IP considers sale of Turkish mills

Investment disclosure says IP is exploring “strategic options” for its ownership stake in Olmuksan International Paper containerboard mills.

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October 5, 2020

A subsidiary of United States-based International Paper (IP) has filed a notice posted to a Turkish investment oversight agency website indicating it is considering options to sell the stake it holds in Turkey-based Olmuksan International Paper Ambalaj Sanayi ve Ticaret Anonim Şirketi. That company operates containerboard mills and downstream corrugating plants in Turkey.

The IP Container Holdings (Spain) SL subsidiary, in the posted notice, says it is evaluating “various alternatives for the packaging press business in Turkey,” and thus needed “to make a statement on the news and rumors in the mass media.”

IP adds that its “evaluation of strategic options for the sale of shares owned by Olmuksan International Paper Ambalaj Sanayi ve Ticaret Anonim Şirketi, including sale to potential investors or sale in the relevant share market of Borsa İstanbul Financial advisors, have been authorized for the purpose.”

The disclosure indicates the sale evaluation process was started at an IP board of directors meeting in late August, and at that time “it was decided to postpone the public disclosure of the information, on the grounds that the announcement of this situation may harm the legitimate interests of our company, create false and misleading impressions on investors, cause speculation in the market and therefore investors may be harmed.”

Turkey’s government has recently proposed a restriction on recovered fiber imports that may be considered unwelcome by operators of containerboard mills and other paper producers in that nation. It is unclear, however, whether that restriction will have any impact on the IP mills.

On its website, Olmuksan International Paper refers to its use of “responsible forest management” in terms of resources, although it also says it is working to expand its “reuse capacity.”