Chatham Asset Management, LLC announced that they have completed a transaction in which affiliates of Chatham have acquired RRD for $10.85 per share in cash. The acquisition was previously announced on December 14, 2021, and RRD stockholders approved the transaction at the Special Meeting of Stockholders held on February 23, 2022. With the completion of the transaction, RRD expects its common stock will cease trading on the New York Stock Exchange before market open on February 28, 2022. In connection with the completion of the transaction, Thomas J. Quinlan has assumed the role of President and Chief Executive Officer of RRD.
"Thanks to the efforts of the Verso team, Verso delivered excellent safety results and solid financial performance in the fourth quarter driven by improved sales and operations year-over-year," said Verso President and Chief Executive Officer Randy Nebel. "As we look toward the future, we believe our pending combination with BillerudKorsnäs will enable our customers and employees to benefit from enhanced opportunities as part of a larger, stronger organization. Our full Board believes the proposed merger maximizes value for shareholders, who will receive a significant premium and immediate and certain value for their shares of Verso." Net sales for the three months ended December 31, 2021 increased $14 million or 4% compared to the three months ended December 31, 2020 driven by favorable price/mix of $57 million, partially offset by $43 million, or 14%, in decreased sales largely attributable to our sold Duluth and idled Wisconsin Rapids mills. Total company sales volume was down from 392 thousand tons during the three months ended December 31, 2020, to 341 thousand tons during the same period of 2021, primarily attributable to our sold Duluth and idled Wisconsin Rapids mills.
Teemu Salmi, CIO, Head of IT & Digitalisation and a member of the Group Leadership Team, has decided to leave his position at Stora Enso. After five years in the company, Teemu will assume the CEO position at Finnish cyber security company Nixu. Teemu will continue working in Stora Enso until 20 May 2022. “Teemu has been instrumental in driving and accelerating Stora Enso’s digitalisation agenda, supporting our transformation to become the renewable materials company. I want to express my gratitude and thanks to Teemu for his contributions to Stora Enso, while also wishing him all the very best for his new exciting career opportunity,” says Annica Bresky, President and CEO at Stora Enso. As part of Stora Enso’s new operating model, IT & Digitalization will moving forward be part of the CFO organisation and report to CFO Seppo Parvi. Seppo and Teemu will immediately start the handover process to ensure a smooth transfer of the responsibilities.
Additional second quarter service performance scores covering Jan.1 through Feb. 18 included: *First-Class Mail: 86 percent of First-Class Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 3.1 percentage points from the fiscal first quarter. *Marketing Mail: 91.2 percent of Marketing Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 1 percentage point from the fiscal first quarter. *Periodicals: 79.4 percent of Periodicals delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 1.4 percentage point from the fiscal first quarter.
Sun Chemical will implement energy surcharges across its entire portfolio of packaging, commercial sheetfed, and screen inks, coatings, consumables, and adhesives in Europe, Middle East, Africa, effective from March 1, 2022. As the unprecedented pace of inflationary cost movements continues to impact the entire spectrum of raw material and packaging components for the ink industry, without sign of stabilisation in sight, the industry is also being hit by abrupt rises of energy costs of all kinds, including electricity, gas, fuel, diesel, drastically impacting manufacturing costs and freights costs. The current situation in Europe has already been adding up further on costs, with more uncertainties moving forward.
Total European shipments of graphic papers in December 2021 were UP 3.2% vs. December 2020 and were UP 4.4% year-to-date. Total European shipments of newsprint in December 2021 were down 5.5% vs. December 2020 and were down 3.4% year-to-date. Total European shipments of sc-magazine in December 2021 were down 6.9% vs. December 2020 and were down 0.7% year-to-date. Total European shipments of coated mechanical reels in December 2021 were UP 9.7% vs. December 2020 and were UP 3.0% year-to-date. Total European shipments of uncoated mechanical (improved & others) in December 2021 were down 6.2% vs. December 2020 and were UP 2.5% year-to-date. Total European shipments of coated woodfree in December 2021 were UP 11.2% vs. December 2020 and were UP 11.7% year-to-date. Total European shipments of uncoated woodfree in December 2021 were UP 10.2% vs. December 2020 and were UP 10.7% year-to-date.
In a world desperate for alternatives to plastics, the market-pull for dry molded fiber is enormous. To support converters in the transition to the new technology, PulPac continuously expands its network of preferred partners and suppliers. Solenis, a leading global producer of specialty chemicals focused on delivering sustainable solutions, has joined this global network of leaders supporting the dry molded fiber community. "We are excited to be a force for sustainable change in the packaging industry by contributing to this groundbreaking technology. Solenis has a prominent culture of innovation, consistently delivering new-to-the-world products and next-generation technologies to meet the ever-changing market needs and challenges our industrial customers face. I believe we are uniquely positioned to provide safe and sustainable barrier solutions designed for circularity to the dry molded fiber converters that lead the way and set new standards for fiber-based packaging,” says Daniel Palrén, Business Development Manager at Solenis. “Fiber-based products coated with these barrier coatings typically are repulpable, recyclable, compostable and biodegradable, thereby offering packaging producers a way to improve their sustainability credentials with brand owners, retailers and consumers.”
If the early days of 2022 have been any indication, paper shortages and rising distribution costs are challenges that the industry will likely face throughout year. The seeds of the current problems were sown in the years of the pandemic, when sales of print books unexpectedly rose, increasing demand while people were leaving manufacturing jobs in droves that led to labor shortages in the printing and papermaking businesses. Those were two of the main takeaways from last week’s webinar, “The Powerful Case for U.S. Book Manufacturing in the Face of Global Supply Chain Challenges, Paper Shortages, and Rising Distribution Costs,” moderated by Chris Lyons, president and publisher of Book Business, and featuring Jim Milliot, editorial director at Publishers Weekly; Bill Rojack, v-p of Midland Paper; and Matt Baehr, executive director at Book Manufacturers’ Institute. The program was sponsored by Canon Solutions America.
It seems businesses are finally bouncing back after the past two years of the pandemic. However, even though business is picking up, there is one glaring issue: The availability of paper stocks has become limited and unpredictable, and as a result the price of paper stock is inevitably increasing. Supply chain issues have been throwing curveballs at various manufacturing segments, and the printing industry is no exception. The availability of paper stocks has become slim as raw material costs rise, mills enact allocations and price increases, and labor shortages continue. So, are we doomed? Not even close. During an hour-long Printing Impressions and In-plant Impressions webinar, Marco Boer VP of I.T. Strategies and President of Midland Specialty Paper & Film Mike Ratcliff discussed the reasons for printing paper supply shortages, the steps printing companies can take to address the limitations head-on, and what print providers can expect in the future of the paper supply chain.
Neenah, Inc. announced a 25 million euro investment in new meltblown capacity in our German filtration facility. Neenah is committed to accelerating growth in life science and industrial filtration markets. Our portfolio of meltblown products promotes higher filtration efficacy and lower energy usage, which our customers value. Our electrostatically charged NeenahPure® media solutions support HVAC, air pollution control, and air purification systems, delivering market leading efficiencies >99.9%. "Clean air and water are critical to our communities and environment. Meltblown technology effectively removes harmful particles from the air we breathe and the water we drink. This new meltblown line intensifies our innovation efforts and allows us to continue to grow with our customers," said President and CEO Julie Schertell.
Stora Enso announced that it has signed a letter of intent to divest the Kvarnsveden site in Sweden to Northvolt. Due to structural decline in demand for graphical paper, in April 2021 Stora Enso announced a plan to close its Kvarnsveden paper production site. Founded in 1900, Kvarnsveden produced pulp and paper for over 120 years until production ended in September 2021. Northvolt is a European supplier of sustainable battery cells and will develop the site into a battery manufacturing plant, reusing and refurbishing the existing facilities and site infrastructure. According to Northvolt, the gigafactory is expected to start the first part of its operations in late 2024, and will employ up to 1,000 people.
Canfor Corporation has entered into a Letter of Intent with McLeod Lake Indian Band and Tsay Keh Dene Nation to sell its forest tenure in the Mackenzie region of British Columbia (BC) and a separate agreement with Peak Renewables to sell its Mackenzie site, plant and equipment for a combined price of $70 million. Canfor, McLeod Lake Indian Band and Tsay Keh Dene Nation intend to work towards a definitive agreement for the sale of the forest tenure and will seek approval from the BC Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development for the tenure transfer.
Statutory results • Sales increased 1% to £3,428m (2020: £3,397m), reflecting underlying performance, portfolio changes and currency movements. • Statutory operating profit was £183m (2020: £411m). The decrease in 2021 is mainly due to the gain on sale of PRH recognised in 2020 and restructuring costs in 2021 partially offset by improved trading profits, reduced intangible charges and gains on the 2021 business disposals. • Net cash generated from operations of £570m (2020: £450m). • Statutory earnings per share of 21.1p (2020: 41.0p).
Metsä Board's Kemi mill is gearing up to increase annual capacity by 40,000 tonnes and further enhance sustainability and efficiency through a series of investments in its white kraftliner production line, which will significantly reduce the mill's water and energy consumption. The coming two years are set to be an exceptional period of growth and improvement at Metsä Board's Kemi mill, driven by significant investments to modernise the production process and eliminate bottlenecks. At the helm is mill manager Timo Ahonen, who is excited by what 2022 and 2023 have in store for the Kemi site: "I thoroughly enjoy the process of implementing changes to our operations that we can see reflected in our results. One of our key goals for 2022 is to ensure the successful implementation of our production development programme," Ahonen highlights.
Kimberly-Clark Corporation announced that it has completed its acquisition of a majority stake in Thinx, Inc., an industry disruptor and the leader in reusable period and incontinence underwear category. The company made an initial minority investment in Thinx in 2019. "Our investment in the success of Thinx represents a compelling strategic fit as we build our portfolio of period and light bladder leakage solutions, and we are excited for the opportunity this expanded partnership will provide to both Kimberly-Clark and Thinx," said Russ Torres, Group President of Kimberly-Clark's North American consumer business. "The investment in Thinx paves the road for collaboration and allows us to work together to drive category growth with our retail partners while continuing to support Thinx in direct-to-consumer channels."
Solenis, a leading global producer of specialty chemicals, will increase prices across all product lines in North America and Latin America by 10 to 25 percent, effective April 1, 2022, or as customer contracts allow. These price increases are necessary because of increased costs for raw materials, energy, transportation, and packaging. These increases will allow Solenis to continue to provide value-added solutions to customers.
National Average Price for Regular Unleaded Current: $3.572; Month Ago: $3.335; Year Ago: $2.678. National Average Price for Diesel Current: $3.979; Month Ago: $3.678; Year Ago: $2.889.
American Dollar to Canadian Dollar = 0.783604; American Dollar to Chinese Yuan = 0.158366; American Dollar to Euro = 1.122623; American Dollar to Japanese Yen = 0.008653; American Dollar to Mexican Peso = 0.048975.
Huhtamaki, a key global provider of sustainable packaging solutions, has signed a 12-year Virtual Power Purchase Agreement (VPPA) with a subsidiary of NextEra Energy Resources, LLC. NextEra Energy Resources is the world’s largest generator of renewable energy from the wind and sun. The 42-megawatt agreement for renewable energy covers approximately 30% of Huhtamaki operations’ current electricity demands in the United States and Mexico, where the company has 18 manufacturing units. “We believe in protecting food, people and the planet. This agreement marks an important milestone on our journey towards delivering on our ambitious 2030 sustainability agenda. The agreement builds on the European VPPA agreement announced late in 2021, which covers 80% of our European electricity usage”, says Thomas Guest, Deputy CEO of Huhtamaki. The renewable energy covered by the agreement will be sourced from a subsidiary of NextEra Energy Resources’ Inertia Wind Energy Center in the Electricity Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) North Zone, in Texas. The approximately 300-megawatt project is expected to be operational by the end of 2022 and to save more than 71,000 tons of CO2 emissions annually, equivalent to the average electricity usage of more than 12,000 homes in the United States.*
R.R. Donnelley & Sons Company held its virtual special meeting of stockholders to consider two proposals relating to the previously announced Agreement and Plan of Merger, dated as of December 14, 2021, by and among Chatham Delta Parent, Inc., Chatham Delta Acquisition Sub, Inc. and RRD. Pursuant to the terms of the Merger Agreement, Acquisition Sub will merge with and into RRD, with RRD surviving the Merger as a direct or indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Parent. The first proposal, to adopt the Merger Agreement, was approved by affirmative vote of a majority of the outstanding shares of RRD common stock entitled to vote thereon.
2021 Annual Highlights (comparative figures have been restated to reflect discontinued operations2) Sales of $3,956 million (compared with $4,105 million in 2020) As reported (including specific items) Operating income of $50 million (compared with $292 million in 2020) Operating income before depreciation and amortization (OIBD) of $302 million (compared with $543 million in 2020) Net earnings per common share of $1.60 (compared with $2.04 in 2020) Net earnings per common share of $0.26 (compared with $1.95 in 2020) Net debt1 of $1,351 million as at December 31, 2021 (compared with $1,760 million as at September 30, 2021). Net debt to adjusted OIBD ratio1 of 3.5x down from 3.8x as at September 30, 2021.
Intense negotiations between UPM and Paperworkers’ Union continue. Today the union announced a three weeks’ extension to the strike at most UPM’s Finnish mills, until 2 April 2022, unless new collective labour agreements are reached before that. The Paperworkers’ Union’s strike at UPM Pulp, UPM Biofuels, UPM Communication Papers, UPM Specialty Papers and UPM Raflatac units in Finland began 1 January 2022. Currently, approximately 200 union members work at the mills in tasks critical to society, such as power plants and water treatment facilities. “In recent weeks the parties have negotiated both in the presence of the National Concialiator as well as in one-on-one negotiations. The parties now are familiar with each other’s objectives, so the negotiators have the chance to bargain and reach business-specific agreements,” says Jyrki Hollmén, Vice President, Labour markets, UPM. “Intense negotiations will continue. We call for rapid progress and spirit of compromise, so we can find satisfactory solutions for all parties and start our mills again. UPM businesses are doing their best to advance an open dialogue between the negotiating parties,” Hollmén concludes.
The U.S. Postal Service announced it has completed its obligations under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process, which, in this instance, evaluated the potential environmental impacts of the Postal Service’s Next Generation Vehicle Delivery (NGDV) program, a fiscally and environmentally responsible plan to modernize the federal government’s largest and oldest vehicle fleet. The Postal Service communicated its completion of the NEPA process in a record of decision (ROD) filed with the Federal Register today. “As we have reiterated throughout this process, our commitment to an electric fleet remains ambitious given the pressing vehicle and safety needs of our aging fleet as well as our fragile financial condition. As our financial position improves with the ongoing implementation of our 10-year plan, Delivering for America, we will continue to pursue the acquisition of additional BEV as additional funding – from either internal or congressional sources - becomes available,” said Postmaster General and USPS Chief Executive Officer Louis DeJoy. “But the process needs to keep moving forward. The men and women of the U.S. Postal Service have waited long enough for safer, cleaner vehicles to fulfill on our universal service obligation to deliver to 161 million addresses in all climates and topographies six days per-week.”
