MeadWestvaco to Shut Down Four Machines

STAMFORD, CT, USA—MeadWestvaco Corp. reports plans to shut down four coated paper machines and related equipment permanently. According to the co., these actions will take effect April 1, 2002, and will be completed by the end of May.

Three coated paper machines and associated equipment will be closed at MeadWestvaco's plant in Chillicothe, OH, mill. One coated paper machine at the Luke, MD, mill also will be closed permanently. According to the paper mfr., this restructuring will result in the elimination of approximately 350 jobs in Ohio and approximately 75 positions in Maryland. "It is expected, over time, the production will be transferred to more efficient machines elsewhere in the company," reports MeadWestvaco.

MeadWestvaco Corp. was created on January 29, 2002, through the merger of The Mead Corp. and Westvaco Corp. The company reportedly has about $8 billion in annual sales and operates in four key segments: packaging; coated and specialty papers; consumer and office products; and specialty chemicals.

Says president and CEO, John A. Luke, Jr.: "These actions reflect our determination to move rapidly to capture the benefits of this strategic merger. With the merger and these steps, we are creating the highest quality and most efficient coated papers business in North America."

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