StepChange Consulting continuously publishes articles on current industry trends and hot topics. Many industry executives and professionals already subscribe to our periodic publications. If you would like to be included on our distribution list, please click here.

Recent publications include the following:

Digitally Prepared?

"Digitally Prepared?"

A view on the Industry’s readiness for Industry 4.0 and developments since 2015

Awareness about Industry 4.0 increasing | 35% of companies with concrete projects | Industry 4.0 not a priority | Expected benefits: costs reduction and new business models | IT budgets up | Pulp & Paper trailing other industries

By Dr. Veronica Schey and Péter Khaut

Download (PDF, 537 KB)

Essentials III

StepChange Essentials III Book

13 Articles, covering Economic and Financial Essentials, Management Essentials, Industry Essentials

267 Pages

EUR 45,80

Order here

Press Release StepChange B3NCH Index SBI performance

"Press Release: StepChange B3NCH Index (SBI) outperforms"

Companies in pulp, paper and packaging outperform the market. Five year CAGR of StepChange B3NCH Index (SBI) higher than any other major global index.

Vienna, October 10th, 2017

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Americas First?!

"Americas First?!"

Survey Results of Economic outlook survey for North American RISI conference 2017

Industry survey confirms positive business environment with continued demand growth | Key priorities pricing and talent management | US considered most attractive business location for forest based products in North America | North America ranked as most competitive business location globally

Download (PDF, 444 KB)

Paper, Packaging and Populism

"Paper, Packaging and Populism"

A review of the global economic and political climate and the financial state of the industry

By Joachim Klein and Sarah Rabl, 2017

Download (PDF, 994 KB)

Diligent Due Diligence

"Diligent Due Diligence"

Tailor-fit industry due diligence: Uncovering M&A risks and rewards

By Joachim Klein and Valentin Schenkenfelder, 2017

Download (PDF, 459 KB)

Good Buy II – Get me results!

"Good Buy II – Get me results!"

Achieving sourcing results in strategic categories

By Dr. Veronica Schey and Georgi Krastev, 2017

Download (PDF, 899 KB)

B3NCH Packaging Benchmark

"M&A und Umstrukturierungen zeigen Wirkung"

Alle sechs Monate veröffentlicht das Beratungsunternehmen StepChange Consulting eine zusammenfassende Analyse der wichtigsten Finanzkennzahlen ausgewählter Marktteilnehmer der Industrie. In diesem Beitrag für die apr beschäftigt sich das Unternehmen mit der Vergleichsgruppe „Verpackung“.

Download (PDF, 2.628 KB)

Buyer-Seller Viewpoint Analysis Paper & Biorefinery Conference 2017 Graz

"Buyer-Seller Viewpoint Analysis"

Results of 2017 survey assessing current and future collaboration in the supply chain of the forest based industries: Demand and prices for all raw materials expected to grow | No demand, supply and price increase for graphic paper expected | Sales channels seen as efficient by sellers and buyers | Industry sees itself lagging behind other industries in terms of collaboration | Buyers perceive overall higher benefits from collaboration compared to sellers | Key barriers: Dependency on specific partner, lack of trust, unequal distribution of benefits, data security | Sellers significantly overrate customers’ service level satisfaction

Presentation held at Paper and Biorefinery Conference in Graz, by Alexander Wirth and Valentin Schenkenfelder, 2017

Download (PDF, 684 KB)

Boom or Fake?

"Boom or Fake?"

Summary of 2017 European Pulp and Paper Outlook study reveals continued bullish expectations | demand up | prices and costs up | top priority on innovation for the first time | Industry 4.0 gaining importance

Download (PDF, 346 KB)

Summary of Results - 2016 North American Pulp and Paper Outlook Survey

"Climbing the mountain with enough fuel"

Survey Results of Economic outlook survey for North American RISI conference 2016

Industry survey confirms positive but slowing business environment / Industry not convinced by the benefits of TPP/TTIP / USA voted most attractive industry location in North America

Download (PDF, 395 KB)


"Pulp paradox – a new horizon?"

Industry survey confirms demand growth expectation | Consolidation of global BEK expected | Pulp buyers skeptical about price indexes | Mixed view on trading platforms | China considered a priority market | Awareness about Industry 4.0 varies significantly

By Dr. Veronica Schey and Sarah Rabl, 2016

Download (PDF, 584 KB)

A review of the global economic climate and the financial state of the industry

"Tissue Trumps!"

A review of the global economic climate and the financial performance of the Pulp and Paper industry

By Kristi Magllara and Sarah Rabl, 2016

Download (PDF, 423 KB)

Financial Benchmarking Sample 2016

"Financial Benchmarking Sample 2016"

Download (PDF, 990 KB)

Pulp and Paper in Austria 2016

"Pulp and Paper in Austria 2016"

Austria’s competitiveness and readiness for Industry 4.0 Study

Presentation held at Paper and Biorefinery Conference in Graz, by Alexander Wirth and Valentin Schenkenfelder, 2016

Download (PDF, 769 KB)

Outlook and 4.0 Survey

"Sentiment Down – Bad weather ahead?"