Fourth Quarter 2021 Financial Highlights: • Total revenues of $826.5 million decreased 5.6% compared to the prior year quarter ◦ Same store revenues(1) decreased 4.3% compared to the fourth quarter of 2020 • Total digital revenues were $272.6 million or 33% of total revenues, up 5.0% over the same period in the prior year on a same store(1) basis • Net loss attributable to Gannett of $22.4 million and margin loss of 2.7% • Cash used for operating activities of $5.9 million and free cash flow(1) usage of $18.2 million
*Net loss from continuing operations for the fourth quarter was $28 million, $1 million favorable to the comparable period in 2020 *Amidst strong demand, secured double-digit percent price increases along with volume improvements for cellulose specialties contracts in 2022 *Expect to drive EBITDA growth in 2022 focused on higher pricing, managing costs and improved reliability; expect a stronger back half with extensive maintenance outages heavily weighted to the first half of 2022 *Enhanced sustainability disclosures in updated Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Report, including a Greenhouse Gas reduction target of 40% by 2030 from 2020 levels
In the next two years Sappi will be investing a sum in the low double-digit millions to expand its Centre of Excellence for speciality papers at its facility in Carmignano, northern Italy. With this investment, the company plans to increase production capacity to support further growth in the existing dye sublimation business, in combination with an improved first-class service and lead times. *Expansion of the Mill facility to meet growing demand *Support the current growth of the dye sublimation industry *Improve lead time and sustainability footprint of the Mill. The conversion is scheduled for completion by the end of 2023.
Metsä Board Corporation, part of Metsä Group, has published its 2021 Annual and Sustainability Report as a pdf file in Finnish and English. The combined Annual and Sustainability Report includes the Report of the Board of Directors, the Company's Financial statements and the Corporate governance statement for the financial period 1 January–31 December 2021. The combined Annual and Sustainability Report, published for the first time, responds to the growing demand for sustainability information and the increasing regulatory requirements for sustainability reporting. A broader sustainability section reports on how Metsä Board has progressed towards the ambitious 2030 sustainability targets and the measures taken to achieve them. The reporting entity includes disclosure of climate risks under the TCFD and SASB reporting for pulp and paper product industry.
*Fourth Quarter Revenue of $2.0 Billion with GAAP EPS of $0.61; Adjusted EPS of $0.71 *Commitment to Low Cost Model Helped Drive GAAP Operating Income of $31 Million and Adjusted Operating Income of $47 Million in the Fourth Quarter of 2021 *GAAP Operating Income of $234 Million and Adjusted Operating Income of $305 Million for Full Year 2021 *Strategic Initiatives Successes Included Progress on Operational Separation of the Business, Sale of CompuCom, and Further Advancement of Varis Platform and Digital Business Commerce Capabilities *Over $300 Million Committed to Shareholders in 2021 Through Stock Repurchases
Stora Enso and Picadeli, Europe’s leading take-away salad bar company, are introducing renewable formed fiber lids to replace single-use plastics in take-away packaging. The lids are made of PureFiber™ by Stora Enso, and they are plastic-free, recyclable, and biodegradable. The innovation will help Picadeli reduce approximately 120 tonnes of plastic waste annually. “Our strategic aim is to grow with sustainable, scalable, and innovative packaging solutions. We do this by supporting strong forerunner brands such as Picadeli in meeting the growing consumer demand for plastic-free and circular solutions. A salad bowl lid is a good example of an everyday single-use plastic item that can make an important difference on climate footprint when replaced by a sustainable alternative,” says Sohrab Kazemahvazi, SVP Formed Fiber at Stora Enso.
Stora Enso is starting a feasibility study for the possible conversion of an idle paper machine at its Oulu site in Finland for a high-volume consumer board line. On a successful completion of the feasibility study, an investment decision could be made by the end of 2022 with start-up in 2025. Stora Enso’s strategy is to invest in growth to support the strong, continuous demand for sustainable packaging. This is one of the key strategic focus areas in which the Group is building its market share with both existing and new customers. Stora Enso already holds a leading global market position in this segment. The potential investment in Oulu would target high-quality and low carbon-footprint packaging segments for frozen and chilled food and beverages, as well as for non-food applications such as pharma and cosmetics. The feasibility study will also assess how the conversion could contribute to Stora Enso’s science-based targets regarding operational CO2 emissions.
The U.S. consumer magazine industry shrunk by more than 30% in the past five years, due largely to print advertising declines, per PwC data. The rate of decline is expected to slow slightly in the next five years, thanks to new efforts from online media companies to acquire and digitize traditional print brands. Why it matters: "If you make the right acquisition in the right vertical ... it can give you real scale that is meaningful and major clout in that vertical very quickly," said Jason Webby, chief revenue officer at Future.
The U.S. Postal Service is launching a set of four new fast delivery solutions, including one specifically aimed at local businesses. Known as USPS Connect, the set of solutions offers several options designed to help meet growing consumer demand for affordable, fast local, regional, and national deliveries and returns. According to the U.S. Postal Service, the solutions leverage ongoing network improvements, new equipment, and new pricing.
American Trucking Associations’ advanced seasonally adjusted (SA) For-Hire Truck Tonnage Index rose 0.6% in January after increasing 0.9% in December. In January, the index equaled 115.5 (2015=100) compared with 114.9 in December. ATA recently revised the seasonally adjusted index back five years as part of its annual revision. “January’s gain was the sixth straight totaling 4.4%,” said ATA Chief Economist Bob Costello. “The index, which is dominated by contract freight with only small amounts of spot market truck freight, is off 3.9% from the all-time high in August 2019 and only 1.5% below March 2020 when the pandemic hit. In January, truck tonnage was helped by rising retail sales and factory output. While housing starts fell last month, which is another important driver of truck tonnage, it remained at high levels.”
Cascades Sonoco, a joint venture between Cascades Inc. and Sonoco Products Company, today announced that its FlexSHIELD® coatings have received third party certification for compostability from TÜV Austria. Additionally, the coatings have achieved recyclability and repulpability certifications from the Fiber Box Association. FlexSHIELD’s aqueous-based barrier coatings are designed for use in folding carton, cup, and foodservice container applications, where scoring, folding and heat sealing often create major challenges. FlexSHIELD is the first fully compostable product that provides polyethylene-like protection and ease of conversion at an economical price point. Packaging treated with FlexSHIELD is FDA, CFIA and EUR compliant for direct food contact. “We are pleased that our entire FlexSHIELD coating line has now achieved these important certifications,” said Jeff Stacy, Market Segment Manager, Cascades Sonoco. “These certifications demonstrate our commitment to creating more sustainable packaging solutions for our customers and are the fruit of years of research and development efforts.”
ProAmpac announced that it has acquired Belle-Pak Packaging (“Belle-Pak”), an award-winning manufacturer of flexible packaging products. With the addition of Belle-Pak, ProAmpac expands its growing presence in Canada and extends its reach in high-growth e-commerce, healthcare and logistics end markets. Based in Ontario, Canada, Belle-Pak’s diverse portfolio of flexible packaging products includes poly mailers for e-commerce and logistics services, packing list envelopes and custom medical and clinical bags. This acquisition allows ProAmpac to serve a broader base of category-leading customers across North America with high-quality and innovative flexible packaging solutions. Greg Tucker, Founder and CEO of ProAmpac, said, “I am pleased to welcome the talented Belle-Pak team to ProAmpac as we continue our growth in Canada and embark on this exciting partnership. With Belle-Pak’s advanced technology and efficient manufacturing capabilities, our combined company will be well-positioned for continued growth and operational excellence.”
Worzalla was ranked the largest employee-owned book printer in North America and the fifth-largest North American book printer in Printing Impressions’ latest industry rankings titled “2021 Printing Impressions 300.” Worzalla was also ranked the 63rd largest printer by annual sales on the general list that includes all printing companies in North America. This is the second consecutive year Worzalla has been ranked as a Top 5 Market Segment Leader in the book printing category. Worzalla also held its ranking as the 63rd largest printer from last year. “Our consistent growth and ranking in Printing Impressions’ annual report is a reflection of Worzalla’s ability to support its customers as book sales continue to increase across America,” said Jim Fetherston, President and CEO of Worzalla. “Much of our success is due to our dedicated associates, who do so much to deliver quality products for our customers despite the challenges our industry has faced over the last few years.” In 2021 Worzalla launched phase three of its modernization plan adding needed printing capacity to its facilities in Stevens Point, Wisconsin. The expansion included the addition of a new casemaker and press. Additionally, Worzalla continued to grow its workforce for the day-to-day operations of creating the millions of books ordered by Worzalla’s customers each year.
Recent Highlights *Increased Net Sales 1% (3% excluding divestitures) in 2021, driven by higher print volumes, including print segment share gains from new clients, growth in Agency Solutions Net Sales, and increased pricing in response to inflationary cost pressures. *Delivered $38 million of Net Earnings From Continuing Operations in 2021 and Adjusted Diluted Earnings Per Share From Continuing Operations of $0.60 per share in 2021 compared to $0.29 per share in 2020. *Generated $137 million of Net Cash From Operating Activities and Free Cash Flow of $87 million in 2021. *Divested non-core assets, generating $166 million of cash proceeds in 2021. *Reduced Net Debt by $410 million or 40% over the past two years, reaching Debt Leverage of 2.5x.
Metallized, Thermal, Cast Coated and Carbonless products impacted - Unsuccessful collective agreement negotiations between Lecta and the trade unions representing the labour force in the Leitza mill resulted in the trade unions starting an intermittent strike as of January 30. Despite all the efforts put in finding a reasonable solution to this issue, trade unions informed that the strike will become indefinite as of today. This unfortunate event will disrupt production schedule in the Leitza mill and will result in orders of the impacted products being postponed and/or cancelled. Lecta is taking all relevant measures to end this conflict as soon as possible and mitigate any inconvenience or disruption this unfortunate situation may have on our clients and is committed to restoring regular production schedule as soon as possible.
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Company announced that it has entered into a definitive merger agreement with certain affiliates of Veritas Capital, a leading private investment firm, for the acquisition of the Company. Pursuant to the terms of the agreement, HMH shareholders will be entitled to receive $21 in cash per share through a tender offer. The per share purchase price represents a 36% premium to the Company’s unaffected share price as of January 13, 2022 and implies an equity value of approximately $2.8 billion. The decision to enter into an agreement with Veritas was the result of a deliberate and thorough strategic review process overseen by HMH’s Board of Directors. As part of that review, the Company held discussions with several potential strategic and financial bidders, including Veritas, through a formal process. Further details of the transaction and background of the sale process will be included in the Company’s Schedule 14D-9 with respect to the tender offer.
Fourth Quarter 2021 *Sales for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2021 were $35.7 billion, an increase of $3.5 billion, or 10.7 percent from the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020. Comparable sales for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2021 increased 8.1 percent, and comparable sales in the U.S. increased 7.6 percent. *Net earnings for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2021 were $3.4 billion, or $3.21 per diluted share, compared with net earnings of $2.9 billion, or $2.65 per diluted share, in the same period of fiscal 2020. For the fourth quarter of fiscal 2021, diluted earnings per share increased 21.1 percent from the same period in the prior year. Fiscal 2021 *Sales for fiscal 2021 were $151.2 billion, an increase of $19.0 billion, or 14.4 percent, from fiscal 2020. Comparable sales for fiscal 2021 increased 11.4 percent, and comparable sales in the U.S. increased 10.7 percent. *Net earnings for fiscal 2021 were $16.4 billion, or $15.53 per diluted share, compared with net earnings of $12.9 billion, or $11.94 per diluted share in fiscal 2020. For fiscal year 2021, diluted earnings per share increased 30.1 percent versus last year.
*Comparable sales up 28.3% on an owned basis and up 27.8% on an owned-plus-licensed basis versus Q4 2020; up 6.6% and up 6.1%, respectively, versus Q4 2019 *Digital sales up 12% over Q4 2020, up 36% over Q4 2019 *7.2 million new customers shopped the Macy's brand, an 11% increase over Q4 2019 *Generated $2.7 billion in Operating Cash Flow and $2.3 billion in Free Cash Flow in FY 2021 *New $2 billion share repurchase program authorized after completing current $500 million program and raised quarterly dividend by 5%
In just four months, Tetra Pak has co-invested over €11.5 million with recyclers and industry players, to help set up four completely new recycling solutions for carton packages in Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Ukraine and Australia. From building recycling capacity from scratch via cross-border cooperation (in Saudi Arabia), expanding that capacity by 50% (in Turkey), tripling the production capacity for the cartons' PolyAl element (in Ukraine) to leveraging a public/ private partnership (in Australia), these projects share one single, critical trait. They will enable recycling of all components of a used carton package, transforming them into quality materials and goods. Once fully operational, the new solutions will be able to process up to an additional 45,000 tonnes of used carton packages, enabling global carton package recycling to exceed 50 billion a year. This translates to significantly improved recycling in the respective countries, and in some cases also in the neighbouring ones.
Ahlstrom-Munksjö, Ellepot, and OrganoClick have partnered to provide 100% biobased and biodegradable solutions to the horticulture market. Organic 2.0 paper pot is an entirely organic-based solution to grow crops on an industrial scale. The new product has allowed the companies to enter the organic crop segment, which is expected to grow exponentially in the coming years. Organic 2.0 results from a close collaboration between Ellepot, OrganoClick and Ahlstrom-Munksjö's R&D team. After years of co-development, the three companies created a sustainable and more economical solution to grow plants by using paper pots planted directly into the soil. The pots degrade away after time which allows for the crop's roots to penetrate through the media and supports the healthy growth of the plants. Organic 2.0 paper pot consist of 100% fully compostable and biodegradable materials and has a decomposition time of 6 to 8 weeks.
The construction of Wisdome Stockholm, a scientific experience arena, is now underway. The building at Sweden’s National Museum of Science and Technology in Stockholm has a pioneering design and will be a landmark object for sustainable and climate-smart construction in wood. Stora Enso is the main partner and delivers wood construction materials to Wisdome Stockholm. Wisdome Stockholm is a spectacular wooden building design of 1,325 square meters with a unique vaulted roof. Inside the building, there is a globe-shaped dome theatre of 21.6 meters in diameter hosting a 3D cinema with a spherical screen. "We are a proud supplier to this ground-breaking project. Wisdome Stockholm pushes the boundaries and shows what is possible to create with wood as a climate-friendly construction material. Through unique projects like this we can strengthen our customer offering as well as our leading position within renewable construction materials,” says Per Lyrvall, Country Manager Sweden, Stora Enso.
