Stora Enso concludes paper mill sell-off

Stora Enso has sold three of its five remaining paper mills
Stora Enso has sold three of its five remaining paper mills

Stora Enso has found a buyer for its Hylte facility but has decided to retain Anjala mill in Finland.

Hylte is located in south-west Sweden and is one of the biggest newsprint mills in the world, with capacity of 245,000tpa. 

Stora Enso has agreed to sell it to Sweden Timber in an €18m (£15.8m) deal. 

The sale will reduce Stora Enso’s sales by around €90m, and will involve a loss on disposal of some €35m, on top of the €19m impairment made in Q4 2022. 

Hylte also makes biocomposites and formed fibre products as part of Stora Enso’s Packaging Solutions division. The group said the transaction did not affect those operations. 

Anjala mill in Finland, which makes coated and uncoated book and magazine paper, as well as improved newsprint, is being retained following a review. The mill’s capacity is 435,000tpa.

Back in spring 2022 Stora announced it was planning to sell four of its five remaining paper operations. 

The group is now retaining two of them: Anjala and Langerbrugge in Belgium have been integrated into the Packaging Materials division as of 1 January.

Stora Enso chief financial officer Seppo Parvi commented: “I am pleased that Sweden Timber will continue to serve Hylte’s paper customers with the intent to further develop the operations. 

“For the Anjala site, we have concluded that the benefits from retaining the site within the group exceed the value of explored divestment opportunities.” 

Stora Enso confirmed that Anjala and Langerbrugge would continue with paper production. 

A feasibility study is already underway looking into converting one of Langerbrugge’s two paper machines to make recycled containerboard. It is set to be completed by mid-2023. 

The previously-announced deal to sell Maxau mill in Germany to Lidl and Kaufland owner Schwartz is expected to conclude early this year. 

The sale of Nymölla mill to Sylvamo was completed at the beginning of January. 

Stora Enso had sales of €10.2bn in 2021. The group will announce its 2022 results next week. 

The group's future strategy is focused on renewable products in packaging, building solutions, and biomaterials.