By Joe Bachman
Verso Corp. expects no job losses in its pending bankruptcy.
The company announced its bankruptcy on Tuesday, citing the decline in demand for paper products, as well as increases in foreign imports that sell paper at a lower price.
The company has emphasized the filing is meant to restructure its $2.4 billion in debt and there are no plans to close to sell any of the eight mills under its’ umbrella.
“The most important thing for people to know is that we’re going to continue operating the business as usual during the restructuring,” said Kathi Rowzie, Verso spokeswoman on Tuesday. “Verso’s mills will continue to operate and manufacture the products that our customers expect from us, so people should really see no difference.”
The company has come under fire for not paying timber vendors on time, but Rowzie said that occurred as part of the bankruptcy proceedings.
She added the company plans to borrow $600 million to keep operations running and vendors paid, which is a requirement under the chapter 11 bankruptcy.
“We expect a restructuring result in a balance sheet that’s going to better align versus capital structure with our operations,” Rowzie added. “We firmly believe that Verso will emerge after chapter 11 as a stronger company that’s positioned to compete and win in a global marketplace.”
Wisconsin Rapids Mayor Zach Vruwink said he spoke with leadership at Verso, and the company’s nearly 1,000 mill workers in Wisconsin Rapids should not be in any danger of job loss.
Formerly known as NewPage, Verso Corp. purchased the company in Wisconsin Rapids for $1.4 billion in 2014.