The future grows in the forestFor our customers, leaders and society, the need for a shift towards a sustainable bioeconomy with positive climate impact is more apparent than ever. Stora Enso is in a unique position to lead a transition from a linear to a circular economy, from dependency on finite or fossil-based materials towards materials and solutions that are renewable, recyclable and with low or zero carbon footprint.
Sustainability and innovation at the coreWe continue to build a strong portfolio, helping our customers be more competitive and sustainable – for today and tomorrow. Our promise to society and our foundation for innovation is “Everything that is made from fossil-based materials today can be made from a tree tomorrow.” 100% of our wood comes from sustainable sources where biodiversity values are secured. With the acquisition of forests from Bergvik Skog in Sweden, we became one of the largest private owners of biological assets in the world. Stora Enso supports all 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) defined by the United Nations and we have identified the three strategic goals where we contribute most: Responsible Consumption and Production, Climate Action and Life on Land. We have set tough science-based targets regarding the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and will continue our drive to improve energy efficiency and reduce our use of fossil fuels.
Result 2019In 2019, 72% of sales and 78% of operational EBIT came from our growth businesses of packaging, wood products and biomaterials. Over 7% of our sales came from new products and services. Our operational EBIT was affected by lower prices for our products. I am not pleased with our profitability levels, but we have focused on areas we can influence. I am very satisfied that we delivered a record high cash flow, despite the challenging market conditions. While megatrends and our customers’ needs support our strategic direction, Stora Enso is also affected by today’s political and economic instability. To mitigate these effects, we implemented a profit protection programme during 2019 and will continue this into 2021.
Transformation continuesOne of our biggest decisions during 2019 was to convert the Oulu paper mill into packaging materials. Other milestones include the finalisation of the cross laminated timber (CLT) investment at Gruvön sawmill. The conversion of Enocell Mill into dissolving pulp that can be used for textile applications, is another example of replacing materials from finite sources with more sustainable alternatives.
Openness to change
Our greatest assets are our people and our ecosystems of customers, partners and suppliers. Taking the lead requires courage and a mind-set of openness to change. I’m very proud of leading this fantastic company. We are well equipped to deliver on our strategy and take the challenge of creating a world based on renewable materials.
President and CEO