2016 Outlook study reveals: negative outlook in almost all paper segments / general economic outlook still good / Industry priorities on costs and price & margin / strategic topics with lower priorities / Input costs expected to rise / Industry 4.0 – little practice, high expectations

By Ralf Möbus and Jukka Halonen, 2016

Download (PDF, 440 KB)

Industry 4.0 Berlin

"Industry 4.0"

What's in it for Pulp, Paper & Packaging?

Presentation held at RISI European Conference 2016 in Berlin

Download (PDF, 1.810 KB)

Industry 4.0

"Industry 4.0"

What digital can do for the Paper Industry

The European pulp and paper industry has experienced and consistently supported the three major phases of industrial transformation since the 18th century. From steam power to electric power, then to the progressive integration of automation and information technologies, today’s paper industry stands ready to engage in its fourth industrial phase: industry 4.0.

Download (PDF, 2.392 KB)

Don’t wait! Innovate!

"Don’t wait! Innovate!"

Innovation management in fiber based packaging

By Dr. Veronica Schey and Kristi Magllara, 2015

Download (PDF, 713 KB)

Making a difference: From consistently in-constant towards consistent constancy

"Making a difference: From consistently in-constant towards consistent constancy"

Improving business success by managing process volatility through lean process capabilities

By Alexander Wirth and Thomas Teltscher, 2015

Download (PDF, 485 KB)

Selected Financial Benchmarking - September 2015

"Selected Financial Benchmarking - September 2015"

Download (PDF, 558 KB)

Österreich - Handelst du schon oder wartest du noch?

"Österreich - Handelst du schon oder wartest du noch?"

Evaluierung der Wettbewerbsfähigkeit Österreichs als Standort für die Holz- und Papierindustrie

By Michael Kiennast and Alexander Wirth, 2015

Download (PDF, 1.519 KB)

Temporary relief or tipping point

"Temporary relief or tipping point?"

Results of 2015 Pulp and Paper Outlook and European Competitiveness Survey: Demand stable / prices and costs down / financing up / packaging up / graphic papers down / focus on price and margin management / strategy is back / Germany and Poland most attractive in Europe / Mondi, DS Smith, UPM, Smurfit Kappa and SCA considered most competitive / Hopeful for positive influence from capacity consolidation and customer requirements

Download (PDF, 399 KB)

Slice and Dice

"Slice and Dice!"

A view on customer segmentation in paper and packaging

By Ralf Möbus and Joachim Klein, 2015

Download (PDF, 501 KB)

Lean Machine 14

"Lean machine —
Case study – Lean Workstream: Improving lost time from breaks"

By Alexander Wirth and Peter Khaut, 2015

Download (PDF, 553 KB)

Right location but close to the tipping point

"Right location but close to the tipping point?"

Results from 2014 North American forest based industry survey: Upward trend continues but skepticism has increased / North and South America considered most competitive locations for forest based industries / Innovation and talent focus is back

Download (PDF, 440 KB)

Forest based industries in Austria publication

Study: "Forest based industries in Austria - Quo vaditis Holz und Papier?"

In einer Umfrage attestieren Führungskräfte der Branche in Österreich schlechte Zukunftsaussichten

By Michael Kiennast and Thomas Teltscher, 2014

Download (PDF, 128 KB)

Forest based industries in Austria

Study: "Forest based industries in Austria"

StepChange conducted an industry specific survey to assess Austria’s competitiveness as an industry location for the forest based industries: 170 participants completed the survey / Focus purely on stakeholders in the Austrian forest based industries / Overall, Austria is viewed as somewhat attractive, but 4 out of the 5 key competitive factors are viewed as very unattractive / Only export opportunities are viewed as attractive / EU and EURO-zone membership receive strong commitment / Action has to be taken to secure Austria’s position as an industry location / Raw materials, energy and labor costs are the main concerns of the industry / Labor is the key area where the government is expected to take action / Education and innovation are important to sustain Austria’s attractiveness

Download (PDF, 539 KB)

Press Release Forest based industries in Austria

Press Release regarding Industry Study: "Forest based industries in Austria"

Österreichs Holz - und Papierwirtschaft sieht Standort gefährdet! Eine von StepChange Consulting durchgeführte Studie unter Unternehmern und Führungskräften der österreichischen Holz- und Papierwirtschaft weist alarmierende Standortrisiken auf.

Download (PDF, 296 KB)

Weblinks:  Die PresseWirtschafts BlattKleine ZeitungTiroler Tageszeitung

Economic Outlook Survey Europe 2014

"Old Europe?"

