Executives from New Page Corporation and its parent company, Cerberus, met in Kimberly with village officials and union members from the closed New Page mill. New Page CEO Mark Suwyn stands behind the decision. "The reason Kimberly was shut down was that it had no orders, and it was my highest price mill," said Suwyn. "I could make all the products that are made at Kimberly on other machines, at lower cost."
Suwyn said he's reasonably confident that the mill will be reopened someday, either by New Page, or by another company. "I'm confident to the point that I'm spending eight to ten million dollars a year to make it so it can be started up quickly," Suwyn said. "If I felt that this mill was never going to run again, I'd stop spending that money."
Suwyn said several companies are interested in buying the Kimberly mill, and at least one of them is not a competitor. But he said there are no firm offers on the table at this time.
Union members from the closed Kimberly mill didn't feel anything was accomplished during Thursday's meeting with Suwyn. Suwyn said the mill won't reopen until the economy bounces back and cheap foreign imports are kept from flooding the US market. Union member Jim Dercks said that leaves little room for optimism. "I'm not very confident, I have to be honest," said Dercks, who said it's encouraging that other companies are interested in the mill, and he hopes New Page takes their offers seriously.