LAAKIRCHEN, Austria, Dec. 4, 2017 (Press Release) -Last year, Laakirchen Papier AG invested around EUR 100 million and now possesses one of Europe’s most modern containerboard machines. This is intended to enable the Upper Austrian mill’s owner, the Heinzel Group, to achieve its objective of becoming one of the top players in the European packaging market. The main target markets for the containerboard, which is to be sold under the “starboard” brand name, are Austria, Germany, CEE and Italy.
Paper has been manufactured in Laakirchen for the past 150 years and now with its entry into the packaging paper market, Laakirchen Papier AG has ushered in a new era. Indeed, the decision to break into the containerboard field will secure the long-term success of the company, as with a volume of 26.4 million t/y and annual growth of between two and three per cent, the strong, European corrugated board market segment offers considerable future potential for the paper industry. Accordingly, the production of lightweight containerboard made entirely from recycled fibres on PM10 started in Laakirchen mid of October. The paper machine meanwhile runs stable and produces paper on A quality level.
Mark Lunabba, the CEO of Laakirchen Papier AG, sums up the positive market outlook as follows: “Above all, the combination of rising online retailing volumes and the current economic upturn with its related increase in consumer spending has triggered sizeable expansion in the packaging paper market.”
Quality and efficiency as the key to a position amongst the top producers
The PM10 will now manufacture up to 450,000 t/y of containerboard based on recycled paper with working widths of 7.5 m at a speed of 1,600 m/min. This production switch also required additional investments at the company location. These included new plant for the treatment of wastepaper fibres and anaerobic used water cleaning, storage areas for recycling paper, and the completion of a warehouse with an automated crane system for the new products.
100 per cent sustainable manufactured: starboard Liner and starboard Wave
“Containerboard serves as the basis for corrugated board packaging and we offer our customers the products starboard Liner and starboard Wave with substances of between 70 and 140 gsm”, says Thomas Krawinkler, Head Sales and Marketing at Laakirchen Papier AG.. Owing to these low grammages, lightweight containerboard is ideal for mail order purposes, while in addition its high strength and stability make it equally suitable for industrial packaging (e.g.in the automotive, furniture and consumer goods sectors), as well as for agricultural products and electronic devices. Furthermore, Laakirchen Papier has a certified hygiene management system in accordance with DIN EN 15593, which makes it possible to use the containerboard for corrugated packaging in the food industry
As far as sales are concerned, Laakirchen Papier relies upon the expertise and market reach of Heinzel Sales. This trading house already sells the starboard selection from Raubling Papier GmbH, which is also part of the Heinzel Group, and now the lightweight containerboard from Laakirchen will expand the existing starboard range still further.
Apart from Austria and Germany, Poland, Italy and the states of central Europe also number among the large target markets for starboard Liner and starboard Wave from Laakirchen.
starboard Liner and starboard Wave are manufactured entirely from recycling fibres. Therefore, the sourcing of wastepaper is a key issue for the Upper Austrian paper producer. Fortunately, the major wastepaper trader, Bunzl & Biach, which is also a member of the Heinzel Group, secures the supply of the necessary quantities of wastepaper.
About Laakirchen Papier AG
Laakirchen Papier AG which is located in Laakirchen (Upper Austria) specialises in the production and further development of super calendered, uncoated papers (SC papers) and and lightweight containerboard on the European market. In 2016, Laakirchen Papier AG achieved sales revenues of EUR 243 million and on average employed a workforce of 506.
About Heinzel Group
The Heinzel Group which is united under the Heinzel Holding umbrella, ranks with its industrial locations Zellstoff Pöls AG, Laakirchen Papier AG (both Austria), Raubling Papier GmbH (Germany) and AS Estonian Cell (Estonia) among the largest producers of market pulp and magazine paper in Central and Eastern Europe. Moreover, since the beginning of 2016, corrugated containerboard has also been part of its range. The group’s Trading Business Area includes Wilfried Heinzel AG, a globally active pulp, paper and board trading company, and Europapier International AG, the leading paper merchant in Central and Eastern Europe. In addition, Bunzl & Biach GmbH is the largest and most important waste paper company in Austria and the no. 1 wholesaler in Central and Eastern Europe. The Heinzel Group’s successful growth is based on the fulfilment of the highest customer demands with regard to quality and efficiency.
In 2016, the Heinzel Group achieved sales revenues of EUR 1,763.3 million and on average employed a workforce of 2,441.