Dear Industry Executive: By now, you've heard plenty from us about the dire need for Congress to pass legislation to reform the US Postal Service. Passage of such a bill can potentially improve all aspects of your dealings with the USPS - better rates, service, accountability, and the like. The manager of the Coalition for a 21st Century Postal Service (C21), the mailing industry group of which ACMA is an influential member, wrote an excellent opinion piece in today's edition of The Hill, an objective daily publication that connects the players, defines the issues and influences the way Washington's decision makers view the debates on Capitol Hill. Two Quick & Easy Asks: 1. Share this influential article on social media using the buttons at the top of the op-ed from both your personal and business accounts if possible. You can also visit the C21 Facebook page to like and share from there. 2. If your business or clients rely on a healthy Postal Service, help influence Congress to move the current postal reform bills along to eventual passage. If your company has ties with any Members of the Senate Appropriations Committee (especially Democrats), encourage them to work with Sen. Jerry Moran (R-KS) on his “second review” language for the Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee of Appropriations. Click here to view a list of senators on this vital committee to see if one represents your state. As always, please alert us (via our email@example.com address) of any/all actions you take, as it's very helpful in our broader efforts and allows our DC personnel to follow up directly. And of course, please pass this alert onto anyone you know in the catalog/remote marketing/e-com industries who you think could take similar actions.
Bertelsmann closed the first half of 2021 with a record operating result of €1.4 billion. The international media, services, and education company generated revenues significantly above the previous year’s and pre-Corona levels, as well as its highest Group result in 19 years. Four of the eight business units each recorded double-digit organic growth rates. For the full year, the company expects its business to continue to develop positively and anticipates Group profit of close to two billion euros. Bertelsmann’s first-half consolidated revenues increased by 10.7 percent over the previous year to €8.7 billion (H1 2020: €7.8 billion). Organic growth was 16.6 percent year-on-year, and 7.1 percent compared to the pre-Corona year 2019. The RTL Group, Penguin Random House, Gruner + Jahr, and Arvato divisions each recorded double-digit organic-growth rates. Operating EBITDA improved significantly to €1.4 billion (H1 2020: €1.0 billion), marking a new record. RTL Group, Penguin Random House and Arvato once again proved to be the strongest earnings pillars in the Bertelsmann Group.
Last June, Chanhassen, Minnesota-based IWCO Direct announced a two-year, $50 million expansion plan, the largest in the 52-year history of the the direct marketing solutions provider. Part of those expenditures includes the installation of high-speed inkjet printing presses, largely in response to changing direct mail client needs for more highly personalized, data-driven campaigns, produced in shorter runs with rapid turn times. This new omnichannel market reality has also required IWCO Direct CEO John Ashe and his executive team to make difficult decisions about how to optimize the company's existing production facilities and remove excess capacity. As part of this, the 330 workers employed at IWCO Direct's Little Falls, Minn., lithographic printing, letter shop, and commingling plant were told last week that the 200,000-sq.-ft., leased facility — located 100 miles north of Minneapolis in a town of 8,500 residents nestled along the banks of the Mississippi River — will close by Jan. 2, 2022.
In PakoPharm®, Koehler Paper has a specialty paper in its range, which is exclusively used as package inserts for medications and cosmetics or as instructions for use. Low paper weight and good readability are particularly important for these applications. Koehler’s PakoPharm® thin printing paper meets both of these requirements. This specialty paper with a grammage of 37 gsm to 60 gsm is ideally suited for printing and further processing on both sides, so even the smallest characters can be read with no problem. Thanks to its excellent running properties and printability in printing and folding machines, PakoPharm® is also perfect for challenging print jobs. As a leading developer and manufacturer of reel fed folding machines, GUK values outstanding quality, innovation and sustainable responsibility. With more than 70 years’ experience, the company develops and produces complex high capacity folding machines. Over 65,000 folding machines have been sold bearing the name GUK as a quality seal. The company account for approx. 70% of the worldwide demand for reel fed folding machines. “Whenever we build a new machine for package inserts for someone, wherever they are in the world, we prefer to test with PakoPharm®. That way we know that it works,” says Sebastian Faulhaber, Corporate Development and Marketing at GUK.
Stora Enso has completed the union negotiations regarding the closure of pulp and paper production at Kvarnsveden. A total of 340 people will be permanently laid off. Some 25% of the redundancies can be managed through pension arrangements, and 100 people have already found new jobs within Stora Enso or with an external employer. The redundancies will mostly take effect in November. In April 2021, Stora Enso announced a plan to permanently close down pulp and paper production at its Kvarnsveden site due to the declining paper market. As a result of the co-determination negotiations regarding the Kvarnsveden site, pulp and paper production will be closed permanently from 30 September 2021. The customer service centre at Kvarnsveden will be closed by 31 December 2021. The power plant will continue to operate, but only for the purpose of district heating and for maintaining the buildings onsite. When the co-determination plan was announced in April, the maximum personnel impact was estimated to be 440 people. As a result of the negotiations, 340 people will be permanently laid off. Some 25% of the redundancies can be managed through pension arrangements, and 100 people have already found new jobs within Stora Enso or with an external employer.
UPM will continue its efforts to initiate business-specific collective bargaining with the Paperworkers’ Union. Since spring, UPM has sought to enter into business-specific collective bargaining to negotiate flexible ways of organising work, working hours and salaries, as well as competence development within businesses with Paperworkers’ Union and employee representatives by business. However, the Paperworkers’ Union has not welcomed business-specific negotiations but has required a single company-level collective labour agreement. If Paperworkers’ Union does not accept UPM's businesses as contractual partner, the businesses need to prepare the working conditions after the turn of the year without collective labour agreement to ensure business continuity and payroll. UPM would then act according to the labour law, UPM practices and personal employment contracts. "We do not wish it would come to that, but it is a better alternative than forcing our completely different businesses into one mould," says Riitta Savonlahti, Executive Vice President, Human Resources, UPM.
Successful pilot projects to certify rubber producers large and small, and the supply chain companies that process rubber, set a new standard for environmental sustainability in the rubber industry. On 22 September, PEFC will hold a webinar to help other rubber producers follow their lead. Natural rubber represents a USD 300 billion supply chain. Most of this rubber is produced by independent smallholders in Southeast Asia, on the borders of some of the world’s most ecologically important forest areas. Sourcing this rubber sustainably helps protect these forests and is a necessary step towards achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals before 2030. Sustainable forest management and chain of custody certification are relatively new for the rubber industry. But early adopters are already on the move. We have piloted certification for both natural rubber and rubberwood across Southeast Asia. Working with growers of all sizes, we have developed group certification solutions that allow smallholders to band together and prove their sustainable practices. These early adopters demonstrate that certification is entirely achievable. By getting certified, they both open up market access for their rubber, protect adjacent forests and improve their own livelihood.
Following the recent news on Aptar Freyung receiving ISCC PLUS*- Certification, enabling the use of renewable feedstock material for closures production, Aptar Food + Beverage is excited to announce that the Neo™ closure solution for the infant formula market is now available in renewable feedstock material based on the mass-balance approach. This polypropylene (PP) closure is made using sustainably sourced renewable feedstock derived solely from vegetable oil waste and residue, such as used cooking oil and residues from oil processing. There are many sustainability benefits found in using recycled and bio-based materials. First, the reduction of fossil-based resins in food-grade products can reduce the carbon footprint of a closure. Another benefit, from a technical and manufacturing perspective, is that new quality or filling line evaluations are not required. As the resin’s characteristics of fossil-based and renewable feedstock are the same, the closures keep the same level of safety and convenience. In addition, it can help infant nutrition brands to achieve their sustainability goals related to the reduction of CO2 emissions, and the incorporation of recycled or bio-based content measured by the mass balance model.
Konica Minolta Business Solutions U.S.A., Inc. is pleased to announce the installation of its AccurioJet KM-1e LED UV Inkjet Press at commercial and direct mail printer Zenger Group. Headquartered in Tonawanda, New York, Zenger Group is a second-generation, family-owned and operated, cutting-edge company using their strong print foundation to help brand owners market more efficiently and effectively. Having purchased an AccurioJet KM-1 in 2019, the high-volume production printing, high uptime and low cost of operation led them to make the second purchase. While other manufacturers were considered, Zenger Group found the AccurioJet KM-1 inks were much more durable, could print on any substrate and at a lower cost than the other available options. In its first year owning the AccurioJet KM-1, Zenger Group found customers love the outstanding quality and consistency, and the ability for the company to produce high volume postcards at a low cost enabled it to bring long-run mailing card applications – previously outsourced – back in house. The UV inkjet technology helped grow the company by 60 percent in 2020, moving it up the ranks to 123 from 207 on Printing Impressions’ Top 350 list. CEO Steve Zenger was also recently inducted into Printing Impressions’ Printing Industry Hall of Fame.
R.R. Donnelley & Sons Company announced that the Company’s Board of Directors has amended the Company’s stockholder rights plan to extend its final expiration date to August 28, 2022. The Board extended the Rights Plan due to concerns about the potential for one or more persons or groups to gain undue influence over or control of the Company through open market accumulation or other tactics. The Rights Plan does not prevent any action the Board determines to be in the best interests of the Company and its stockholders.
Rayonier Advanced Materials Inc. announced that it has completed its previously announced sale of its lumber and newsprint assets to GreenFirst Forest Products Inc., a Canadian lumber company, for a total purchase price of approximately US$235 million, subject to final adjustments. The total purchase price is payable approximately 85 percent in cash and 15 percent of common shares in GreenFirst, which is subject to a six-month holding period. Notably, RYAM retained all the cash generated by the Purchased Assets prior to closing plus rights and obligations related to all softwood lumber duties, including any potential interest on the duties, previously paid to the U.S. Department of Commerce of approximately $110 million. As previously disclosed, the proceeds will be used to repay debt and make strategic capital investments focused on the High Purity Cellulose segment.
Finding new ways to address our environmental challenges is reliant on our ability to foster innovation to find ways of driving systemic change. To support such innovation and progress towards circularity, Huhtamaki, a key global provider of sustainable packaging solutions for consumers around the world, donated €600,000 to fund the development and piloting of a river waste collector, invented by the Finnish cleantech start-up RiverRecycle. The collector is an integral part of RiverRecycle’s solution to solve marine waste, one of the biggest global challenges of today. With Huhtamaki’s support, a prototype waste collector was built and tested in Finland. This was then transported to and assembled in Mumbai, where it is now operational and where it will be collecting waste from the Mithi River for the next 12 months. “We believe in protecting food, people and the planet. We also believe that cooperation across the value chain with key stakeholders is needed to address global sustainability challenges, for example such as in this case marine plastics. If we want to drive systemic change, we not only need to support the development and commercialization of innovation that can help stop waste from getting into the oceans, but we also need the monetization of waste and incentivization of local communities to improve their waste management practices,” says Thomasine Kamerling, Executive Vice President Sustainability and Communications at Huhtamaki.
The company’s second quarter fiscal year 2021 net sales of $4.2 billion were up 5% compared to 2019. Gross profit: $1.82 billion, an increase of $267 million or 17%. Gross margin: 43.3%, an increase of 440 basis points. Comparable sales were up 3% year-over-year, and up 12% versus 2019. The comparable sales calculation reflects online sales and comparable sales days for stores that were open on the same days in both the current and prior comparable period. Old Navy Global: Net Sales were up 21% versus 2019, with Old Navy maintaining its position as the #2 apparel brand in the U.S.1 Comparable sales were flat to last year and up 18% versus 2019. Gap Global: Net Sales declined 10% versus 2019, with permanent store closures resulting in an estimated 14% sales decline, and international COVID-closures driving an estimated 1% decline on a 2-year basis. Global comparable sales declined 5% year-over-year and increased 3% versus 2019. Banana Republic Global: Net Sales declined 15% versus 2019, with permanent store closures resulting in an estimated 10% sales decline, and international COVID-closures driving an estimated 1% decline on a 2-year basis. Comparable sales were up 41% year-over-year and down 5% versus 2019. Athleta: Net Sales were up 35% versus 2019. Comparable sales grew 13% year-over-year and 27% versus 2019.
Gap Inc. has acquired Drapr, an ecommerce startup and online application based on technology that enables customers to quickly create 3D avatars and virtually try on clothing. Drapr is designed to help customers find the best clothing size and fit for their personal style and body type, while helping retailers reduce unnecessary returns. “Fit is the number one point of friction for customers and, through their advanced 3D technology, Drapr has shown it can help shoppers efficiently find the size and fit they need. We plan to leverage Drapr to help Gap Inc. improve the fit experience for our customers and accelerate our ongoing digital transformation,” said Sally Gilligan, Chief Growth Transformation Officer at Gap Inc.
For the Second Quarter of Fiscal 2021 *Net sales increased 60.2% to $2.0 billion compared to $1.2 billion in the second quarter of fiscal 2020 due to the favorable impact from stronger consumer confidence and fewer COVID-19 restrictions, compared to the second quarter of fiscal 2020. *Comparable sales (sales for stores open at least 14 months, including stores temporarily closed due to COVID-19, and e-commerce sales) increased 56.3% compared to a decrease of 26.7% in the second quarter of fiscal 2020, driven by a 52.5% increase in transactions and a 2.5% increase in average ticket. Compared to the second quarter of fiscal 2019, comparable sales increased 13.1%. *Gross profit increased to $798.0 million compared to $329.0 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2020. As a percentage of net sales, gross profit increased to 40.6% compared to 26.8% in the second quarter of fiscal 2020, primarily due to leverage of fixed costs, improvement in merchandise margins, favorable channel mix shifts, and leverage of salon expenses. *Net income was $250.9 million compared to $8.1 million in the second quarter of fiscal 2020. Adjusted net income for the second quarter of fiscal 2020 was $41.5 million.
