NewPage saw drop in sales but expects less downtime in 2010
“ We’re seeing the underlying demand for printing paper improving as the U.S. economy improves. As a result, we’re rebalancing our mills and do not expect to take as much downtime in 2010 as we had to take in 2009 to . . . balance supply with demand,” he said.
The company’s biggest product is coated paper, but it also makes other forms of paper, including supercalendered and traditional and enhanced newsprint at Point Tupper.
While Suwyn said they aren’t currently projecting a recovery to levels from the last decade, he noted that 25 per cent of coated paper capacity in the U.S. has since shut down.
The company’s net loss was $55 million in the fourth quarter of 2009 compared to $42-million in the last quarter of 2008. For the year the company lost $308 million, compared to $117 million in 2008. It expects to sell $150 million in assets in 2010, with some expected to come in the first half of the year.
NewPage also owns paper mills in Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin.
The Point Tupper mill employs 550 people. NewPage bought the former Stora Enso mill in 2007.