Elena Armas self-published The Spanish Love Deception in February 2021. TikTok embraced the fake dating, enemies-to-lovers romance—videos hashtagged #TheSpanishLoveDeception have been viewed 73 million times to date—and in September 2021, Atria signed Armas to a two-book deal. “The slow-burning romance heats up the pages as Armas’s witty, intelligent protagonists reveal their innermost secrets and overcome their past misunderstandings,” our review said. “Rom-com fans will be riveted.” The book debuts at #3 on our trade paperback list; rights have been sold in 23 countries, and the sequel, The American Roommate Experiment, follows in September. Pop culture critic Chuck Klosterman lands at #5 on our hardcover nonfiction list with The Nineties, a “nostalgic look at the waning days of offline culture,” our review said, that “both piques and entertains.” Klosterman characterizes the era as one of ambivalence, but the book’s opening-week sales have been decisively enthusiastic. Latin Grammy Award–winning singer Chiquis Rivera lands at #8 on our hardcover nonfiction list with the memoir Unstoppable. A Spanish edition, Invencible, debuts at #20 on our trade paperback list.
Canfor Pulp Products Inc. is announcing a minimum six-week curtailment of BCTMP production at Taylor Pulp in response to significant transportation shortages that have resulted in inventories at the pulp mill reaching capacity. “Taylor Pulp has been dealing with ongoing transportation challenges that have significantly impacted the facility’s ability to ship product,” said Don Kayne, Chief Executive Officer, Canfor Pulp. “We regret the impact the curtailment will have on our employees, their families and the community.” Already facing increasing fibre costs due to the constrained fibre supply in the region and a weaker longerterm outlook for BCTMP markets, the current logistical issues have created a very challenging business environment for Taylor Pulp. During the curtailment, Canfor Pulp will continue to monitor the supply chain constraints and assess opportunities to improve the operating economics of the mill. The curtailment will reduce the production of BCTMP by at least 25,000 tonnes.
In line with its commitment to optimize energy efficiency and reduce environmental impact. The ISO 50001 standard is the benchmark international standard developed by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) for the development of an energy management system within an organization. Lecta’s compliance with this strict standard guarantees the existence of a system optimized for proper, efficient energy use at all its manufacturing sites. Lecta, by carrying out its activity in accordance with the requirements of this important environmental certification, also reaffirms its commitment to the implementation of energy saving measures, with the resulting reduction in emissions and environmental impact.
2021 Highlights: *Net Sales were $7,156 million versus $6,560 million in the prior year. *Net Organic Sales increased approximately 2% in the fourth quarter and full year versus the prior year periods. *Net Income was $204 million versus $167 million in the prior year. *Executing approximately $850 million in recognized pricing actions in 2021 and 2022 to address commodity input cost inflation. *Commissioning the world's lowest-cost and highest-quality coated recycled paperboard production capabilities at the Kalamazoo, Michigan campus. *Completed AR Packaging and Americraft acquisitions, significantly expanding geographies, markets and the product portfolio. Graphic Packaging Holding Company (NYSE:GPK), (the "Company" or "Graphic Packaging"), a leading provider of sustainable packaging solutions to food, beverage, foodservice, and other consumer products companies, today reported Net Income for fourth quarter 2021 of $39 million, or $0.13 per share, based on 309 million weighted average diluted shares. This compares to fourth quarter 2020 Net Income of $64 million, or $0.24 per share, based on 270 million weighted average diluted shares.
Full Year Highlights *We achieved an improvement in our safety recordable incident rate by approximately 30 percent. *Net sales of $1,028.5 million increased 30 percent compared to 2020, primarily driven by organic volume growth, pricing actions and the impact of the acquisition of Itasa. *In April 2021, we acquired Itasa, a leading global coater and converter of release liners used in hygiene, tapes, industrial labels, composites and various other end markets. The purchase price was $240.2 million, and in the first nine months of ownership, Itasa has generated incremental net sales of $106.9 million. *We executed several operational initiatives, including a $13 million investment in new coating capacity starting up in 2023, closure of our Appleton, Wisconsin facility to save $7-8 million annually, and restarting an idled asset to support growth in premium packaging. *We made meaningful progress on key environmental, social and governance initiatives, including actions designed to reduce energy usage, water consumption and greenhouse gases, recognition through leading sustainability rating agencies (including EcoVadis Gold Medal in Spain and Silver Medal in all other locations) and advancements in the diversity of our Board of Directors (with half identifying as female or underrepresented minorities).
Full Year Key Messages *GAAP net sales, including the impact of foreign exchange and a disposition in early 2020, increased $197 million or 4.1%; Non-GAAP organic net sales increased 3.2% primarily from higher demand for many of the Company’s products and services *GAAP income from operations was up $55 million versus the prior year *Cash provided by operating activities in 2021 was $92.1 million as compared to $149.8 million in the prior year period; current year results include payments in excess of $100 million related to the planned merger, settlement of LSC bankruptcy related claims, repayment of half the payroll taxes deferred in 2020 and payments made to terminate certain interest rate swap agreements *Total debt outstanding of $1.47 billion at December 31, 2021 is down $37 million from the prior year end; Pension and OPEB plans are overfunded by $42 million at December 31, 2021 which is an improvement of $146 million from the $104 million underfunded amount at the prior year end *Gross leverage ratio of 3.6x and net leverage ratio of 2.9x both improved 0.1x from December 31, 2020 and represent lowest levels since 2016 spin
The United States Postal Service reported new delivery performance metrics showing the average time to deliver a mailpiece across the postal network was 2.7 days in the first five weeks of the fiscal year second quarter. Throughout January, winter storms across the nation created hazardous road conditions and impacted the air transportation network resulting in delays for middle mile mail and package transit. The Postal Service continues to implement mitigation plans to move mail and packages effectively across the nation. Additional second quarter service performance scores covering Jan.1 through Feb. 11 included: *First-Class Mail: 86.1 percent of First-Class Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 3 percentage points from the fiscal first quarter. *Marketing Mail: 90.9 percent of Marketing Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 1.3 percentage points from the fiscal first quarter. *Periodicals: 79.5 percent of Periodicals delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 1.4 percentage points from the fiscal first quarter.
For the Twelve Months Ended January 1, 2022 (52 Weeks) Net sales increased 29% to $1,411.0 million, compared to $1,091.7 million in the prior year. *DTC channel net sales increased 35% to $784.7 million, compared to $580.9 million in the prior year period, driven by both Drinkware and Coolers & Equipment. The DTC channel grew to 56% of net sales, compared to 53% in the prior year. *Wholesale channel net sales increased 23% to $626.3 million, compared to $510.9 million in the same period last year, primarily driven by both Drinkware and Coolers & Equipment. *Drinkware net sales increased 32% to $832.4 million, compared to $628.6 million in the prior year period, due to 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 24% to $551.9 million, compared to $446.6 million in the same period last year. The strong performance was driven by growth in bags, outdoor living products, soft coolers and hard coolers.
The Responsible Wood Forest Certification System 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 28 February to 28 April 2022. Responsible Wood revised the national forest certification system for Australia and New Zealand following the entry into force of the revised 2018 PEFC Sustainable Forest Management standard.
Fourth Quarter 2021: Net sales of $1.5 billion increased 14% as reported in fourth quarter 2021. Currency had an unfavorable impact of $16 million, or 1%. Net earnings were $169 million, or $1.12 per diluted share, in fourth quarter 2021 as compared to net earnings of $138 million, or $0.88 per diluted share, in fourth quarter 2020. Fourth quarter 2021 was favorably impacted by Special Items of $1 million. The after tax gain on the sale of Reflectix was predominantly offset by restructuring costs and Tax Special Items. Full Year 2021: Full year 2021 net sales of $5.5 billion increased 13% as reported. Currency had a favorable impact of $68 million, or approximately 1%. Full year 2021 net earnings were $491 million, or $3.22 per diluted share, as compared to net earnings of $484 million, or $3.10 per share, in full year 2020. Special Items had an unfavorable impact of $50 million in 2021, primarily attributable to Tax Special Items, restructuring related costs, and a loss on debt redemption, partially offset by the gain on the sale of Reflectix. Tax Special Items were primarily expense items attributable to increases in uncertain tax positions and revaluation of deferred tax assets. Comparatively, Special Items had an unfavorable impact of $14 million in 2020.
Fourth Quarter 2021 Summary: *Strong top line growth across each segment resulted in reported sales up 9% and core sales (excluding currency effects and acquisitions) up 10% *Reported earnings per share increased 8% to $0.85 *Reported net income increased 8% to $58 million. Annual 2021 Summary: *Top line growth across each segment drove record annual sales of $3.2 billion *Reported sales grew 10% and core sales increased 7% *Reported net income totaled $244 million, exceeding 2019 pre-pandemic levels *Acquired Voluntis, a pioneer in digital therapeutics, and 80% of Weihai Hengyu Medical Products, a leading Chinese manufacturer of elastomeric and plastic components used in injectable drug delivery *Furthered our ESG performance and commitments resulting in the following recognitions: Newsweek’s Most Responsible Companies, Barron’s Most Sustainable Companies, Forbes’ Green Growth 50 list, Forbes’ Global Top 10 Female-Friendly Companies, JUST Capital’s Top 10 Companies Leading in Reducing Environmental Impact, EcoVadis Platinum and CDP’s Supplier Engagement Leaderboard *28th consecutive year of paying increased annual cash dividends
U.S. purchases of total printing-writing papers increased nine percent in January compared to the same month last year. Total U.S. printing-writing paper inventory levels increased one percent in January 2022 when compared to December 2021. *Uncoated free sheet (UFS) paper shipments decreased three percent compared to January 2021 while the inventory level increased two percent compared to December 2021. UFS imports and exports both decreased compared to December 2020, down eight percent and 13 percent respectively. *U.S. purchases of coated free sheet (CFS) papers in January increased 29 percent compared to last January while the inventory level remained essentially flat (+0.4 percent) compared to December 2021. CFS imports increased 58 percent while exports decreased eight percent in December 2021. *Coated mechanical (CM) paper shipments increased nine percent compared to January 2021 while the inventory level decreased six percent compared to December 2021. CM imports increased 24 percent while exports decreased 20 percent in December 2021. *U.S. purchases of uncoated mechanical (UM) papers in January increased eight percent compared to last January while the inventory level increased six percent compared to December 2021. UM imports and exports both increased compared to December 2020, up 21 percent and 18 percent respectively.
The American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) has released its January 2022 Packaging Papers & Specialty Packaging Monthly report. According to the report, total packaging papers & specialty packaging shipments in January decreased two percent compared to January 2021. *The operating rate in January was 86.3 percent, down 1.0 points from January 2021. *Mill inventories at the end of January decreased 5,000 short tons from the previous month and were down 7,000 short tons compared to January 2021.
Mercer International Inc. reported fourth quarter 2021 Operating EBITDA increased to a record $164.9 million from $49.5 million in the fourth quarter of 2020 and from $148.1 million in the third quarter of 2021. In the fourth quarter of 2021, net income was $74.5 million (or $1.13 per basic share and $1.12 per diluted share) compared to a net loss of $13.0 million (or $0.20 per share) in the fourth quarter of 2020 and net income of $69.1 million (or $1.05 per basic share and $1.04 per diluted share) in the third quarter of 2021. In 2021, Operating EBITDA increased to a record $478.8 million from $192.7 million in 2020. In 2021, net income was a record $171.0 million (or $2.59 per basic share and $2.58 per diluted share) compared to a net loss of $17.2 million (or $0.26 per share) in 2020.
Mondi plc is pleased to announce that it has entered into an agreement to sell its Personal Care Components business (‘PCC’) to Nitto Denko Corporation (‘Nitto’) for an enterprise value of €615 million, which is also the approximate cash consideration payable to Mondi at completion (the ‘Transaction’). Mondi’s strategic focus to grow in packaging and the limited overlap of PCC with the rest of its business, has led Mondi to conclude that the next phase of PCC’s development will be better undertaken outside of the Group. PCC, part of the Group’s Engineered Materials business unit, manufactures a range of components for personal and home care products needed in everyday life such as diapers, feminine care, adult incontinence and wipes. For the financial year to 31 December 2020, PCC generated underlying EBITDA of €42 million.
Norske Skog Saugbrugs, together with its research and industry partners, has been granted NOK 60 million in research funding from the Research Council of Norway and Innovation Norway under the Green Platform Programme. The portfolio of products to be developed aims to remove or greatly reduce the use of petroleum-based raw materials and harmful materials, as well as to contribute to increased recycling of plastics. «It is through research and innovation that we create tomorrow's sustainable society. Green platform is an important measure to ensure profitable green transition, and will help us become more skilled at scaling up and linking research to the market», says Jan Christian Vestre, Minister of Trade and Industry (Labour Party). CEO of Norske Skog, Sven Ombudstvedt, says: «Norske Skog will connect strong professional R&D environments to develop unique and sustainable nanocellulose and biocomposite products that the world will demand more of in the future. Our unique fibre expertise will be a valuable contribution in creating sustainable commercial value chains by utilising recycled and renewable raw materials».
At Stora Enso, one of our main foundations and objectives is to provide renewable and circular solutions for all of our products. As a result, we set out to create cutlery and a circular solution for it that will change the way people use single-use cutlery. Plastic cutlery is one of those items that traditionally will not be recycled even if it is placed in the recycling bin. It's far too contaminated. It's far too small. It's far too light. As a result, over 40 billion plastic utensils used each year in the United States alone, are a complete waste. Our Biocomposites already provide various advantages compared to polystyrene. *The material is more durable since the wood fibers strengthen the material's characteristics. *The CO2 emissions are reduced by 48%
National Average Price for Regular Unleaded Current: $3.528; Month Ago: $3.314; Year Ago: $2.575. National Average Price for Diesel Current: $3.942; Month Ago: $3.623; Year Ago: $2.806.
American Dollar to Canadian Dollar = 0.786976; American Dollar to Chinese Yuan = 0.158075; American Dollar to Euro = 1.135546; American Dollar to Japanese Yen = 0.008693; American Dollar to Mexican Peso = 0.049316.
2021 FOURTH QUARTER HIGHLIGHTS *Delivered solid performance due to continued strength in the paperboard business *Managed through increased COVID related absences, supply chain disruptions and weather impacts *Achieved net income of $10 million, or $0.56 per diluted share and Adjusted EBITDA of $56 million *Net sales of $490 million, up 8% compared to the fourth quarter of 2020 *Net debt reduction of $37 million. 2021 FULL YEAR HIGHLIGHTS *Delivered strong performance due to robust demand for paperboard products and solid operational execution *Net loss of $28 million, which includes an after-tax loss of $38 million associated with the closure of Neenah, Wisconsin tissue facility *Net sales of $1.8 billion *Net debt reduction of $69 million
Canfor Corporation announced the permanent reduction of 150 million board feet of production capacity at its Plateau Sawmill to resize the facility and align it with the available, sustainable timber supply in the region following the devastating impacts of the Mountain Pine Beetle infestation and other constraints on the timber harvesting land base. The reduction in production capacity will be achieved through a partial plant closure and the elimination of one of the three production lines in the mill. The capacity reduction is expected to impact approximately 70 employees at the facility and is anticipated to take effect at the end of the second quarter of 2022 following the depletion of existing log inventory. Canfor will mitigate the impact to affected employees by offering employment opportunities at other Canfor locations, along with relocation and transition support. “As the allowable annual cut has decreased in the region, it is necessary to resize the facility to align with the sustainable fibre supply,” said Don Kayne, President and CEO, Canfor. “I want to thank our Plateau employees for their ongoing dedication and hard work, and we are committed to providing comprehensive support to those employees impacted by today’s announcement, including offering jobs at other Canfor facilities. We will work to minimize the impacts this decision has on our employees, their families, our contractors and the community.”