Canfor Corporation announced that it will implement reduced operating schedules at its BC sawmills, with the exception of WynnWood, starting the week of August 30. As a result, Canfor’s BC mills are expected to operate at approximately 80% of production capacity and operating schedules may continue to vary as economic conditions warrant. “Due to challenging market conditions, we are implementing reduced operating schedules at our BC sawmills that will remain in place until demand and pricing meaningfully improve. We recognize the impact that volatile lumber markets have on our employees, contractors and communities and we will make efforts to mitigate the negative effects,” said Stephen Mackie, Executive Vice President, North America, Canfor. “We will also leverage our global operating platform to minimize disruptions in supply to our customers.”
Nordstrom, Inc. reported second quarter results, which reflected continued broad-based improvement in sales trends at Nordstrom and Nordstrom Rack across categories and geographies. The Company reported net earnings of $80 million or $0.49 per diluted share, with earnings before interest and taxes (“EBIT”) of $151 million. For the second quarter ended July 31, 2021, net sales increased 101 percent from the same period in fiscal 2020 and decreased 6 percent from the same period in fiscal 2019, representing a sequential improvement of approximately 700 basis points relative to the first quarter of fiscal 2021. The timing shift of the annual Anniversary Sale, with roughly one week falling into the third quarter of 2021, had a negative impact of approximately 200 basis points on net sales compared with fiscal 2019. Adjusting for this timing shift, sales trends improved by approximately 900 basis points relative to the first quarter.
Urban Outfitters, Inc. which operates a portfolio of global consumer brands comprised of the Anthropologie, BHLDN, Free People, FP Movement, Terrain, Urban Outfitters, Nuuly and Menus & Venues brands, announced net income of $127 million and earnings per diluted share of $1.28 for the three months ended July 31, 2021. For the six months ended July 31, 2021, net income was $181 million and earnings per diluted share were $1.82. Total Company net sales for the three months ended July 31, 2021, were a record $1.16 billion. Net sales increased 20.3% compared to the three months ended July 31, 2019. Comparable Retail segment net sales increased 22%, driven by strong double-digit growth in digital channel sales, partially offset by low single-digit negative retail store sales due to reduced store traffic. By brand, comparable Retail segment net sales increased 53% at the Free People Group, 20% at Urban Outfitters and 14% at the Anthropologie Group. Total Retail segment net sales increased 24%. Wholesale segment net sales decreased 30% primarily from reducing the Free People Group’s sales to promotional wholesale customers.
Quarter-to-date service performance data for July 1 through August 20 included: *First-Class Mail: Delivered 88.8 percent of First-Class Mail on time against the USPS service performance standard, an improvement of 1.3 percentage points from the third quarter. *Marketing Mail: Delivered 92.7 percent of Marketing Mail on time against the USPS service performance standard, an improvement of 1.7 percentage points from the third quarter. *Periodicals: Delivered 82.1 percent of Periodicals on time against the USPS service standard, an improvement of 2.9 percentage points from the third quarter. Additionally, for the week of August 14-20, the Postal Service achieved its highest level of service performance recorded for the Marketing Mail category in five years, matching a previous high (93.9%) recorded in August 2016.
Nearly 180 million American workers currently pay into the Social Security system. But upwards of 150 million of them have not recently viewed an accounting of what they’ve contributed, what Social Security income they can anticipate for retirement and other vital details. This because most stopped receiving an annual paper statement in the mail years ago. And the overwhelming majority cannot or do not access this information online. The data makes clear that most wage earners do not have essential knowledge about their personal Social Security benefits, which for many will be their primary or significant source of income in their later years. Fortunately, the solution is simple: direct the Social Security Administration (SSA) to mail all workers aged 25 and older an annual paper statement, just like they did up until 2010. This is precisely what bipartisan legislation recently reintroduced in the U.S. Congress would do. Appropriately named the “Know Your Social Security Act,” the measure has strong support from citizens, consumer groups, advocates for seniors, cybersecurity experts and financial planners.
Total revenues across all categories for June 2021 were essentially flat, with an increase of 0.2% as compared to June 2020, coming in at $1.2 billion. Year to date revenues were up 18.1%, at $6.3 billion for the first six months of the year. Trade (Consumer Books) sales were down 8.0% in June, coming in at $638.5 million, but up 17.0% year to date, with $4.1 billion in revenue. In terms of physical paper format revenues during the month of June, in the Trade (Consumer Books) category, Hardback revenues were down 10.2%, coming in at $203.1 million; Paperbacks were down 8.3%, with $225.2 million in revenue; Mass Market was down 26.0% to $18.2 million; and Board Books were up 13.3%, with $14.3 million in revenue. click read more below for additional information
Which Products Will Be Affected By Plastic Packaging Tax? A packaging product will be classified as ‘plastic packaging’ if plastic is the heaviest of its components. Then, if the packaging contains less than 30% recycled plastic, it will be subject to PPT. Even though the tax’s environmental aims are to promote and produce ‘greener’ plastics, packaging labelled as biodegradable and compostable will still be subject to the new tax laws. There are, however, some exemptions to these rules, which include: *If the plastic packaging contains licensed human medicines *If the packaging is used in aircraft shipping or railway stores for international journeys *If the packaging’s primary function is to secure the safe transit of goods and produce *Exported goods will also be exempt, as long as they are exported within 12 months
American Trucking Associations’ advanced seasonally adjusted (SA) For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index decreased 1.2% in July after falling 2% in June. In July, the index equaled 109.8 (2015=100) compared with 111.1 in June. “Softness in tonnage over the last few months is due more to supply constraints, rather than a big drop in freight volumes,” said ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello. “Not only are there broader supply chain issues, like semiconductors, holding tonnage back, but there are also industry specific difficulties, including the driver shortage and lack of equipment. For-hire truckload carriers are operating fewer trucks than a year earlier. It is difficult to haul significantly more freight with fewer trucks and drivers. “In addition to these supply issues, retail sales and housing starts, both large drivers of truck freight, retreated in July, although both rose on a year-over-year basis,” he said. June’s reading was revised down to -2% from our July 20 press release. Compared with July 2020, the SA index fell 2.9%, which was the first year-over-year drop since March. In June, the index was flat from a year earlier. Year-to-date, compared with the same seven months in 2020, tonnage is down 0.2%.
Aptar Food + Beverage announces its recyclable SimpliCycle valve will be launched within new Kraft Heinz Ketchup packaging. In addition to Heinz Ketchup, other Kraft Heinz brands including Heinz Mustard, Heinz Mashups, and Heinz BBQ Sauce, will convert to the SimpliCycle valve by the end of the year. Testing was coordinated and administered by both companies to ensure the consumer experience was equally matched in the conversion.
Cascades is pursuing its efforts to reduce its environmental footprint and is once again innovating by becoming the first company in its category in Canada1 to launch 100% recycled plastic packaging that is also recyclable*, for the entire Cascades Fluff & Tuff® line. Creating this resistant, environmentally friendly packaging made from recycled materials has been a major project for the company, requiring several months of research and testing. Deployment of this new packaging will be completed by the end of 2021. In addition to all these attributes were the results of a life cycle analysis conducted by an independent firm of Cascades' polyfilm, confirming that the option containing 100% recycled resin reduces the impact on climate change by 76% compared with its virgin resin equivalent. These results clearly support the recycled option.
Cascades is pleased to announce that the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) has approved its greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction targets. The targets submitted are therefore in line with the methodology developed by the organization, which is a partnership between the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), the United Nations Global Compact, the World Resources Institute (WRI) and the World Wildlife Foundation (WWF). The SBTi drives ambitious climate action in the private sector by enabling companies to set science-based emissions reduction targets. Cascades is therefore joining the global movement of companies committed to climate action. In its fourth Sustainability Action Plan launched last June, Cascades announced that it is determined to: *Reduce its mills' Scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions intensity by 38.7% (kg of CO2 eq. / metric tonne of saleable products); *Reduce Scope 1 and 2 absolute greenhouse gas emissions from other emissions sources, including its converting plants, by 27.5% (kg of CO2 eq.); *Reduce Scope 3 (supply chain) greenhouse gas emissions intensity by 22% (kg of CO2 eq. / metric tonne of saleable products). To reach its targets, Cascades will carry out a series of in-plant projects, increase its consumption of renewable energy and engage the players in its supply chain.
Known as IMAGin® Simply Sustainable™, the new product line is PVC-free and consists of polyester (PET) and polypropylene (PP) films that meet current regulatory standards of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety and Improvement Act (CPSIA). IMAGin Simply Sustainable products are primarily designed for window or glass surfaces but are versatile for other applications as well. The films are created with a unique polymer technology that delivers notable benefits over traditional static cling products or similar PVC-based products. The product line offers removable and permanent products, including: *Crystal Cling (SS299): This 4.0-mil gloss clear removable PET film offers excellent clarity and print compatibility with UV and latex inkjet printers. It features a 3.0-mil polyester traction back release liner and is intended for short- to medium-term advertising on glass surfaces such as windows, displays and signboards. *Print Friendly Opaque (SS129): Designed for medium-term advertising on glass surfaces such as windows, displays and signboards, this 2.3-mil gloss white permanent block-out PP film can be printed with UV inkjet printers. It is top-coated and protected with a 50# bleach glassine liner. *White Magic Cling (SS99) and Clear Magic Cling (SS29): Available in gloss white (SS99) or gloss clear (SS29), this 2.0-mil soft, flexible PP removable film is designed to cling to any smooth glass surface, including windows, office doors, display cases or beverage coolers. It also works well on other smooth, glossy plastic and shiny metal surfaces. It is supplied with a 90# poly-coated layflat liner for ease of processing and handling and can be printed with conventional screen and offset, UV screen and offset, UV inkjet and latex printers.
Smurfit Kappa has announced it is investing $22 million to expand its corrugated plant in Culiacan, North-West Mexico. It demonstrates the company’s continued commitment to the Mexican market with expanded capacity, capabilities and products offerings for local customers in the fresh produce segment. The investment will modernise and expand the plant, with the installation of high-tech state of the art machinery and the construction of a new 10,900m2 building that will include a new corrugator and an automatic Rotary Die Cutter (RDC) that will be fully operational by the end of 2021. The facility will produce corrugated boxes made with a moisture barrier that helps resist condensation. These new offerings will also result in more sustainable operations at the facility with reduced use of paper that is 100% recyclable and can be reused at Smurfit Kappa mills.
Total European shipments of graphic papers in June 2021 were UP 33.9% vs. June 2020 and are UP 2.5% year-to-date. Total European shipments of newsprint in June 2021 were UP 11.5% vs. June 2020 and are down 6.5% year-to-date. Total European shipments of sc-magazine in June 2021 were UP 28.1% vs. June 2020 and are UP 1.4% year-to-date. Total European shipments of coated mechanical reels in June 2021 were UP 43.2% vs. June 2020 and are UP 0.1% year-to-date. Total European shipments of uncoated mechanical (improved & others) in June 2021 were UP 26.9% vs. June 2020 and are UP 5.4% year-to-date. Total European shipments of coated woodfree in June 2021 were UP 57% vs. June 2020 and are UP 4.6% year-to-date. Total European shipments of uncoated woodfree in June 2021 were UP 41.7% vs. June 2020 and are UP 10.7% year-to-date.
Resolute’s commitment to renewable energy benefits both the environment and our bottom line. We generate three quarters of our total energy needs from renewable sources such as carbon-neutral biomass and hydroelectricity. In 2020, our commitment to renewable energy continued to result in a significant drop in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions intensity, which reflects the volume of emissions per unit of production. We recorded a 56% reduction in GHG emissions intensity compared to 2000 levels, a tangible demonstration of Resolute’s carbon leadership. We also reduced our absolute GHG emissions by 83.4% over 2000. Replacing high-emission fuels like coal with less-carbon-intensive fuels benefits both the environment and our bottom line. We have been scope 1 coal-free since April 2014. We have also reduced the use of bunker C oil at our Clermont, Dolbeau and Saint-Félicien mills in Quebec, and initiatives are currently underway at several facilities to reduce the use of natural gas and to promote biomass or electricity utilization. In 2020, 75% of our fuel energy needs were met using biomass, including bark, wood residues and biosolids, which we use to help power our facilities rather than sending these waste products to landfill. This approach reduces our consumption of fossil fuels, as well as the GHG emissions associated with their use.
Tristram Wilkinson, currently serving as President of Kimberly-Clark's Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) consumer business, has been named President of the company's Asia Pacific consumer business, and will have responsibility for the company's largest international region with operations in more than 30 countries, including China, India, Australia, Korea and the ASEAN member states. Wilkinson will continue to report to Chairman and CEO Mike Hsu and will be based in Singapore. Wilkinson is succeeding Aaron Powell, who is departing the company for an external opportunity. A successor to Wilkinson will be named in the near future.
National Average Price for Regular Unleaded Current: $3.147; Month Ago: $3.158; Year Ago: $2.227. National Average Price for Diesel Current: $3.275; Month Ago: $3.274; Year Ago: $2.427.
American Dollar to Canadian Dollar = 0.788553; American Dollar to Chinese Yuan = 0.154380; American Dollar to Euro = 1.176200; American Dollar to Japanese Yen = 0.009078; American Dollar to Mexican Peso = 0.049033.
