Stora Enso Oyj intends to delist its American Depositary Receipts (ADRs), each representing one Stora Enso Series R ordinary share, from the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in the USA. This delisting will be followed by the filing of Form 15F with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to deregister and terminate its reporting obligations under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (Exchange Act).
The delisting is expected to take effect by the end of December 2007. However, Stora Enso plans to maintain a sponsored Level I ADR facility, and following delisting from the NYSE, Stora Enso's ADRs will be traded on the International OTCQX - a premium market tier that distinguishes leading international companies from other securities traded over-the-counter. The disclosure requirements associated with the International OTCQX are in line with Stora Enso's focus on providing high levels of reporting and corporate governance transparency, as well as its intention to continue to develop relationships with US-based investors. Stora Enso's ordinary shares will continue to trade on the OMX Nordic Exchanges in Helsinki and Stockholm. Stora Enso will continue to comply with the rules of the OMX Nordic Exchange and Finnish financial and other ongoing reporting requirements that are relevant for Stora Enso.
"This decision is consistent with our strategy of focusing and simplifying our operations, and it reduces costs and complexity. We are committed to continuous improvement in further developing our risk management, internal control and compliance processes, whereby the positive elements from the Sarbanes-Oxley Act will continue to form part of Stora Enso's approach to governance, internal control, reporting and disclosure," said Hannu Ryöppönen, Deputy CEO and CFO of Stora Enso.
"Financial markets in recent years have been globalising significantly, and the euro zone provides liquid and well-functioning capital markets. Listing our ADRs on the NYSE has lost some of its attractiveness, even though the investor base and US capital market as such will remain very important and valuable to us in the future."
"Trading in Stora Enso shares has become concentrated in the OMX Nordic Exchange Helsinki, where international investors benefit from a well-functioning market with good trading liquidity. Also, as trading on the NYSE accounted for less than 5% of the worldwide average daily trading volume in our shares in the past year, it is no longer relevant from a cost and administrative perspective to submit to the reporting obligations under the Exchange Act."
Stora Enso intends to file Form 15F with the SEC in January 2008 to deregister and terminate its reporting obligations under the Exchange Act. By law, upon filing Form 15F Stora Enso's reporting obligations under the Exchange Act are immediately suspended and the deregistration becomes effective 90 days later unless Form 15F is withdrawn by Stora Enso before then or the SEC delays the deregistration process. Stora Enso reserves the right to postpone the filing of the Form 15F or withdraw Form 15F for any reason prior to its effectiveness.
Stora Enso will continue to publish its Annual Report and Accounts and other documents and communications in accordance with Exchange Act Rule 12g3-2(b) in English on its website www.storaenso.com.
Stora Enso has not arranged for the listing of its ADRs or ordinary shares on another national securities exchange in the USA.
For further information, please contact:
Hannu Ryöppönen, Deputy CEO and CFO, tel. +358 2046 21450
Kari Vainio, EVP, Corporate Communications, tel. +44 7799 348 197
Keith B. Russell, SVP, Investor Relations, tel. +44 7775 788659
Ulla Paajanen-Sainio, Vice President, Investor Relations and Financial Communications, tel. +358 40 763 8767