Company with West Carrollton plant ready to sell assets

Appvion, Inc. wants to sell its assets to a group of lenders — or the best bidders, the company said Friday.

The Appleton-Wisc.-based company, which has a West Carrollton plant, said it filed a motion in the Delaware U.S. Bankruptcy Court for approval of a “stalking horse asset purchase agreement bid from a group of its lenders” to acquire most of Appvion’s assets.

The proposed sale would include the West Carrollton Plant, an Appvion spokesman said Friday.

The company announced in October that it was seeking Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

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“After evaluating options to address our capital structure and conducting extensive negotiations with our lenders, we determined that a sale would be the best path forward for Appvion,” Kevin Gilligan, Appvion chief executive, said in a statement.

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Gilligan said he expects the company to emerge “as a healthier, financially-stable business poised to compete long term in the specialty paper market and further invest in the innovation that has made Appvion a market leader.”

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The agreement with the lenders entails an offer of $325 million “plus the assumption of substantial liabilities,” the company said. Appvion intends to implement bid procedures in a court-supervised process and said it is open to better offers.

The court will consider the proposed bid procedures in early March, Appvion said.

Appvion has requested an auction on April 23, provided it receives qualified overbids no later than April 19 at 4 p.m.

Company representatives would then pick what they feel is the best bid.

Interested bidders may contact Alexander Rohan at Guggenheim Securities at (212) 823-6648.

Appvion’s West Carrollton thermal paper coating plant has about 111 workers.

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