Three Gannett newspapers in New Jersey — Asbury Park Press, Home News Tribune and Courier News — have unionized with the NewGuild of New York, the union announced last week. “Our newsrooms have served our communities for over a century, and by forming the APP-MCJ Guild, we are ensuring our journalists are given the necessary means to serve for the next 100 years,” states Ryan Ross, on-air host and visual journalist for the Asbury Park Press. “We respect the right of employees at Asbury Park Press, the Courier News and the Home News Tribune to make a fully informed choice for themselves whether to unionize or not to unionize,” says Thomas C. Zipfel, Gannett's labor relations counsel.
At the end of 2020, the Hachette Book Group was the fourth-largest trade publisher in the country, with estimated annual sales of roughly $700 million. When the acquisition of Simon & Schuster—the third-largest trade publisher—by #1 trade publisher Penguin Random House is finally completed, HBG will move into the third spot. Last week, HBG took a major step to ensure that it will assume S&S’s position as the largest trade publisher behind PRH and HarperCollins, with its agreement to acquire Workman Publishing for $240 million. One of few remaining independent publishers of its size, Workman had sales of $134 million last year, and its addition will get HBG revenue over the $800 million level.
Consumers are becoming increasingly conscious of their impact on the environment, and the majority of UK consumers believe the recycling rate of paper isn’t very high. This low consumer awareness is worrying when paper is, in fact, one of the most recycled materials in the world with a recycling rate of 74%. A study, conducted by the not-for-profit organisation Two Sides and independent research company Toluna, aims to understand changing consumer perceptions towards print and paper. This unique insight into consumer attitudes towards one of the world’s oldest and universally used materials, will be repeated biennially to monitor and report upon evolving consumer perceptions, as environmental awareness intensifies and alternative digital channels of communication become prevalent. Paper is one of the world’s most recycled materials. In Europe 74% of paper, 56 million tonnes, was collected and recycled in 2020. Paper Packaging has an even higher recycling rate of 85%.
The Board of Directors announced the selection of the Chief Executive Officers (CEO) and company names for each of the two companies, which would become effective upon the completion of the spin-off: *The ODP Corporation – a leading B2B solutions provider serving small, medium and enterprise level companies, will consist of several operating companies, including the contract sales channel of ODP’s current Business Solutions Division, which will be renamed ODP Business Solutions, and ODP’s newly formed B2B digital platform technology business, which will be named Varis. ODP Business Solutions and Varis will be owned by ODP, but operated as separate businesses. ODP will also continue to own the global sourcing operations and other sourcing, supply chain and logistics assets. Gerry Smith will continue to serve as CEO of The ODP Corporation following the separation. *Office Depot – a leading provider of retail consumer and small business products and services distributed via approximately 1,100 Office Depot and OfficeMax retail locations and an award-winning eCommerce presence, officedepot.com, will be spun-off and will be named Office Depot, Inc. Kevin Moffitt, currently EVP, Chief Retail Officer of The ODP Corporation, will be appointed CEO of Office Depot upon completion of the spin-off.
Mactac® Distributor Products announces its OODLES multi-print wall media has earned UL 10b and 10c certification, meeting the latest compliance requirements for out-facing elevator door applications. Compliance is necessary for any elevator wraps being used in the healthcare industry, such as in hospitals and other care facilities. Earlier this year, The Joint Commission, a leading accreditation and regulating body in healthcare, changed the fire rating for elevator doors, requiring the UL 10b and 10c certification to apply graphics materials on outside-facing doors. Compliance is also recommended for outdoor elevator graphics in schools, universities, hotels, and other similar buildings and facilities. “Customers can now confidently apply Mactac OODLES media to elevator doors within these settings and have peace of mind knowing that they are in compliance with the required safety standards,” says Amanda Smith, Product Manager, Mactac Distributor Products. “The certification adds to the versatility OODLES media already delivers.”
Sun Chemical expanded its ECO PASSPORT by OEKO-TEX® certified colorant portfolio for spin-dyed fibers, reinforcing its commitment to sustainable fibers processing for textiles. The newly added products provide excellent suitability for polyamide and polyacrylics, complementing the existing ECO PASSPORT colorant portfolio that contains products suitable for polypropylene, polyester and polyamide. The number of ECO PASSPORT certified colorants has increased to nineteen total products, now encompassing the full color space across a variety of polymers and providing excellent durability performance both in processing and end-use applications.
Fourth-quarter service performance for July 1 through August 12 included: *First-Class Mail: Delivered 88.8 percent of First-Class Mail on time against the USPS service standard, an improvement of 1.3 percentage points from the third quarter. *Marketing Mail: Delivered 92.6 percent of Marketing Mail on time against the USPS service standard, an improvement of 1.6 percentage points from the third quarter. *Periodicals: Delivered 82.4 percent of Periodicals on time against the USPS service standard, an improvement of 3.1 percentage points from the third quarter. The Postal Service’s recent service delivery improvements have been, in part, the result of a strategic shift to more ground deliveries, decreasing the agency’s reliance on the limited cargo capacities of third-party air carriers, and improved network efficiencies.
Highlights: *Second quarter net sales and earnings exceed expectations and company raises full year 2021 financial outlook *Second quarter net sales increase 31.4% *Record second quarter diluted earnings per share of $2.48 and company raises full year 2021 guidance to $5.80 to $6.10 *Strengthened financial position during the quarter, ending with $2.6 billion in cash *Repurchased $255 million of shares in the quarter and now plans to repurchase $500 million to $700 million of shares in 2021. “Our performance in the second quarter marked another important step in further establishing Kohl’s as the leading destination for the active and casual lifestyle. We delivered record second quarter earnings with sales and margins materially exceeding expectations. As pleased as we are with our ongoing strategic progress, much of our opportunity is still ahead of us. We are on the eve of launching several transformational partnerships that will drive sustainable growth for years to come,” said Michelle Gass, Kohl’s chief executive officer.
HH Global is pleased to announce the completion of the acquisition of Adare International (including Purple Agency), from the private equity firm Endless LLP, following the signing of an agreement on Monday 21 June 2021. The combined business will generate approximately $2.1bn in annual sales. This deal will create a joint global business with over 4,000 employees and a presence in more than 65 countries, cementing HH Global’s position as market leader. It will also allow stronger in-country operations, helping to propel seven of our local markets to achieve local annual run rates of over $50m revenue for the first time. Mike Perez, Group CEO of HH Global, expressed “Following on from the successful integration of InnerWorkings in October last year, we are thrilled to join forces with Adare International. Welcoming new clients and colleagues on board is always an exciting process, and the strength of Adare International in these areas was a key motivation for our interest in acquiring them. I’m also particularly excited to enhance our capabilities in creative services in the healthcare and B2B sectors with Purple Agency, and to take advantage of the enhanced geographical reach and local revenue within their regional operations.”
Sonoco ThermoSafe and Korean Air announced a global partnership agreement for the leasing of the new Pegasus ULD® temperature controlled bulk shipping container. The agreement enables pharmaceutical freight forwarders access to Pegasus ULD® containers directly from Korean Air. Korean Air and mutual clients will also have access to other Sonoco ThermoSafe containers as part of this agreement. Sonoco ThermoSafe will support this partnership by adding ICN airport to its global service network. Services including ground handling, repairs, and preconditioning of Pegasus ULDs at ICN will be provided through Sonoco ThermoSafe’s global partnership with Unilode. Sonoco ThermoSafe’s Pegasus ULD® is the world’s first FAA and EASA-approved passive bulk temperature-controlled ULD container for pharmaceutical use, which enables it to speed through international air freight handling and customs processes at the lowest possible cost. With a focus on sustainability, the Pegasus is engineered with composite materials, offering a lighter solution that is also substantially more damage-resistant than traditional metal containers. Additionally, the Pegasus ULD® contains a fully integrated, FAA-approved telemetry system, providing real-time, cloud-based data on payload and ambient temperature and key environmental factors, precisely synchronized with GPS location.
Total packaging papers & specialty packaging shipments in July decreased one percent compared to July 2020. They were up two percent when compared to the same seven months of 2020. The operating rate was 84.2 percent, down 1.5 points from July 2020 and up 4.0 points year-to-date. Mill inventories at the end of July increased 8,000 short tons from the previous month and were essentially flat (+672 short tons) compared to July 2020.
According to the report, total printing-writing paper shipments increased five percent in July compared to July 2020. U.S. purchases of total printing-writing papers increased nine percent in July compared to the same month last year. Total printing-writing paper inventory levels remained essentially flat (-0.1 percent) when compared to June 2021. Uncoated free sheet (UFS) paper shipments increased seven percent compared to July 2020 while the inventory level remained essentially flat (-0.4 percent) compared to June 2021. UFS imports and exports both increased compared to June 2020, up four percent and 18 percent respectively. U.S. purchases of coated free sheet (CFS) papers in July increased three percent compared to last July while the inventory level increased two percent compared to June 2021. CFS imports and exports both increased compared to June 2020, up 32 percent and 53 percent respectively. Coated mechanical (CM) paper shipments increased 16 percent compared to July 2020 while the inventory level decreased three percent compared to June 2021. CM imports and exports both increased compared to June 2020, up 60 percent and 31 percent respectively. U.S. purchases of uncoated mechanical (UM) papers in July increased 28 percent compared to last July while the inventory level decreased four percent compared to June 2021. UM imports and exports both increased compared to June 2020, up 61 percent and 180 percent respectively.
Neenah, Inc. adds the first of its kind, environmentally forward RECYCOTAPE™ tape backing to its sustainable product offering. Consumers can now recycle shipping or packaging boxes sealed with RECYCOTAPE, as this unique packaging tape backing will break down along with the box during the recycling process. RECYCOTAPE is uniquely made from FSC® certified, sustainably sourced fibers that easily re-pulp and allow coating removal during the recycling process. As a result, these base papers can provide usable fiber to reprocess into new paper. “There is a growing interest in the market for an environmentally friendly alternative to traditional packaging tapes and a viable replacement for plastic-based, non-recyclable tapes used to seal corrugated boxes. RECYCOTAPE is both,” says Chris Boothby, Tape Product Manager for Neenah.
The global Felix Schoeller Group is announcing plans to invest in a manufacturing operation for Release Liners at their Pulaski, New York facility. After years of rapid business growth, the company is now recognized as a leading manufacturer of siliconized poly-coated kraft (PCK) liners. Based on the unique integration into paper making, extrusion coating and siliconizing, Felix Schoeller Release Liners have become a benchmark in the self-adhesive graphics, tape, and industrial markets. The planned investment in North America is not only a geographic expansion but will also add new capabilities: The new operation is designed to coat both solventless and solvent based silicone systems to best meet the requirements of current and future customers. The new operation is expected to be operational by 2023.
Germany’s biggest amusement park, Europa‐Park, as begun using the innovative Blue4est® Thermal Paper of Koehler Paper. It’s also marketed under the name “Ökobon” in Germany. The blue receipt paper is durable, sustainable, recyclable and guaranteed to be free of chemically reactive components. Although fun and variety are the main focus at Europa‐Park, the family‐run enterprise that employs just under 4,450 people attaches enormous importance to sustainability as well. Using the blue Koehler receipt paper is one of the ways in which Europa‐Park is taking its customers’ interest in increased sustainability seriously. In most cases, traditional receipt paper cannot be disposed of as wastepaper, but is sorted into residual waste instead. This is not the case with the blue Thermal Paper from Koehler that Europa‐Park has been using at its 600 cash registers since August of this year.
Per Ivar Berg (58) has been appointed new Managing Director at Norske Skog Saugbrugs AS from February 1, 2022. He has extensive experience from a number of positions in the pulp and paper industry, in addition to food industry. Until recently, he was the Executive Vice President at TINE with responsibility for production, investments, contingency planning, product development and R&D. He has previously been Managing Director at the Norske Skog mills Follum and Parenco as well as production- and maintenance manager at Saugbrugs from 1997 to 2001. Berg graduated in 1987 with a master degree in chemical engineering at NTNU in Trondheim. "We are very pleased to welcome Per Ivar Berg as the new Managing Director at Norske Skog Saugbrugs. Together, we share the ambition to create as competitive Norske Skog Saugbrugs as possible in this demanding industry. Today, Saugbrugs is well-run mill with great potential for further development, especially within new fibre products. For Saugbrugs, Berg will enhance broad industrial experience, high ambitions and new expertise to further develop the product portfolio and mill," says Sven Ombudstvedt, CEO of Norske Skog ASA and Chair of the Board of Norske Skog Saugbrugs AS.
Fourth-quarter service performance for July 1 through August 6 included: *First-Class Mail: Delivered 88.9 percent of First-Class Mail on time against the USPS service standard, an improvement of 1.4 percentage points from the third quarter. *Marketing Mail: Delivered 92.6 percent of Marketing Mail on time against the USPS service standard, an improvement of 1.6 percentage points from the third quarter. *Periodicals: Delivered 82.9 percent of Periodicals on time against the USPS service standard, an improvement of 3.6 percentage points from the third quarter. For the week of July 31 – August 6, Periodicals, including newspapers and magazines, reached the highest service performance level (84.8 percent) reported for that category in nearly a year and a half, since the week of March 28 – April 3, 2020 (85.3 percent).
Amazon is on pace to spend over $120 billion on supplies and services from businesses in the U.S. in 2021. The purchases are from more than 200,000 companies that operate in communities across the country that help keep Amazon running—from electric vehicle manufacturers to cardboard box producers to construction and engineering firms. The 2021 spending represents an increase of 20% year over year and does not include any of the products Amazon buys and sells to customers in its stores. “Millions of families rely on us to deliver what they need every day,” said Dave Clark, CEO of Worldwide Consumer at Amazon. “Delivering for our customers takes teamwork—we can’t do it alone. We rely on strong partnerships with hundreds of thousands of American businesses—from our forklift manufacturer in Kentucky to the construction company in Texas that builds our delivery stations. Today is about renewing our commitment to these businesses and betting big on them.”
