BillerudKorsnäs To Divest UK Paper Mill
Renewable packaging manufacturer BillerudKorsnäs has announced plans to divest its paper mill in Beetham, UK.
The company has initiated the process of divesting the mill but has not entered into any binding agreement yet.
The strategic importance of the paper mill at Beetham has been reduced since BillerudKorsnäs' machine glazed (MG) paper business decided to focus on production at its Skärblacka facility in Sweden.
Beetham produces kraft paper for packaging of medical equipment, food and other types of industrial applications and has a capacity of around 45,000 tonnes per year.
In 2020, the facility reported sales of around SEK 480 million (€47.1 million).
The company's net sales grew by 6% to SEK 6.5 billion (€640 million) in the second quarter of its financial year, while adjusted EBITDA increased by 14% to SEK 883 million (€86.82).
Operating profit amounted to SEK 404 million, while net profit was SEK 311 million (€30.6 million).
President and CEO of BillerudKorsnäs, Christoph Michalski, said, "Strong sales growth continued throughout the second quarter, driven by volume growth, product mix and higher prices.
"Sales volumes increased compared to the same period last year despite different timing in the maintenance schedule. Profitability continued to strengthen with excellent cash flow delivery in the second quarter."
The company reported strong net sales' in the first quarter of its financial year, with sales rising 2% to SEK 6.52 billion (€0.64 billion).
BillerudKorsnäs forecast a 'positive' outlook for the rest of the year, with demand expected to remain strong in all segments.
The conditions for liquid packaging board are expected to remain stable, while price increases will compensate for higher input costs in some categories, it added.
Michalski added, "Our current business priorities remain the same: health and safety, stable production, the ramp up of Gruvön, a competitive wood supply as well as delivering our cost and efficiency programme. Good performance in these areas will bring profitable growth over the next few years."
He also added that the company is reviewing its longer-term strategic direction.
"The markets in which we operate, particularly primary fibre carton and container board, are indicating strong growth opportunities for the foreseeable future. We are starting to investigate additional supply capacity post 2024, assuming full capacity utilisation by then," Michalski stated.