Midwest Paper Group has unveiled plans to invest $30m in the former Appleton Coated mill in Combined Locks, Wisconsin, US.

The proposed investment is expected to create up to 321 total jobs, as well as 594 additional indirect jobs in the region.

Midwest Paper Group’s parent companies, Industrial Assets and Maynards Industries, acquired the facility at an auction held shortly after the mill was shut down in September last year.

After the acquisition, the two companies tried to sell the plant, but failed to find a suitable buyer.

As a result, they decided to run the mill as an ongoing operation.

“We have received overwhelming support and encouragement to restart this mill – support and encouragement from the owners, community, customers, suppliers, government officials, contractors, and most importantly, our employees.”

Midwest Paper Group president Kyle Putzstuck said: “We have received overwhelming support and encouragement to restart this mill – support and encouragement from the owners, community, customers, suppliers, government officials, contractors, and most importantly, our employees.

“The additional support from the state of Wisconsin being announced today is a further affirmation that we are on the right path and represents a significant investment in continuing the 129-year-old papermaking tradition in Combined Locks.”

The company is receiving up to $1.8m in state tax credits from Wisconsin Economic Development (WEDC) over a three-year period to support its efforts to modernise the former Appleton Coated paper mill.

In December last year, the firm restarted one of its three paper machines for production.

All three paper machines are currently in operation, with about 310 workers at the site.

Furthermore, Midwest Paper is planning to convert the facility that produces printing and writing grades of paper to accommodate the production of packaging grades.

As part of the project, the company will install equipment to facilitate the conversion of waste paper to medium and linerboard used in corrugated and other packaging.

Initially, the company will produce both grade lines, before embarking on the expansion of production of its packaging grades of paper to meet the growing demand for packaging papers.

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