Metsa, Finland, 15 February 2011 -- M-real Corporation, part of Metsäliitto Group, plans to increase the annual folding boxboard capacity of its Äänekoski and Kyröskoski mills in total by about 70,000 metric tons. The combined value of the planned investments in Äänekoski and Kyröskoski is approximately EUR 30 million. The Kyroskoski investment is planned to be completed in late 2011 and the Äänekoski investment in spring 2012.
Related to the planned investment M-real will start statutory negotiations at the Äänekoski board mill on 18 February 2011, covering 130 workers at the mill. The maximum personnel reduction needed is estimated to be 10 people. Kyröskoski investment is expected to have no effect on personnel numbers.
Following the planned investments, the annual folding boxboard production capacity at Äänekoski mill will be approximately 240,000 metric tons and approximately 190,000 at Kyröskoski mill. The new production volumes are planned to be sold for food packaging purposes. Beyond these planned investments, M-real has good potential to further increase the capacity of Kyroskoski and Äänekoski mills if the market so requires.
"Demand growth for M-real’s ecological and safe virgin fiber board has in food packaging been faster than expected and the expansion of Simpele mill’s capacity that will be implemented in spring 2011 is not enough to satisfy the demand. The best way to increase our production is to debottleneck the current board machines in moderate steps. Our target is to continue the profitable growth of our cartonboard business," said CEO Mikko Helander.
M-real has announced plans to increase the annual folding boxboard capacity in total by about 150,000 metric tons during 2011-2012, including the investments at the Simpele, Äänekoski, and Kyröskoski mills. Thus, M-real’s total folding boxboard capacity would increase to about 935,000 metric tons per annum.