Christian Rynning-Tønnesen of Norske Skog wins RISI’s European CEO of the Year Award

BRUSSELS, 26 January 2009 – RISI today announced that Norske Skog’s CEO and President, Christian Rynning-Tønnesen, has been selected as European CEO of the Year for the pulp and paper industry. Rynning-Tønnesen will be presented with the award at RISI’s 11th European Pulp & Paper Outlook Conference in Berlin, Germany, to be held on March 29-31, 2009.

Rynning-Tønnesen was chosen as the European CEO of the Year by a group of investment analysts and portfolio managers covering the forest products industry. The analysts responded to a survey organized by RISI and the criteria for nomination included leadership, vision and strategic accomplishment.

Norske Skog is one of the world’s leading newsprint and magazine paper producers. With the newsprint sector under significant pressure, the Norwegian company has been making headlines in the past few years. Under Rynning-Tønnesen’s lead, the company has cut capacity, sold off assets and undertaken various restructuring programs.

Despite posting a NOK 1.2 billion loss in the third quarter 2008, analysts surveyed for the award have been impressed with Rynning-Tønnesen’s leadership in recent times and in particular with the sale of its operations in Korea.

One analyst described Rynning-Tønnesen’s as having done “a fantastic job, particularly in the area of refinancing. Norske Skog could have found itself in a very different position if it wasn’t for his incisive leadership and sound decision making.”

Rynning-Tønnesen commented, “This is a nice recognition after a period of much hard work by a united Norske Skog team. The organization has implemented a very extensive improvement program and completed several asset sales in 2008. Norske Skog is much better equipped to meet the future after measures taken the last years, but a lot of hard work remains.”

Rynning-Tønnesen joined Norske Skog in April 2005 as CFO and assumed the post of CEO and President in June 2006. Rynning-Tønnesen joined Norske Skog after serving as a member of the corporate management team at state-owned power generator Statkraft for 11 years and as its deputy CEO for two. Prior to that, he was with McKinsey for three years and three years with Esso Norway. He graduated as an engineer from NTNU (Norwegian University of Science and Technology).

RISI’s European CEO of the Year Award was inaugurated in 2007 and the first winner was UPM’s Jussi Pesonen. Stora Enso’s Jouko Karvinen won the award in 2008. RISI also runs a CEO of the Year Award in Latin America, Asia and North America.

For more information on the RISI European Pulp & Paper Outlook Conference, visit

About Norske Skog

Norske Skog was founded by Norwegian forest owners in 1962, and is among the largest newsprint and magazine paper producers in the world with around 6,500 employees at 16 mills in Europe, South America, Australasia and Asia.

Approximately half of the production capacity is located in Europe. The operating revenue was around NOK 27 billion (EUR 3 billion) in 2007. Norske Skog is listed on Oslo Stock Exchange. The group’s head quarter is in Oslo, Norway.

About RISI

RISI is the leading information provider for the global forest products industry. The company works with clients in the pulp and paper, wood products, timber, tissue, nonwovens, printing and publishing industries to help them make better decisions.

Headquartered in Boston (Bedford), Massachusetts, RISI operates offices in Brussels, Belgium; Atlanta, Georgia; San Francisco, California; Portland, Oregon; São Paulo, Brazil; Shanghai, China; Singapore; Helsinki, Finland; and Charlottesville, Virginia. More information can be found at

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