Several tributaries of the Gimån river in Jämtland are being restored in a project that aims to recreate habitats for aninals like freshwater pearl mussels, trout and otters. The initiative is part of the EU project Rivers of LIFE. SCA is involved as a landowner and is also carrying out its own measures. Rivers of LIFE is a major conservation project within EU that will run until 2025 and aims to protect and recreate nature conservation values that are present or have been present in the aquatic environment. The project will restore habitats that were changed during the era when streams were used to transport timber, and restore parts of rivers and watercourses in Jämtland and Gävleborg. The measures will benefit species living in and around the watercourses. The goal is to restore 120 km of stream habitats.
The Sustainable Green Printing Partnership announced its participation in the Kansas City Sports & Sustainability Symposium on Aug. 17, 2021. The Symposium will be held at Kansas City Chiefs’ Arrowhead Stadium. Attendees include regional professional and collegiate sports teams and venues, concessionaires, business and public leaders, and athletes to explore how the industry can make plays to advance healthier, more sustainable communities. The program covers sustainability focusing on local action across environmental and social fronts. SGP Partnership will participate in the showcase of sponsors, highlighting the role of SGP certified printing facilities can play in the sustainability of sporting events and venues. “I am looking forward to attending and sharing more with the Kansas City sports teams and the Green Sports Alliance on how using SGP certified printers can accelerate their sustainable contribution in local communities. With sport venues using a large amount of print including outdoor signage, arena graphics, packaging and event materials, SGP can helps align the sustainability goals of these teams in their print supply chains,” said Bryan Rose, SGP Board of Directors and vice-president at Cooley Group. “We can help make a transformative change by providing the sports industry printed materials with the best possible sustainable profile.
Second Quarter Financial Highlights and Recent Events * Total revenue increased by 8.7% to $51.8 million, from $47.7 million in the second quarter of 2020. * Envelope segment revenue was up 7.6% to $35.2 million, from $32.8 million in the second quarter of 2020. * Packaging and specialty products segment revenue increased by 11.1% to $16.6 million, from $14.9 million in the second quarter of 2020. * EBITDA1 at $8.6 million, up 24.1%, from $6.9 million in the second quarter of 2020. EBITDA margins stood at 16.5%, up from 14.5%. * Net Earnings at $3.4 million (or $0.12 per share), up from $1.9 million (or $0.07 per share) in the second quarter of 2020. * Recorded $0.8 million of assistance from the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (“CEWS”) program. * Purchased 488,100 shares for total consideration of $1.1 million as part of the Company’s Normal Course Issuer Bid (‘’NCIB’’). * Mary Chronopoulos was appointed CFO and Corporate Secretary effective May 31, 2021.
The forest is not only a habitat for animals and plants but a retreat for people as well. It is also the economic basis for Mercer Timber Products and all companies in the Forestry sector – thus a driver of value creation, especially in rural areas. The industry is exemplary in showing that this is not a contradiction: through the sustainable management of German forests and the efficient use of our resource, wood, the timber industry is making an important contribution to climate protection and ultimately a sustainable future for us all. Wood is the most important renewable raw material in Germany. It plays an outstanding role in climate-neutral value creation and energy generation. Thanks to its sustainable management, the forests in Germany have been supplying wood for a wide variety of purposes for over 300 years. Every year, more wood grows in Germany than is used. Around 32 percent of Germany’s total area is covered with forest, making the country one of the most densely forested areas in Europe. As a PEFC-certified company, Mercer Timber Products supports this sustainable management. After all, forest management is the basis of our existence. In addition, Mercer’s use of wood takes an important step in the shift from fossil fuel energy. The bark from the harvested logs is used directly in the biomass cogeneration plant, which generates green electricity and heat for the drying process.
Many parents around the United States are sending their children back to school soon — in person and full time. Students and teachers, who may not have seen one another in months, will face several challenges related to the coronavirus pandemic, such as learning loss and economic disparities. The good news? Paper can help. Research is mixed on the effects of the pandemic on students, but in a poll of 1,000 public school educators conducted by the Horace Mann Educators Corporation, 97 percent of teachers reported seeing some learning loss in their students during the past year compared to previous years. Data from McKinsey in December 2020 noted that students of color were about three to five months behind in learning due to lower access to technology, the internet and in-person learning support. Reading and math are two paper-intensive subjects that typically require access to textbooks, library books and/or notebook paper. Paper can help bridge the divide in learning achievement caused by the pandemic and related economic challenges. click read more for the rest of the article
Zume, the sustainability solutions company creating economically viable substitutes for single-use plastics, today announced a partnership with Solenis, a leading global producer of specialty chemicals. They are open-sourcing a PFAS (per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances) replacement for food packaging manufacturing to food manufacturers and CPG brands across the global market. To see the open-source process, go to: zume.com/pages/freefromPFAS. In conjunction, Zume is announcing it will no longer manufacture any products that contain PFAS from its California packaging facility, effective immediately, and the company is collaborating with its global partners to ensure that all production globally is PFA-free by the end of 2021. “Open-sourcing our PFA-free solution creates a path for brands across the world to remove plastics and harmful chemicals from their consumer packaging and single-use goods,” said Zume CEO and Chairman Alex Garden. “Brands have made pledges to remove PFAS and this new launch will enable them to deliver on their promises.”
National Average Price for Regular Unleaded Current: $3.186; Month Ago: $3.146; Year Ago: $2.175. National Average Price for Diesel Current: $3.293; Month Ago: $3.264; Year Ago: $2.426.
American Dollar to Canadian Dollar = 0.798688; American Dollar to Chinese Yuan = 0.154304; American Dollar to Euro = 1.176238; American Dollar to Japanese Yen = 0.009074; American Dollar to Mexican Peso = 0.050306.
R.R. Donnelley & Sons Company announced the launch of an omnichannel offering designed to meet the education industry’s need for elevated communications agility that maximizes the value of each step in the student journey. The education industry is going through significant change due to COVID-19 and must evaluate how they acquire and engage students and seek business and operational efficiencies. As enrollment challenges persist, the pressure is on educational institutions to drive brand awareness, cultivate a sense of community, and maintain student safety. RRD has mobilized to offer a specialized set of solutions for pre-K through 12 instructional publishers, self-funded private schools, and higher education institutions. Designed to perform as an extension of marketing and business support teams, standout elements include: *Personalized, education-specific programs that support recruitment strategies, instructional content, interactive online experiences, and printed curriculum for students and teachers *Fundraising campaigns that build endowment sustainability, alumni engagement, and donor support — with quantifiable ROI *Touchless communications via NFC and/or QRC technologies to accommodate demand for contactless interactions *Signage and wayfinding for all campus facilities and spaces, with the option of white-glove installation *Customized support to help fill gaps in specific communications programs — from integrated campaigns to multichannel billing and payment systems
The recent passage of the “No Surprises Act” is being hailed as a major victory for patients and consumers. Effective January 1, 2022, the new federal law will prevent patients from receiving surprise medical bills resulting from gaps in coverage for emergency services and certain services provided by out-of-network doctors and other providers at in-network facilities. Unfortunately, critical documentation that medical consumers rely on to catch and dispute these surprises might not be where they’ve always found it: in their mailbox. Explanation of Benefits (EOBs) are essential notices that help patients understand how much each service costs, how much their insurance plan will cover, and how much they will have to pay their doctor or hospital. Until very recently, it had been a universal health insurance industry best practice to mail paper EOBs to plan members by default. read much more at: https://keepmepostedna.org/new-consumer-protections-against-surprise-medical-bills-are-compromised-when-healthcare-providers-stop-delivery-of-paper-explanation-of-benefits/
Revenues grew to $3.0 billion, up 5 percent. Earnings from continuing operations were $307 million, compared to a loss of $209 million. Adjusted EBITDA was $683 million, compared to $548 million. Key accomplishments included: *Digital advertising revenues surpassing magazine for the first time in Meredith's history. Digital advertising grew 31 percent. Additionally, Meredith's licensing and digital and other consumer driven revenues grew 27 percent and 25 percent, respectively. *$254 million debt reduction, enabled by record Cash Flow from Operations and Free Cash Flow. Debt reduction was enabled by total company revenue performance along with proactive actions to enhance Meredith's financial flexibility. *Agreeing to sell Meredith's Local Media Group for $2.825 billion, representing a 10x valuation. The transaction, which also includes spinning Meredith's National Media Group, comprising digital and magazine, out to shareholders, is expected to advance the company's financial priorities including reducing net debt, improving financial flexibility, optimizing capital allocation to high-potential opportunities, and providing returns to shareholders.
HIGHLIGHTS • Pulp sales of 2,537 thousand tons (-9% vs. 2Q20). • Paper sales of 296 thousand tons (+26% vs. 2Q20). • Adjusted EBITDA1 and Operating cash generation²: R$5.9 billion and R$4.9 billion, respectively. • Adjusted EBITDA1 /ton3 from pulp of R$2,166/ton (+56% vs. 2Q20). • Adjusted EBITDA1 /ton4 from paper of R$1,506/ton (+12% vs. 2Q20). • Average net pulp price – export market: US$636/t (+35% vs. 2Q20). • Average net paper price4 of R$4,731/ton (+9% vs. 2Q20). • Pulp cash cost ex-downtime of R$680/ton (+13% vs. 2Q20). • Decrease in leverage to 3.3 times in USD and 3.1 times in BRL.
Amcor announced the launch of a proprietary healthcare lidding technology that will be utilized for combination products – those consisting of two or more regulated components (device, drug or biologic). This latest innovation from Amcor is based on a patented inert film development and laminate design. It provides a lidding solution that can withstand heat sterilization, the process of preserving and sterilizing items, while preventing drug uptake into the packaging. The packaging solution is ideal for combination healthcare products, such as devices with an Active Pharmaceutical Ingredient (API) that forms the basis of a medicine. It ensures machinability, integrity after sterilization, as well as a convenient peel opening for patients. The features of the new product complement Amcor’s existing healthcare portfolio, which range from lidding for demanding sterilization environments to high barrier overwraps protecting eye droppers and medications for the eye. Amcor collaborated with Johnson & Johnson Vision over the course of several years to develop the lidding technology for use with contact lenses. ch company contributed specific skills and perspective, notably Amcor’s expertise with film extrusion, lamination and conversion for healthcare, and J&J Vision’s expertise on ophthalmic device packaging requirements.
The Sustainable Green Printing Partnership (SGP) announced Christopher Rose of Shutterfly and Blake Pace of Primex Plastics as the first Sustainability Champions. The SGP Sustainability Champion program recognizes SGP Community Members for outstanding efforts in making the environment a better place to work and live. An SGP Sustainability Champion is committed to positive change, shows passion through leadership, and exemplifies environmental stewardship and activism. Champions look beyond immediate, short-term goals and are committed to making an impact in a larger context. Chris Rose of Shutterfly was nominated by several people, recognizing his work in achieving SGP certification for its Fort Mill, SC facility. “Chris Rose took up the cause for sustainability almost two years ago. He was excited about the challenge of receiving SGP certification, knowing it would take considerable time and effort,” said John C. Hindman, Senior Manager for Environmental Health & Safety at Shutterfly. Blake Pace is the general manager of the Primex Plastics Reedsburg, WI facility. “Blake is a firm believer in responsible manufacturing. Along with renewable energy usage, environmental efforts emphasize energy and efficiency audits, reuse and rework of pallet and packaging materials and proactive freight considerations,” said Teri Benning, Primex Plastics in her nomination submission of Blake.
KPLP Q2 2021 Business and Financial Highlights • Revenue decreased by $47.5 million or 12.3% to $339.3 million in Q2 2021 compared to $386.8 million in Q2 2020. • Adjusted EBITDA was $37.3 million in Q2 2021 compared to $64.4 million in Q2 2020, a decrease of 42.1%, and similar sequentially to the $37.5 million in Q1 2021. • TAD Sherbrooke continues to run above the expected start-up curve. • Completed financing for the Sherbrooke Expansion Project. • Declared a quarterly dividend of $0.18 per share to be paid on October 15, 2021.
