Bosses confident buyer will be found for Stoneywood paper mill

Stoneywood paper mill
Stoneywood paper mill

Bosses at a closure-threatened Aberdeen paper mill are confident a new buyer will be found for the business.

Arjowiggins Fine Papers Ltd, which owns the Stoneywood Paper Mill, has been in administration since last week.

Government Minister for Business, Fair Work and Skills Jamie Hepburn and Angus MacSween at Stoneywood Mill

Discussions were held at the site yesterday between bosses, Unite representatives, key stakeholders and Scottish Minister for Business, Fair Work and Skills Jamie Hepburn.

Following talks, a common purpose group was set up to support workers and focus on finding a buyer.

A number of firms have already registered an interest in purchasing the mill.

Jonathan Mitchell, managing director of Arjowiggins Creative Papers, said: “The meeting was very positive. Everyone round the table was bringing their support. There was a very high level of hopefulness.

“We have a positive workforce who have a positive attitude.

“There was interest before in purchasing our division, hopefully those people are still interested.”

Stoneywood Paper Mill

Production at the mill has returned to normal, as agreements with suppliers have been made following the administration proceeding last Monday.

Administrators Iain Fraser, Tom MacLenan and Geoff Rowley, partners at specialist firm FRP Advisory LLP, were appointed in the role.

Mr Fraser said: “We are actively marketing the business and have had some inquiries, however it is early days.”

The paper mill is the last one of its kind in the city, after nearby Mugiemoss and Donside closed.

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Tommy Campbell, regional officer for Unite, said: “The meeting was very helpful.

“We are aware there is serious interest in purchasing the company.

“We are not surprised by this as it’s a profitable business.

“It’s very good to see the Scottish Government, Scottish Enterprise, the local authority and the Chamber of Commerce coming together.

“The mill has been round for more than 250 years, and there’s no reason why it can’t be around another 250.”

A scene from Stoneywood Paper Mills in 1935

Mr Hepburn said: “Everyone wants what is best for the workforce and company so our focus is on supporting the business and the administrators in doing all we can to safeguard jobs.

“In particular, I was struck by the unity and morale of the workforce.

“It was also clear from the meeting that the unions, workforce and company, as well as other stakeholders, are all keen to work together to find a solution.”

He added: “The Scottish Government and Scottish Enterprise will continue to work closely with all partners to explore and exhaust all possible options to try and find the best possible outcome to secure a sustainable future for the mill and its workforce.”