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DS Smith has announced it has agreed to sell its De Hoop paper mill in the Netherlands to De Jong Packaging for a cash sum of €50m (£43m) as it continues to shift focus to fibre-based fmcg packaging.

The company said that sale of the mil, which produces 370k tonnes of mainly heavier grades of recycled paper per annum, supported its strategy to have a “short paper” position in Northern Europe where there is a greater amount of external paper capacity available.

It also further aligns its internal paper production with our priorities in light-weight packaging solutions for FMCG and e-commerce customers.

The proceeds will be used to partly offset this year’s enhanced investment in packaging capacity, with new greenfield corrugated box plants in Italy and Poland, and a significant expansion of its Arnstadt packaging facility in Germany.

Completion of the sale is expected to take place in the second quarter of our FY 2021/22.

As part of the agreement, DS Smith will continue to purchase from and supply to the paper mill a certain amount of containerboard and fibre in support of a smooth and orderly transition.

CEO Miles Roberts commented: “We are pleased to have reached this agreement for the De Hoop Paper mill. While this represents another step to further realign our network of paper mills with the needs of our FMCG and e-commerce led sustainable packaging strategy, we have also found a good home for De Hoop in De Jong Packaging.”

Morning update

English wine producer Chapel Down has announced the completion of a £6.9m fundraising drive.

The funding, which was announced on 4 June, saw £6.88m secured in 33 days with over 4,000 investors subscribing for a total of 11,555,972 new ordinary shares each in the company at a price of 59.5p per share

The fundraising consisted of a placing of 2,395,792 new shares at to raise gross proceeds of £1.4m from directors of the company and IPGL Limited, the family office of major shareholder Michael Spencer.

An equity crowdfunding campaign of 9,160,180 new shares raised £5.5m.

CEO Frazer Thompson said: “We are thrilled to have hit the maximum fundraising target so quickly. We are truly humbled that so many more investors have decided to join us on our journey to change the way the world thinks about English wine forever. More people than ever are aware of the extraordinary potential of English wines. Twenty years ago people thought we were mad. No longer!

“This is the genesis of a new wine region - something special.”

On the markets this morning, the FTSE 100 has rebounded 0.6% to 7,052.9pts.

Early risers include Kerry Group, up 2.8% to €121.95, THG, up 2.6% to 589.7p and Compass Group, up 2.2% to 1,475.3p.

Fallers include Just Eat, down 2.6% to 5,685p, Deliveroo, down 2.2% to 292.7p and McColl’s Retail Group, down 1.4% to 36.1p.

Yesterday in the City

The FTSE 100 continued its losing run to three days, falling 1.1% yesterday to close at 7,012pts.

Just Eat plunged 9.1% back to 5,837p despite upping annual growth expectations on concerns that the pandemic boom in online orders has begun to subside.

Other fallers yesterday included THG, down 5.7% to 575p, Marks & Spencer, down 5.2% to 137.5p, Nichols, down 5.2% to 1,375p, SSP Group, down 4.2% to 242.5p, Associated British Foods, down 2.9% to 2,2024p, Cranswick, down 2.5% to 3,870p, Britvic, down 2.5% to 968p, WH Smith, down 2.2% to 1,544p and Tate & Lyle, down 2.1% to 714p.

Irish nutrition group Glanbia was one of the day’s few winners, rising 5.1% to €15.01 after reporting trading ahead of expectations in the first half, causing it to raise expectations for its full year performance.

Other risers included Bakkavor, up 1.9% to 132.4p, Devro, up 1.6% to 221p, McBride, up 1.4% to 89.4p and Hotel Chocolat, up 1.3% to 385p.