Finland’s Ahlstrom has signed an agreement with EQT, the principal owner of Munksjö AB in Sweden, to combine its Label and Processing business area with Munksjö to form a global leader in speciality papers through partial demergers of its Label and Processing operations in Europe and Brazil. The new company, in which Ahlstrom will have a shareholding of approximately 15%, will be named Munksjö Corporation. It is expected to reach annual synergies of about €25-30 million once fully implemented by the end of the second quarter of 2013.
The transaction will allow Ahlstrom to focus on its value-added business areas – Building and Energy, Filtration and Food and Medical – while the Label and Processing business area can be further developed together with Munksjö.
In 2011, the Label and Processing business (the combined LP Europe and Coated Specialities) had net sales of €681 million and an EBITDA (excluding non-recurring items) margin of 5.1%. It employs approximately 1,500 people and has six plants in Europe and South America. Its main products include release liners, self-adhesive labels, base paper for metallised labels, and flexible packaging papers. The plants that will be part of the transaction include Osnabrück in Germany; La Gere, Rottersac and Stenay in France, the Label and Processing operations in Turin, Italy, and the Coated Specialities plant in Jacarei, Brazil.
The head office of Munksjö Corporation will be located in Stockholm. Jan Åström, president and CEO of Munksjö, will become president and CEO of the new company, with Peter Seligson as an intermediate chairman.