Richmond, Virginia, USA, 19 March 2009 – MeadWestvaco Corporation (MWV) (NYSE: MWV) today announced it will close its Louisa, Virginia, and Caguas, Puerto Rico, folding carton plants in 2009.
These actions are part of the company’s accelerated strategic cost management program, announced 15 January 2009, to optimize its manufacturing footprint and strengthen its mix of value-added products and solutions for MWV’s key global markets. MWV will continue delivering value-added consumer packaging solutions to customers and will focus on market segments that drive profitable growth.
The Louisa and Caguas facilities convert visual and paperboard packaging, primarily for the personal care and healthcare markets. The company is reducing its visual packaging product portfolio, with the exception of differentiated applications in which MWV’s intellectual property provides a competitive advantage. The paperboard converting for personal care in Louisa will shift to MWV’s Melrose Park, Illinois, specialty packaging and folding carton facility. The paperboard converting for healthcare will shift to the company’s Mebane, North Carolina, facility.
MWV is focusing on providing innovative solutions in personal care and healthcare segments that are higher return growth opportunities for the company. For personal care, the company is strengthening its primary packaging platform, and in healthcare, MWV continues to invest in its growing adherence and primary packaging segments.
“We remain fully committed to the healthcare and personal care markets and will continue to invest in areas of our business that offer a competitive advantage to MWV and our leading global consumer goods customers,” said Jim Buzzard, president, MWV. “The alignment of our resources into more profitable markets will enable us to improve performance and better support the development of differentiated solutions.”
Approximately 278 hourly and salaried employees from Louisa and Caguas will be affected and will be eligible for separation benefits.
MeadWestvaco Corporation provides packaging solutions to many of the world’s healthcare, personal and beauty care, food, beverage, media and entertainment, and home and garden industries. The company's businesses include Consumer and Office Products, Specialty Chemicals, and the Community Development and Land Management Group, which sustainably manages the company’s land holdings to support its operations, and to provide for conservation, recreation, and development opportunities. With 22,000 employees worldwide, MWV operates in 30 countries and serves customers in more than 100 nations. MWV manages all of its forestlands in accordance with internationally recognized forest certification standards, and has been named to the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index for the fifth consecutive year. For more information, visit www.mwv.com.