The Postal Regulatory Commission (Commission) welcomes Russell Rappel-Schmid as the agency’s first chief data officer to lead its open data and data governance efforts. Mr. Rappel-Schmid joined the agency effective February 14, 2022. Rappel-Schmid will oversee the Commission’s data management and compliance with the OPEN Government Data Act. Most recently, Rappel-Schmid served as the State of Alaska's first chief data officer. In that role, he worked with the State Office of Information Technology and other state departments on the data governance plan for their move to the cloud. He also launched Alaska’s first non-geospatial open data portal, and created data tools to help users better visualize and understand the state’s data. Rappel-Schmid previously served at the U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General (USPS OIG). He was a member of the USPS OIG’s data analytics team where he worked to identify, access, and effectively use Postal Service data. Rappel-Schmid also worked as an audit manager, overseeing audits of Postal Service costs, pricing, and international mail. Rappel-Schmid started his career using data to drive internal audits while on active duty in the U.S. Marine Corps.
Tony Lord President of Flint Group Commercial Publication Web Division said, "The first responsibility of a supplier is to meet its obligations to its customers for provision of required volumes to maintain the integrity of the supply chain. To meet this requirement we have been successful in responding to the post pandemic’s unprecedented disruption in both global raw material and energy markets by ensuring both product and energy availability to meet our customers’ demands. This has, however, been at previously unparalleled price levels across our entire portfolio of raw materials and manufacturing locations". Lord further stated "Regrettably the hoped for stabilisation in both raw material availability and pricing has failed to materialise so far in 2022 with products remaining scarce and their pricing continuing to escalate accordingly. This, coupled with the exponential increase in energy tariffs, has created a situation where current selling price levels for our products are simply not sustainable. To respond to this sudden rise in costs we feel the sensible approach is to avoid a general price increase and apply a monthly surcharge whilst awaiting further market developments. To this end, effective for deliveries from March 1st 2022, surcharges to recover these recent cost increases will be applied across our entire publication ink portfolio so that we can maintain supply to our customers".
Kohl’s announced the list of the 400 stores that will be adding Sephora at Kohl’s shops this year. From Alaska to Maine, the 400 stores will span 36 states, eight of which are brand new homes to Sephora at Kohl’s. The addition of 400 stores brings the Sephora at Kohl’s location total to 600 and puts the partnership on track to meet its 850 store goal by 2023. “We’re thrilled to be bringing Sephora at Kohl’s closer to millions more of our customers nationwide through this 400 store expansion,” said Doug Howe, Kohl’s chief merchandising officer. “The quick and vast rollout of Sephora at Kohl’s is a testament to how much we believe in this partnership and making prestige beauty more accessible to people everywhere. We’re excited to grow and bring this elevated beauty experience to more of Kohl’s existing and new customers this year.”
Chris Carpenter, President and owner of Sun Prairie, Wisconsin-based Royle Printing, describes why his catalog and magazine printing operation invested in an eight-unit Goss Sunday 2000 heatset web offset press with double former folder. He also discusses the current industry-wide paper shortage. https://www.piworld.com/xchange/offset-printing/royle-printing-installs-8-unit-heatset-web-offset-press/#ne=d7f0e6e16b0d037f71fc050491da5623&utm_source=today-on-piworld&utm_medium=newsletter&utm_campaign=2022-02-14
Global research and education leader Wiley, together with the Big Ten Academic Alliance announced they have reached agreement for a one-year contract extension with an open access option, as a pilot in collective action toward the Big Collection. The Big Ten Academic Alliance is a premier higher education consortium in the U.S. that includes major research institutions in 11 U.S. states. The agreement enables researchers at 13 participating flagship universities and 17 affiliated campuses to publish accepted articles open access in all of Wiley's hybrid open access journals in 2022. The agreement also provides access to all of Wiley’s subscription content across the consortium. The agreement aims to advance the goals of the BTAA Big Collection to move toward a sustainable open scholarship ecosystem.
Sonoco announced that two members of the Company’s Board of Directors will be leaving. Marc D. Oken, 75, chairman and founder of Falfurrias Capital Partners, a Charlotte, N.C., private equity firm, has reached the Board’s mandatory retirement age and will not stand for reelection at the Company’s 2022 Annual General Meeting. Oken joined the board in 2006 and serves on the Company’s Executive Committee as well as the Executive Compensation, Audit and Corporate Governance and Nominating committees. In addition, Lloyd M. Yates, 61, who was recently named President and Chief Executive Officer of NiSource, Inc. (NYSE: NI), a Merrillville, IN, energy holding company, extended his resignation to Sonoco’s Board, effective March 1, 2022. Yates served on Sonoco’s Board since 2019 and is a member of Audit, Financial Policy and Employee and Public Responsibility committees. Yate’s resignation was not the result of any disagreement between Yates and the Company, its management, board of directors or any committee thereof, or with respect to any matter relating to the Company’s operation, policies or practices.
Apollo and Novolex Holdings LLC announced that funds managed by Apollo affiliates have entered into a definitive agreement to acquire the majority of the Company from funds managed by Carlyle. Carlyle will retain a minority stake in the Company. Financial terms were not disclosed. Novolex provides customers with packaging innovation, choice and sustainability. The Company manufactures products made with fiber, renewable, recycled and bio-based materials and resin that are designed to be recycled and composted. The Company is comprised of more than 10,000 employees worldwide and operates 57 manufacturing facilities in North America and Europe, including two world-class plastic recycling facilities. Customers include some of the world’s largest brands in the dine-in and to-go restaurant, grocery, retail, sanitation and janitorial, construction, food processing and related industries. With Apollo’s global resources and significant experience in the packaging sector, Novolex expects to strengthen its leadership position by expanding its blue-chip customer relationships through a shared commitment to sustainability and product innovation.
Menasha Packaging Company announces it has signed an agreement to acquire the assets of Color-Box, a business unit of Georgia-Pacific, LLC. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. The acquisition is expected to close in early summer 2022. Like Menasha Packaging, Color-Box is a corrugated packaging manufacturer specializing in high-graphic boxes. Founded in 2000, Color-Box employs 550 and operates plants in Richmond, Indiana; Pelahatchie, Mississippi; and Madera, California. "Menasha Packaging and Color-Box are a great fit, and we are excited about the opportunities ahead," said Mike Riegsecker, President, Menasha Packaging Company. "Color-Box will expand our geographic footprint and provide additional graphics, design, and structural packaging options for our customers. Color-Box's business culture also strongly aligns with Menasha Packaging's, with a priority on safety and employee wellbeing, excellence in serving customers, and a focus on innovative solutions."
Mondi has created a fully recyclable packaging solution for Warmhaus, a Turkish producer of radiators and boilers for home heating. The new Monocorr Box is made of 100% recyclable corrugated board, including the inserts that cushion the packaged products. The previous Warmhaus packaging used expanded polystyrene (EPS) foam inserts, which have low recycling rates throughout Europe and generally end up in landfill or incineration facilities after disposal. Warmhaus was looking for an environmentally responsible packaging solution that would help to meet their own sustainability goals as well as the requirements of domestic and export customers. Monocorr Box is easily recyclable in Turkey and supports Warmhaus’s exports to the European Union, where some retailers are beginning to switch to EPS-free packaging, even for larger durables. Producers may also have to consider Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) fees for EPS material in the future.
The European print trade body Intergraf, which the BPIF is a member of, has called for an end to the ongoing strikes at UPM in Finland, which began at the start of the year and are due to continue until at least 12 March following another recent extension. The UPM strikes have greatly aggravated the current lack of paper on European markets and are threatening the supply of printed products. Intergraf said printers’ stocks will not last until the strike has been settled and warned that they will not be able to fulfil orders. It has estimated that, based on member associations feedback, from mid-February, there will be a 40% shortage in the paper needed by European printers. Meanwhile Finat, the European association for the self-adhesive label and narrow web packaging industry, has warned that if strikes continue and label production is not put back on track, there could be serious ramifications for the supply of food, beverages, and pharmaceuticals.
European printing companies have warned that industries such as food and consumer goods could suffer significant disruption to their supply chains because of a growing shortage of paper. Strikes by thousands of workers at mills owned by forestry group UPM-Kymmene in Finland have exacerbated paper shortages that started with an unexpectedly strong rebound in demand after lockdowns eased. “You’ve got paper prices spiking and everyone chasing too few tonnes,” said Iwan Le Moine, director of EMGE, a consultancy. “It’s an absolute mess.” Finat, which represents more than 1,000 European label producers, has warned of supply disruptions because of shortages in specialised paper types.
Resolute Forest Products Inc. announced two separate transactions to grow and improve the competitiveness of its wood products business. Resolute reached an agreement with Louisiana-Pacific Corporation to acquire the latter's 50% equity interest in two joint ventures that produce I-joists in the Lac-Saint-Jean region of Quebec for $50 million, subject to customary adjustments. Resolute-LP Engineered Wood Larouche Inc. and Resolute-LP Engineered Wood St-Prime Limited Partnership are located in Larouche and Saint-Prime, respectively, and are equity method investments in which Resolute has a 50% interest in each entity. Resolute operates the facilities and its joint-venture partner, Louisiana-Pacific, sells the products. Resolute will enter into agreements with Louisiana-Pacific to continue to serve as the exclusive distributor of the engineered wood products manufactured at the two operations. In a separate transaction, Resolute also announced an agreement signed on February 11 with Boralex (TSX: BLX) for the purchase of a cogeneration facility in Senneterre, Quebec. "The purchase of the 34.5-megawatt cogeneration facility, adjacent to our Senneterre sawmill, builds on our significant investments in the region, including the ongoing project toward a new planer and associated equipment we announced last summer, as well as operational improvements recently completed at our Comtois sawmill. With this cogen, we will maximize the use of biomass from our regional operations, generating green power and providing a platform for future growth and enhanced competitiveness in the Abitibi-Témiscamingue region. We are pleased to welcome the 30-plus employees of the cogeneration facility to Resolute," added Mr. Lalonde.
Paper Excellence today announced an indefinite production slowdown of its Meadow Lake, Saskatchewan BCTMP mill due to repeated lack of railway service. Meadow Lake Mechanical Pulp Inc., which employs 190 people and infuses over $1 million daily into Canada’s economy, is dependent on CN Rail, which has failed to transport Meadow Lake’s pulp production to ports for months. The mill has exhausted local storage facilities. “While we remain committed to servicing our customers’ needs during this slowdown, we are extremely concerned about this railway situation and hope that it can be resolved soon,” said Stew Gibson, Vice President, Operations and Logistics.
Urban Outfitters, Inc. announced net sales for the three months and year ended January 31, 2022. Total Company net sales for the three months ended January 31, 2022, were a record $1.33 billion. Net sales increased 13.9% compared to the three months ended January 31, 2020. Comparable Retail segment net sales increased 14%, driven by strong double-digit growth in digital channel sales, partially offset by low double-digit negative retail store sales primarily due to reduced store traffic. By brand, comparable Retail segment net sales increased 49% at the Free People Group, 14% at the Anthropologie Group and 3% at Urban Outfitters. Total Retail segment net sales increased 15%. Wholesale segment net sales decreased 22% primarily from reducing the Free People Group’s sales to promotional wholesale customers. URBN believes that the total Company fourth quarter gross margin could deleverage more than planned primarily due to higher than anticipated inbound transportation costs. For the year ended January 31, 2022, total Company net sales increased 14.2% compared to the year ended January 31, 2020. Comparable Retail segment net sales increased 16%, driven by strong double-digit growth in digital channel sales, partially offset by low double-digit negative retail store sales due to reduced store traffic. Wholesale segment net sales decreased 23% primarily from reducing the Free People Group’s sales to promotional wholesale customers.
Fourth-Quarter Highlights: *Net income of $62 million ($1.41 per diluted share) compared with $92 million ($2.09 per pro forma share1) in the third quarter of 2021 *Free cash flow4 (non-GAAP) of $162 million compared with $135 million in the third quarter of 2021. Fourth-Quarter Commercial and Operational Highlights: *Price and mix improved by $41 million versus the prior quarter and volume improved by $14 million, reflecting solid industry fundamentals and continued commercial excellence performance by our teams *Operations improved by $2 million and total planned maintenance outage expenses increased by $24 million versus the prior quarter *Input costs increased by $39 million versus the prior quarter, reflecting higher costs for wood, energy, chemicals, packaging and distribution *Repaid $124 million of debt, achieving a gross debt-to-adjusted EBITDA ratio of 2.4x at year-end
Stora Enso invests EUR 9 million in an automated CLT (cross-laminated timber) coating line at the Ybbs sawmill in Austria. The investment will further strengthen Stora Enso’s position as a leading global provider of engineered wood products for low carbon, sustainable buildings. In the construction industry, there is labor shortage and a pressure to shorten the construction time on-site. The investment enables industrially pre-applied CLT coatings on the CLT walls and floors produced at Stora Enso’s Ybbs site. The automated coating solution results in shorter construction times and higher wood protection. “With this new automation line, we can apply high-quality water-based coating to approximately 500,000m² of CLT walls and floors per year – making us the world leader in this segment. Our customers will benefit from improved protection of CLT against moisture, sunlight, insects and fire, as well as nicely coloured visual surfaces,” says Lars Völkel, EVP Wood Products division.
Additional second quarter service performance scores covering Jan.1 through Feb. 4 included: *First-Class Mail: 86.1 percent of First-Class Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 3 percentage points from the fiscal first quarter. *Marketing Mail: 90.9 percent of Marketing Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 1.3 percentage points from the fiscal first quarter. *Periodicals: 79.5 percent of Periodicals delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 1.4 percentage points from the fiscal first quarter.
Kohl’s Corporation issued the following statement regarding Macellum Advisors GP, LLC’s announcement of its nomination of directors for election to the Kohl’s Board of Directors at the Company’s 2022 Annual Meeting of Shareholders: Kohl’s believes Macellum’s effort to take control of the Board is unjustified and counterproductive. Kohl’s appointed two of Macellum’s designees, along with an additional mutually agreed upon designee, to its Board pursuant to the 2021 settlement agreement with Macellum and certain other shareholders. All members of the Kohl’s Board, other than its CEO, are independent. Macellum’s claim that Kohl’s Board is not equipped to evaluate sale opportunities is groundless. The Board designated its Finance Committee, which is comprised entirely of independent directors, was formed pursuant to the settlement with Macellum and includes one of Macellum’s 2021 designees, to lead the review of any expressions of interest. Additionally, the Company and the Board have engaged financial advisors, including Goldman Sachs and PJT Partners, and have asked Goldman Sachs to engage with interested parties. Furthermore, Macellum’s claim to be “disappointed and shocked” by Kohl’s rejection of the previously disclosed expressions of interest is disingenuous. Macellum has on multiple occasions stated publicly that Kohl’s is worth “at least $100 per share.”
