On September 19, 2017, the Receiver of Appleton Coated LLC conducted a going concern auction of the Company’s assets. The auction was the culmination of a comprehensive marketing effort to find a buyer. As part of the sale and marketing process, the Receiver requested that all potential buyers agree to hire substantially all of Appleton Coated’s employees as part of any purchase agreement. Unfortunately, none of the qualified bidders that attended the auction were in a position to agree to that request. The Receiver will ask the Court overseeing the receivership proceeding to approve the highest and best offer he received for the Company’s assets on Friday, September 22, 2017 in Outagamie County Circuit Court. Due to the auction results, the Receiver must immediately wind down the Company’s business operations beginning Wednesday September 20th and lay off substantially all of the employees of Appleton Coated. A limited number of employees will remain to ensure that the Company’s assets are properly maintained for the new owner until the proposed closing of the sale on September 29, 2017. Orders for stock product will continue to be accepted. Manufacturing orders that have been produced but not yet shipped, will be shipped. Manufacturing orders that have been accepted, but not yet produced, will be reviewed with new ownership to determine whether they will be produced and shipped. New manufacturing orders will not be accepted at this time.
BillerudKorsnäs has decided on streamlining their production structure through a closure of the paper machine in Tervasaari, Finland, latest during Q3 2016. BillerudKorsnäs will thereby entirely leave the Tervasaari production site. The decision has been made after union negotiations and is based on unsatisfactory profitability levels.
Within BillerudKorsnäs Business Area Packaging Paper, a wide range of kraft papers and packaging solutions are offered for use in food packaging, medical packaging and packaging of construction materials – to mention a few application areas. Under the business area strategy “Selective Growth”, BillerudKorsnäs is taking steps to grow within attractive segments of the packaging paper area and to streamline its production structure.
The BillerudKorsnäs production at Tervasaari consists of one paper machine with a capacity of 100 000 t/a of machine glazed papers, MG papers. The paper machine is unintegrated to pulp production which results in an unfavorable cost position, despite the fact that the machine is among the largest of its kind.
The decision means that the production at the machine will stop latest during Q3 2016.
In August this year, BillerudKorsnäs started a feasibility study investigating among other things the potential of moving the Tervasaari machine to Skärblacka in Sweden. Skärblacka would offer integration to pulp production and, with the Tervasaari machine, Skärblacka would strengthen its position as one of the world’s most efficient production units for white MG papers. The investigation is on-going and will be finalized during the first half of 2016.
“The closure of production at Tervasaari is a first step in streamlining our production structure. There is right now intensive work being done in the form of feasibility studies that will lead us in our further development of our production structure. The machine in Tervasaari is one of the largest of its kind and our staff has done a great job to improve profitability through creative ideas and committed efforts but unfortunately this has not been enough due to external factors”, says Christer Simrén, COO and Executive Vice President, BillerudKorsnäs.
The closure will lead to restructuring costs of approximately SEK 100 million. These costs will be included in the reporting for Q3 2015 under “Other units”.