Verso Corporation announced that it will make strategic investments in its Androscoggin Mill in Jay, Maine, focused on technology upgrades that will increase the release liner paper capacity of its No. 4 paper machine. Made over the next 18 months, these investments will better position Verso to meet the growing needs of pressure sensitive laminators worldwide. "The Androscoggin Mill and its No. 4 paper machine have a rich history of manufacturing specialty products," said Verso's President of Graphic Papers Mike Weinhold. "When enhanced with these technology upgrades, the No. 4 paper machine's six-meter width, technical capabilities and fully integrated pulp platform will be particularly well suited to support the growing release liner market. Additionally, these investments advance Verso's strategy to reposition 100 percent of the Androscoggin Mill's production to serve specialty paper and packaging markets." Click Read More below for additional information.
Verso Corporation (NYSE: VRS) (“Verso” or the “Company”) today announced that promptly following the consummation of the proposed sale of Verso’s Androscoggin and Stevens Point mills to Pixelle Specialty Solutions (the “Pixelle Transaction”), the Verso Board intends to return net proceeds from the Pixelle Transaction to stockholders in an aggregate amount of up to $282 million and not less than $225 million.
The Verso Board expects that the return of capital will be made by way of dividends, share repurchases, conducted either by way of modified Dutch tender offer, accelerated share repurchase program or open market purchases, or a combination of dividends and share repurchases, taking into account the then composition of the Company’s broad and diversified shareholder base. Pension contributions are expected to be made in fiscal year 2020 and to offset estimated tax liabilities.
Following the closing of the Pixelle Transaction, Verso will continue to be a debt-free, streamlined company with significant financial flexibility. The Company expects that its remaining mills will continue to provide strong operating cash flow with low SG&A expenses, and that Verso will be well positioned to respond to industry trends and to take advantage of opportunities with high-risk adjusted returns. As previously announced, the Verso Board, as disciplined stewards of capital, intends to continue its strategic review in order to create and maximize shareholder value.
The Pixelle Transaction requires the affirmative vote of a majority of shares outstanding. Each stockholder’s vote FOR the Pixelle Transaction is imperative and will ensure the opportunity for stockholders to receive net proceeds from the transaction.
Verso stockholders of record at the close of business on December 16, 2019, are entitled to attend and vote at the Company’s upcoming 2019 Annual Meeting of Stockholders to be held on January 31, 2020. The Company’s proxy statement and other important information related to the Annual Meeting can be found online at http://www.stockholderdocs.com/VRS.
Verso’s Board of Directors (the “Board”) unanimously recommends that stockholders vote “FOR” ALL seven of Verso’s nominees, “FOR” the approval of the Pixelle Transaction (Company Proposal 2), and “FOR” Company Proposals 3 – 8 on the WHITE proxy card TODAY.