Wepa divests Piano della Rocca tissue mill to Roto-cart


Wepa is going on with its cost and capacity cutting initiative in Italy. Trade unions say Wepa does not respect the business plan agreed upon in November 2011 and is violating trade union rights.

Wepa Lucca, the Italian subsidiary of the German tissue and paper products manufacturer Wepa Group, has sold the Piano della Rocca tissue mill in Borgo a Mozzano to the Italian tissue company Roto-cart. A corresponding agreement had been signed on 29 March, closing of the deal was expected by the end of April, Wepa said. Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.

Piano della Rocca is one of the two tissue mills in the Lucca province that had been put on sale in 2012 as a part of Wepa's capacity restructuring programme in Italy. Piano della Rocca runs one machine with an installed capacity of 29,000 tpy of tissue and employs 33 people.

As far as regards the 18,000 tpy Fabbriche di Vallico tissue mill, Wepa said the mill was still up for sale, but the company declined to provide further details on the sale process. Production at the Fabbbriche di Vallico site had been idle since mid-2012 with 25 employees temporarily laid off or transferred to one of the other sites in the region, the company explained.

Italian trade unions Fistel-Cisl and Slc-Cgil are accusing Wepa of not respecting terms and conditions of the reorganisation plan negotiated in late 2011: In addition to the 46 lay-offs agreed upon in 2011, the company recently announced plans to cut 70 more jobs, a spokesperson for Fistel-Cisl said.

Furthermore, a complaint against the company has been filed with the Labour Court in Lucca, as Wepa was undermining union rights and freedoms, trade unions reported. Wepa said the company was implementing the restructuring plan signed in 2011, but declined to comment further on what it called an ongoing issue.

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