Stora Enso was formed by the merger of Swedish mining and forestry products company Stora and Finnish forestry products company Enso Oyj in 1998.
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The oldest preserved share in the Swedish copper mining company Stora Kopparberg in Falun was issued in 1288. It granted the Bishop of Västerås 12.5 per cent ownership, and it is also the oldest known preserved share in any company in the world. The corporate status of the company was further recognized in 1347, when King Magnus IV of Sweden granted it a charter. Some observers consider that these facts make Stora and its successor Stora Enso the oldest existing corporation or limited liability company in the world.For some periods during the 17th century, the mine provided two thirds of the world production of copper. In the 18th century, the copper mining gradually decreased in importance, and therefore, in 1731, the company bought its first iron ore mine. By the 1860s, iron ore was economically more important to the company than copper.
Stora Kopparbergs Bergslags AB was incorporated as a modern shareholder company in 1862. Towards the end of the 19th century, it diversified from mining and entered pulp and paper production. In the 1970s, most of the mining and steel mill operations of the company were divested, and the focus changed to forestry-related activities. In 1984, the company name was shortened to Stora AB. The copper mine closed down in 1992.
In 1997, the year before the merger with Enso, Stora had 20,400 employees and a turnover of 44.5 billion SEK. The company owned 2.3 million hectares of forest of which 1.6 million hectares in Sweden and the rest in Canada, Portugal and Brazil. It also produced 7.5 TWh of mostly hydroelectric power.
A 1997 article in Harvard Business Review praised Stora's ability to adapt to changing circumstances over the centuries.In 1998, the company merged with Enso to form Stora Enso.
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The roots of Enso go back to 1850's, when Wilhelm Gutzeit started Wilh. Gutzeit & Co. in Norway. He was a native of Königsberg who had moved to Norway to work as a secretary for his step-cousin Benjamin Wegner, an industrialist. Only one of Gutzeit's five children survived to adulthood and thus his son Hans Gutzeit started to work with him in the 1860's and inherited the company in 1869. In 1871 he started to operate in Finland, together with Lars J. Bredesen, who was from Norway too. Gutzeit started a sawmill in Kotka in November
1872 and called it W. Gutzeit & Comp. In 1897 the company became a Finnish company, and its name was changed to Aktiebolaget W. Gutzeit & Co.
As Gutzeit & Co bought Aktiebolaget Pankakoski in 1908 and Enso Träsliperi Ab in Jääski in 1911, the board production was added to company portfolio.In 1918 the company shares were bought by Finland which became independent in 1917, and Gutzeit became fully state owned company.In 1924 the company headquarter was moved from Kotka to Helsinki. The company's name was changed to Enso-Gutzeit Osakeyhtiö in 1928.The company started to build Kaukopää mill in Imatra in 1935. At the time it was the biggest sulfate pulp mill in Europe.Summa paper mill in Hamina was taken into use in 1955.The company's name was changed to Enso-Gutzeit Oy in 1981.Enso-Gutzeit bought A. Ahlström Osakeyhtiö's forest industries at Varkaus in 1987.In 1993 the company bought units from Tampella, Tampella Forest Oy and Tambox Europe's units from Finland and Sweden.In 1996 two state owned forest companies were merged and Enso-Gutzeit Oy and Veitsiluoto Oy from North Finland became Enso Oyj.In 1997, it acquired a majority stake in the German forestry company Holtzmann & Cie.In 1998, the company merged with Stora to form Stora Enso.
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After the merger, Stora Enso expanded its operations by acquiring wood products businesses and bought paper merchant businesses in Europe. In 2000 the company bought Consolidated Papers in North America. Stora Enso also slowly expanded its operations in South America, Asia and Russia.
In 2000, Stora Enso acquired the North American pulp and paper manufacturer Consolidated Papers for EUR 4.9 billion. The acquisition has, in hindsight, been noted in the financial press as a massive value destroyer. In the same year, Stora Enso and AssiDomän formed a joint company, Billerud AB, to produce packaging paper.
