The acquisition of Verso’s two mills increased Pixelle’s current production capacity to more than one million tonnes annually

Verso Stevens Point

Verso’s Stevens Point mill in Wisconsin, US. (Credit: PRNewsfoto/Verso Corporation)

Coated paper producer Verso has completed the sale of its two speciality papers mills in the US to speciality paper manufacturer and supplier Pixelle Specialty Solutions.

The Verso’s assets purchased by Pixelle include Androscoggin mill in Jay, Maine and Stevens Point mill in Wisconsin.

The Androscoggin mill produces speciality papers used for label and converting, flexible packaging and technical paper applications; packaging papers, as well as kraft linerboard and kraft papers. It has a production capacity of approximately 450,000 tonnes of paper annually.

With a capacity of 210,000 tonnes of paper annually, the Stevens Point mill produces flexible packaging papers used for quick-service food pouches, spiral canisters, bags and many types of wrapping paper.

The mill also produces label papers for bottles, jars, cans and release liners, thermal papers and technical papers for bar code labels and receipts.

Pixelle said that the deal has increased its current production capacity to more than one million tonnes annually, making it the largest speciality papers producer in North America.

Pixelle CEO Timothy Hess said: “Customers now have access to the speciality papers industry’s largest assembly of technical expertise, product knowledge, skilled labour and production capabilities.

“At this industry-leading scale, we can provide customers with advanced capabilities such as barrier coatings, customized coating technologies, release and casting chemistries, inkjet innovations, document security, and short-run custom colours.”

Verso seeks to reduce unfunded pension liability

Verso is planning to use a portion of the cash proceeds from the transaction to reduce its remaining unfunded pension liability in 2020.

The two mills will add to the Pixelle’s existing mills in Spring Grove, Pennsylvania, and Chillicothe, Ohio and a coating facility in Fremont, Ohio in the US.

Verso president Mike Weinhold said: “With the sale of the Stevens Point and Androscoggin mills, we will now focus on the growth and enhancement of our pulp and packaging products as well as the speciality products produced at our remaining mills.”