Now that the company has replaced its two oil-fired lime kilns with a biofuel-fired lime kiln, SCA Containerboard can claim to be the first kraftliner manufacturer with fossil-free industrial processes. The new lime kiln, part of the chemical recycling process in pulp production, was commissioned at the end of November. The construction of a new lime kiln is part of the major investment in the Obbola Paper Mill, where SCA is expanding to increase kraftliner production and meet the company’s goal for fossil-free manufacturing. - The aim of our investment in a new lime kiln is to get rid of fossil oil, as well as to meet the need for expansion, says Pär Micael Samuelsson, project manager for the lime kiln subproject. - We will eliminate 8,000 cubic metres of oil per year. Had we continued to use the two oil-fired kilns, we would have needed an additional 2,000 cubic metres to achieve the necessary sulphate pulping. Now we don’t need this and we have completely eliminated oil consumption, he explains.
Tork, an Essity Brand, has announced a strategic partnership with the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC) once again in 2022. APIC is the leading association for infection prevention and control (IPC) professionals, with more than 15,000 infection preventionist (IP) members. The APIC Strategic Partner program establishes long-term relationships with industry partners united in the common goal advancing the science and practice of infection prevention and control in healthcare facilities and beyond. APIC Strategic Partners play an important role in supporting many of the educational initiatives and services that benefit APIC’s membership, which is comprised of nurses, physicians, epidemiologists, microbiologists, public health professionals and other individuals dedicated to preventing the spread of infection.
The boards of Rottneros and Arctic Paper have decided to invest 15 million euro in a moulded fiber tray factory at Arctic Papers premises in Kostrzyn, Poland. The factory will be operated in a separate legal entity and as a 50/50 joint venture, in line with the LOI that was signed by the parties on October 22nd, 2021. “We are seeing a rapidly growing demand for moulded fiber trays, and we are pleased to announce that we are now ready to move forward with our plan to launch the first industrial scale production of high barrier fiber-based packaging. The collaboration of the two parties combines Arctic Papers favorable location and existing infrastructure with Rottneros technological know-how and will bring benefits to both companies”, said the CEOs of Rottneros and Arctic Paper, Lennart Eberleh and Michal Jarczyński, in a joint statement.
We are very pleased to announce that, effective 1 March 2022, Gilles Van Nieuwenhuyzen will become CEO of Lecta Group. He will also be appointed as Director of Lecta Ltd succeeding Eduardo Querol. Gilles has a vast and diversified experience in different industries such as chemicals (DSM ), packaging (Rexam and Stora Enso), food ingredients (Danisco and CSM), and paper & board (Stora Enso). He has also served several positions as independent advisor and top interim executive . Gilles has proven all along his career a successful focus on the same pillars which form the basis of Lecta transformation today. He will drive with energy and passion our path to profitable growth through innovation, value selling and focused investment while developing further our operational excellence initiatives.
National Average Price for Regular Unleaded Current: $3.480; Month Ago: $3.301; Year Ago: $2.491. National Average Price for Diesel Current: $3.876; Month Ago: $3.586; Year Ago: $2.727.
American Dollar to Canadian Dollar = 0.786976; American Dollar to Chinese Yuan = 0.157312; American Dollar to Euro = 1.139579; American Dollar to Japanese Yen = 0.008627; American Dollar to Mexican Peso = 0.048922.
HIGHLIGHTS • Pulp sales of 2,722 thousand tons (+2% vs. 4Q20). • Paper sales of 371 thousand tons (+5% vs. 4Q20). • Adjusted EBITDA1 and Operating cash generation²: R$6.4 billion and R$4.8 billion, respectively. • Adjusted EBITDA1 /ton from pulp of R$2,114/ton (+59% vs. 4Q20). • Adjusted EBITDA1 /ton3 from paper of R$1,619/ton (+32% vs. 4Q20). • Average net pulp price in export market: US$630/ton (+38% vs. 4Q20). • Average net paper price3 of R$5,109/ton (+24% vs. 4Q20). • Pulp cash cost ex-downtime of R$747/ton (+20% vs. 4Q20). • Leverage down to 2.4 times in USD and 2.5 times in BRL.
Bertelsmann Investments (BI) is acquiring a stake in Ada Health, a leading European start-up in the digital health sector, thus strengthening its commitment to the promising business field of digital health. In 2016, an entrepreneur, a neuroscientist and a doctor founded the start-up Ada Health in Berlin-Kreuzberg with the aim of harnessing artificial intelligence for the early diagnosis of diseases by patients themselves. As a pioneer in the field of digital health, Ada Health developed a medical platform and an app, which is now available in seven languages, that helps people quickly and easily make an initial medical diagnosis based on their symptoms - and has already done so millions of times. Together with other investors, Bertelsmann Investments (BI) is now taking a stake in the successful company. In an extension of the financing round B, which had already brought Ada Health 90 million US dollars in May 2021, BI and the investors Farallon Capital, Red River West are together providing a further 30 million US dollars for the expansion of the business. Ada Health is thus one of the first investments by Bertelsmann Investments in the digital health sector.
Import growth is expected to moderate during the first half of 2022 giving the nation’s congested container ports a much-needed break. Imports at the nation’s ports are expected to grow modestly during the first half of 2022, according to the monthly Global Port Tracker report released by the National Retail Federation and Hacker Associates. But continued high volumes will keep up the pressure that built as the economy bounced back from the pandemic last year. “We’re not going to see the dramatic growth in imports we saw this time last year, but the fact that volumes aren’t falling is a clear sign of continued consumer demand,” said Jonathan Gold, NRF VP for supply chain and customs policy. Congestion remains on both coasts. The Port of Los Angeles alone has around 40 ships waiting to dock, according to Ben Hackette, founder, Hackett Associates.
Dotdash Meredith is eliminating the print editions of six of the former Meredith Corp.’s most iconic magazines, including InStyle, Entertainment Weekly, Eating Well and People en Espanol, according to a report yesterday first published by the Wall Street Journal. The Journal said it obtained an internal memo from Dotdash CEO Neil Vogel in which Vogel told employees that the move would eliminate about 200 jobs, which represent less than 5% of Dotdash Meredith’s total staff. The other magazines being shut down are Health and Parents. “We have said from the beginning, buying Meredith was about buying brands, not magazines or websites,” Vogel said in the memo. “It is not news to anyone that there has been a pronounced shift in readership and advertising from print to digital, and as a result, for a few important brands, print is no longer serving the brand’s core purpose.”
Measurement is one of the industry's biggest challenges. The IAB State of Data 2022 report released Tuesday reveals that many executives are less prepared for the deprecation of third-party cookies than first believed, and there is a great deal of work to be done to mitigate the risks to revenue, brand visibility, and customer relationship management. The IAB called on the industry to form universal measurement standards during the company's annual leadership study, citing Meta's $10 billion revenue hit based on changes in privacy standards. The data concludes that advertisers “are on the brink of losing their ability to measure advertising campaigns.” As the industry’s sense of preparedness grows, implementations have made little progress.
The PEFC product categories are a key element in the implementation of the PEFC chain of custody by certified organisations and certification bodies. The revised list of categories, released in October 2021, has undergone an editorial review and the latest version is now available. The editorial changes cover the addition of: two new categories, 100307 (Other dissolving pulp derivatives) and 110510 (Other stationary products); a 2012-2021 category equivalences table; a change log section. For full report go to: https://cdn.pefc.org/pefc.org/media/2022-01/5c5adb05-7f72-4c3c-9e6f-e93d8d3ef55e/081e0e3e-a54c-5c12-8ced-c8151b106097.pdf
An Alaska Native from the Tsm'syen Nation of Southeast Alaska and British Columbia, Derik brings to the role decades of business experience, a deep commitment to forest conservation, and a lifelong passion for helping advance Indigenous culture to protect ancestral homelands. Derik has spent much of his career at Sealaska, the Native Corporation for Southeast Alaska. He founded Sealaska Environmental Services. Most recently, Derik served as Sealaska’s vice president. Derik is a graduate of the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies and the University of Washington’s College of Forest Resources.
Fourth-Quarter and Full-Year Highlights •Fourth-quarter 2021 net sales were $1.44 billion, up from $1.38 billion in 2020. Full-year 2021 net sales were $5.59 billion, compared to $5.24 billion in 2020. •Fourth-quarter 2021 GAAP earnings per diluted share was $0.66, compared with a GAAP loss per diluted share of $(0.12) in 2020. The full-year 2021 GAAP loss per diluted share was $(0.86), compared to GAAP earnings per diluted share of $2.05 in 2020. The full-year 2021 GAAP loss was driven by $410.4 million after-tax pension settlement charges mostly related to the Company's settlement of its U.S. Inactive Plan in the second quarter. •Full-year cash flow from operations was $298.7 million in 2021, compared with $705.6 million in 2020. Free cash flow in 2021 was $55.8 million, compared with $524.5 million in 2020. •On January 26, 2022, Sonoco completed the acquisition of Ball Metalpack, a leading manufacturer of sustainable steel tinplate packaging for food and household products and the largest aerosol can producer in North America, for $1.35 billion in cash subject to customary adjustments, including for working capital, cash, and indebtedness.
Q4 2021 in brief •Net sales increased 23% to EUR 999 million (EUR 813 million) •Adjusted EBIT was EUR 82 million (EUR 73 million); reported EBIT was EUR 84 million (EUR 48 million) •Adjusted EPS was EUR 0.54 (EUR 0.48); reported EPS was EUR 0.56 (EUR 0.30) •Comparable net sales growth was 12% at Group level and 19% in emerging markets •The impact of currency movements was EUR 24 million on the Group’s net sales and EUR 2 million on EBIT. Q1-Q4 2021 in brief •Net sales increased 8% to EUR 3,575 million (EUR 3,302 million) •Adjusted EBIT was EUR 315 million (EUR 302 million); reported EBIT was EUR 296 million (EUR 265 million) •Adjusted EPS was EUR 2.07 (EUR 1.95); reported EPS was EUR 1.91 (EUR 1.69) •Comparable net sales growth was 7% at Group level and 13% in emerging markets •The impact of currency movements was EUR -54 million on the Group’s net sales and EUR -6 million on EBIT •Capital expenditure was EUR 259 million (EUR 223 million) •Free cash flow was EUR -26 million (EUR 207 million)
JANUARY–DECEMBER 2021 (1–12/2020) •Sales were EUR 6,017 million (5,055). •Operating result was EUR 874 million (376). Comparable operating result was EUR 914 million (368). •Result before taxes was EUR 832 million (330). Comparable result before taxes was EUR 872 million (322). •Comparable return on capital employed was 16.2% (7.1). •Net cash flow from operations was EUR 1,023 million (667). OCTOBER–DECEMBER 2021 (10–12/2020) •Sales were EUR 1,560 million (1,357). •Operating result was EUR 221 million (97). Comparable operating result was EUR 220 million (94). •Result before taxes was EUR 215 million (88). Comparable result before taxes was EUR 214 million (86). •Comparable return on capital employed was 14.7% (7.4). •Net cash flow from operations was EUR 427 million (306).
January–December 2021 (compared to 1–12/2020) • Sales were EUR 2,084.1 million (1,889.5). • Comparable operating result was EUR 386.6 million (221.2), or 18.6% (11.7) of sales. Operating result was EUR 375.9 million (227.3). • Comparable earnings per share were EUR 0.85 (0.46), and earnings per share were EUR 0.82 (0.48). • Comparable return on capital employed was EUR 18.7% (12.2). • Net cash flow from operations was EUR 329.6 million (307.7). October–December 2021 (compared to 10–12/2020) • Sales were EUR 518.5 million (473.1). • Comparable operating result was EUR 91.3 million (64.5), or 17.6% (13.6) of sales. Operating result was EUR 90.8 million (64.5). • Comparable earnings per share were EUR 0.20 (0.14), and earnings per share were EUR 0.19 (0.14). • Comparable return on capital employed was 16.1% (14.3). • Net cash flow from operations was EUR 119.7 million (81.0).
SCREEN Americas announces the installation of the Truepress Jet520HD AD at MSP, of Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania. The installation of the high-definition inkjet web press with an advanced drying unit, the Truepress Jet520HD AD will join the Truepress Jet520NX in the company’s 100,000-square-foot facility. The new SCREEN press replaces MSP's original Truepress Jet520S and Truepress Jet520ZZ models. With this latest installation, MSP plans on eliminating its offset lithographic equipment entirely. The ability to put multiple jobs on one roll combined with a one-touch operation has proven to be both profitable for the printer and beneficial to the customer allowing MSP to effortlessly convert more than 100 of its clients over to SCREEN’s technology. The company’s chief operating officer, Doug Wright, expects that with the installation of the Truepress Jet520HD AD, the few remaining clients he has on lithographic presses will soon make the switch to digital inkjet technology.
UPM’s negotiations with the Finnish Paperworkers’ Union (Paperiliitto) are now underway for UPM Pulp, with the other UPM businesses expected to follow, according to media reports from Finland. Finnish trade publication Print&Media has reported that, following movement with the situation on Friday, negotiations have started today (7 February) for the UPM Pulp business and negotiations on UPM’s other divisions should also begin this week. The publication was also sent a comment from labels division UPM Raflatac, in response to the warning from the European association for the self-adhesive label industry, Finat, on the availability of label stocks, which it shared with Printweek: “The strike further aggravates the industry level supply situation which has been tight and constrained already since early 2021.
After 14 years with Canfor, Alan Nicholl, Executive Vice President, Bio-Based Solutions & Pulp Operations, has accepted the role of Managing Director with Licella Holdings, Canfor’s joint venture partner in Arbios Biotech (Arbios) effective April 2022. Alan will continue to serve as President & CEO of Arbios. David Calabrigo, Senior Vice President, Corporate Development, Legal Affairs and Corporate Secretary, has assumed responsibility for leading the Bio-Innovation team as the Company continues to pursue opportunities to develop bio-based solutions to address the growing demand for low carbon, renewable products. Kevin Anderson, Vice President, Operations, Canfor Pulp is now reporting directly to Don Kayne, CEO, Canfor Pulp.