In 2002, Stora Enso started investigating the possibility of establishing plantations and production facilities in Guangxi, China.In recent years the company has gone through heavy restructuring. The North American operations were divested in 2007 to NewPage Corporation. Stora Enso has sold and closed down some of its mills in Finland, Sweden and Germany. The closure of a plant in Kemijärvi in 2008 and subsequent events were subject to significant Finnish media coverage.In 2009, Stora Enso entered into a joint venture in Uruguay, called Montes del Plata, with access to 250,000 hectares of woodland and the intention to build a large-capacity mill.
In 2010, Stora Enso acquired a 30 per cent stake in the Chinese printed paper packaging manufacturer Inpac.In September 2012, Stora Enso signed an agreement with Packages Ltd., the largest packaging company of Pakistan, to set up a joint venture named Bulleh Shah Packaging Ltd. at Kasur, Pakistan. The ownership stake for Stora Enso was 35 per cent. In 2017, the stake was sold back to Packages Ltd., at a loss of EUR 19 million.Between 2006 and 2014, the share of paper products of the total sales decreased from 62 per cent to 38 per cent, while packaging and wood products increased their shares of the revenue, as the company, according to Bloomberg News, was "betting on renewable packaging as online shopping grows." In 2015, the Financial Times and Bloomberg News reported that Stora Enso was investing in biomaterials and renewable construction products as possible future growth areas.By 2016 Stora Enso owned 90 per cent of Inpac.In July 2017, the Financial Times reiterated that a focus on renewable packaging, biomaterials and construction products formed part of the strategic direction of Stora Enso, while also reporting that the revenue from paper had decreased further to 30 per cent of the total sales. It also reported that the current and foreseeable market conditions were such that forestry industry companies in general received and could be expected to receive comparatively low shares of their profits from paper production.In 2018, Stora Enso, along with 23 other Finnish and Swedish companies, formed a joint venture named Combient for research and knowledge sharing in the areas of artificial intelligence, deep learning, big data and automation.Examples of notable products launched in 2017–2019 were
cardboard-based packaging under the name EcoFishBox as an alternative to polystyrene boxes for transportation of fresh fish,
industrial-scale supply of lignin under the name Lineo as an alternative to phenol-based adhesives,
prototypes of biodegradable drinking straws, DuraSense biocomposites which enable the use of renewable wood-based fibres which can be used as substitutes for fossil-based plastic, and
a new retail solution which merges in-store and online shopping through RFID-enabled e-kiosks. The service is offered in co-operation with Atos.
In the beginning of 2020 Stora Enso started a new division called Forest. It included
Stora Enso's forest assets in Sweden
the 41% share of Tornator with the majority of its forest assets located in Finland
wood supply operations in Finland, Sweden, Russia and the Baltic countries.In July 2021 Stora Enso informed that it was selling its RFID tag technology called ECO to Grupo CCRR.In March 2022, Stora Enso announced its intention to sell four paper mills located in Anjala in Finland, Hylte and Nymölla in Sweden and Maxau in Germany. If no buyer could be found, the company would continue to run the mills.
Ms. Anna-Lena Astrom (Sr. VP of Investor Relations)
Christian Swartling (Sr. VP Group Legal & Acting Gen. Counsel)
Mr. Rene Hansen (Exec. VP and Head of Brand & Communications)
Ms. Katariina Kravi (Exec. VP of HR)
Mr. Jarmo Alm (Sr. VP of Bus. Area Newsprint & Book Papers - Stora Enso Publication Paper Division)
Mr. Sakari Eloranta (Sr. VP of Pulp Competence Centre)
Mr. Hannu Kasurinen M.Sc (Econ.), M.Sc. (Exec. VP of Packaging Materials)
Recognition and Awards
Ms. Annica Bresky M.B.A., M.Sc. (Pres & CEO)
Mr. Seppo Parvi M.Sc. (CFO, Deputy CEO & Country Mang. of Finland)
Ms. Aruna Arumugam (Head of Admin.)