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Blue Paper in Operation

02/21/2014

A successful conversion: a joint venture between Klingele and VPK brings the paper mill Blue Paper into operation

The company positions itself as a flexible and competent provider of lightweight containerboard

 

Remshalden/Aalst. With the official start of production, "Blue Paper" – a joint venture of the Klingele group (D) and the VPK Packaging Group (B) – has successfully realised this difficult and ambitious project. During a construction period of about one year the former UPM newspaper factory in Strasbourg was converted into a state-of-the-art production site for the manufacture of lightweight paper for corrugated board packaging.

 

An excellent project management was the guarantor for success of this ambitious undertaking. Working on the basis of comprehensive technological know-how in paper manufacturing and ample experience with other conversion projects, it was possible to combine knowledge and expertise of Klingele and VPK in the partnership.

 

The production and delivery of the first rolls of paper began only after extensive test runs and the fulfilment of high quality standards. Working from its strategically-placed location at the heart of Europe, Blue Paper provides a new source of raw materials for the corrugated board industry. The company has positioned itself as a flexible and competent provider; its ownership structure also enables optimal market access within its independent management structure. The portfolio of lightweight medium and testliner produced on the basis of recycled paper has extended the range of products produced by both partners in this joint venture. It meets exactly the requirements made by customers and markets for high-quality yet environmentally-friendly products.

 

Facility saved, jobs saved and the highest quality standards maintained

 

The key data confirm the unique status of the project: Never before was a newsprint paper machine of this size converted. The conversion costs amounts to over €100 million. From a technological standpoint, Blue Paper is now equipped with an absolutely "state of the art" machine. Nearly all critical parts have been updated or replaced. Production quality fulfils the highest of standards.

 

Whilst pleased with these top results, the partners in the joint venture were even happier that they were able to save the UPM factory from threatened closure. This saved past investments and resources as well as guarding 140 direct jobs.


VPK and Klingele have a unique position as their combined consumption of paper for corrugating amounts to more than 1 million tons, creating a natural captive market for this additional capacity.

 

The production site represents the level of commitment by both partners in the joint venture to environmentally-friendly production with low water consumption and optimised emissions. 

 

The paper machine has a trimmed working width of 8.54 m. This enables Blue Paper to serve the most common widths of modern corrugators perfectly. Production is initially planned at an annual capacity of more than 300.000 tons of wellenstoff and testliner, ranging from 70 to 135 g/m2. Production capacity is set to increase in a further stage.

 

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Firm Profile / Facts & Figures :

 

Klingele, a German family-owned company since 1920, is one of the leading independent producers of corrugated cardboard and packaging. With one paper mill, six integrated corrugated cardboard plants and seven converting plants in Europe and Africa, the group generates sales of €325 million and has a total of 1.250 employees.

 

VPK Packaging Group is an integrated European packaging group with 33 plants spread across 12 European countries, realizing sales of €700 million  and having a total of 3.500 employees. Headquarters are located in Belgium.


VPK Packaging Group and Klingele offer solutions to the specific needs of their customers to protect their products and optimize their logistical chain. The raw material consists nearly exclusively of recycled paper fibre and consequently contributes to the sustainable management of our natural resources.

 

 

For further information, please contact :

 

Dr. Jan Klingele, Managing Partner Klingele Papierwerke
E : jan.klingele@klingele.com

T: 0049 7151 701-215

Pierre Macharis, CEO  VPK Packaging Group
E : pierre.macharis@vpk.be
T : 0032 52261208


François Bru, Directeur Général Blue Paper
E : francois.bru@bluepaper.eu

T : 0033 3 88 41 75 71