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Mark Kowlzan, CEO of PCA Named RISI North American CEO of the Year

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RISI is pleased to announce that Mark Kowlzan, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Packaging Corporation of America (PCA), has been named the 2017 North American CEO of the Year. The award will be presented to Mr. Kowlzan at the North American Conference on October 17, 2017 in Boston, Massachusetts at the Seaport Hotel.

RISI’s North American CEO of the Year is nominated by a group of investment analysts and portfolio managers covering the North American and global pulp and paper industry. Analysts credited Kowlzan for growing PCA in containerboard and corrugated packaging – while at the same time operating the firm at the highest EBITDA margin among North American publicly-traded containerboard producers.

In the first quarter this year PCA generated a 21.7% EBITDA margin – the highest among publicly-traded North American containerboard producers. One analyst said that PCA under Kowlzan has “continued to put up best-in-class margins and expand their converting presence. They have maintained a strong balance sheet and with stock at all-time highs are poised for another growth step.”

Another credited Kowlzan for “solid integration improvement and attractive M&A” activity. In the last year, PCA spent $486 billion on acquiring two independent converters, TimBar Packaging and Columbus Container. The acquisitions followed the late-2014 conversion of a newsprint machine at its DeRidder, LA, mill to containerboard production. The company also acquired Boise Paper, which operates a containerboard and box unit in the USA, for $1.27 billion in late 2014.

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