2021 is a perfect storm providing four challenges: *Paper: inventory is limited, prices continue to rise; *Postage: Mismanagement at the USPS continues to drive annual increases; *PPC Inflation: privacy and competition are driving cost upward; *Pandemic: while consumer confidence is still high, fears of inflation loom large. However, even the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse can’t kill print as the channel is currently booming – driving top-of-funnel opportunities, retargeting efforts, and creating more powerful and cost-effective prospecting audiences. Instead of waiting for customers or prospects to come to your site, print creates push campaigns that are highly profitable and cost-effective. Print marketing is still entirely relevant, even in this digital era, and smart marketers take advantage of this form of communication and the power it has with the human brain. Yes, the way we consume and share news and information has changed dramatically in the last 10 years alone. And, yes, digital marketing has in the recent past taken the limelight from traditional print media. read more at: https://cohereone.com/beware-the-four-horseman-of-the-apocalypse/
Dear Industry Member: Representatives from the Coalition for a 21st Century Postal Service (C-21), including ACMA’s Hamilton Davison, recently hosted staffers from a half dozen Congressional offices. The event was opened by mailing industry proponent Rep. Glenn Grothman (R-WI-6th, pictured at right). In addition to stressing the importance of the Postal Service, the goal was to educate a new crop of Capitol Hill postal staffers from offices that are not as familiar with what keeps the USPS delivering affordably and reliably and the need for legislation now. Representing Marketing Mail interests, Davison emphasized the potentially fatal impact the impending August 30th postage increase will have on catalog and other mailers’ future use of the mail. Other C-21 members discussed similar problems for the other mail classes from the rate hike as well as the USPS’s deliberate slowdown of mail delivery. see more detail at: https://catalogmailers.org/mailing-industry-coalition-briefs-congress-to-spur-action-on-postage-increases/
The United States Postal Service filed notice today with the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) regarding a temporary price adjustment for key package products for the 2021 peak holiday season. This temporary rate adjustment is similar to one in 2020 that anticipated heightened peak-season package and shipping demand, which typically results in extra handling costs. The planned peak-season pricing, which was approved by the Governors of the Postal Service on Aug. 5, would affect prices on commercial and retail domestic competitive parcels – Priority Mail Express (PME), Priority Mail (PM), First-Class Package Service (FCPS), Parcel Select, USPS Retail Ground, and Parcel Return Service. International products would be unaffected. Pending favorable review by the PRC, the temporary rates would go into effect at 12:00 a.m., Central Time, on Oct. 3, 2021, and remain in place until 12:00 a.m., Central Time, Dec. 26, 2021. This seasonal adjustment will bring prices for the Postal Service’s commercial and retail customers in line with competitive practices. No structural changes are planned as part of this limited pricing initiative.
The Atlantic has reached a paid circulation of 833,410 for the first half of 2021, the largest in its 164-year history, Editor In Chief Jeffrey Goldberg and CEO Nicholas Thompson announced in a message to the staff. The number, which had been filed with the Alliance for Audited Media (AAM), includes both print and digital subscribers, including those on the iOS app and Apple News+. Growth has gone from 474,274 two years ago to 252,242 in the first half of 2020.
Sonoco announced it will raise the price for all paperboard tubes and cores by a minimum of 8 percent, effective with shipments in the United States and Canada, on or after September 10, 2021. “Significant market tightness and additional inflationary cost pressures to our primary raw materials (uncoated recycled paperboard and adhesives) make this increase necessary,” said Doug Schwartz, Division Vice President and General Manager, North America Tubes and Cores. “Despite these market and supply chain challenges, we remain committed to maintaining the quality and service that our customers have become accustomed to when working with Sonoco.”
Second Quarter 2021 Highlights (as compared to second quarter 2020): • Revenue increased 40.7% to $376.7 million primarily due to organic growth in certain film, woven, and tape products, including continued strength in products with significant e-commerce end-market exposure such as water-activated tape and dispensing machines. • Gross margin increased to 23.7% from 21.3% primarily due to a favourable product volume/mix and an increase in the spread between selling prices and combined raw material and freight costs. • Net earnings attributable to the Company shareholders decreased $0.1 million to $14.3 million primarily due to (i) an increase in finance costs mainly due to the 2018 Senior Unsecured Notes Redemption Charges(2) and the non-recurrence of a gain in the second quarter of 2020 resulting from a fair value adjustment to the Company's contingent consideration related to the Nortech Acquisition(3) and (ii) an increase in selling, general and administrative expenses mainly due to increases in both variable and share-based compensation. The unfavourable impacts were largely offset by an increase in gross profit. • Free cash flows(1) decreased by $28.8 million to $6.4 million primarily due to the decrease in cash flows from operating activities and an increase in capital expenditures as compared to minimal capital expenditures in 2020 as a precautionary measure given market uncertainty caused by COVID-19.
The city of Lappeenranta has come of age in symbiosis with UPM. For over 120 years, the forest giant has driven prosperity and innovation in the eastern Finnish border town newly voted as one of Europe’s greenest cities. “Lappeenranta wouldn’t be the vibrant city it is today without UPM,” says Mayor Kimmo Jarva. His words are more than a polite nod to the city’s top corporate taxpayer. Ever since the Kaukas mill was founded in 1873, the historic garrison town has evolved in close synergy with UPM. The mayor’s fourth-floor office provides sweeping views of the forests that have brought wealth to the town. The same forests now yield not only sawn timber, pulp and paper but also a new kind of “green gold” – circular innovations such as renewable biofuels, biochemicals and biomedical products.
“Copy paper and tissue paper are some of the most used paper products, but companies have not yet widely adopted sustainable paper in China,” explains Ma Lichao from FSC China. City Forest initiative is driving the change. In addition to UPM, organisations such as Kimberly-Clark, one of the world’s largest tissue paper producers, the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) are together promoting the use of sustainable papers in China. The FSC has been expanding its partnership with Chinese businesses since 2019, awarding the “City Forest” certificate to office buildings that uses FSC-certified tissue paper. So far, 34 business buildings in seven major Chinese cities have participated in the program.
The Uruguayan PEFC Scheme has been submitted to PEFC for assessment. The public consultation, which is your chance to give your feedback on this revised system, will run from 23 August to 21 October. PEFC Uruguay revised the country’s national forest certification system following the entry into force of the revised 2018 PEFC Sustainable Forest Management standard. To provide you with additional information, we are holding a webinar on 23 August, at 14:00 CEST. The webinar is free to attend, and everyone is welcome.
Cascades Sonoco, a joint venture between Cascades Inc. and Sonoco Products Company, announced its Birmingham facility has been certified SQF (Safe Quality Food), a GFSI (Global Food Safety Initiative) benchmarked certification standard. Widely applicable to nearly every stage of the food supply chain, SQF certification addresses not only farming and packhouses, but everything from food manufacturing to animal feed and pet food production. GFSI recognition has been considered the gold standard for food safety certification and harmonizes food safety standards under one umbrella to reduce risk to both producer and consumer while also managing costs, developing competencies and capacity and creating an international platform for collaboration, exchanging knowledge and networking.
Novolex® has acquired Vegware, a rapidly growing international provider of compostable foodservice packaging headquartered in Edinburgh, U.K. Vegware’s teams in both the U.K. and U.S. are expected to join the Novolex family. The Vegware brand will remain intact as part of Novolex’s Eco-Products portfolio of brands and will continue to sell its products under the Vegware label. “Vegware is an excellent company and its addition to Novolex is an exciting step to growing our global compostable products footprint,” said Stan Bikulege, Chairman and CEO of Novolex. “We are pleased to welcome the Vegware team to the Novolex family and maintain our momentum of supporting brands that meet society’s expectations for sustainable products.” Vegware was founded in Edinburgh in 2006 by Joe Frankel. Headquartered in Scotland, it has operations in the U.K., EU and the United States. The company sources renewable, plant-based materials to manufacture cups, cutlery, tableware and takeout packaging designed to be commercially composted with food waste. Sold in more than 70 countries, Vegware products are known for their quality, performance and design.
Metsä Group’s innovation company Metsä Spring Ltd has made an equity investment in Innomost Ltd, a startup converting forest industry side streams into high-value bioactive products. The financing round totals approximately EUR 5 million, consisting of private investments and public financing from Business Finland and ELY Centre for Central Finland. Metsä Spring is participating in the round with Innovestor Technology Fund and other private investors. Innomost intends to produce valuable ingredients for the cosmetics and personal care industry, as well as for other industrial applications. Metsä Group has several mills, which may provide birch bark for the production. The company’s present product portfolio includes betulin, suberin, birch charcoal powder and birch bark powder. These ingredients can be used in different cosmetic product categories, including skincare, hair care, body care, decorative cosmetics and oral care. Especially betulin and suberin have also other potential industrial uses. The Finnish skincare brand Lumene has launched a couple of cleansing products with Innomost ingredients.
Freedom has signed an exclusive letter of intent to purchase the assets of Suncraft Technologies, and is expected to close the deal in the upcoming weeks. “We are thrilled to welcome Suncraft employees to the Freedom family and are confident that this will be a perfect fit for them, as well as their clients” states Eric Blohm, President of Freedom. “In addition to our recent digital press and lettershop expansion, the acquisition of Suncraft’s assets will further strengthen our core competencies and expand our extensive offerings to our clients.
Yes, the forthcoming August 29, 2021 USPS rate increase is painful. But the USPS threw direct marketers a bone. Did you miss it? The USPS August rate case includes a size adjustment for first-class postcards. Marketers are no longer bound by the content restrictive size of 4.25” x 6” for First-Class Postcards. First-Class Postcards are now allowable up to 6” x 9”! August 29 pricing for this mail class ranges from $0.306/pc to $0.326/pc. Formerly 6” x 9” Postcards were required to mail at letter rates, either First-Class or Marketing Class depending on content. The new adjustment will give marketers a larger canvas to work with while also allowing them to benefit from the speedier in home delivery of First-Class Mail. more at: https://specialtyprintcomm.com/blog/ask-randy-good-news-usps/
A recent article in The New York Times, (“Maine Will Make Companies Pay for Recycling. Here’s How It Works.” 7/21/21) explored Maine’s dramatic new recycling law. But it also missed the point on paper recycling. In a letter to the editor, AF&PA responded to set the record straight: Telling readers the U.S. “recycling rate for plastics and paper products” is 32 percent is like telling them the average elevation of Denver and Death Valley is about half a mile. It may be technically true, but it clouds over more than it reveals. Whatever is true of plastic, the fact is that for all paper, the recycling rate was 66 percent in 2020. The recycling rate for paper-based packaging specifically—like cardboard boxes and corrugated containers—was a whopping 89 percent. In fact, more paper is recycled by weight from municipal waste streams than plastic, glass, steel and aluminum combined. In the context of a story about proposals in several jurisdictions that would turn our current recycling system on its head, these distinctions matter a great deal. Extended producer responsibility programs would disrupt the most effective recycling streams in the interest of improving the least effective, while imposing large new costs on producers who are already being responsible by investing capital to innovate and use a highly renewable and recyclable material—paper.
Tronox Holdings plc, the world’s leading integrated manufacturer of titanium dioxide pigment, announced that its Board of Directors had reorganized its committee structure to enhance the Board’s oversight over environment, sustainability and governance (“ESG”). Under the new structure, the Governance Committee will become the Governance and Sustainability Committee with a restated committee charter that will require management to regularly report on its progress on key ESG initiatives. The enhanced Board oversight comes on top of other significant ESG-related improvements made by Tronox, including the announcement in its most recent Sustainability Report of a detailed plan to align with a global warming scenario below 2° C and achieve net zero GHG emissions by 2050; inclusion of carbon emission reduction targets in its executive compensation programs; and a commitment to be fully compliant with applicable TCFD and SASB disclosure standards when it releases its 2021 sustainability report.
The U.S. Postal Service today announced its financial results for the 2021 third quarter ended June 30, reporting a net loss of approximately $3.0 billion, compared to a net loss of approximately $2.2 billion for the same quarter last year. Excluding the combined effects of non-cash workers' compensation adjustments due to fluctuations in discount rates and other actuarial revaluations, the loss for the quarter would have been approximately $2.3 billion, compared to a loss of approximately $2.4 billion for the same period last year. The Postal Service reported operating revenue of approximately $18.5 billion for the third quarter of fiscal 2021, an increase of $845 million, or 4.8 percent, compared to the same quarter last year. Marketing Mail revenue increased by approximately $1.0 billion, or 42.2 percent, on volume growth of approximately 4.3 billion pieces, or 38.6 percent. Marketing Mail experienced steep volume declines at the onset of the pandemic last year, but has been rebounding as the economy continues to recover. First-Class Mail revenue increased by $54 million, or 1.0 percent, on volume growth of 130 million pieces, or 1.1 percent, as the economy continues to recover. Shipping and Packages revenue decreased by $646 million, or 7.8 percent, on a volume decline of 300 million pieces, or 14.1 percent, compared to the same quarter last year, as a pandemic surge in demand for package deliveries began to abate.
For the Three Months Ended July 3, 2021: Net sales increased 45% to $357.7 million, compared to $246.9 million during the same period last year. *Direct-to-consumer (“DTC”) channel net sales increased 48% to $196.9 million, compared to $133.0 million in the prior year quarter, driven by strong performance in both Drinkware and Coolers & Equipment. The DTC channel grew to 55% of net sales, compared to 54% in the prior year period. *Wholesale channel net sales increased 41% to $160.8 million, compared to $113.9 million in the same period last year, driven by both Drinkware and Coolers & Equipment. In the second quarter of 2020, wholesale channel net sales were adversely impacted by the temporary store closures due to COVID-19. *Drinkware net sales increased 69% to $192.9 million, compared to $114.3 million in the prior year quarter, primarily driven by the continued expansion of our Drinkware product offerings, including the introduction of new colorways and sizes, and strong demand for customization. *Coolers & Equipment net sales increased 23% to $157.8 million, compared to $128.6 million in the same period last year, driven by strong performance in soft coolers, bags, outdoor living products, cargo and hard coolers. Gross profit increased 52% to $209.1 million, or 58.5% of net sales, compared to $137.5 million, or 55.7% of net sales, in the second quarter of 2020.
Two Sides North America is pleased to welcome The Printing Industry of the Carolinas, Inc. (PICA), as our newest member. Headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, PICA is the regional graphics trade association serving the commercial printing, digital, wide format, mailing and packaging industries in North and South Carolina. The association provides educational programs, networking opportunities, buying power programs and conferences geared toward the printing industry. “Printers play a vital role in helping to educate print buyers and other decision makers about the sustainability, effectiveness and relevance of print, paper and paper-based packaging in today’s omni-channel world,” says Two Sides North America President Kathi Rowzie. “Two Sides is pleased to add PICA to our growing list of industry association members, and we invite their members to join us as well.”
