A hearing ended Monday after nearly seven hours of discussion, to decide the future of Appleton Coated and its more than 600 workers. It looks like the future could be a little bit brighter for those workers. During Monday's hearing the judge was supposed to either approve of the $21 million purchase agreement or deny the sale. However, some changes were made to those original purchase agreements after a different offer came through from the employee union and a lending firm. "We will work to do our very best to provide an operating budget to each of the steelworkers and the receiver. We will work very hard. That's not a guarantee, but if it's not done by the end of the day tomorrow it will be done the following day," explained Mark Friedlander, Industrial Assets attorney. Now, Industrial Assets says it will pay $20 million , with more money to provide an operating budget to keep the plant open for 45 days. Over those 45 days Appleton Coated will run with only 200 employees to fulfill current orders. The mill typically employs more than 600 people. Click Read More below for more of the story.
UPM has signed an agreement to sell its Schwedt newsprint mill site and relevant assets to LEIPA Georg Leinfelder GmbH for the aim of a conversion into liner production. The entire personnel of Schwedt mill will transfer to LEIPA as old employees. The transaction price is EUR 70 million. The transaction is subject to customary third party approvals.
As part of the transaction, the parties have agreed to enter into a contract manufacturing agreement for newsprint for a transition period which would end latest at the end of 2017. The mill’s capacity is 280,000 tonnes of newsprint annually.
LEIPA will convert the mill into liner production. The planned production capacity would be approximately 450,000 tonnes of liner annually.
“With this transaction UPM and LEIPA will have an improved opportunity to develop their businesses to meet the market needs. LEIPA is a solid and successful player in the liner business,” says Winfried Schaur, Executive Vice President, UPM Paper ENA.
“The negotiations with LEIPA have proceeded well and we believe that the transaction will bring benefits to the employees in the form of future employment at a converted site,” says Schaur.
UPM continues newsprint production at its Chapelle, Kaipola, Hürth, Schongau, Shotton and Steyrermühl mills.