Fortress Paper Ltd. reported 2015 first quarter EBITDA loss of $2.5 million. The Dissolving Pulp Segment generated EBITDA loss of $3.3 million and the Security Paper Products Segment generated EBITDA of $2.3 million. Corporate costs contributed $1.5 million to EBITDA loss. EBITDA loss of $3.3 million for the Dissolving Pulp Segment for the quarter ended March 31, 2015 was an improvement of $0.4 million when compared to the fourth quarter of 2014 EBITDA loss of $3.7 million, which was primarily impacted by the eight day annual maintenance shutdown in October 2014. The operational challenges in the chemical preparation area and limited capacity of the turbine experienced during the fourth quarter of 2014 continued to impact the results of the first quarter of 2015.
Operating profit for January–March 2015 was SEK 396 million (January–March 2014: SEK 389 million). Profit was positively affected by increased sales of paperboard and reduced production costs, while major planned maintenance and rebuilding shutdowns had a negative impact of SEK 130 million. Price decreases for printing paper and sawn timber were offset by a weaker Swedish krona. Compared with the fourth quarter, operating profit decreased by SEK 76 million, excluding the previous quarter’s item affecting comparability. The decrease was due to maintenance and rebuilding shutdowns, which was partly offset by improved profit for forest and energy.
INTERFOR CORPORATION (TSX: IFP) announced today that it has reached an agreement with The Price Companies, Inc. (“Price”) to acquire Price’s sawmill in Monticello, Arkansas (the “Monticello Sawmill”). The Monticello Sawmill is located in Southern Arkansas, approximately 90 miles southeast of Little Rock. For the last 12 months ended March 31, 2015, the Monticello Sawmill produced approximately 75 million board feet of lumber.
Berlin Packaging, a leading full-service supplier of plastic, glass, and metal containers and closures, today announced that its custom-designed packages for Lube-Tech and Permatex have received 2015 AmeriStar Awards from the Institute of Packaging Professionals. The AmeriStar Awards, one of the most exclusive competitions in the industry, recognizes those packages exhibiting excellence in innovation, economics, performance, environmental impact, marketing and product protection. Berlin's AmeriStar Awards were for Permatex's Fast Orange hand cleaner, and a fuel treatment packaging solution for Lube-Tech.
Simon & Schuster sales fell 5% in the first quarter ended March 31, 2015 compared to the first quarter of 2014, dropping to $145 million. Operating income, however, increased to $12 million from $11 million, parent company CBS reported. Sales of digital products were up in the quarter, but sales of print were down. Digital revenues represented 31% of S&S’s total revenues for the first quarter of 2015. The improved profit performance was attributed to lower selling and inventory costs.
Continuously rising input costs and consequently declining profit margins make corrective pricing measures inevitable as Sappi Europe’s business is unsustainable at current price levels. We are therefore announcing a price increase of 8% for all European coated fine and coated mechanical reels business as per the 1st of July 2015.
Sappi North America today officially announced its call for 2015 Ideas that Matter grant proposals, inviting designers to show the world how design, specifically print, can play an important role in changing lives for the better. Sappi established the Ideas that Matter grant program 15 years ago to fund designers who apply their creative talents to causes that address significant issues facing our society. Over the past decade and a half, Sappi has witnessed world-changing, integrated work firsthand as a part of the program and is committed to the belief that good ideas inspire people to take action, great ideas change the world. In a world gone digital, print is at the heart of influential and effective messaging. Ideas that Matter is the only grant program of its kind in the paper industry that funds projects addressing a variety of social issues – from diversity and human rights campaigns to health and youth development.
The global sustainability performance of the forest product industry is improving, with all aggregate indicators for reporting associations showing progress: •Greenhouse gas emissions intensity was reduced by 17% between 2005 and 2013. •The share of bio-energy in the industry’s fuel mix increased by 8 percentage points, to 61%, since 2005. •The number of hectares certified to a third-party sustainable forest management certification system increased by 41 percentage points, to 52% of wood supply, since 2000. •The global paper recycling rate increased by 11 percentage points, to 58%, between 2001 and 2013.
As of May, UPM’s new wood-based BioVerno diesel fuel will be available at ABC service stations. The product, sold as a part of ABC’s Smart Diesel range, is a result of UPM’s own innovation and is produced at the UPM Lappeenranta Biorefinery. This high quality fuel suits all diesel engines. ABC’s Smart Diesel already boasts excellent properties, and now it has become even more environmentally sound with a locally produced diesel by its side. Renewable UPM BioVerno diesel reduces greenhouse gas emissions by up to 80% when compared to traditional diesel. UPM BioVerno is produced at the UPM Lappeenranta Biorefinery from crude tall oil, a residue of the pulp production process. This biorefinery is the first of its kind in the world. A significant proportion of the raw material for the diesel comes from UPM’s Finnish pulp mills.
First Quarter Highlights *Record operating income and adjusted earnings per share, driven by double-digit earnings growth in both segments. *Consolidated sales increase 1 percent (8 percent on a constant currency basis). *Earnings per diluted share of $0.95 up 20 percent compared with adjusted earnings per share of $0.79 in 2014. Prior year adjusted E.P.S. excluded $0.01 for restructuring costs. *Initial dividend paid at the previously announced increased quarterly rate of $0.30 per share.