International Paper is proud to announce Sylvamo Corporation as the name of its global papers spinoff, with headquarters planned for Memphis, Tennessee. The name Sylvamo speaks to the company's connection to trees and highlights its role as a steward of sustainable forests. Sylvamo combines the Latin words for forest, "silva," and love, "amo." Company leaders translate this unique combination as "love of forests." Sylvamo, currently a subsidiary of International Paper, will be governed by a nine-member board with eight independent directors. Jean-Michel Ribiéras, senior vice president, Global Papers, will serve as the company's chairman and chief executive officer.
Second quarter 2021 net income from continuing operations was $20.7 million ($0.61 per diluted share) compared to net income from continuing operations of $14.3 million ($0.43 per diluted share) in the second quarter of 2020. Net income from ongoing operations, which excludes special items and discontinued operations, was $16.1 million ($0.48 per diluted share) in the second quarter of 2021 compared with $16.0 million ($0.48 per diluted share) in the second quarter of 2020. *Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization ("EBITDA") from ongoing operations for Aluminum Extrusions of $19.7 million was $6.4 million higher than the second quarter of 2020 *EBITDA from ongoing operations for PE Films of $9.0 million was $6.5 million lower than the second quarter of 2020 *EBITDA from ongoing operations for Flexible Packaging Films of $8.3 million was $1.8 million higher than the second quarter of 2020
Sonoco announced it is implementing a price increase for all grades of uncoated recycled paperboard (URB) in the United States and Canada, effective with shipments beginning September 7, 2021. Sonoco said the price increase was in response to continued tight market conditions as strong demand across the Company’s U.S. and Canada mill network has resulted in order backlogs remaining at near historic highs as well as unprecedented inflationary pressures on papermaking.
The Mayr-Melnhof Group (MM) has completed the acquisition of the Kwidzyn plant, Poland, agreed in mid-February 2021, with the approval of all relevant competition authorities. The acquisition of Kwidzyn is part of MM's strategy to grow high-quality virgin fiber board (FBB) with innovative, sustainable and cost-efficient grades. In addition, MM diversifies the product portfolio by integrating an attractive pulp and paper production with a focus on uncoated fine paper (UWF) and packaging kraft papers. In line with the expanded product range, the MM Karton division is renamed MM Board & Paper. "I am pleased that we are entering two new core businesses with uncoated fine paper and packaging kraft paper. MM Kwidzyn will drive our innovations for more sustainable packaging solutions in the growing virgin fiber board market and also create attractive new perspectives through the integration of pulp and paper at a European location with cost advantages. We look forward to a successful collaboration with our new colleagues, ”comments Peter Oswald, CEO of the MM Group.
Interfor Corporation recorded Net earnings in Q2’21 of $419.2 million, or $6.45 per share, compared to $264.5 million, or $4.01 per share in Q1’21 and $3.2 million, or $0.05 per share in Q2’20. Adjusted net earnings in Q2’21 were $433.5 million compared to $270.6 million in Q1’21 and $10.6 million in Q2’20. Robust lumber prices in North America and strong operating performance during the second quarter of 2021 led to Interfor realizing record financial results, including records for Net earnings, Adjusted EBITDA and cash flow from operations.
After a successful first rebuild stage of the paper machine 5 in Oberkirch, Germany – with the installation of the Voith SpeedSizer film press and contactless qDryPro Compact high‐performance drying system – Koehler Paper has confirmed its confidence in Voith. Hartmut Felsch, plant manager at Koehler, Oberkirch, Germany: “"In Voith, we have found a strong and reliable partner with the highest quality standards for all areas of paper production.” Thorsten Heidt, Senior Sales Manager at Voith also confirms: “We have a long‐standing, successful business relationship with Koehler. Just recently, Koehler was able to achieve a world speed record with the new production line 8 at the Kehl location thanks to our successful cooperation and continuous optimization. We are very pleased that Koehler has again opted for our leading technologies and that our solution convinced in all points.” Koehler has selected the full‐line supplier to deliver the second modernization stage, focusing on the much‐proven NipcoFlex shoe press. The aim is to achieve an optimal production result.
Net sales for the three months ended June 30, 2021 increased $61 million, or 23%, compared to the three months ended June 30, 2020, driven by increases in volume and favorable price/mix as the economy began to open, partially offset by $30 million, or 11%, attributable to our idled Duluth and Wisconsin Rapids mills. Total company sales volume was up from 346 thousand tons during the three months ended June 30, 2020, to 369 thousand tons during the same period of the current year. Of the 23 thousand ton volume increase, 82 thousand tons were attributable to an increase in volume, partially offset by 59 thousand tons attributable to our idled Duluth and Wisconsin Rapids mills. Operating income was $11 million for the three months ended June 30, 2021, an increase of $53 million when compared to operating loss of $42 million for the three months ended June 30, 2020.
Fourth-quarter service performance for July 1 through July 30 included: First-Class Mail: Delivered 89.0 percent of First-Class Mail on time against the USPS service standard, an improvement of 1.5 percentage points from the third quarter. Marketing Mail: Delivered 92.6 percent of Marketing Mail on time against the USPS service standard, an improvement of 1.6 percentage points from the third quarter. Periodicals: Delivered 82.7 percent of Periodicals on time against the USPS service standard, an improvement of 3.4 percentage points from the third quarter. For the week of July 24 - 30, Marketing Mail maintained the highest service performance level (93.7 percent) reported for that category in nearly five years, since the week of August 20-26, 2016 (93.9 percent).
Second Quarter 2021 Financial Highlights: • Total revenues of $804.3 million rose 4.9% compared to the prior year quarter ◦ Same store revenues (as defined and reconciled on Table No. 5 below) increased 6.8% compared to the second quarter of 2020 • Total digital revenues were $259.3 million or 32.2% of total revenues • Net income attributable to Gannett of $15.1 million • Adjusted EBITDA totaled $115.8 million, an increase of $37.8 million or 48.4% compared to the second quarter of 2020 and represented a 14.4% margin • Net cash flow provided by operating activities of $31.3 million • Free cash flow of $23.1 million
Fiscal 2021 Full Year Key Financial Highlights: *Revenues were $9.36 billion, a 4% increase compared to $9.01 billion in the prior year, reflecting a 30% increase in the fourth quarter *Net income of $389 million compared to a net loss of $(1.55) billion in the prior year, which included non-cash impairment charges of $1.69 billion *Total Segment EBITDA was $1.27 billion compared to $1.01 billion in the prior year *Diluted EPS were $0.56 compared to $(2.16) in the prior year – Adjusted EPS were $0.67 compared to $0.22 in the prior year *Revenues at Move, operator of realtor.com®, grew 36% year-over-year, with 68% growth in the fourth quarter, which was an acceleration from the prior quarter growth rate. Average monthly unique users grew 32% in the fourth quarter *Dow Jones saw record digital subscriptions, continued robust growth at Risk & Compliance and a strong increase in digital advertising revenues *Foxtel’s streaming products exceeded 2 million total paid subscribers as of year end, driving 40% total paid subscriber growth *Book Publishing continued to benefit from strong consumption patterns with 19% revenue growth *Announced agreement to acquire OPIS, a leading data and analytics provider for energy and commodities markets, to bolster Dow Jones’ Professional Information Business
The international media, services, and education company Bertelsmann has completed the acquisition of 25 percent of the capital shares and 46 percent of the voting rights in the Nasdaq-listed education company Afya in Brazil. The Brazilian antitrust authorities had previously given their approval. The transaction, which significantly expands Bertelsmann’s involvement in the Brazilian education market, has a volume of €500 million. Bertelsmann will provide three of the eleven members of the company’s Board of Directors from now on. Afya is the leading provider of medical education and training in Brazil. Bertelsmann acquired the shares in the company from Crescera Educacional II, a fund launched in 2014 by Crescera Capital with Bertelsmann as the main investor. Afya is now to be developed further in cooperation with the Esteves founding family, which holds 24 percent of the shares and 45 percent of the voting rights, and the company’s successful management.
The media companies RTL Deutschland and Gruner + Jahr are joining forces to form a new national cross-media champion. The decision follows a review process lasting several months, with the aim of deepening the successful collaboration between the country’s leading private TV, radio, and streaming group and the publishing house with its powerful brands. The new company will start operating as one at the beginning of next year. Bertelsmann CEO Thomas Rabe says: “The relevant bodies, RTL Group’s Board, and Bertelsmann’s Executive Board and Supervisory Board, have come to the conclusion that RTL Deutschland and G+J can better exploit their growth potential together. By forming this national media champion, Bertelsmann is implementing its strategic priorities as it has already done in France, the Netherlands and Belgium. This will strengthen our media businesses in the German market in the competition with the global tech platforms,” Rabe continued, “No other media company in this country can create such a cross-genre growth alliance. RTL Deutschland and G+J are a content powerhouse that combines the content expertise of 1,500 journalists, among other things. The companies bring together strong content and brands across the various media under one roof. This will generate annual synergies of around 100 million euros – largely due to growth.”
Berry Global Group, Inc. is again demonstrating its worldwide leadership in the design, development, and production of patient-centered healthcare solutions with the announcement of plans to establish a second manufacturing facility and global healthcare center of excellence in Bangalore, India. Planned for development near Berry’s existing Bangalore operation, the new facility will enable the company to extend its R&D expertise and scale up production in several key healthcare sectors: ophthalmic, nasal pumps, inhalation, and injectable administrations. The increased capacity will also enhance supply in India and throughout South Asia, addressing some of the fastest growing healthcare market geographies.
Novolex released its third annual sustainability report, building on disclosures in prior editions and including many new topics reflecting Novolex’s values and commitments as well as stakeholder interests. Expansion of content continues Novolex’s journey of aligning environmental, social, and governance (ESG) reporting with Sustainable Accounting Standards Board (SASB) and Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) formats as well as documenting the company’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. New topics in the 2020 report include a greenhouse gas (GHG) target as well as disclosures related to raw material sourcing, focused giving, cybersecurity, diversity and inclusion, human rights and others. Highlights of the new content include Novolex’s first timebound target for greenhouse gas reduction from operations of 20% by 2025. Additionally, the report provides readers with greater information about Novolex products and the raw materials used to make them, aligning with SASB reporting standards for packaging companies. In 2020, 49% of raw materials were derived from renewable and post-consumer recycled (PCR) sources.
In our most recent EcoVadis sustainability assessment, we achieved ‘Platinum’ rating, which places us in the top 1% of companies assessed by EcoVadis globally . Notably, we scored 90% for our performance in sustainable procurement, with praise for our Supplier Engagement programme and FSC chain of custody certification, and 80% on environmental issues, with praise for “exceptional” reporting on environmental issues. We placed in the top 2% in our industry overall.
Highlights • Strong financial performance, good momentum ◦ Higher sales volumes, higher average selling prices and effective cost control ◦ Underlying EBITDA of €709 million, with margin of 19.5% ◦ Cash generated from operations of €552 million ◦ Balance sheet at 1.5x net debt to underlying EBITDA • Investing through-the-cycle ◦ Completed acquisition of Olmuksan, strengthening our position in the fast growing Turkish corrugated market (€88 million on an implied 100% EV basis) ◦ Good progress on capital investment projects, delivering growth, sustainability benefits and enhanced cost competitiveness (€286 million capital investments in the period) ◦ Approved €125 million upgrade and expansion of Kuopio containerboard mill (Finland) and further investment in corrugated plants to support strong growth in eCommerce • Launched Mondi Action Plan 2030 (MAP2030), our sustainability framework for the next decade • Signed €750 million revolving credit facility aligning financing with MAP2030 and extending debt maturity profile • Interim dividend declared of 20.0 euro cents per share • Well-positioned for growth in packaging markets, with cost-advantaged asset base, strong financial position and unique portfolio of sustainable solutions
National Average Price for Regular Unleaded Current: $3.189; Month Ago: $3.134; Year Ago: $2.182. National Average Price for Diesel Current: $3.294; Month Ago: $3.250; Year Ago: $2.428.
American Dollar to Canadian Dollar = 0.799645; American Dollar to Chinese Yuan = 0.154574; American Dollar to Euro = 1.180609; American Dollar to Japanese Yen = 0.009107; American Dollar to Mexican Peso = 0.050172.
For the second quarter of 2021, Clearwater Paper reported net sales of $406 million, a 15% decrease compared to net sales of $481 million for the second quarter of 2020. Net loss for the second quarter of 2021 was $52 million, or $3.10 per diluted share, compared to net income for the second quarter of 2020 of $23 million, or $1.36 per diluted share. On a non-GAAP basis, Clearwater Paper reported adjusted net loss in the second quarter of 2021 of $18 million, or $1.07 per diluted share, compared to second quarter 2020 adjusted net income of $28 million, or $1.67 per diluted share. Adjusted EBITDA for the quarter was $15 million, compared to the second quarter of 2020 Adjusted EBITDA of $79 million. Additionally, Clearwater Paper incurred impairment and other closure costs associated with the recently announced closure of its Neenah, Wisconsin facility of $41.7 million. For the first six months of 2021, Clearwater Paper reported net sales of $832 million, a 13% decrease compared to net sales of $958 million for the first six months of 2020. Net loss for the first six months of 2021 was $40 million, or $2.37 per diluted share, compared to net income for the first six months of 2020 of $33 million, or $1.99 per diluted share. On a non-GAAP basis, Clearwater Paper reported adjusted net loss in the first six months of 2021 of $6 million, or $0.37 per diluted share, compared to first six months of 2020 adjusted net income of $37 million, or $2.24 per diluted share. Adjusted EBITDA for the first six months was $69 million, compared to the first six months of 2020 Adjusted EBITDA of $134 million.
