Aylesford Newsprint, which produces 400,000 tonnes of newsprint annually from recycled newspapers and magazines, has now officially been placed into administration. The plant employed a workforce of over 300.
The appointed administrators are KPMG.
The company told staff yesterday that it was seeking the move. Aylesford is a major buyer of material from local authority sources in the UK, much of which is supplied via waste management companies.
Companies in the sector have been facing weaker demand for newsprint as a result of the decline in printed newspaper sales.
In the UK, all newsprint produced is made from used newspapers and magazines. There are two other manufacturers of newsprint in the UK: Palm in Norfolk and UPM in Shotton in North Wales.
The failure of Aylesford, which was bought by its current owners, a finance company, from SCA and Mondi, will provide a boost to the other mills.
UPM has already closed one of its two machines in North Wales. Palm owns the most modern mill in the UK at King’s Lynn with its German-owned parent investing heavily to build the plant.
Aylesford Martland Holdings is the owner of Aylesford Newsprint. In August 2014 the then managing director Ian Broxup left the company with executive chairman Landry Kouakou taking over day-to-day control as chief executive officer.