Resolute Forest Products

Resolute Forest Products (French: Produits forestiers Résolu), formerly known as AbitibiBowater Inc., is a Canada-based pulp and paper company.[6][7] Headquartered in Montreal, Quebec, the company was formed in 2007 by the merger of Bowater and Abitibi-Consolidated.[8] At that time, the merged company was the third largest pulp and paper company in North America, and the eighth largest in the world.

Resolute Forest Products Inc.
Company typeSubsidiary
ISINUS76117W1099 delisted 2023[1]
IndustryPulp and Paper, Tissue, Wood Products
Founded2007 (Abitibi-Consolidated and Bowater merger)
HeadquartersMontreal, Quebec, Canada
Area served
Key people
Duncan K. Davies[2]
Remi G. Lalonde[3] CEO
ProductsMarket Pulp, Paper, Tissue, and Wood Products[4]
RevenueDecrease US$ 2.8 billion (2020)[5]
Decrease US$ 99 million (2020)[5]
Decrease US$ 10 million (2020)[5]
Total assetsDecrease US$ 3.73 billion (2020)[5]
Total equityDecrease US$ 1.081 billion (2020[5]
OwnerPaper Excellence Group (2023–present)
Number of employees
7,100 (2020)[5]
ParentDomtar (2023–present)

On 1 July 2012, the company's name was changed to Resolute Forest Products Inc.[9][10] In 2023, the company was acquired by the Paper Excellence Group through its subsidiary, Domtar.[11]

History edit

On 29 January 2007, Bowater Inc. and Abitibi-Consolidated announced they would be merging to create AbitibiBowater.[8] The merger created the third largest pulp and paper company in North America, and the eighth largest in the world. On 16 April 2009, the company filed for bankruptcy protection in the United States and similar protection under the Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act in Canada, eventually reporting debt of about US$6 billion.[12] The company won court approval for an injection of $206 million to get it through its financial restructuring in April 2009[13] and emerged from creditor protection on 9 December 2010.[14] AbitibiBowater changed its operating name to Resolute Forest Products on 1 July 2012.[9][10] In a round of market consolidation, a new private company called the Paper Excellence Group acquired Catalyst Paper in 2019, Domtar in 2021 and Resolute in 2023.[15]

Predecessor companies edit

The following are the principal predecessor companies of Resolute:[16]

Abitibi-Price (1979)[a 1]

Consolidated Paper Corporation (1932)

Bathurst Power and Paper Company (1915)

Consolidated‑Bathurst (1966)
subsidiary of Power Corporation[a 2]
Abitibi-Consolidated (1997)

Donohue Inc. (1920)[a 3]

QUNO (1913)[a 4]

acquisition of QUNO (1995)
acquisition of Donohue (2000)

Bowater (1910)[a 5]

CP Forest Products (1988)
divested as Avenor (1993)
acquisition of Avenor (1998)
AbitibiBowater (2007)
name changed to Resolute (2012)
  1. ^ date of name change; Price acquired in 1974
  2. ^ sold to Stone Container Corporation and renamed Stone-Consolidated (1989)
  3. ^ originally named Murray River Power and Pulp Company; name changed in 1922
  4. ^ originally named Ontario Paper Company; founded by Robert R. McCormick, proprietor of the Chicago Tribune
  5. ^ North American assets of Bowater plc; spun off in 1984
  6. ^ acquired by Canadian Pacific Limited in 1974
  7. ^ formed as a subsidiary of International Paper; spun off in 1982, becoming CIP

Operations edit

Resolute Forest Products manufacturing facilities in 2019 (by location)[a 1]
Country Pulp, tissue and paper Sawmills Remanufactured wood Engineered wood[a 2] Wood pellets
United States
  1. ^ "2019 Form 10-K" (PDF). Retrieved July 21, 2020.
  2. ^ 50% interest in joint venture
  3. ^ indefinitely idled

Issues edit

Employees edit

The Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada has been critical of the company's attempts to renegotiate pension contributions with their pension underfunded by approximately $1.9 billion.[17] On 3 May 2013, it was reported that an agreement was put in place which may address the ongoing pension dispute with Resolute agreeing to increase its pension payments and “stabilize the pension plan over the next decade.”[18]

