About 200 Appvion Layoffs to Result from Consolidation
Appleton, Wisconsin-based paper manufacturer Appvion, Inc. has announced plans to consolidate its carbonless paper manufacturing business across two facilities, following which dozens of workers will face layoffs. Appleton is moving its carbonless paper coating operations from its Appleton site to the one in Pennsylvania. The resulting Appvion layoffs will affect about 200 Appleton-based employees.
The paper manufacturer is consolidating its carbonless paper coating and rewinding operations at its paper mill in Roaring Spring, Pennsylvania. The transfer will eliminate the need for about 200 employees in Appleton, where Appvion’s total workforce currently hovers over 500.
The 300 employees who will remain at the Appleton site following the Appvion layoffs will continue to manufacture Appvion’s thermal paper and other specialty paper products.
The decision to consolidate operations at the two manufacturing facilities follows after the papermaker posted a sharp sales decline in its carbonless paper business in its most recent quarter. A competition-led supply glut coupled with waning industry demand has caused paper prices to crater over the years.
Appvion Layoffs Follow Its Bankruptcy as Paper Industry Struggles
The industry-wide slump forced Appvion to consider restructuring its business earlier this year. Appvion filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection less than two months ago as it faced serious financial headwinds.
Appvion, like most other paper manufacturers, has been facing a slowdown in sales as demand for paper waned. The print media industry is largely to blame for the slumping paper demand. Books, newspapers, and magazines—which use paper as a key input—are losing their market share to electronic books and digital media sources. The print media industry is consequently cutting back on its print business and gradually transitioning towards digital media.
Another Appleton-based papermaker, Appleton Coated, which competes with Appvion, has likewise been cutting jobs amid dipping sales and growing debt.
Appvion conducts its papermaking business out of three sites—the aforementioned Appleton, Wisconsin headquarters; the Roaring Spring, Pennsylvania paper mill; and a third facility in Ohio. The majority of its employees are based in Appleton.
The century-old Appvion employed over 800 employees at its Appleton facility until earlier this year. The number will now be cut to less than half following these Appvion layoffs. Meanwhile, further Appvion layoffs seem imminent as the company continues to weather industry headwinds.
“Appvion cutting 200 jobs in Appleton in consolidation,” ABC2 WBAY, November 9, 2017.