The COVID-19 pandemic has had an immeasurable effect on office paper demand, particularly as a result of remote working and homeschooling regulations implemented across Europe. The most significant impact was certainly at the peak of the first wave, between April and June 2020. During that period, most people didn’t even have a home office setup nor a printer installed at home.
Over time, printing capabilities at home increased which helped demand to recover to some extent. But while that was happening, we also noticed a change in buying behaviour and a greater appetite for A-brands and sustainably produced brands.
In our papers business, we are well positioned to respond to these changes in buying behaviour. We believe in the future of paper and will continue to invest in our brands. While there is a steady decline, we expect paper demand to remain, but it will come through different consumer purchasing patterns.
All about HP Papers
We have two strong cut-size brands in European Papers, both of them with a different positioning, but clearly catering to the needs of today’s and tomorrow’s consumers.
One of them is the HP Papers range, a wide selection of home and office papers purposefully designed to meet the demands of our customers and the requirements of the modern workplace. This is a well-established A-brand which consumers trust to deliver quality.
HP Papers have been designed and optimised to deliver outstanding print performance on both home and office printers, with a choice of paper that suits every need. They produce excellent results across six product families and a broad weight range, helping customers deliver affordable colour documents that impress with heavier weights and higher whiteness.
HP Papers also support customers in getting the best printing results, saving them both time and money by reducing ink buildup on printer parts, ink drag and unnecessary reprints. Optimised to be jam-resistant, they give customers reliability and peace of mind.
Following the introduction of HP PageWide printers (offering lower costs, faster speeds and environmentally friendly printing), IP has further optimised ColorLok technology to ensure HP Papers lock in colour quickly, keeping pace with the advances in printer technology. This is the only paper range to carry the HP PageWide logo.
HP Papers are also dedicated to improving our environmental footprint. All products are sustainably sourced, and the brand has pledged to globally remove plastic from the ream wrapper packaging by 2025 globally.
Delivering what our customers need in the changing workplace is our number one priority. This is why HP Papers has launched the three-ream Home & Office box. It’s easier to handle, lighter to ship and smaller to store than a standard five-ream box. This makes it the perfect solution for home office or hybrid working.
The conscious choice
IP’s other core cut-size brand in Europe is REY which comprises a wide selection of papers – including the 34 colours in the tinted Adagio paper range – that provide a complete offering for companies, administrations and schools.
REY has a solid reputation for being a well-established and reliable brand. It was developed with discerning consumers in mind and looks to inspire them to make a conscious choice when they buy a ream of paper. REY also ties in well with the corporate social responsibility policies within organisations, making it the preferred choice for businesses and end users sharing the same values.
REY is a strong, engaging brand with a feel-good identity that people can easily relate to. It’s all about inspiring positive interactions between people, their communities and our planet. Through community involvement, environmental stewardship and sustainable innovation, we want to inspire people to make conscious choices – with a brand which continually works to improve its ecological footprint at every stage of the paper life cycle and support a circular economy.
The raw materials of our papers are 100% sourced from sustainably managed forestry, to ensure that we provide our customers with an environmentally responsible product. The entire REY paper range sold in Europe has approved, internationally recognised certifications, such as FSC, PEFC and the EU Ecolabel.
But it’s not just about the product itself. REY was the first in the industry to replace the use of transparent plastic foils for its sample packs and moved to a fully recyclable paper envelope. As part of our ambition to eliminate plastic usage wherever possible and initiated during our 2019 rebranding, IP moved the entire REY range of white office paper to paper-based packaging.
For Q4 2021, we’re aiming to go a step further still and introduce 100% plastic-free paper packaging by eliminating even the thin polyethylene layer – which acts as a moisture barrier – that most of the paper packaging currently has. The new packaging is made from a renewable and recyclable paper-based solution.
The avoidance of the plastic coating also significantly improves the overall recyclability of the packaging, becoming a mono-material that can be recycled together with normal paper waste without extra treatment.
With REY, customers will be able to:
- show their commitment to eliminating and reducing plastic
- address growing demand for more sustainability and transparency
- be part of a powerful brand story
- help keep the environment plastic-free, thereby helping to protect wildlife
- inspire change.
The world’s paper company – Sylvamo
On 3 December 2020, International Paper announced its plans to spin off its global paper business by the end of Q3 2021, subject to customary conditions and standard approvals by International Paper.
Operating under the name Sylvamo, the spin-off will become the world’s premier uncoated woodfree (UWF) papers company, with talented teams, substantial scale, strong brands and low-cost assets in Europe, Latin America and North America which will serve key geographies around the world.
As a standalone company, Sylvamo will generate over $3 billion in annual sales, and have seven mills and annual capacity of approximately 3.4 million short tons, with 2.8 million of those being UWF.
In Europe, the mills in Saillat, France, and Svetogorsk, Russia, will be part of Sylvamo. Among the company’s key brands in the region will be REY, HP, Jetstar, PRO-DESIGN and Preprint-E/S, all made at the Saillat mill, as well as Ballet and Svetocopy, which are produced in Svetogorsk.
Sylvamo combines the Latin words for forest, ‘silva’, and love, ‘amo’. This combination is translated as a ‘love of forests’. Indeed, the name Sylvamo speaks to the company’s connection to trees and highlights its role as a steward of sustainable forests.