Heinzel Group finalizes the Laakirchen paper mill acquisition and starts sales and marketing coopera
The Heinzel Group is pleased to announce that the takeover of the former SCA publication paper mill in Laakirchen, Austria, agreed in December 2012, was completed on April 2, 2013. With a turnover of EUR 308 m in 2012, Laakirchen Papier AG, as the company will be known in future, is set to make a sizeable contribution to Heinzel Group growth.
It is expected that the integration of the 540,000t mill into the Heinzel Group will proceed smoothly and synergies from pulp integration and common purchasing can be realized immediately. The takeover transaction also involved the acquisition of a majority holding in the waste paper dealer, Bunzl & Biach, with annual sales volume of 590,000t and possesses further growth potential.
With turnover of EUR 1.1 billion and EBITDA of EUR 69 million, the Heinzel Group again showed strong results in 2012. An equity ratio of 48.5% and gearing of 12% form a solid basis for investment-based growth.
Following its integration into the Heinzel Group, Laakirchen Papier’s financing basis will change. External investors – especially in Austria – have indicated a keen wish to participate in this traditional Upper Austrian corporation. To date this was not possible, as the company was internally financed, but now in response to this interest a bonded loan issue is planned with the aim of reaching a large number of potential investors.
Another important element of the takeover is represented by the decision of the Heinzel Group and SCA to cooperate in the sale and marketing of publication papers, pulp, kraftliner and products for flexible packaging. In this connection, two former SCA offices in Poland and Italy have also been acquired by Heinzel Sales, the sales and trading arm of the Heinzel Group.
For each country, a separate strategy has been defined between the sales organizations of both Heinzel and SCA with the aim of using the strongest position of each group to maximum effect.
The Heinzel Group will retain the Grapho brands for SC products from Laakirchen, as products such as GraphoVerde and GraphoNova are well established in the markets and occupy a strong quality position.
Andrew Paul, the head of Heinzel Sales: “We are excited about the new opportunities for both groups to provide even better service performance and a stronger market presence for our customers and we will be implementing the active transfer of responsibilities within the coming months.”
The Heinzel Group
The Heinzel Group, which is united under the Heinzel Holding umbrella, ranks with its subsidiaries Zellstoff Pöls AG and AS Estonian Cell among the largest producers of market pulp in Central and Eastern Europe.
The Group’s trading division includes Wilfried Heinzel AG, a globally active pulp and paper trading company, and Europapier AG, the leading paper merchant in the CEE region.
The Group’s successful growth is based on the fulfillment of the highest customer demands with regard to quality and efficiency.
In 2012, total Heinzel Group sales amounted to 2.4 million tons and as a consequence of the Laakirchen acquisition; the group’s volume to market will be boosted to 3.6 million tons per annum. Consequently, Heinzel Group will be one of the leading industrial players and distributors for pulp and paper products in growing CEE markets.