The net sales growth is primarily attributed to increased selling prices of $533 million due to the pass through of inflation, organic volume growth of 5%, and a $147 million favorable impact from foreign currency changes. These increases were partially offset by prior quarter divestiture sales of $62 million. The organic volume growth was primarily due to organic growth investments and continued recovery of certain markets that had previously been facing COVID-19 headwinds. The operating income decrease is primarily attributed to a $42 million unfavorable impact from price cost spread, and a $12 million increase in selling, general, and administrative expense, partially offset by a $24 million increase from the organic volume growth, and a $23 million favorable impact from foreign currency.
Notable items in the third quarter include: *Record net sales of $4.8 billion increased 14% compared to the prior year quarter *Net income of $250 million increased 40% compared to $179 million in the prior year quarter *Record third quarter North American per day box shipments increased 9% compared to the prior year quarter *Successfully implementing published price increases across all major paper grades; pricing realization outpaced inflation in the quarter *Generated net cash provided by operating activities of $751 million and Adjusted Free Cash Flow of $554 million compared to $740 million and $508 million, respectively, in the prior year quarter *Reduced total debt by $270 million
Second Quarter 2021 Financial and Segment Highlights *Revenue was $67.8 million higher than the previous year. All four segments experienced year-over-year revenue growth. Not including the First American acquisition, which closed on June 1, 2021, revenue increased $40.5 million, or 9.9 percent year-over-year. *The Payments segment delivered revenue growth of 43.1 percent over the previous year, $27.3 million of which was from First American. *Net income of $12.1 million includes $15.9 million of costs related to the First American acquisition during the quarter. *Cash flow from operations for the first half of 2021 was $83.8 million and capital expenditures were $46.6 million. Free cash flow, defined as cash provided by operating activities less capital expenditures, was $37.2 million, a decrease of $45.4 million as compared to 2020, largely attributable to capital investments this year and costs related to the First American transaction.
Q2 2021 Highlights (comparative figures have been restated to reflect discontinued operations2) *Sales of $956 million (compared with $942 million in Q1 2021 (+1%) and $1,020 million in Q2 2020 (-6%)) *As reported (including specific items) **Operating income of $23 million (compared with $44 million in Q1 2021 (-48%) and $64 million in Q2 2020 (-64%)) **Operating income before depreciation and amortization (OIBD)1 of $87 million (compared with $109 million in Q1 2021 (-20%) and $127 million in Q2 2020 (-31%)) **Net earnings per share of $0.02 (compared with $0.22 in Q1 2021 and $0.57 in Q2 2020)
Costco Wholesale Corporation reported net sales of $15.21 billion for the retail month of July, the four weeks ended August 1, 2021, an increase of 16.6 percent from $13.04 billion last year. For the forty-eight weeks ended August 1, 2021, the Company reported net sales of $176.30 billion, an increase of 17.8 percent from $149.66 billion last year.
Highlights from the quarter include: *Raising 2021 billings guidance to $980-1,020 million and unlevered free cash flow guidance to 12-14% of billings *Strong billings growth across the Company of 25% in Q2 and 21% YTD as demand for teaching and learning solutions grows with students returning to classrooms this fall *Annualized Recurring Revenue (ARR)2 growth accelerated 106% bringing ARR to $77 million, or 8% of trailing twelve-month billings. Net Retention Rate (NRR)2 was 154% *Trailing twelve-month free cash flow of $101 million, an improvement of $29 million compared to the first quarter of 2021, reflecting strong operating leverage and the benefits of 2020 actions to align HMH’s cost structure with its Digital First, Connected strategy *Gross leverage ratio of 1.8x, below HMH’s target leverage ratio of 2.0x adjusted EBITDA
In a reversal of the usual flow of things, GrillGirl.com founder Robyn Lindars has started a print magazine. Grill Girl is available at retailers and grocery stores nationwide, including Barnes & Noble, CVS and Walmart. Lindars, who started offering outdoor grilling recipes in 2008, went into print to help “elevate everyone’s grilling game,” she states. Each issue will feature over 25 recipes and advice on how to pick the right grill, grill the perfect steak, cook an entire meal on the grill and plank grill pizzas.
Effective August 16, 2021, the Fuel Surcharge table for U.S. UPS Ground services will change. Details on these changes can be found here. The UPS Ground Fuel Surcharge will continue to be based on based on the National U.S. Average on Highway Diesel Fuel Price and adjusted weekly. Changes to U.S. UPS Ground Fuel Surcharge tables will also be reflected on our Fuel Surcharge webpage beginning August 12, 2021. details at: https://www.ups.com/us/en/shipping/surcharges/fuel-surcharges.page?
Stakeholders from around the world are invited to give feedback on the regional forest certification system for the Balkans. Deadline for comments is 2 October. Give your feedback now! Our national members for Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia, and Slovenia developed a harmonized framework for their national forest management standards to create this regional system for the Western Balkans. By developing a regional system, it enables our members to maximise their impact and reach, share resources and knowledge, and reduce the costs in developing and running a forest certification system. The system is now undergoing the PEFC assessment process, carried out by an independent PEFC Registered Assessor. It must pass this process and be approved by the PEFC General Assembly before it can achieve endorsement.
The print and paper advocacy group, Two Sides, are excited to announce its newest member, a print partner for thousands of marketing, creative and print professionals, Tradeprint. “We understand what the customer needs from us, and we’ll do everything it takes to deliver. We know their reputation is on the line with each and every order, that’s why we produce only the highest quality print.” says Charlene Joss, Managing Director at Tradeprint. Charlene continues, “It’s not just the high quality of print we deliver to our customers, but also the benefit of knowing that we regularly evaluate ways to reduce the impact of our operations and products on the environment so that we are protecting it to the best of our abilities. By joining with Two Sides, we will further promote the sustainable qualities of our company and an industry that has a great sustainable record.”
Graphic Packaging Holding Company announced that it has published its 2020 Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Report and launched a new ESG website that is interactive and designed for real-time dissemination of information. In the most recent report, Graphic Packaging outlines the many initiatives underway at the Company to further drive sustainability across operations and innovation in product development with the end consumer in mind. "We continue to advance our ESG program while delivering innovative packaging in support of the move to a more circular economy," said President and CEO, Michael Doss. "Significant progress and positive developments across all facets of our operations and with our people were accomplished over the past year. Our Diversity & Inclusion strategy continues to drive robust conversation, and we have implemented new programs to ensure continual progress. Employees are engaged as we grow as a workforce and provide new learning and development opportunities. Our efforts to limit impacts of our operations on the environment are driving results. We achieved further progress towards our environmental goals in 2020."
Last year, the e-commerce industry grew nearly three times more than in 2019 — and this record-breaking order volume remains strong in 2021. Since March 2020, fulfillment centers have continued to work past capacity, as consumers increase their expectations surrounding lightning-fast and damage-free home deliveries. In February, Digital Commerce 360 and Bizrate found that 68 percent of consumers would be more inclined to place an order if fast shipping was available. And it’s not just e-commerce companies affected by demand — retailers are bearing the brunt, too. The same survey reported that 26 percent of shoppers ordered online for same-day delivery from major brick-and-mortar stores, almost double the rate from August 2020. As fulfillment managers look at every possible solution to meet demand, automation solutions like Pregis’ Sharp bagging systems are taking center stage, thanks to their benefits in reducing costs, increasing efficiency, and sustainability.
Consolidated net sales of $269.3 million in the second quarter of 2021 increased 67 percent compared with $161.4 million in the second quarter of 2020. The increase includes strong volume growth in both segments, including net sales from the Itasa acquisition of $33.2 million. The impact from lower net selling prices was mostly offset by favorable currency effects. Excluding the Itasa acquisition, net sales grew 4% from the first quarter of 2021. Operating loss of $32.6 million in the second quarter of 2021 decreased compared to operating loss of $58.5 million in 2020. The operating loss of $32.6 million in 2021 resulted primarily from non-routine charges of $51.9 million, including asset restructuring costs resulting from the Appleton Mill closure, loss on debt extinguishment, acquisition and integration costs, pension settlement losses and other restructuring items as detailed in the GAAP reconciliation table.
The quarter-on-quarter improvement in Group EBITDA and overall return to profit of US$18 million was driven by strong dissolving pulp (‘DP’) prices and an excellent performance from the packaging and specialities segment. These gains were partially offset by ongoing global logistical challenges which impacted export deliveries and costs in all three regions and lower margins in Europe due to significant input cost inflation. Higher selling prices facilitated a substantial increase in EBITDA for the DP segment and sentiment generally remained buoyant on the back of steadily improving retail demand in the apparel sector. The average Chinese market price for hardwood DP increased 19% on the prior quarter to US$1,088 per ton. The EBITDA in the packaging and specialities segment reached a new record high and contributed almost half of the group EBITDA. Sales volumes increased by 23% compared to the equivalent quarter in the prior year and validate the strategic actions taken to reduce exposure to graphic paper through diversification into this segment.
Organic net sales increased 11.4%. The Business Services segment was up 14.3% on a GAAP basis while the Marketing Solutions segment was up 10.3% both on a GAAP organic basis from the second quarter of 2020. The Business Services segment experienced growth in several of our strategic focus areas including Packaging, Labels and Supply Chain Management. Net sales in Marketing Solutions also experienced growth, led by higher volumes in Digital Print and Fulfillment and Direct Marketing, partially offset by last year’s Census project, which was completed in mid-2020. Income from operations was $28.2 million in the second quarter of 2021 compared to loss from operations of $19.0 million in the second quarter of 2020. The second quarter of 2021 included net restructuring, impairment and other charges of $9.7 million, a decrease of $18.7 million from the prior year period primarily due to lower consulting and employee termination costs.
Net sales approximated $1.7 billion in the second quarter of 2021 which represented a $242 million increase from the prior year period. Higher average selling prices contributed $27 million to net sales. Adjusted for divestitures, shipments in tons increased 18 percent as higher sales volumes and favorable mix boosted revenues $255 million. Net sales benefited $79 million from favorable foreign currency translation. Recent divestitures reduced net sales by $111 million and revenue from technical services declined $8 million reflecting lower engineering project activity. Segment operating profit was $232 million in the second quarter of 2021 compared to $99 million in the prior year period.
Results for the six months ended June 30, 2021, include: Net Sales — Net sales were $1.4 billion in the six months ended June 30, 2021, down 1% from the same period in 2020, primarily due to the impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic in the first quarter, nearly offset by year-over-year increases in print, logistics and agency solutions sales in the second quarter. Net Earnings (Loss) From Continuing Operations — Net earnings from continuing operations were $45 million or $0.85 diluted earnings per share from continuing operations in the six months ended June 30, 2021, an increase of $69 million compared to the same period in 2020, which recorded a net loss of $24 million or $0.46 diluted loss per share. Net earnings were higher due to a $26 million decrease in restructuring, impairment, and transaction-related charges, a $24 million increase from gains on the sale of businesses, and a $14 million gain from the sale and leaseback of the Chalfont, Penn., production facility in the second quarter of 2021. These increases were partially offset by approximately $30 million in non-recurring temporary cost savings in 2020.
Berry Global Group, Inc. announced its new commercial-scale clean room for blown film, supporting its growing healthcare business in rigorous healthcare and pharmaceutical applications. The ISO 7 class clean room can produce nine-layer blown films. The new installation fully encloses commercial-scale production of Berry’s proprietary nine-layer blown film from extrusion to packaging, a first in the United States. The addition further enhances Berry’s ability to supply more sensitive applications such as sterile intravenous solution bags, pharmaceutical packaging, medical equipment manufacturing, and microchip packaging. Installed in Berry’s existing Dalton, Georgia, facility, the clean room provides a controlled environment, complete with FDA-approved lubricants and contact surfaces, and a 100 percent inspection system for real-time defect detection for quality assurance.
Total revenues for the second quarter of 2021 increased 23.5 percent to $498.5 million from $403.8 million in the second quarter of 2020. Subscription revenues increased 15.7 percent to $339.2 million, advertising revenues increased 66.4 percent to $112.8 million and other revenues increased 8.7 percent to $46.5 million. Compared with the second quarter of 2019, total revenues increased 14.3 percent, as subscription revenues increased 25.4 percent, advertising revenues declined 6.6 percent and other revenues increased 3.3 percent. Total operating costs increased 12.4 percent in the second quarter of 2021 to $421.4 million compared with $374.9 million in the second quarter of 2020, while adjusted operating costs increased 15.4 percent to $405.6 million from $351.6 million in the second quarter of 2020. Compared with the second quarter of 2019, total operating costs increased 5.8 percent, while adjusted operating costs increased 6.5 percent.
Total reported sales for the second quarter of 2021 were $2.3 billion, an increase of 6% compared to the second quarter of 2020. The year-over-year increase in revenue was partially driven by stronger business activity as the public sector returned to work and schools began to return to in-class learning. Product sales in the second quarter were up 6% relative to the prior year period, driven by stronger demand for core supply product categories, workspaces and technology. Service revenue in the first quarter was up 8%, largely related to stronger demand for managed print and fulfillment, as well as copy and print services in both BSD and Retail Divisions. The Company reported operating loss of $78 million in the second quarter of 2021, compared to operating loss of $456 million in the prior year period. GAAP operating results in the second quarter included $122 million of charges including $115 million of non-cash asset impairment charges, and $7 million in net merger, restructuring and other operating costs. Asset impairment charges of $115 million in the second quarter of 2021 included $114 million related to impairment of goodwill and other intangible assets at CompuCom, largely related to the macroeconomic effects of COVID-19 on current business conditions. Net merger, restructuring and other operating costs of $7 million were primarily associated with the planned separation of B2B operations. Net loss was $88 million, or $(1.62) per diluted share in the second quarter of 2021, compared to net loss of $439 million, or $(8.19) per diluted share in the second quarter of 2020.
