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International Paper exiting Indian paper manufacturing unit

International Paper Co. agreed to sell its controlling interest in India-based paper manufacturer, International Paper APPM Ltd., to West Coast Paper Mills Ltd.

International Paper CEO Mark Sutton said the decision to exit its position in the Indian business was in line with the company's continued focus on growing its global packaging and cellulose fibers businesses.

The transaction is expected to be closed by the end of 2019, dependent on customary closing conditions, including the completion of a tender offer by West Coast.

Through this tender offer, West Coast is obliged to acquire all of International Paper APPM's publicly owned shares, which represent 25% of the paper manufacturer's outstanding shares.

Based on the outcome of the tender offer, West Cost plans to acquire between 51% and 60% of International Paper APPM's outstanding shares from International Paper at a price per share of 275 Indian rupees.

After the deal closes, International Paper, which owns 75% of International Paper APPM's outstanding shares, will be a passive investor until it sells its remaining stake.

As of May 28, US$1 was equivalent to 69.60 Indian rupees.