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RIVERWOOD INTERNATIONAL REPORTS FIRST QUARTER RESULTS

 ATLANTA, April 20 /PRNewswire/ -- Riverwood International Corporation (NYSE: RVW) today reported first quarter sales of $260.7 million, up $11.4 million, or 4.6 percent, from the first quarter of 1992. Income from operations for the three months ended March 27, 1993 was $21.9 million, down $10.3 million, or 32.0 percent, from the same period last year. Net income for the quarter was $5.8 million, or $.09 per share, down 58.3 percent compared with $13.9 million in 1992.
 Net sales in the first quarter included $20.6 million of sales from the Macon, Ga. mill which was acquired in mid-1992. Stronger U.S. dollar currency exchange rates in the first quarter of 1993 compared with 1992 caused a $9.3 million decline in net sales.
 Net income for the quarter was reduced by approximately $8.0 million of incremental interest expense, net of tax, associated with last year's recapitalization, public debt offering and acquisition of the Macon paperboard mill. This was partially offset by a $4.8 million net reduction in deferred income taxes due to recent Brazil tax law changes. Excluding the effect of these items, first quarter 1993 net income would have been $9.0 million, 35 percent below last year.
 The reduction in income from operations was due mainly to a loss in the Containerboard segment and an earnings decline in the Coated Board System segment. These declines were partially offset by a strong increase in the U.S. Timberlands/Wood Products segment.
 The Containerboard segment reported an operating loss of $4.6 million compared with income of $3.9 million in the 1992 first quarter. This reflects lower linerboard prices and the mid-1992 acquisition of the Macon mill. However, the Brazilian operations maintained the 1992 level of earnings, despite weak worldwide linerboard markets.
 The lower Coated Board System earnings resulted primarily from weak markets worldwide for paperboard used in folding carton applications and higher marketing and packaging machinery product development expenditures. In addition, earnings from international operations were reduced due to a stronger U.S. dollar compared with a year ago.
 Income from operations for the company's third business segment, U.S. Timberlands/Wood Products, increased by $5.8 million, due to higher lumber and plywood selling prices compared with a year ago.
 "Despite the difficult market conditions we faced in the first quarter, we remain confident that Riverwood International will show a strong increase in operating earnings for the year," said Thomas H. Johnson, Riverwood president and CEO. "To improve our results in the short term, we are carefully examining every cost to make sure it is vital to our long-term strategy, and are taking steps to improve productivity in our manufacturing operations. However, we will continue our focus on marketing and packaging machinery development in order to build the market for our additional carrierboard volume following the 1994 start up of the Macon coated board production.
 "We expect a strong beverage season this year, given the full backlogs for our packaging machinery and carrierboard products. This performance and recent signs of improvements in folding carton grades give us reason to anticipate higher prices in the second half of the year for coated board selling into both the folding carton and beverage carrier markets.
 "Improvement in the Containerboard segment depends to a large extent on economic recovery in both the United States and Europe. However, even with only slowly improving economies, we are hopeful that the high rates of containerboard capacity utilization should lead to better prices by the end of the year.
 "For our wood products business, we expect continued strong performance for the full year, although most likely not at the level experienced in the first quarter.
 "We are also optimistic about our outlook for 1994 and beyond. The marketplace is responding favorably to our investment in packaging machinery design and development with increased demand for our systems. We can meet this increased demand for carrierboard with the start up of coated board production at the Macon, Georgia mill in the second half of 1994."
 Riverwood International Corporation is a global packaging systems and paper products company. At the end of 1992, the company employed more than 8,500 people worldwide and had assets of approximately $1.9 billion and annual sales of approximately $1.1 billion. The company is headquartered in Atlanta and has seven major business operations spanning North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Central America and South America.
 RIVERWOOD INTERNATIONAL CORPORATION
 CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF INCOME
 (In millions of dollars, except per share amounts)
 Unaudited
 Three Months Ended
 March 27, March 28,
 1993 1992
 Net Sales $260.7 $249.3
 Cost of Sales 204.6 187.8
 Selling, General and Administrative 30.3 26.3
 Research, Development and
 Engineering 1.9 1.5
 Other Income (Expense) (2.0) (1.5)
 Income from Operations 21.9 32.2
 Interest Income 1.1 0.2
 Interest Expense 21.1 7.1
 Income before Income Taxes 1.9 25.3
 Income Taxes (3.9) 11.4
 Net Income $ 5.8 $ 13.9
 Earnings per Share Data:
 Weighted Average Shares (000) 62,051 N/A
 Earnings per Common Share $0.09 N/A
 RIVERWOOD INTERNATIONAL CORPORATION
 BUSINESS SEGMENT DATA
 (In millions of dollars)
 Unaudited
 Three Months Ended Percentage
 March 27, March 28, Increase/
 1993 1992 (Decrease)
 NET SALES
 Coated Board System $171.2 $187.2 (8.5)
 Containerboard 58.0 37.9 53.0
 U.S. Timberlands/
 Wood Products 36.2 28.5 27.1
 Eliminations (4.7) (4.3) 9.7
 $260.7 $249.3 4.6
 INCOME FROM OPERATIONS
 Coated Board System $ 20.6 $ 27.2 (24.3)
 Containerboard (4.6) 3.9 ---
 U.S. Timberlands/
 Wood Products 12.8 7.0 83.2
 Eliminations (6.9) (5.9) 16.3
 $ 21.9 $ 32.2 (32.0)
 RIVERWOOD INTERNATIONAL CORPORATION
 Notes to Consolidated Statements of Income
 Note 1
 On June 24, 1992, Riverwood International completed an initial public offering of 19.5 percent of its common stock, or 12,100,000 shares, for gross proceeds of $172 million and issued $400 million of bonds in a public debt offering. The debt offering consisted of $150 million, 10.75 percent senior notes due 2000 and $250 million, 11.25 percent, senior subordinated notes due 2002. The earnings per common share amounts for the three months ended March 28, 1992 have not been presented since such amounts are not comparable due to the recapitalization.
 Note 2
 Due to recent changes in Brazil's tax laws, the Company recognized a net $4.8 million deferred tax benefit in the first quarter of 1993. The primary effect of the tax law change allowed the Company to accelerate its payments of deferred income taxes on inflationary profits at reduced tax rates. Excluding the Brazilian tax benefit, the Company's effective tax rate is 45 percent.
 -0- 4/20/93
 /CONTACT: Sharon Sweet, (financial), 303-978-4694; or Jonna Manes (media), 404-644-3014, both of Riverwood International Corporation/
 (RVW)


CO: Riverwood International Corporation ST: Georgia IN: PAP CST SU: ERN

MC -- DV003 -- 7704 04/20/93 06:01 EDT
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Date:Apr 20, 1993
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