Environmental accreditations edit

On August 29, 2013 a case study examining the use of Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) Controlled Wood system by Resolute was released.[19] The report concludes that Resolute's improper application of Forest Stewardship Council standards threatens the integrity of the FSC system and brand. On January 1, 2014, after a successful appeal by the Grand Council of the Crees, three FSC certificates covering more than 8 million hectares of forest were suspended. FSC found violations of its principles relating to indigenous Peoples’ rights, environmental impacts, forest benefits, monitoring and assessment, and High Conservation Value forests.[20] Resolute Forest Products became a member of the World Wildlife Fund’s Climate Saver’s Program on November 10, 2011 with a commitment to “reduce their absolute greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 65 per cent by 2015 below 2000 levels” .[21]

Greenpeace edit

Resolute Forest Products has been criticized by Greenpeace and other organizations for advancing logging and road building in endangered species habitat in Québec and Ontario.[22]

On 18 May 2010, Resolute Forest Products joined 29 other organizations including Greenpeace Canada and the David Suzuki Foundation[23] to become a founding member of the Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement (CBFA).[24] The agreement formalizes the members’ commitments to conserving vast areas of forests and enabling the legislated protection of large-scale areas that are needed to preserve threatened species such as woodland caribou. Claiming a lack of progress on delivering results within the CBFA, particularly on the creation of protected areas and caribou conservation plans, Greenpeace Canada and Canopy, two founding signatories, departed the agreement in December 2012 and April 2013 respectively.[25] Other environmental organizations suspended work with Resolute on May 21, 2013 announcing that "Resolute will not do the minimum that the science says is required to protect our forests and the threatened caribou that call them home."[26]

Greenpeace Canada released a report examining Resolute's sustainability claims in May 2013, alleging that the company is deceiving customers about the sustainability of their forestry operations and their interactions with communities, First Nations and workers.[27] Greenpeace withdrew an earlier criticism of Resolute Forest Products on 19 March 2013 noting that a December 2012 campaign against the company “incorrectly stated that Resolute had breached the Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement”.[28]

On May 23, 2013, Resolute filed a $7,000,000 defamation lawsuit against Greenpeace Canada and two of its staff in Ontario Superior Court alleging the organization interfered with economic relations with their customers.[29] In response Greenpeace launched a legal defense fund and characterized the lawsuit as a Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation (SLAPP). In September 2016, the Ontario Superior Court dismissed Resolute's defamation action on the grounds it was designed to "greatly expand the scope of the litigation and transform the trial into an inquiry into Greenpeace." The logging company responded saying the "court decision does not in any way diminish the claims against Greenpeace of defamation and intentional interference with commercial relations."[30]

In May 2016, Resolute filed a $300 million-dollar lawsuit in Atlanta, Georgia using the United States' RICO Act (which is primarily for fighting organized crime and racketeering) against Greenpeace. The complaint alleges that the environmental group is a "global fraud" that is tricking people in both the US and around the world into donating "millions of dollars based on materially false and misleading claims about its purported environmental purpose and its “campaigns” against targeted companies."[31] In January 2017, Greenpeace asked a court in Georgia for the case to be dismissed on the grounds that the company's use of RICO "is simply an intimidation tactic that would set a dangerous precedent if successful" because Resolute "is trying to silence critics of its logging practices in Canada's boreal forests."[32] In June 2017 several major book publishers including Penguin Random House and HarperCollins have had to respond to Resolute's RICO action after a petition, which was signed by more than 100 authors in support of Greenpeace, was presented at BookExpo 2017, the USA's publishing trade show. The petition's signatories are concerned that using RICO in this particular action is a legal attempt to stymie free speech.[33]

In 2019, the federal district court for the Northern District of California dismissed most of the claims by Resolute Forest Products and, in April 2022, the court ordered Resolute Forest Products to pay Greenpeace $800,000 in costs after Greenpeace brought an anti-SLAPP motion against the company.[34]

