience showcasing the latest products and stories on new healthcare technologies. The Center, simulating virtual games like The Sims, is initially presented as a floor plan of a typical hospital. Visitors can click on any of the eight hospital units (Patient Room, ICU Unit, Emergency Department, Radiology, Surgery, Administration, Medical Records and Data Room) and find fully equipped rooms with cutting-edge products. Users can then click on products to get an overview, read articles, watch videos and more. The resource aims to give Health Data Management’s readers -- senior-level administrators, clinicians and IT staff -- an engrossing yet non-intrusive look into the hospitals of tomorrow.
“As publishers, we have an obligation to our readers to always come up with engaging ways to present content,” says Rob Whitaker, a SourceMedia senior vice president and group publisher. “We wanted an immersive environment that would let our readers ‘experience’ content. Unfortunately, that platform didn’t exist, so we started building it by bringing together the folks who had experience in different areas.”
Stagnito Media has acquired Private Label magazine from E.W. Williams Publications Co. and will marry the magazine with its own Progressive Grocers Store Brands to form a new publication, Private Label Store Brands (PLSB). The newly formed print magazine will take advantage of the trend of more consumers purchasing store brand products.
"With this merger, we'll produce an exciting new publication for the market, one that will appeal to a wider range of retailers and industry suppliers," said Steven Lichtenstein, vice president and group publisher of Stagnito Media, in a video statement. "Store Brands' highly strategic approach will perfectly complement Private Label's statistical and private-based information."
Accompanying the new publication is the creation of the website plstorebrands.com. Stagnito will also up the frequency of its e-newsletter Store Brands Strategies from weekly to daily. Lichtenstein, who will head the entire group, says the new publication will focus on "the why and how" rather than the "who and what," targeting senior-level management, purchasing and merchandising executives. The acquisition also included other Private Label products, including Private Label International and Private Label China.
Pearson, the world’s leading learning company, is announcing today the acquisition of EmbanetCompass from an investor group led by Technology Crossover Ventures and Knowledge Universe, for $650m in cash.
EmbanetCompass partners with leading non-profit colleges and universities in North America to provide fully online learning solutions for more than 100 university programmes. It provides a full range of services including: programme design and development, marketing and student recruitment, faculty training and support, data-driven student retention and learning analytics; student services (counselling, tutoring, mentoring), technology support and launch funding.
Institutional services are one of the fastest growing areas of the US higher education market. Out of 6,700 degree-granting institutions in the US, approximately 175 institutions engage third-party vendors to power online programmes. Of a total post-secondary student population of 22 million, 2.5 million participate in purely online programmes with over 6 million taking at least one online course. Pearson believes the number of students learning online and the number of institutions serving those students will grow rapidly, as academic institutions seek low-risk and cost-effective ways to better serve new and existing customers by boosting student access, affordability, achievement and retention.