Mayr-Melnhof Group has signed an agreement to acquire the entire share capital of Kotkamills Group Oyj from its shareholders. The transaction is subject to customary completion conditions and regulatory approval. Closing of the transaction is expected by mid of 2021. The proposed acquisition will strengthen Mayr-Melnhof’s position in virgin-fiber based carton board.

The integrated Kotka mill operates a board machine which started up in 2016 with a production of folding box board (FBB) and food service boards (FSB) with the capacity of 400kt/a and a Saturating Kraft paper machine with 170kt capacity. The mill integrate is completed with a saw mill and an energy plant.

During the over five years of ownership steered by MB Funds, Kotkamills has established a strong market position as a high-quality consumer boards producer. With the acquisition of Kotkamills Mayr-Melnhof will grow its position in the attractive virgin fiber-based carton board market, complementing the strong recycled fiber-based board business. The transaction will also create a strong offering of barrier coated FSB solutions which can replace plastic and plastic-coated board in addition to Mayr-Melnhof’s Coated Recycled Board (CRB) and Coated Liner. Further, the addition of Saturating Kraft Paper will diversify the business by adding a new product.

Mayr-Melnhof Group CEO, Peter Oswald, comments: “The acquisition of Kotkamills is an ideal complement to our existing carton board business. It strengthens MM’s business model as a dedicated carton board and folding carton producer with a reinforced position in virgin fiber-based carton board which has good growth potential. Kotkamills adds significantly to MM’s sustainability strategy offering innovative solutions for plastic replacement. We have great confidence in the top-class team of Kotkamills to shape a promising future together.”

Kotkamills CEO, Markku Hämäläinen, comments: ”From Kotkamills’ point-of-view this acquisition is a perfect match. Mayr-Melnhof Karton will provide Kotkamills a strong foothold in the carton board market with the barrier coated FSB solutions which can replace plastic and polyethylene-coated board.”

Kotkamills Chairman, Hannu Puhakka, complements: “We have been very satisfied working with Kotkamills over five years. We see that the acquisition by Mayr-Melnhof Group is the optimal endpoint for our cooperation with Kotkamills. I would especially like to thank the management and the entire personnel of Kotkamills for their professional and committed work, which has made success the best possible.”  

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Written by Kevin Gambrill