References edit

  1. ^ Brenda Martin (2023-03-01). "Paper Excellence Welcomes Resolute Into Its Family of Companies". Paper Excellence Group. Retrieved 2024-02-02.
  2. ^ "Duncan K. Davies Named Chairman of the Board of Resolute". Resolute Forest Products. 2021-09-13.
  3. ^ "Executive Team". Resolute Forest Products.
  4. ^ "Products". Resolute Forest Products.
  5. ^ a b c d e f "2020 10-K" (PDF). Resolute Forest Products.
  6. ^ "Abitibi and Bowater Agree to Merge In All-Stock Deal". CNBC. January 29, 2007.
  7. ^ "Bowater completes merger with Abitibi". Charlotte Business Journal. October 29, 2007.
  8. ^ a b "Abitibi, Bowater merging to create forestry giant". CBC News. 2007-01-30. Archived from the original on July 11, 2007. Retrieved 2007-02-26.
  9. ^ a b "AbitibiBowater Changing Name To Resolute Forest Products". The Globe and Mail. Toronto. 2011-10-11. Retrieved 2011-10-14.
  10. ^ a b Forsyth, Paul (28 December 2011). "New name for AbitibiBowater". Retrieved 31 December 2011.
  11. ^ "Paper Excellence completes acquisition of Resolute Forest Products". Northern Ontario Business. Retrieved 2023-07-18.
  12. ^ "AbitibiBowater gets bankruptcy protection in Canada". CBC News. 2009-04-18. Retrieved 2011-09-26.
  13. ^ "AbitibiBowater gets court OK for $206 mln DIP". Reuters. 2009-04-17. Retrieved 2009-04-20.
  14. ^ "AbitibiBowater emerges from bankruptcy". Reuters. 2010-12-09. Retrieved 2011-09-13.
  15. ^ Dubinsky, Zach; Thompson, Elizabeth (March 9, 2023). "Who's behind Canada's new pulp-and-paper powerhouse, and where's the money coming from?". CBC News.
  16. ^ "Our History". Resolute Forest Products. 2020.
  17. ^ "Resolute workers have done 'enough,' union says". CBC News.
  18. ^ "Kenora mill workers union says conflict over pensions may be settled for good". Kenora Daily Miner and News. 2013-05-03. Retrieved 2013-07-05.
  19. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-11-15. Retrieved 2013-08-29.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  20. ^ "Resolute Forest Products' FSC Forest Management Certificates to be suspended". FSC Newsroom. 2013-12-18. Archived from the original on 2014-03-16. Retrieved 2014-02-28.
  21. ^ "Resolute Forest Products Joins WWF Climate Savers Program". WWF. 2011-11-10. Retrieved 2013-07-05.
  22. ^ "Resolute responds to Greenpeace campaigns by labelling us a "criminal enterprise". Other corporations respond by… - Greenpeace Canada". 2017-01-23. Retrieved 2018-08-11.
  23. ^ "Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement: Who's involved". Archived from the original on 2012-02-11. Retrieved 2011-10-11.
  24. ^ "Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement: The Agreement". Archived from the original on 2011-10-31. Retrieved 2011-10-11.
  25. ^ "Another environmental group pulls out of Canadian logging pact". The Globe and Mail. Toronto. 2013-04-17.
  26. ^ "Environmental groups suspend further work with Resolute Forest Products under Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement". The Wall Street Journal. 2013-05-21.[permanent dead link]
  27. ^ "Resolute False Promises: The [un]sustainability report 2013 | Greenpeace Canada". Archived from the original on 2013-10-16. Retrieved 2013-05-21.
  28. ^ "Notice of correction regarding Resolute Forest Products' operations" (PDF). Greenpeace. 2013-03-19. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-05-12. Retrieved 2013-07-05.
  29. ^ "Quebec forestry company suing Greenpeace for $7 million". The Star. Toronto.
  30. ^ "Court dismisses 'vexatious' allegations by Resolute Forest Products against Greenpeace". Financial Post. September 2, 2016.
  32. ^ "Resolute, Canadian Forest Giant, Uses Trump-Linked Law Firm To Sue Greenpeace". Huffington Post. January 24, 2017.
  33. ^ "Major publishers move to defend Greenpeace in dispute with logging firm". The Guardian. 21 June 2017.
  34. ^ "Forest Product Companies to Pay $800,000 in Attorney's Fees and Costs after Dismissal of RICO and Other Claims Against Greenpeace". Climate Change Litigation. Archived from the original on 17 October 2021. Retrieved 8 April 2022.

External links edit

  • Official website
  • Business data for Resolute Forest Products Inc.: