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Stora Enso Plans to Acquire French Merchanting Business From IP

Press release from the issuing company

HELSINKI, Finland, Jan. 18 -- Stora Enso today announced that Stora Enso is in negotiations to acquire a leading French paper merchant, Papeteries de France (PdF), from International Paper. PdF, which has net sales of about EUR 160 million from a sales volume of some 160 000 tonnes of paper, would become part of the Stora Enso Merchants division, Papyrus. PdF has about 220 employees, all of whom are located in France. The acquisition is expected to be closed at the end of March 2005, subject to formal processes and approval by regulatory authorities. The financial terms of the proposed transaction will be disclosed following signing of a definitive agreement, which is expected to take place in February. The planned acquisition of PdF is a further step in strengthening the Papyrus presence in France and Western Europe.