24th October 2005
Aurinkolehto Ltd. will increase and up-scale its production capacity substantially and develop even further its proprietary production technology with the aim to better meet their customers' needs and requirements.
The strong expansion will be enabled by a group of experienced capital investors. One of the investors is Finnish Industry Investment Ltd. through its Start Fund I LP. In addition to this institutional investor, Aurinkolehto's backup group includes five private investors with solid business know-how and convincing experience in various fields of industry and international business.
The company will continue its activities with a strong focus on research and development of both technology and products. The entrepreneurial nature of the company will remain strong as Arto and Susanna Maaranen will continue as majority owners and be in charge of the activities on the operative level. However, in their work they will be strongly backed by the company's Board consisting of the operative management and representatives of the investors.
The Chairman of the Board will be one of the investors, Mr Juha Kurkinen. He has a strong background in food ingredients (xylitol, fructose, natural flavours, betaine, and other extracted fine chemicals, industrial enzymes) and in management, having earlier served many years in the Senior Executive positions in the Finnish-based Cultor Group and the Danish-based Danisco Group, and as a Board Member at a Palo Alto -based Genencor International Inc. Mr. Kurkinen serves presently as full-time Chairman of Rastor Ltd., one of the oldest and leading Finnish management training and consulting companies.
Aurinkolehto's investments include among other things an increase in the capacity of Aurinkolehto Ltd's bottling line and technological development, to enable the production of even higher quality birch sap in different bottle models according to the customers' needs. In the future the product range will also include other birch sap based natural products.
Aurinkolehto Ltd. will start the production of birch sap in large containers for industrial applications particularly for cosmetics and food / beverage industries. With this new production line the company will be able to respond to the continuously increasing demand for birch sap as a healthy natural substance in high quality products.
We will be pleased to continue cooperation with you and hope to serve you even better in the future.
Executive Vice President
Chairman of the Board