Ahlstrom to exit Dust Filtration material businesses; Sells Wuxi plant and machinery in Bethune to Andrew Industries
Ahlstrom, a global leader in nonwovens and specialty papers, today announces the exit from most of its Dust Filtration material businesses through the sale of the Wuxi plant in China and three production lines in Bethune in the USA to Andrew Industries.
The value of the transaction is approximately EUR 5.3 million. Dust Filtration is part of Ahlstromís Filtration Business area.
Both plants make dust filtration materials used in applications such as bag house filtration for pollution control. Ahlstrom has concluded that dust filtration materials produced at the Wuxi and Bethune sites do not fit strategically its product portfolio.
The Wuxi plant in the Jiangshu province employs about 40 people.
In Bethune, South Carolina, Andrew will transfer the three dust filtration production lines to its own sites. The transaction will affect the 48 people employed at the Dust Filtration business, while Ahlstrom will investigate possibilities to offer employment for some of the staff. The Bethune plant currently employs about 190 people in total. Ahlstrom will continue to manufacture nonwovens for wipes and advanced liquid filtration products at the site.
Both transactions are expected to be completed by the end of first quarter 2011. Ahlstrom will book approximately EUR 5.2 million as a non-recurring loss from the transaction in its fourth-quarter 2010 financial results. The completions of the transactions are subject to customary closing terms.
Asia remains a key strategic growth region for Ahlstrom. The company acquired in September a transportation filtration material plant in Binzhou, China and announced in October a joint venture with Yulong Paper Co. in Longkou for production of crepe papers in the country. The Group currently generates about 10 percent of its annual net sales from Asia.
Ahlstrom in brief
Ahlstrom is a global leader in the development, manufacture and marketing of high performance nonwovens and specialty papers. Ahlstromīs products are used in a large variety of everyday applications, such as filters, wipes, flooring, labels, and tapes. Based upon its unique fiber expertise and innovative approach, the company has a strong market position in several business areas in which it operates. Ahlstromís 5,800 employees serve customers via sales offices and production facilities in more than 20 countries on six continents. In 2009, Ahlstromís net sales amounted to EUR 1.6 billion. Ahlstromís share is quoted on the NASDAQ OMX Helsinki. The company website is at www.ahlstrom.com.
Andrew Industries in brief
Andrew Industries, based in Altham, U.K., is a privately owned international manufacturing group with operations in Europe, North America and Asia. The companyís Textile division makes technical needlefelts and drylaid nonwovens materials used in a diverse range of industrial applications. The company website is at www.andrewindustries.com.
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