Germany’s Felix Schoeller Group intends to substantially expand the capacities of its plants in the USA and Canada from 2023 in three stages. Its North American decor paper capacities are planned to more than double in the course of the next three years.
As already announced in August, a new silicone coater will start up at the Pulaski, NY plant in mid-2023 as a first step. This will enable Felix Schoeller to supply the North American market with domestically produced siliconized release liners and films.
Focus on the expansion of decor paper capacities
Further measures to be implemented in the course of the project until 2025 include the increase of capacities at Technocell Dekor’s Canadian Drummondville plant from currently 32,000 tpy to more than 40,000 tpy. This expansion is scheduled to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2023.
In addition, the specialty paper producer plans to construct a second paper machine for the North American market. The new PM is to manufacture up to 50,000 tpy of decor paper. The location and technical equipment details are to be determined during the project planning process. Felix Schoeller says it intends to make further targeted investments in North America, enabling it to also produce release liner base paper locally in the USA. The entire volume of investments earmarked for the production of decor and release liner paper in the USA and Canada is reported to exceed $100m.
Hans-Christoph Gallenkamp, CEO of the Felix Schoeller Group, explains that the North American decor paper market has shown constantly good growth and is likely to continue to grow in the years ahead, owing to the country’s population growth, the resulting demand for housing and the associated investments of the wood-based materials industry, among other factors.
With its 122 employees working at a total of 13 converting and packaging machines, the Pulaski plant is Felix Schoeller’s main sales and distribution location for North America. Besides, the group operates a decor paper plant in Drummondville, Canada, whose paper machine has a capacity of 30,000 tpy, and a paper and film converting plant in Anaheim, California, USA, which has 15 employees.
The product range of Felix Schoeller Group includes photographic and digital printing paper, decor paper for the furniture and wood industries, release paper, wallpaper nonwovens, sublimation paper and flexible paper composites for packaging. In 2021, the group, which has a workforce of more than 3,700, produced around 545,000 t of specialty paper and generated sales of €1.05bn.