The U.S. Postal Service announced its financial results for the first quarter of its fiscal year 2022 (Oct. 1, 2021 - Dec. 31, 2021), reporting an adjusted loss of approximately $1.3 billion for the quarter, compared to an adjusted loss of $288 million for the same quarter last year. Adjusted loss excludes non-cash workers' compensation adjustments for the impacts of actuarial revaluation and discount rate changes, which are outside of management's control. On a U.S. generally accepted accounting principles basis, the Postal Service had a net loss of approximately $1.5 billion for the quarter, compared to net income of $318 million for the same quarter last year. The increases in both net loss and adjusted loss were partially driven by inflationary impacts to operating expenses, including rising prices associated with energy and fuel expenses.
Key Points *Revenue growth of 18% *EBITDA growth of 13% to €1,702 million with an EBITDA margin of 16.8% *Corrugated growth of 8% *ROCE of 16% *Acquisition in Italy ensuring continued security of supply for our customers *Ongoing investment programme meeting customers’ needs for innovative and sustainable packaging *Science Based Targets initiative (‘SBTi’) approval in line with the Paris Agreement
Verso Corporation announced the filing of a definitive proxy statement for a special meeting of stockholders, at which Verso stockholders will consider and vote upon various items related to the proposed and previously announced transaction with BillerudKorsnäs AB. If approved, all Verso stockholders will receive $27.00 per share in cash upon closing of the transaction, representing immediate and certain value at a significant premium. The consideration corresponds to a premium of approximately 57% compared to the unaffected closing price of Verso's shares on July 9, 2021, the day prior to the submission of an unsolicited, non-binding proposal to acquire Verso for $20.00 per share in cash, and a 35% premium over that unsolicited proposal.
Commenting on the group’s results, Sappi Chief Executive Officer Steve Binnie said: “I am very pleased with an excellent performance from the group. We outperformed the guidance provided at the end of the last quarter with EBITDA at US$240 million, a 36% increase over the prior quarter (US$177 million) and more than double the equivalent quarter last year (US$98 million). Robust market demand in all product segments combined with the implementation of higher sales prices facilitated the growth and offset rising costs. This achievement was despite logistics and transport bottlenecks, as well as significant increases in energy, pulp and other raw materials.” Financial summary for the quarter: • EBITDA excluding special items US$240 million (Q1 FY21 US$98 million) • Net debt US$1,917 million (Q1 FY21 US$2,056 million) • Profit for the period US$123 million (Q1 FY21 loss of US$17 million)
With a soon-to-be-launched gluing innovation at Nymölla Mill in Sweden, where Multicopy is produced, the mission towards a more competitive and sustainable paper production continues. One of the latest sustainable innovations at Stora Enso and Multicopy is the EcoSeal ream adhesive technology with a new dotting pattern application, that has recently been launched and will gradually be implemented in the paper production at the Nymölla mill. This new technology, supplied by Valco Melton, a global leader in sustainable gluing, coating machinery and quality assurance technologies, is a great process improvement both when it comes to bond strength and reduced environmental impact. The gluing guns are assembled by hand, and specifically designed for packaging, engineered for every sort of application and high-speed precision gluing.
Lakeside Book Company and ALJ Regional Holdings, Inc. jointly announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement for Lakeside's acquisition of all of the issued and outstanding shares of common stock of ALJ's wholly-owned subsidiary Phoenix Color Corp. ("Phoenix"). Headquartered in Hagerstown, Maryland, Phoenix is a specialty printer of book components, children's books, and other print-related products with printing facilities in Indiana and Maryland. The transaction is expected to close during the second calendar quarter of 2022, subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory and stockholder approvals. "We know Phoenix well as a recognized leader in book components. Adding their team's capabilities to Lakeside's service offerings will enable our publishing customers to conveniently manage book and cover printing in one place," said Dave McCree, Lakeside's Chief Executive Officer. "We are always looking for ways to make the printing supply chain more efficient for publishers and this transaction would be a significant step in that direction."
Deluxe announced its integration with Q2 Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: QTWO), a leading provider of digital transformation solutions for banking and lending. Through this integration, Deluxe will offer HR & Payroll Solutions within Q2’s Partner Marketplace Program, enabling financial institutions to seamlessly provide these solutions to their clients, while generating recurring revenue and increasing customer retention. The Q2 Partner Marketplace allows financial service companies to provide applications to their consumer and small business clients. The Deluxe HR & Payroll application offered through the Q2 Marketplace, empowers small businesses to automate payroll, tax payments, hiring and onboarding, time management, benefits administration, and additional HR tools within a single platform for ease of use.
*S&P Global Delivered Very Strong Financial Results in 2021 *4th Quarter Revenue Increased 12% and Full-Year Revenue Increased 11% *Diluted EPS Increased 48% to $2.79 in the 4th Quarter; Increased 29% to $12.51 for the Full Year *Adjusted Diluted EPS Increased 16% to $3.15 in the 4th Quarter; 17% to $13.70 for the Full Year *Recent Growth Investments Resulted in New Product Launches and Expanded Capabilities *Sustainable1 Driving Significant Expansion of ESG Product Offerings *Achieved Considerable Progress on Merger Preparation and Synergy Validation
HH Global has once again been recognized for our efforts in enabling our clients to further their sustainability and ESG goals and lessen their impact on the planet. The Co-operative Group are one of the UK’s largest grocery retailers, and one of our top ten UK clients. Through using the latest technology and assessing the environmental viability of our procurement model, from suppliers to materials, we have been able to successfully innovate the Co-op and subsidiary company Nisa’s sustainability strategies across the board. In 2021, our changes to the production of Nisa’s main marketing leaflet have prevented 175 tonnes of paper from going to waste. We have also standardized these leaflets, by producing them on the same FSC accredited paper used for their magazines and POS material. This means that the paper used across their major marketing channels has been harvested in a responsible and sustainable manner.
The new targets are connected to individual regions where Crown maintains operations and include: In the Americas: United States: Lifting the current 45% average to achieve ambitious milestones of 70% by 2030, 80% by 2040 and 90% by 2050. Mexico: Maintaining >90% through 2030 and working with industry partners to establish country-wide recycling rates. Brazil: Maintaining >97% through 2030. In Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA): Reaching 80% in the countries in which we operate by working with industry partners.
Flint Group Packaging will increase the prices of all its packaging products sold by the Flexible Packaging, Paper & Board and Narrow Web businesses. Further to multiple announcements advising of the worsening market conditions throughout 2021, the group has continued to weather unprecedented raw material, packaging, energy and freight cost increases. Escalating costs continue to be seen across all the above categories with no sign of relief in the foreseeable future. Doug Aldred, Chief Commercial Officer – Flint Group Packaging said, “The security of supply is our number one priority. Due to our extensive global network and efficiency programmes, we are able to mitigate a significant portion of cost and supply risk. However, we continue to witness tightening supply and exponential cost increases. Despite implementing an extensive range of efficiency programs to mitigate these conditions, we are reluctantly compelled to raise prices.”
Mondi, a global leader in packaging and paper, and Henkel are helping consumers to wash dishes more sustainably by creating a completely new reuse packaging concept. The two companies worked together on a packaging solution for Henkel’s hand dishwashing products that allows refilling plastic bottles from flexible pouches. This supports Henkel’s sustainability targets of making 100% of its packaging recyclable or reusable and reducing 50% of fossil-based virgin plastic by 2025. Since January, consumers can purchase a new keep-at-home refillable pump dispenser with refills in the lightweight, mono-material pouch produced by Mondi. The flexible stand-up pouch reduces plastic by 70% every time it replaces rigid plastic bottles and is easy to recycle where existing infrastructure exists. Convenient and lighter to carry home, the pouch completely empties thanks to its shaped design, leaving no residue. It is soft touch with a sturdy base so it can easily stand in-store, offering retailers attractive and eye-catching on-shelf appeal while also communicating all the brand information including sustainability benefits. Mondi’s leak-proof pouch is certified according to ISTA 6, providing a highly durable packaging for both in-store and online shopping.
McKinley Paper Company, the U.S. wholly-owned subsidiary of Bio PAPPEL, continues to grow in the U.S. and today announces the acquisition of 100% of Midwest Paper Group (“Midwest”) from the investment fund IOP. The acquisition of Midwest Paper Group, a large independent containerboard producer located in Wisconsin with a production capacity of 500 thousand tons annually, fits well with Bio PAPPEL– McKinley and substantially increases its current U.S. containerboard production. This allows the company to have a nationwide coverage to support McKinley’s plans of continuous growth in its packaging division as well as to reliably supply its current customer base throughout the U.S. With the acquisition of Midwest Paper Group, as well as the currently under construction and planned super plants of corrugated boxes, Bio PAPPEL will reach combined annual revenues in excess of $3 billion dollars, keeping a low debt level and financial investment grade rating.
Midland, one of North America's largest independent distributors of media for business communications, announced today that industry veteran Robert Rundle has joined the organization as Sr. Product Manager for Graphics and Specialty Media. Robert has over 20 years of experience in the Marketing and Product Management of Offset, Digital and Wide Format Pressure Sensitive Film. “Robert will lead Midland’s efforts to continue to grow our Graphics and Specialty Media product category, including development of new and innovative self-adhesive Specialty Media for offset, digital and wide format inkjet print applications. In today’s challenging print market, these products offer opportunities for printers to offer high value Graphics and Specialty Media solutions to their end user customers. Robert’s expertise in this sector of the market will be an invaluable resource for our customers to leverage”, comments David Field, General Manager of Midland’s Specialty Paper & Film Division.
Green logistics is a strategic approach that seeks to reduce the environmental impact of every activity in the supply chain, from sourcing or production to distribution and transportation. It is a comprehensive transformation of the entire strategy, structure and processes of companies, with the aim of creating environmentally responsible and resource-efficient logistics networks. Sustainable warehousing consists of having an infrastructure that is capable of moving goods faster and more efficiently than conventional logistics procedures. This results in a reduction of the pollution produced by this activity, as well as cost savings. In the warehouse, in addition to the machinery and energy sources used, it is essential to analyze and optimize the packaging and order preparation policy. In this sense, the design and use of packaging is a critical point in achieving green logistics. Packaging designs that make the best use of space should be used, both in storage and during transport. In addition, the use of recyclable or reusable materials helps to achieve more sustainable logistics within the company. Here you can learn about our recyclable packaging and our reusable packaging, all of them 100% customizable and personalized, according to the characteristics of the goods to be contained.
HP Inc. today announced the acquisition of Choose Packaging, a packaging development company and inventor of the only commercially available zero-plastic paper bottle in the world. Choose’s patented technology provides an alternative to plastic bottles and can hold a wide variety of liquid products. Its novel, paper-based bottles are made with naturally occurring and non-toxic materials and pave the way for a new standard for bottling solutions globally. “This acquisition is a great example of how we continue to strengthen our capabilities in attractive verticals like sustainable packaging while also driving progress against HP’s broader sustainability goals,” said Savi Baveja, Chief Strategy & Incubation Officer, HP Inc. “Choose has built a truly differentiated technology and we are excited to welcome this talented team to the HP family.”
SG360°, an industry-leading provider of performance-driven direct marketing solutions, announced that effective immediately, James (Jim) Andersen has been appointed Interim CEO of SG360° in the wake of the death of the previous CEO, John A. Wallace, Jr. on January 4, 2022. Mr. Andersen has extensive and successful decades of direct marketing experience and has been a member of the SG360° Board of Directors since October of 2021. “We are fortunate to have Jim on our board and that he’s in a position to step in to fill this crucial, temporary role while we search for a permanent successor to John,” said Willie Woods, President of ICV Partners, LLC. “Jim’s close working relationship with John over the last three months will serve the company well as we focus on continuing the execution of the innovation-driven growth strategy that John had begun.”
Additional second quarter service performance scores covering Jan.1 through Jan. 28 included: *First-Class Mail: 86.9 percent of First-Class Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 2.2 percentage points from the fiscal first quarter. *Marketing Mail: 91.0 percent of Marketing Mail delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 1.2 percentage points from the fiscal first quarter. *Periodicals: 79.8 percent of Periodicals delivered on time against the USPS service standard, a decrease of 1 percentage point from the fiscal first quarter.
Fiscal 2022 Second Quarter and First Half Key Financial Highlights: *Revenues in the quarter were $2.72 billion, a 13% increase compared to $2.41 billion in the prior year and the highest quarterly revenue since separation. Revenues in the first half rose 15% year-over-year *Net income in the quarter was $262 million, flat compared to $261 million in the prior year. Net income in the first half rose 72% year-over-year *Total Segment EBITDA in the quarter was $586 million, an 18% increase compared to $497 million in the prior year. Total Segment EBITDA in the first half rose 30% year-over-year
Fourth Quarter 2021 *Net sales increased 9% to $137.4 billion in the fourth quarter, compared with $125.6 billion in fourth quarter 2020. Excluding the $1.3 billion unfavorable impact from year-over-year changes in foreign exchange rates throughout the quarter, net sales increased 10% compared with fourth quarter 2020. *Operating income decreased to $3.5 billion in the fourth quarter, compared with $6.9 billion in fourth quarter 2020. *Net income increased to $14.3 billion in the fourth quarter, or $27.75 per diluted share, compared with $7.2 billion, or $14.09 per diluted share, in fourth quarter 2020. Fourth quarter 2021 net income includes a pre-tax valuation gain of $11.8 billion included in non-operating income from our common stock investment in Rivian Automotive, Inc., which completed an initial public offering in November. Full Year 2021 *Net sales increased 22% to $469.8 billion, compared with $386.1 billion in 2020. Excluding the $3.8 billion favorable impact from year-over-year changes in foreign exchange rates throughout the year, net sales increased 21% compared with 2020. *Operating income increased to $24.9 billion, compared with operating income of $22.9 billion in 2020. *Net income increased $33.4 billion, or $64.81 per diluted share, compared with net income of $21.3 billion, or $41.83 per diluted share, in 2020.
Sheridan is excited to announce a new feature enhancement to Sheridan SelectTM, offering publishers multi-volume set support for print-on-demand books. Sheridan Select has been simplifying publishers’ production workflows for over a decade, be it through fully-automated data integration, or a simple, easy-to-use web portal to upload files and place orders. This new feature enhancement gives publishers the ability to identify, upload, store, order, and print sets or collections comprised of multiple products with ease. This feature is available in both the fully automated and self-service models of Sheridan Select for print-on-demand books. It supports member products (i.e., child ISBNs) to be ordered independently, or as part of a collection (i.e., parent ISBNs). If desired, the ability to turn on or off member product independence is also available. For example, “If a set is defined as volume 1, volume 2, and volume 3, Sheridan Select has the ability to control whether each individual volume can be ordered by itself or not as defined by the publisher,” comments Eric Biggins, Sheridan’s Director of Customer Technology. “The rollout of this latest feature is just one more way that Sheridan continues to streamline publishers’ workflows and bring efficiencies to their businesses.”
