US-based speciality papers and pulp producer Verso is planning to restart the manufacture of packaging products by upgrading the closed pulp line and No. 3 paper machine at its Androscoggin Mill in Jay, Maine.
Last July, the company had closed the paper machine and associated pulping capacity at the facility, due to the low demand for the graphic paper products, which were produced using the machines.
The machinery upgrade will be carried out with a $17m investment, $4m of which will be provided by Maine Technology Institute through its Maine Technology Asset Fund 2.0.
According to the company, the upgrade will be completed by the third quarter of this year, and is expected to create nearly 120 full-time jobs at the facility and additional positions throughout the Maine forest products supply chain.
Upon completion, Verso intends to diversify its product mix into growing market segments.
Verso chief executive officer Christopher DiSantis said: “Verso identified this upgrade and restart of the No. 3 paper machine and associated equipment at the Androscoggin Mill as part of our continuing development of a holistic strategy that includes repositioning of certain assets, and we want to thank Governor LePage and the Maine Technology Institute for their support in helping to make it possible.
“When this project is completed, the Androscoggin Mill will be more competitive in the global marketplace and better positioned for future success.”