At HH Global it is important to us that we ensure our organisation grows both responsibly and sustainably, therefore our Innovation with Purpose strategy continues to evolve. A key objective of this is to enhance and develop our holistic approach to Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) activities. The ambitions of many organisations are yet to be distilled into targets in this area. HH Global is demonstrating genuine leadership by showing our clients, colleagues and suppliers the commitments we are making, relevant not only to our own operations but to the whole of our supply chain.
The Myanmar Forest Certification Scheme was submitted to PEFC for endorsement last month. The public consultation, which is your chance to give your feedback on this new system, will run from 16 August to 14 October. This is the first time the Myanmar Forest Certification Committee (MFCC), the PEFC national member for Myanmar, has applied for PEFC endorsement of the country’s national forest certification system. To provide you with additional information, we are holding a webinar on 16 August, at 10:00 CEST. The webinar is free to attend, and everyone is welcome. Register for the webinar at: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZYsfuCurDgiE9W7O8dsRj12DlKdZb0Md7Tn
Amcor plans to invest over $10 million in MSU’s School of Packaging – the largest investment in the history of the university’s College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (CANR), under which the School of Packaging sits. The funding, which forms part of Amcor’s commitment to supporting the next generation of responsible packaging talent, will be used to help the school further its high academic standards and enable facility modernization upgrades that ensure students have access to state-of-the-art technology. The partnership between these two leading organizations will also support the creation of an Endowed Chair of Packaging Sustainability to drive forward further research and innovation in the topic. Ron Delia, Amcor CEO, said, “This is an important investment in the future of the packaging industry, which will be defined by responsible, sustainable packaging solutions. MSU already attracts the greatest talent in the industry and Amcor is committed to fostering the boldest thinkers as they make ground-breaking advancements in more sustainable packaging solutions.”
David Timm, president of Pregis’ performance flexible operations, has established several pivotal roles focused on creating a whole new customer experience model. These include: Russ Joseph, vice president of sales; Beth Scherpenberg, vice president of sales operations; Chad Perre, vice president of technology, and Jonathan Quinn, director of market development and sustainable flexible packaging. In their respective positions, the team will be responsible for delivering operational excellence, gold standard customer service and performance-oriented, customer-driven solutions with sustainability at the forefront.
Interfor Corporation announced that it is expecting production disruptions at its B.C. Interior sawmills during the third quarter of 2021 due to the ongoing impacts of wildfires and other factors on log supply. “The wildfires in the B.C. Interior and the related provincial state of emergency and governmentmandated curtailment of all forest harvesting activities are expected to have a significant impact on Interfor’s operations in the next several weeks or more. This is an active situation, and we are closely monitoring the implications for our operations. We are also doing what we can to help, working cooperatively with the provincial wildfire service and local communities to support the firefighting efforts. At this time there are over 230 Interfor staff and contractors and over 90 pieces of contractorowned heavy equipment dedicated to assisting the B.C. Wildfire Service in their efforts,” said Andrew Horahan, Senior Vice President of Western Operations at Interfor. Based on current information, Interfor is expecting to curtail a minimum of 50 million board feet of production across its B.C. Interior operations in August, with the possibility of further downtime in September and beyond, depending on evolving weather conditions.
Mercer International Inc. is pleased to announce that it received approval from the applicable Bankruptcy Court for a sales Order approving the acquisition by its wholly-owned subsidiary of a state-of-the-art CLT manufacturing facility located at Spokane, Washington (the “Facility”) for a price of $50 million, subject to customary adjustments. The closing of the sale is scheduled to occur shortly. The Facility is located on 54 acres of land near Spokane and has an area of about 270,000 square feet; is equipped with state-of-the-art extensive automation technologies including one of the largest CLT presses in the world; has capacity of approximately: (a) 13 million sq. ft. of 5-ply panels annually or 140,000 cubic meters of annual production based on 5-day operations ; and (b) represents about 30% of the current North American mass timber manufacturing capacity.
Georgia-Pacific is expanding its manufacturing footprint for curbside recyclable paper padded mailers to support growing demand for more sustainable shipping envelopes. The new locations in Jonestown, Pennsylvania, and McDonough, Georgia, will expand availability of the mailers in the Northeast and Southeast to customers including Amazon. GP is also adding a third production line at its first mailer manufacturing site that opened in the Phoenix area in 2020. Georgia-Pacific’s expertise in paper making and paper-based packaging, and support from its research and development team, have contributed to the company’s success in its first manufacturing location and served as drivers in the expansion plans.
Sole Source Capital LLC announced that it has acquired I.D. Images (“IDI”), a premier provider of product identification solutions. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Established in 1995, IDI is a manufacturer of high-quality durable and graphic intensive labels that address a broad range of product identification needs for a variety of end markets and customers. The company offers custom and stock labels to distributors, value-added resellers, and label converters and printers. Headquartered in Brunswick, OH, the company has eight manufacturing and distribution locations across the United States.
Due to an anticipated large gathering of people during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, out of an abundance of caution for the safety and health of our employees and the public, the Aug. 6, 2021, open session meeting of the U.S. Postal Service Board of Governors will now be conducted by live audio webcast only, with no in-person attendance. With no in-person attendance, the Postal Service is cancelling the previously scheduled public comment period that was to have been conducted following the adjournment of the meeting. The Board is expected to discuss the following items at the Aug. 6 meeting beginning at 9:00 a.m. ET: *Call to Order and Opening Remarks of the Chairman *Remarks of the Postmaster General and CEO *Approval of Minutes *Committee Reports *Quarterly Financial Report *Quarterly Service Performance Report *Approval of Tentative Agenda for November Meetings *Adjournment
R.R. Donnelley & Sons Company issued the following statement regarding the Schedule 13D filed on July 28, 2021 by Chatham Asset Management, LLC with the Securities and Exchange Commission disclosing, among other things, its current holdings of common shares and debt of RRD. RRD is open to constructive input from any of its stockholders and has been engaged in frequent dialogue with Chatham for more than two years. In addition, the Company’s Board of Directors and management continue to work extensively with external advisors to review strategic opportunities, including monetizing assets to unlock the intrinsic value of RRD. Since July 31, 2020, RRD has successfully executed the following transactions to accelerate its debt and leverage reduction: *In November 2020, RRD completed the sales of its two remaining Logistics businesses for $238 million with the assistance of an external advisor. *In December 2020, RRD generated $96 million in proceeds from liquidating certain insurance policies. *RRD completed nine real estate sales yielding proceeds of $22 million.
Second Quarter 2021 U.S. GAAP Summary: Net sales of $1.3 billion increased 15% as reported. Currency contributed $46 million, or approximately 4%, to net sales growth, as compared to second quarter 2020. Net earnings in second quarter 2021 were $109 million, or $0.71 per diluted share, as compared to net earnings of $100 million, or $0.64 per diluted share, in second quarter 2020. The effective tax rate in second quarter 2021 was 29.7%, as compared to 30.8% in second quarter 2020.
The Mayr-Melnhof Group (MM) has completed the acquisition of Kotkamills, Finland, agreed in December 2020, with the approval of all relevant competition authorities. With the acquisition, MM strengthens its position on the virgin fiber board (FBB) market with an attractive range of barrier board solutions that can replace PE (polyethylene) -coated board. MM is also entering the growing market for cardboard for paper cups (cup stock). The acquisition complements MM's established market position in recycled cardboard. In addition, MM is diversifying its product range with Saturating Kraft Paper / Impregnation paper, in which Kotkamills is one of the world's leading producers. "MM Kotkamills will play a strong and dynamic role within MM as an innovator in cardboard for modern paper cups, the water-dispersion-based coating of which is already carried out on-line in the cardboard machine. Our medium-term goal is to bring the sales volume to a capacity of around 400,000 t of carton per year. We look forward to a successful collaboration with our new colleagues, "comments Peter Oswald, CEO of the MM Group.
The pulp and paper industry is invested in the health of our forests, and sustainability continues to be a high priority in the next decade. At Domtar, we’re proud of our commitment to the environment, and to see our colleagues be recognized for their sustainability focus. The American Forest and Paper Association, of which Domtar is a part, recently released five sustainability goals for the industry to meet by 2030: *Zero injuries *Resilient forests *Reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions *Drive water stewardship *Advance a circular value chain. AF&PA also highlights sustainability work at individual companies and advocates for the industry on important issues, such as recycling, postal reform and consumer choice of paper communications.
Mondi is rolling out a comprehensive portfolio of corrugated packaging solutions for the online grocery market across Central Europe. Using its wealth of experience in eCommerce packaging, Mondi has created clever new solutions for the diverse needs of grocery retailers who can now deliver a variety of goods, from perishable food to wine bottles in fit-for-purpose packaging. All boxes in the eGrocery portfolio are fully recyclable and meet customers' requirements of sustainability, cost efficiency and product protection. Mondi’s latest eGrocery packaging solutions include: Pick&ShipBox – a one-pack solution for all channels. It adapts to multiple requirements and offers convenience features such as easy lifting and opening. PantryBox – for quick and easy filling and closing. It is strong, stackable, and suitable for carrier shipping or click & collect. RecipeBox – for doorstep delivery of fresh produce and groceries. It has an integrated lid and optional holes for better ventilation. EatsBox – for smaller local deliveries by bike or scooter. It is lightweight and offers a quick filling option. Click&LoadBox – for click & collect of mixed grocery orders. It has handles for loading into cars and carrying home. Click&EnjoyBox – for holiday, gift or seasonal promotion packs. It has compartments for tall products like bottles, with an easy handle carrier. Click&CarryBox – for heavier mixed orders, providing strength and stability. It has an integrated handle for easy carrying.
S&P Global and IHS Markit announced an agreement to sell IHS Markit's Oil Price Information Services (OPIS); Coal, Metals and Mining; and PetroChem Wire businesses to News Corp in a cash transaction valued at approximately $1.150 billion. The sale is expected to be completed at the close of the merger between S&P Global and IHS Markit. The agreement marks the culmination of S&P Global and IHS Markit's previously announced decision to explore a divestiture of these businesses and represents an important milestone on the path to regulatory approval for the merger between S&P Global and IHS Markit.
Grainger reported results for the second quarter 2021 with sales of $3.2 billion, up 13.1% and up 15.0% on an organic, daily, constant currency basis compared to the second quarter 2020. Both the High-Touch Solutions N.A. and Endless Assortment segments produced strong top-line growth. Gross margin for the second quarter of 2021 was 35.0%, a 75 basis point decline over the prior year quarter driven by pandemic-related inventory adjustments recorded in the High-Touch Solutions N.A. segment. Reported operating earnings for the second quarter of 2021 of $334 million were up 62% versus the second quarter of 2020, primarily due to losses taken in the second quarter of 2020 related to the divested Fabory business.
Pratt Industries announced it would invest $400 million in a new 100% recycled paper mill in Henderson, Kentucky. This represents the largest single investment by the company in its history and will create more than 320 full time jobs plus an additional 700 in the construction phase. “It will be the world’s most advanced, environmentally-friendly 100% recycled paper mill,” said company owner and executive chairman Anthony Pratt. “And it means Pratt Industries will have built 6 of the last 8 paper mills in the United States.” Construction on the 450,000 sq ft mill would begin next March with a startup date scheduled for Fall 2023.
pladis, the global snack company behind some of the UK’s most loved and iconic brands, has been on a mission to substantially reduce its environmental impact by updating the packaging of various products to more ecological alternatives. This is part of the company’s sustainability agenda, which reflects its commitment to making all its packaging recyclable, reusable or compostable by 2025. Most recently, pladis has made steps forward to move toward more paper-based solutions – its Mini Cheddars and Cheeselets ranges now use Sonoco’s EnviroCanTM with paperboard end. Cracker Crisps and Mini Twiglets are also set to use EnviroCanTM later this year. “Sonoco’s EnviroCan™ with paperboard end meets the recycling requirements of the UK, which is great for our brand and the consumer, who can have peace of mind when disposing of the packaging in household waste recycling bins,” says Christopher Owen, Marketing Controller at pladis UK&I.
Greif, Inc. announced that it is expanding its CorrChoice – Concord sheet feeder operations. The company plans to acquire and install by the spring of 2022 an Engico Jumbo Flexo Folder Gluer from Haire Group that converts corrugated scored sheets into boxes. The three color, 188” machine offers flexibility with 66” and 99” die cut cylinders and will be the third jumbo press in Greif’s CorrChoice sheet feeder network. This investment enables Greif to continue its growth with new and existing strategic customers throughout the southeastern United States while enhancing customer service through diminished lead times. The expansion is also expected to create up to 30 new jobs in Cabarrus County where the CorrChoice – Concord sheet feeder is located
As from this summer, sugar beet pulp will be used to make Van Gilse kilo bags of granulated sugar. The kilo bags will be on sale in supermarkets. Sugar beet paper is a ground breaking innovation of Cosun Beet Company and paper manufacturer Crown Van Gelder. Step by step, the paper packaging will be introduced for other Van Gilse products. The sugar beet paper was extensively tested with paper manufacturer Crown Van Gelder before being taken into use. It is suitable for direct food contact and is strong, machine processable and easy to open and close. Sugar beet paper is made in part from beet pulp, a by-product of the sugar production process that is currently used as an animal feed and a source of green gas. By replacing 20% of the wood fibres in the paper, sugar beet fibres reduce the environmental impact by 16%.