INTERFOR CORPORATION recorded Net earnings in Q4’21 of $69.7 million, or $1.15 per share, compared to $65.6 million, or $1.05 per share in Q3’21 and $149.1 million, or $2.24 per share in Q4’20. Adjusted net earnings in Q4’21 were $78.2 million compared to $46.7 million in Q3’21 and $164.7 million in Q4’20. Interfor recorded Net earnings of $819.0 million, or $12.88 per share in 2021, compared to $280.3 million, or $4.18 per share in 2020. Adjusted EBITDA was $1.2 billion on sales of $3.3 billion.
Christoph Wachter took over as director of the Flexible Packaging Paper division at Koehler Paper in January 2022. He succeeds Eckhard Kallies, who has had great success in positioning, developing, and implementing a long-term strategy for this new business unit as part of a three-year mandate. Having invested over 300 million euros into the new production line 8 at its Kehl production facility, Koehler Paper entered the flexible packaging growth market in 2019. With Koehler NexPlus®, Koehler is now meeting the rapidly growing demand for sustainable packaging solutions. Christoph Wachter is taking over the division at Koehler Paper during a period of strong growth. He comes from Tyrol in Austria, is married, and has two grown-up children. The 58-year-old studied business administration and brings with him 30 years of experience in specialty paper in the paper industry, where his roles have included working as a CEO with international responsibility.
Norske Skog’s EBITDA in the fourth quarter of 2021 was NOK 422 million, an increase from NOK 111 million in the third quarter of 2021. Sales prices for all grades increased in the quarter as a necessary consequence of unprecedented high energy costs in Europe and a tightened publication paper market situation following significant capacity closures and post Covid-19 demand recovery. The European mills operated at full capacity during the quarter. Cash flow from operations was NOK 317 million in the quarter compared to NOK -99 million in the previous quarter, positively impacted by the improved operating margins, change in working capital and sale of CO2-allowances, but negatively impacted by employee redundancy payments at the Tasman mill in New Zealand. Operating earnings in the fourth quarter of 2021 were NOK 479 million compared to operating earnings in the third quarter of 2021 of NOK -565 million. Net profit in the quarter was NOK 400 million compared to a net loss of NOK 602 million in the previous quarter. Net interest-bearing debt was NOK 1 054 million at the end of the fourth quarter, with an equity ratio of 34%.
The Finnish Paperworkers’ Union has today informed UPM that their strike at UPM’s Finnish mills will be extended by three weeks until 12 March 2022, unless new agreements are reached before that. The Paperworkers’ Union’s strike at UPM Pulp, UPM Biofuels, UPM Communication Papers, UPM Specialty Papers and UPM Raflatac units in Finland started 1 January 2022. Currently, approximately 200 union members are working in tasks critical to society, such as power plants and water treatment facilities. The union simultaneously informed UPM that it is ready to negotiate with UPM businesses. UPM received an invitation to negotiations concerning UPM Pulp on Monday 7 February. The invitation indicated that the negotiations would be carried out with the CLA advisory board of the union. The board includes members of other forest products companies which means that discussions could be conducted on a very general level. Due to anti-trust compliance, genuine negotiations on UPM’s business-specific issues could not be conducted.
Kohl’s Corporation (NYSE:KSS) (“Kohl’s” or the “Company”) today issued the following statement: The Kohl's Board of Directors (the Board) has determined, following a review with its independent financial advisors and upon the recommendation of its Finance Committee, that the valuations indicated in the current expressions of interest which it has received do not adequately reflect the Company’s value in light of its future growth and cash flow generation. The Board is committed to maximizing the long-term value of the Company and will review and pursue opportunities that it believes would credibly lead to value consistent with its performance and future opportunities. The Board has designated its Finance Committee to lead the ongoing review of any expressions of interest. The Finance Committee, which was formed pursuant to the 2021 settlement agreement with Macellum Advisors GP, LLC and other shareholders, is comprised exclusively of independent directors. The Company and the Board have also engaged financial advisors, including Goldman Sachs and PJT Partners, and have asked Goldman Sachs to engage with interested parties.
National Average Price for Regular Unleaded Current: $3.423; Month Ago: $3.288; Year Ago: $2.443. National Average Price for Diesel Current: $3.771; Month Ago: $3.574; Year Ago: $2.667.
American Dollar to Canadian Dollar = 0.784008; American Dollar to Chinese Yuan = 0.157151; American Dollar to Euro = 1.144151; American Dollar to Japanese Yen = 0.008678; American Dollar to Mexican Peso = 0.048461.
R.R. Donnelley & Sons Company helped Levain Bakery™ meet a 200% increase in e-commerce demand during the pandemic. The 26-year-old company, which started on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, has transformed from a New York City institution popular amongst locals and tourists, to a national brand – while improving efficiencies and exceeding consumer expectations with the help of RRD’s packaging and warehousing solutions. Amid the onset of COVID-19, Levain experienced skyrocketing demand for its assortments of cookies available for purchase online. Simultaneously, the company needed to address an e-commerce packaging redesign while scaling up its warehousing capacity. To address these challenges, the company collaborated with RRD, a Chicago-based company with roots in printing that evolved to offer solutions from creative design and kitting to warehousing and proprietary supply chain management, and more. “We were already a growing brand, opening new bakeries, scaling our e-commerce business, and expanding into grocery retailers,” said Andy Taylor, CEO of Levain. “The challenge was creating a packaging solution that not only ensured our customers would receive our product in pristine condition, but also improved our efficiency to better meet demand. When COVID-19 caused New York—and the rest of the world —to shut down, we saw online orders multiply and we needed a supplier that had the flexibility to meet accelerating demand on a greater scale.”
Hygiene and health company Essity, maker of the Tork brand, has acquired the US professional wiping and cleaning company Legacy Converting, Inc. The company manufactures sanitizing and disinfecting wet-wipes, chemical-ready wipes and dry wipes - expanding the Tork professional hygiene portfolio. Essity, a leading global hygiene and health company, today announced the acquisition of Legacy Converting, Inc., a U.S.-based cleaning and wiping company and manufacturer of the best-in-class, EPA-regulated Everwipe™ brand of disinfecting and wiping products. Legacy Converting, Inc. was founded in 2004 and manufactures roll and folded wipes in a variety of formats including pop-up canister, bucket and resealable packs. The company services customers in the Public Interest, Commercial and Healthcare market segments via the Industrial and Office supply sales channels. Legacy Converting, Inc. is based in New Jersey.
First Fiscal Quarter Highlights: *Net sales of $3.6 billion, a 14% increase *Operating income of $229 million; Operating EBITDA of $457 million *Diluted net income per share of $0.87; *Authorized new share repurchase plan of $1 billion; expect to repurchase at least $350 million of shares outstanding in fiscal 2022
Berry Global Group, Inc. announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a new share repurchase program under which the Company may repurchase up to $1 billion of its outstanding shares of common stock. The Company currently expects to repurchase at least $350 million of shares outstanding in fiscal year 2022, including the $50 million shares repurchased in the first fiscal quarter, and to fully utilize the program over the next two to three fiscal years. This new, expanded authorization replaces the Company’s existing share repurchase program, and reflects the Company’s strong and dependable cash flow and its desire to opportunistically return capital to shareholders. The specific timing, price and size of purchases will depend on prevailing stock prices, general economic and market conditions, applicable legal requirements and other considerations.
RMGT, manufacturer of the leading 8-up sheetfed offset press in North America, announces that Envision3 is the most recent printing operation in North America to install the new 8-UP+ RMGT 970 offset press. Based in the greater Chicago area in Bloomingdale, IL, Envision3 is one of the top 300 largest printing and mailing manufacturers in the country and is a full-service offset and digital printing, packaging, mailing, and finishing company. Since its inception in 2000, Envision3 has been a traditional 40” shop having installed three Mitsubishi presses in this time period. Since Mitsubishi merged with Ryobi to form RMGT, Envision3 recently expanded their offset press line with the newly introduced RMGT 970 press. “We've been a Mitsubishi shop, now RMGT, for the 21 years since our formation,” states Kevin Franz, President, Envision3. “Mitsubishi and RM Machinery have won our business multiple times through the years with their new presses and great service.” Envision3 started in 2000 with a 40-inch and a 28-inch Mitsubishi offset press and later moved on to the Mitsubishi Diamond 3000 series. In the last quarter of 2021, Envision3 installed the latest addition to the 9 Series family, the RMGT 970, which features a new 25” x 38” sheet size.
*Q4 GAAP net loss of $128 million / net income of $307 million for 2021 *Liquidity of $953 million / net debt of $190 million at year-end *Repurchased 1.3 million shares in Q4 / 4.6 million shares (6%) in 2021 *Net pension & OPEB liability down by over $400 million at year-end
*Full year revenue increased 12.9%, up 2.0%, excluding First American, delivering the first full year of reported sales-driven growth in nearly a decade *Consolidated fourth quarter revenue increased 25.5%, up 6.8%, excluding contribution from First American *All four segments delivered year-over-year sales-driven revenue growth in the fourth quarter *Fourth quarter net income was up 10.4% from the third quarter of 2021 and adjusted EBITDA margin was 20.5%, up 120 basis points sequentially from the third quarter of 2021
*Record first quarter net sales of $5.0 billion increased 12.5% year-over-year *Net income of $182 million increased 19.9% year-over-year *Consolidated Adjusted EBITDA of $680 million increased 1.6% year-over-year *Earned $0.68 per diluted share (“EPS”) and Adjusted EPS of $0.65, up 19.3% and 6.6%, respectively
Costco Wholesale Corporation reported net sales of $15.76 billion for the retail month of January, the four weeks ended January 30, 2022, an increase of 15.5 percent from $13.64 billion last year. Lunar New Year/Chinese New Year occurred on February 1, 11 days earlier this year. The shift favorably impacted January’s Other International and Total Company sales by approximately 4% and 0.5%, respectively. For the twenty-two weeks ended January 30, 2022, the Company reported net sales of $92.10 billion, an increase of 16.4 percent from $79.11 billion last year.
Fourth Quarter Financial Highlights: *Delivered sales of $3.4 billion, up 14.2%, and up 16.9% on a daily, constant currency basis *Expanded gross margin by 240 bps to 37.3% *Generated reported and adjusted operating earnings of $417 million and achieved operating margin of 12.4%, up 305 basis points on a reported basis and up 240 basis points on an adjusted basis. 2021 Financial Highlights: *Delivered sales of $13.0 billion, up 10.4%, and up 12.4% on an organic, daily, constant currency basis *Drove U.S. market outgrowth of 100 basis points, 450 basis points on a two-year average *Achieved reported and adjusted operating earnings of $1.5 billion, up 51.8% on a reported basis and up 16.6% on an adjusted basis
SEE has announced the acquisition of Foxpak Flexibles Ltd. (Foxpak) under SEE Ventures, its initiative for investing in disruptive technologies and business models to accelerate growth. Foxpak, a privately-owned Irish packaging solutions company, pioneered the development of digital printing on flexible packaging. Foxpak partners with leading brands to deliver highly decorated packaging solutions; stand-up and spout pouches, and sachets that serve a variety of markets including food retail, pet food, seafood, and snacks. Foxpak has leveraged digital printing capabilities to print directly on its flexible packaging materials to empower their customers’ brands. Their solutions can be quickly scaled up or down to meet the production requirements for customers of any size.
Mactac® would like to introduce Nick Savelieff, an experienced Operations professional, as the company’s Vice President of Operations. With more than 20 years of experience in the plastics and pressure-sensitive adhesive (PSA) industries and in a variety of roles within supply chain, operations, and sales/marketing, Savelieff will lead the management of Mactac’s North American coating facilities and distribution centers. He will also oversee Mactac’s corporate engineering department. In his role, Savelieff will champion manufacturing excellence and drive a continuous improvement culture across Mactac’s production facilities. Among his primary responsibilities are workplace safety and environmental compliance, strategic operations planning, manufacturing performance and productivity, and asset management and planning.
Smurfit Kappa has collaborated with a leading UK recipe box company, Mindful Chef, to reduce the company’s carbon footprint by making their packaging more sustainable. Mindful Chef experienced a huge increase in demand for its home-delivered recipe kits during the pandemic. The company, which has been climate neutral since 2020, is committed to making every aspect of its business as sustainable as possible. Its previous recipe box consisted of insulation pouches combined with gel ice packs which, whilst effective at keeping the contents cool, were not easily recycled.
The New York Times Company announced fourth quarter 2021 diluted earnings per share from continuing operations of $.41 compared with $.06 in the same period of 2020. Adjusted diluted earnings per share from continuing operations (defined below) was $.43 in the fourth quarter of 2021 compared with $.40 in the fourth quarter of 2020. Operating profit increased to $94.1 million in the fourth quarter of 2021 from $80.5 million in the same period of 2020 and adjusted operating profit (defined below) increased to $109.3 million from $97.7 million in the prior year, as higher advertising, subscription and other revenues more than offset higher costs.
R.R. Donnelley & Sons Company announced that the unsolicited non-binding and conditional “Alternative Acquisition Proposal” from a strategic party (the “Strategic Party”) to acquire all of the outstanding shares of RRD’s common stock for $11.50 per share in cash has been withdrawn. The Strategic Party did not provide specific reasons for its withdrawal. The Company remains subject to the Chatham Merger Agreement, pursuant to which Chatham will acquire all of the RRD common stock not already owned by affiliates of Chatham for $10.85 per share in cash.
Stora Enso is investing EUR 8 million to double its production capacity of formed fiber in Europe. With new machinery in Hylte, Sweden, Stora Enso will meet the increasing demand for formed fiber. The investment further strengthens Stora Enso’s position as a leading provider of renewable materials that replace fossil-based ones. Stora Enso’s formed fiber products are currently being used in food packaging such as bowls, trays and lids. The technology is also being used for the development of fiber bottles. After the investment is completed, the Hylte site’s annual formed fiber capacity will grow from 50 to approximately 115 million units of product, making Stora Enso one of Europe’s leading suppliers of formed fiber. Formed fiber is renewable, recyclable, and biodegradable, and can be used to replace plastics in a wide range of applications. PureFiber™ by Stora Enso is a range of formed fiber products that contain no per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) and has up to 75% lower CO2 footprint compared to alternative packaging materials such as plastic or bagasse.
Readers purchased 825 million copies of print books in the U.S. in 2021—the best-selling year for print books, NPD Bookscan says, since it began tracking data in 2004—and analysts believe young people posting about books on social media played a serious role in those big numbers. The U.S. print book market was up 9% compared to 2020, according to NPD Bookscan, finishing 67 million copies ahead of 2020, and selling 125 million more copies than in 2019. Kristen McLean, executive director and industry analyst at NPD Bookscan, said social media—particularly TikTok users who post about books, known collectively as BookTok—has “definitely been a factor” in surging book sales, along with the pandemic in general, with many of the sales gains coming in Q1 and Q2 before the Covid-19 vaccines were widely available.
