Austrian-born financial and corporate strategist Kratochwill will take over from Rosemarie Asquino at the beginning of 2015. Asquino is retiring after 38 years at Sappi, although she will act as an advisor on strategic issues until the end of July 2015.
According to Sappi, Asquino has played a vital role in the growth of the division due to her experience, strong trade knowledge and ability to develop strong partnerships.
Kratochwill will be tasked with continuing to expand the Speciality Papers division and further strengthen the firm’s position within the market.
Sappi Europe chief executive Berry Wiersum said: "We thank Rosemarie Asquino for her outstanding work. As we move into the future, we will be placing our full trust in her successor, Thomas Kratochwill.
“With his natural vigour and expertise, he will take the Speciality Papers division to a new level and implement the agreed-upon strategy in full."
Kratochwill joined Sappi in 1995 in the finance department. He became involved in financial systems and process optimisation methods and managed several system migration projects as a result of business expansion.
In 2010 he succeeded Alex Thiel as project director, and in this role successfully led and implemented significant transformation initiatives for the group.
Kratochwill said: "My personal motto is: first listen, understand the customer, and then implement together. In this way, we can be an approachable and innovative partner in the tailor-made customer solutions sector, providing top quality and the highest service level.
“Packaging manufacturers, brand owners, designers and print finishers are set to profit even more intensively from the fact that Sappi is more than just a packaging material manufacturer.”