Flambeau River Paper announced the shutdown of its #3 paper machine to be effective immediately. #3 paper machine primarily produces commodity white papers and has been impacted by the ongoing and unprecedented rise in pulp costs coupled with an in-elasticity of commodity paper price. Flambeau River Papers’ #1 and #2 paper machines along with the Flambeau pulp mill, woodyard and utilities will continue to operate uninterrupted on a 24 hour, 7 day a week schedule. It is important to point out that PM 1 and PM 2 produce primarily specialty and value-added papers. The size and capabilities of these two paper machines, along with integrated nature of the mill, make them competitive and well suited for continued success in these markets. Over the last five years the mill has worked hard and qualified propriety specialty papers on these machines. Also manufactured on PM 1 and PM 2 are Flambeau’s other value-added papers such as Torchglow and Glacier Opaque branded papers, custom FDA compliant papers, fluorescent colored papers, wet-strength papers, saturating base stocks, deeply colored papers, watercolor papers, book papers, endleaf papers, lightweight offset papers, converting and drawing stocks. Paper grades historically produced on PM 3 such as Offset Papers and Laser Bond papers will not be part of the productive capacity of FRP as we proceed forward. We will work in concert with you and communicate the status of pending orders and shipments.
In order to prepare Kotkamills Absorbex Oy, a subsidiary of Kotkamills Oy and the leading global supplier of Laminating Papers, to meet the increasing demand, as well as to replace the discontinuing production volume of Paper Machine 7 in Tainionkoski, Imatra (Stock Exchange release on the 3rd of July 2017), Kotkamills Oy has started the pre-feasibility study of a new Paper Machine 3 (PM 3) in Kotka. The final decision of this possible investment will be done by the end of year 2018. The capacity, cost estimation and start-up timing of the the PM 3 will be published later on subject to the positive investment decision.
After the possible start-up of the PM 3, Kotkamills Oy is maximizing the integration advantages of the Kotka site. In addition to the efficient investment cost of PM 3 to the already available infrastructure, the energy and fixed costs per produced volumes of the whole integrated site would be lower than today. The possible investment would have a positive impact on the profitability of Kotkamills Group.
In addition to the possible PM 3, Kotkamills Absorbex Oy will subcontract certain Laminating Paper grades from one or more European paper companies. First Laminating Paper trial reels from an external producer have already been delivered to a customer of Kotkamills Absorbex Oy.