“We are pleased with O-I’s full year 2021 results, which rebounded strongly following the onset of the pandemic. Business performance exceeded the company’s guidance provided at the beginning of the year as well as our most recent business outlook. Sales and production volumes surpassed pre-COVID levels underscoring consumer preference for premium and sustainable glass packaging. Likewise, earnings benefited from very good operating performance and the company’s margin expansion initiatives,” said Andres Lopez, CEO of O-I. Reported Results: For the full year 2021, the company recorded earnings from continuing operations of $0.88 per share (diluted), compared to $1.57 per share (diluted) in 2020. Current year earnings from continuing operations before income taxes were $332 million, compared to $353 million in the prior year. Lower 2021 earnings primarily reflected the non-recurrence of a $275 million gain related to the 2020 sale of O-I’s Australia and New Zealand business unit, partially offset by higher operating results in 2021. Both periods included items management considers not representative of ongoing operations and other adjustments.
Click here (https://security-us.mimecast.com/ttpwp#/checking?key=dG9tLnBhbmtvd0BtaWRsYW5kY28uY29tfHJlcS1lNGUxNTYyN2RiMmY4M2JlYmU4YThmOGQ5MTEyNmNhOA%3D%3D) to review our mailing industry coalition-based letter in support of HR 3076 -The Postal Service Reform Act. We and other organizations and companies who comprise the Coalition for a 21st Century Postal Service have been asked to support this signifcant and helpful bill. Getting this passed with a clear bipartisan majority in the House will grease the skids in the Senate. Constituent influence is the key to getting this done. We hope to obtain as many signatures from companies and trade associations as possible, demonstrating broad support. The ACMA is signing onto the letter and we urge you to review it, then send a quick reply directly to this email whether you’d like your company’s name added or not. Sorry for the short notice, but please get back to us no later than 10:00 am Eastern Time Tuesday, February 1st. This bill is the product of years of work by ACMA and others. As with much Congress does, it is not perfect, but it is clearly helpful and while we will continue to work for improvements, we cannot let perfect be the enemy of good. This is good as written and we must move quickly as things will soon devolve into election year politics and nothing may be possible. ACMA member or not, if you mail, you should support this bill. Please reach out with any questions, and thank you for taking action!
Gannett Co., Inc. announced that the Company’s Board of Directors authorized a share repurchase program for the repurchase of up to $100 million of the Company’s common stock.“The authorization to buy back up to $100 million of common stock provides the Company with another mechanism to maximize long-term value for our shareholders,” said Michael Reed, Gannett Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “We remain confident in our strategy and believe that our current stock price represents a significant discount to the intrinsic value of the company and its operating units. Over the last year we have significantly improved our capital structure and the stock repurchase program announced today provides us with additional flexibility to create long-term value for investors. We remain committed to a disciplined capital allocation strategy, including investments in our strategic priorities, continued debt paydown, and return of capital to our shareholders.
Highlights - Six Months Ended December 31, 2021 •Net sales of $6,927 million, up 12%; •GAAP Net Income of $427 million, up 3%; GAAP earnings per share (EPS) of 27.9 cents per share, up 5%; •Increasing cash returns to shareholders: quarterly dividend of 12.0 cents per share; $600 million of sharerepurchases expected in fiscal 2022, including an additional $200 million announced today. CEO Ron Delia said: "Amcor delivered a solid first half result as our teams continue to successfully navigate a persistently challenging and dynamic operating environment.”
The paper mailer has passed Western Michigan University Old Corrugated Container Equivalency (WMU OCC-E) testing protocol. The testing protocol was developed by WMU and certified by the Fibre Box Association, which represents 95% of the corrugators in the United States. Passing this third-party independent testing and certification makes EverTec mailers qualified to use a recyclable symbol according to the protocol established by Federal Trade Commission Green Guides. In addition, the Pregis EverTec mailer has also been assessed by the How2Recycle® program and deemed widely recyclable. The EverTec mailer is a sustainable protective packaging solution that helps customers achieve their environmental goals without sacrificing performance. The mailer is a lightweight, durable package that can decrease material waste, as well as reduce reliance on corrugated boxes and improve distribution efficiency—all while providing consumers with a curbside recyclable option. To meet significant market demand, Pregis has invested in several new U.S. manufacturing sites in 2021 and will be increasing capacity further in 2022.
Smurfit Kappa has made a simple but far-reaching change to its Vitop® taps. The taps used on its Bag-in-Box products are now free from carbon black pigment, making them much easier to recycle. Smurfit Kappa’s two largest European Bag-in-Box plants in France and Spain are now using the Vitop® Natural, a tap with a translucent body that was introduced two years ago as a sustainable alternative to the carbon black Vitop®. As the carbon black pigment is not always detected by the optical sorting near-infrared (NIR) scanners used by many recycling facilities, it can be classified as an unwanted component and can also give recycled plastic an unattractive grey colour.
Sun Chemical will increase prices across selected parts of its pigments, dyes and preparations portfolio, effective February 14, 2022 or as contracts allow. The price increase affects all market segments. “We need to take this action due to the current market conditions,” said Stefan Sütterlin, President of Sun Chemical’s Color Materials division. “Sun Chemical values the relationship we have with our business partners, and we remain committed to continuous cost and productivity improvement programs designed to keep our cost drivers under control and provide maximum value to our customers. However, the unprecedented magnitude and speed of increases in materials forces us to pass on higher cost to our customers.”
The Sustainable Green Printing Partnership (SGP) is a non-profit organization that certifies printing facilities’ sustainability best practices, including and beyond regulatory compliance. SGP advocates best practices and innovation among print community stakeholders, aligning the printing industry and its customers in the pursuit of a more accountable sustainable supply chain. Monadnock is a long-time leader in crafting sustainable and premium printing, packaging, and specialty technical papers for leading brands worldwide. Operating under a third-party certified ISO 14001 Environmental Management System, the synergistic alignment and partnership with SGP enables us to better serve our mutual stakeholders and customers. “Monadnock and the Sustainable Green Printing Partnership share a commitment to sustainability and innovation,” said Jonathan Graham, Chairman of the Board, Sustainable Green Printing Partnership. “Our work to build an increasingly sustainable supply chain is accelerating through strategic partnerships with leading companies like Monadnock.”
Paper Excellence is pleased to have received $8.6 million of the more than $70 million in provincial funding announced by the CleanBC Industry Fund yesterday. “This funding is being invested at four of our BC mills into projects that will reduce the mills’ greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and improve efficiency,” said Graham Kissack, Vice President, Environment, Health & Safety, and Corporate Communications. “Programs like the CleanBC Industry Fund are helping industry achieve British Columbia’s ambition for a low carbon future.” The four mills—Catalyst Crofton, Catalyst Port Alberni, Howe Sound Pulp & Paper, Skookumchuck Pulp—employ more than 1,500 people in rural BC and make an economic contribution of $2.25 billion annually. “Separate from the economic impact these mills have in their local communities, our products are spearheading carbon reduction every day,” said Kissack. “Our paper and pulp products are made from a renewable resource that often displace existing plastic products.”
Highlights: *4Q21 Reported EPS of $2.19, down 4% driven by impact of extra week in prior year *4Q21 Net sales increased 9.7% to $2.2 billion *FY21 Reported EPS of $8.83, up 34% *FY21 Net sales increased 20.6% to $8.4 billion. “2021 marked the company’s tenth consecutive year of strong top- and bottom-line growth,” said Mitch Butier, chairman, president and CEO. “We delivered 19 percent revenue growth on a constant currency basis and 25 percent adjusted earnings per share growth, while generating record free cash flow.
Norske Skog has entered into agreement with Talley’s Group, a New Zealand based dairy, fishing, produce and food company, to sell the Nature’s Flame pellets company for a consideration of approximately NZD 47.8 million (approximately NOK 280 million). The transaction is expected to close during the first quarter of 2022. “Nature’s Flame is an excellent company producing high quality and sustainable energy pellets from wood residues, and thus the sales process generated significant interest. Under our ownership, we have expanded the capacity from producing some 20,000 tonnes when acquired to currently 90,000 tonnes, and we are very pleased that Talley’s has indicated interest to continue the ongoing project to further expand the capacity to 150,000 tonnes."
The demand for environmentally friendly packaging continues to grow. This development is posing real challenges for brand owners. How do they make the switch to flexible packaging that is recyclable? What needs to be considered? How can the issue of recycling be advanced? And why does Europe still need to catch up on topics such as “defining recyclability” and “test methods”? Insight into these questions and more is featured in a new episode of Sappi's Blue Couch Series. *“Functional paper packaging – the path towards greater recyclability” *Julian Thielen, Head of the “Made for Recycling” service at Interseroh Plus, Kerstin Dietze, Key Account Manager for Paper and Packaging Solutions at Sappi, and Gustavo Duarte, Manager Competence Center Packaging Solutions at Sappi
Sustana, a leading manufacturer of premium, sustainable recycled fiber and paper products, announces the appointment of Jeffrey Crawford to the position of Vice President of Sustainability. Jeffrey brings over 13 years of experience supporting Fortune 500 companies, investors, United Nations agencies, and national governments design and implement sustainability and climate strategies, policies, and projects in Africa, Asia-Pacific, Europe, and North America to Sustana. He will be responsible for driving Sustana’s sustainable products, strategy, and ESG initiatives across Sustana Fiber and Rolland Papers, advancing the group’s leadership in providing sustainable recycled solutions to the paper and packaging industry. Jeffrey will lead the company’s sustainability strategy for Rolland Paper as well as Sustana Fiber recycled fiber operations. Sustana has full control over the fiber production, recycled papermaking, and converting processes and Jeffrey’s role will build upon Sustana’s Sustainability Strategy and be an ambassador for recycled sustainability produced printing papers and packaging plus food packaging.
Stora Enso will invest EUR 40 million in new technology and restructuring of its fluff pulp production site in Skutskär, Sweden. The objective is to increase cost efficiencies and further improve the site’s climate footprint, thereby aligning with Stora Enso’s goal to provide regenerative solutions. Stora Enso is Europe’s leading producer of fluff pulp. The Skutskär site produces fluff pulp used in hygiene products such as baby diapers, feminine care and adult incontinence protection products, as well as in air-laid nonwovens such as wipes, napkins and medical pads. The investment in new bleaching technology supports Stora Enso’s ambitious climate targets and will enhance both operational efficiency and the site’s carbon footprint performance. With its science-based targets updated in 2021, Stora Enso commits to reducing absolute greenhouse gas emissions from operations by 50% by 2030, aligned with the 1.5-degree scenario. The transition to new technology will enable a carbon footprint reduction of 5% for the site’s products through resource and energy efficiencies.
Q4/2021 (year-on-year) *Sales increased by 26.3% to EUR 2,719 (2,154) million. *Operational EBIT increased to EUR 426 (118) million. *Operational EBIT margin increased to 15.7% (5.5%). *Operating profit (IFRS) increased to EUR 839 (289) million including the positive impact from the valuation of biological assets. *Strong cash flow from operations amounted to EUR 619 (436) million. Cash flow after investing activities was EUR 424 (223) million. *The net debt to operational EBITDA ratio improved to 1.1 (2.3). The target is to keep the ratio below 2.0. Year 2021 (year-on-year) *Sales were EUR 10,164 (8,553) million. *Operational EBIT more than doubled to EUR 1,528 (650) million.
WestRock Company announced plans today to build a new corrugated box plant in Longview, Washington, to meet the growing demand from WestRock’s regional customers in the Pacific Northwest. “WestRock’s corrugated packaging business in the Pacific Northwest continues to perform well, with strong relationships with customers in attractive growth markets,” said David B. Sewell, chief executive officer, WestRock. “Our new corrugated packaging plant will enable our team in this region to serve these customers even better in the future, with a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility that will provide new capabilities and efficiencies for our customers.”
Waddington North America™ (WNA), a Novolex® brand, announced today that it has been awarded a new patent for Cutlerease®, an innovative dispenser that offers customers one disposable utensil at a time. Thanks to the patent, Novolex can now offer customers the opportunity to lease or buy Cutlerease dispensers — making it even easier for foodservice establishments to enjoy its many benefits. The unique system cuts waste, reduces the spread of germs, saves space and provides guests with a more convenient way to get utensils. Customers simply withdraw the utensil from the dispenser by pulling on the handle of the spoon, fork or knife that they want. After the utensil is removed, another pops out, ready for the next guest.
Continuing its progress around its sustainable sourcing goals, Crown Holdings, Inc. has received certification from the Aluminium Stewardship Initiative (ASI) for its Mexican beverage can operations. Through the ASI Performance Standard, which assesses and confirms the ethicality of metal packaging production activities, Crown Mexico is verified for responsible production, sourcing and stewardship of aluminum. The achievement underscores Crown's ongoing commitment to operate as a responsible organization across its global footprint and deliver against the goals of its ambitious Twentyby30 sustainability program. As a not-for-profit standards setting and certification organization, ASI works to define environmental, social and governance principles and criteria, with the aim to address sustainability issues in the aluminum value chain. In addition to creating a benchmark for the industry, the organization's efforts around the ASI Performance Standard include: establishing requirements that can be independently audited to provide objective evidence for the granting of ASI Certification; reinforcing and promoting consumer and stakeholder confidence in aluminum; and serving as a broader reference for the establishment and improvement of responsible production, sourcing and material stewardship initiatives in metals supply chains. Utilizing these measures, ASI's ultimate mission is to recognize and collaboratively foster responsible production, sourcing and stewardship of aluminum.
The FPA Emerging Leadership Council’s (ELC) Advocacy Committee developed a fact sheet on extended producer responsibility (EPR) to help educate the industry, stakeholders, and the consumers of goods packaged in flexible packaging. The fact sheet touches on the following aspects related to EPR: the basic elements of EPR; an overview of the Maine and Oregon EPR legislation; how producers and consumers may be affected by EPR legislation; the FPA’s policy surrounding EPR; and important terms to know. To see the fact sheet, go to: https://www.flexpack.org/publication/RG93bmxvYWQ6NzY3
Greif, Inc. announced that Ole Rosgaard assumed the role of President and Chief Executive Officer, consistent with the company's previously announced succession plan. Mr. Rosgaard succeeds Pete Watson who will become Executive Chairman of Greif’s Board of Directors. Mr. Rosgaard has also been nominated to serve on Greif’s Board of Directors, which will be voted upon at the Annual Stockholders’ Meeting on March 1, 2022. In addition, Greif announced a new executive leadership team effective February 1, 2022, that will lead ongoing growth and continuous improvement opportunities to drive additional shareholder value. Greif’s new executive leadership team is comprised of: Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer, Larry Hilsheimer; Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary, Gary Martz; Executive Vice President, Chief Human Resources Officer, Bala V. Sathyanarayanan; Senior Vice President, Chief Supply Chain Officer, Tina Schoner; Senior Vice President, Global Operations Group, Kimberly Kellermann; Senior Vice President, Group President, Paper Packaging and Soterra LLC, Tim Bergwall; Senior Vice President, Group President, Global Industrial Packaging, Patrick Mullaney; Vice President, Chief Technology Officer, Doug Lingrel; Vice President, Chief Marketing and Sustainability Officer, Matt Eichmann (effective March 1, 2022).