Stora Enso has finalised its previously announced acquisition of 100% of the shares in the German paper merchant Schneidersöhne Group. The all-cash acquisition was completed following approval by regulatory and competition authorities. The acquisition price on a debt- free basis was EUR 450 million. The synergies will be achieved by optimising the value chain from producer to end-user and efficiently co-ordinating operations within Stora Enso's merchant business, Papyrus.
The strategic aims of the acquisition are to bring Stora Enso closer to the customer and end-user in the value chain and to improve the profitability of Stora Enso's merchant business. Schneidersöhne will become part of Papyrus. Through Papyrus Stora Enso will gain full management control of the company and it will be fully consolidated from July 2005 onwards.
The acquisition of Schneidersöhne will have the following financial effects on Stora Enso: earnings per share (EPS) and cash earnings per share (CEPS), including full synergies of approximately EUR 15 million from 2008 onwards, will be enhanced by EUR 0.02 and EUR 0.05 respectively. Stora Enso's interest-bearing debt will increase by EUR 450 million, and its debt/equity ratio will increase by 0.06.
"Close co-operation with expanding Papyrus will give us an even better understanding of the requirements of printers and office paper users so we can develop our products and services accordingly. We will move closer to the customer. We will gain synergies through more efficient co-operation between Stora Enso's paper and board divisions and Papyrus," says Pekka Laaksonen, Senior Executive Vice President, Stora Enso Fine Paper.
"Papyrus's strategy is to take the lead in developing the European merchant business. As a result of the Schneidersöhne acquisition, we now have a strong market position, being the second-largest in Europe, with good geographical coverage. We will further improve our service by adding attractive products, widening our distribution network and expanding our comprehensive e-business solutions to more customers. We will simply help our customers to become more successful," says Mats Nordlander, President of Papyrus.
Schneidersöhne is by sales volume the second-largest paper merchant in Germany and the fifth-largest in Europe. It has operations in 11 countries, the biggest markets being Germany and Switzerland. It has 38 branch offices, including 20 in Germany. Schneidersöhne has 2 100 employees and had net sales of EUR 1 130 million in 2004.
JP Capital International acted as the financial advisor for the transaction.
For further information, please contact:
Pekka Laaksonen, Senior Executive Vice President, Stora Enso Fine Paper,
tel. +358 2046 21218
Esko Mäkeläinen, CFO, tel. +44 20 7016 3115
Mats Nordlander, President of Papyrus, tel. +46 703 370 890
Kari Vainio, Executive Vice President, Corporate Communications, tel. +44 7799 348 197
Keith B Russell, Senior Vice President, Investor Relations, tel. +44 20 7016 3146
Papyrus is a wholly-owned paper merchanting subsidiary of Stora Enso with net sales of EUR 640 million in 2004. Papyrus holds a leading position in the Nordic countries and a strong market position in Western Europe. It supplies 710 000 tonnes of paper annually. Papyrus currently has a presence in 13 European countries.
Previous press releases concerning Stora Enso's Schneidersöhne acquisition available at www.storaenso.com/press
- 25 April 2005: Stora Enso to acquire Schneidersöhne Group