International Paper to sell its Indian paper business to West Coast Paper Mills

International Paper has entered into an agreement with West Coast Paper Mills (WCPM) to sell its controlling interest in International Paper APPM, an India-based paper business. International Paper currently owns approximately 30-million shares, or 75% of the outstanding shares, of International Paper APPM Limited (APPM).

19 Jun 2019 | By Dibyajyoti Sarma

According to a press release shared by International Paper, the transaction is expected to be completed by the end of the year subject to satisfaction of customary closing conditions, including obtaining required governmental approvals and West Coast Paper Mills’ launch of a tender offer.

Pursuant to Indian securities law requirements, WCPM will launch a tender offer to acquire up to all of the APPM shares owned by public shareholders, which represents 25% of APPM’s outstanding shares.

The closing of IP’s transaction with WCPM will occur following the completion of the tender offer and receipt of antitrust clearance. Depending on the results of that tender offer, WCPM will acquire from IP between 51% and 60% of the outstanding APPM shares at a price per share of Rs 275. 

Once this transaction closes, WCPM will be responsible for the operations of APPM, and International Paper will be a passive investor until such time that IP has sold its remaining shares in APPM.

“As part of our strategic assessment of the IP portfolio, we have decided to exit our position in IP APPM,” said Mark Sutton, chairman and chief executive officer, IP APPM. “This decision is a reflection of our continued focus on growing our global packaging and cellulose fibres businesses.  Our paper business continues to perform well in India and we wish the team there the very best in the future.”