Brokaw paper mill to permanently close, affecting 450 jobs - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Brokaw paper mill to permanently close, affecting 450 jobs

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MOSINEE (WAOW) -  Wausau Paper is finalizing a deal to sell the Brokaw mill to Neenah Paper.  The Brokaw mill will permanently close by the end of March, 2012.

   It's expected to affect 450 hourly and salaried jobs.

  The sale marks the end of Wausau Paper's participation in the print and color business.

   It's part of what the Wausau Paper board of directors called a strategic review for that portion of its paper business.

    In late October, company leaders told Newsline 9 their net income for color paper products had dropped from about 13 million dollars to about 5 million dollars, just in the past year.

   And it had been the trend the last decade.

   In a press release from the company, President and CEO Thomas Howatt said: "I wish to express my sincere gratitude to our print & color employees for their unceasing efforts to reengineer and sustain this business.   Our decision to exit print & color was ultimately driven by dramatic and irreversible market demand decline and the need for consolidation to bring these markets properly into balance."

 The net proceeds of the sale are expected to total 49 million dollars.

 Newsline 9 was unable to reach Neenah Paper for comments on its future plans.

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(PRESS RELEASE) - Wausau Paper (NYSE:WPP) announced today that its

Board of Directors has approved the sale of its premium Print & Color brands –

including Astrobrights®, Astroparche® and the Royal family of products – and closure of

its Brokaw, Wisconsin, paper mill. The sale, to Neenah Paper, Inc., is scheduled to

close on January 31, 2012. The Brokaw mill will be permanently closed by March 31,

2012, marking the end of the Company's material participation in the Print and Color

markets. The Brokaw shutdown will affect approximately 450 hourly and salaried jobs.

Today's announcement reflects the outcome of a strategic review of alternatives for the

Print & Color business, begun early in 2011.

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