Results of 2014 Pulp and Paper Outlook and European Competitiveness Survey reveal: Europe generally not attractive - Germany and Poland most attractive / energy costs and regulations considered hurdles for the future / consolidation and sustainability focus enablers for future competitiveness / positive expectations for the economy / expectations for pulp and paper mixed / pressure on margins to remain high / company priorities on cost reduction, pricing, customers and innovation / Mondi, UPM, SCA and IP considered most competitive

Download (PDF, 902 KB)

Hard Knock Life

"Hard Knock life pays off: Packaging outperforms —
A review of the global economic climate and the financial performance of the Pulp and Paper industry"

By Joachim Klein and Kristi Magllara, 2014

Download (PDF, 1.300 KB)


"Accelerating organizations to deliver results! —
Enhancing Operational Performance by Best Practice Continuous Improvement"

By Steven E. Smith and Michael Kiennast, 2013

Download (PDF, 850 KB)

Merchants Nov 13

"Merchants – In need or retreat?"

Excerpt of global merchanting study, 2013

Download (PDF, 2.289 KB)


"Merchanting: In need or retreat?"

By Dr. Veronica Schey and Ralf Möbus, 2013

Download (PDF, 536 KB)

StepChange 2013 Outlook NA

"Growth is back"

Results from 2013 economic outlook survey North America confirm upward trend, sustainability increasingly a necessity for future competitiveness, 2013

Download (PDF, 375 KB)

StepChange 2013 Merchants

"Merchants — In need or retreat?"

European Results from Global Industry Study, 2013

Download (PDF, 1,2 MB)

StepChange 2012 A New Dawn

"A new Dawn? —
Economic survey reveals upward trend, sustainability a necessity for future competitiveness”

Survey Results RISI North American Forest Products Conference 2012

Download (PDF, 292 KB)

StepChange 2012 Maintain

"Maintain, Improve or Invest? Capture! —
A Review on Return on Maintenance”

By Thomas Teltscher and Alexander Wirth, 2012

Download (PDF, 134 KB)

StepChange 2012 Implikationen CEPI

"Strategische Implikationen der CEPI 2050 Roadmap auf die Papier-, Verpackungs- & Zellstoffindustrie"

Presentation Papierfachtagung Graz 2012 by Alexander Wirth

Download (PDF, 568 KB)

StepChange 2012 Survey Results

"No light at the end of the tunnel?"

Economic Outlook 2012 / CEPI 2050 Roadmap Awareness - Survey Results

Download (PDF, 422 KB)

StepChange 2012 A Roadmap without a map for the road

"A roadmap without a map for the road
Strategic implications of the CEPI 2050 Roadmap on the Pulp, Paper and Packaging Industry"

By Alexander Wirth and Joachim Klein, 2012

Download (PDF, 516 KB)

StepChange 2012 Good Buy

"Good Buy!
Part I: Strategic sourcing opportunities considering TCO"

By Alexander Wirth and Joachim Klein, 2012

Download (PDF, 270 KB)

StepChange 2011 Survey Results RISI NA

"Is your company ready for the current economy?"

Survey Results RISI North American Forest Products Conference 2011

Download (PDF, 82 KB)

StepChange 2011 - The Crystal Ball_Demand and Supply Planning

"The Crystal Ball
How Demand and Supply Planning can improve business performance"

By Thomas Teltscher and Stefan Schönberger, 2011

Download (PDF, 73 KB)

StepChange 2010 - 2010 What's Next Final

"2010 - What's next?
Remaining cautious in post crisis euphoria"

By Joachim Klein and Harald Schmid, 2010

Download (PDF, 106 KB)

SCC The Price Is Right

"The Price is right!
The quick guide to profitability"

By Ralf Möbus and Joachim Klein, 2011

Download (PDF, 136 KB)

StepChange 2011 - Sales Force Effectiveness

"Sales Force Effectiveness, July 2011"

By Ralf Möbus & Gustavo Smith, 2011

Download (PDF, 105 KB)

SCC Visibility And Control

"Return to Business as Usual?
Visibility and Control in Turbulent Times"

Results of study 2010

Download (PDF, 104 KB)

SCC Post Recession Recovery

"Post Recession Recovery?
Investing and attracting Capital in the Russian Pulp and Paper Industry"

By Thomas Teltscher, Ralf Möbus and Joachim Klein, 2010

Download (PDF, 264 KB)

SCC Supply Chain Management

"Integrated Supply Chain Management —
Business Benefits through Collaborative Logistics"

Excerpt of results of survey conducted for 2009 PPI Transport Symposium 2009

By Joachim Klein, Ralf Möbus, Alexander Wirth, 2010

Download (PDF, 140 KB)

SSC Avoid Panic


Our point of view on how anticyclical behavior may help to capture opportunity from the downturn.

By Joachim Klein and Ralf Möbus published in PPI July 09

Download (PDF, ca. 2,2 MB)

SSC Impact of Crisis

"What is the impact of the crisis on you? —
Survey Summary"

Results of study 2009

Download (PDF, 72 KB)

SSC Don't forget the customer

"Don't forget the customer —
Darwinism in effect - Customer retention and margin management during the downturn"

By Joachim Klein and Ralf Möbus, 2009

Download (PDF, 176 KB)

SSC Nurture And Develop

"Nurture and Develop —
Why human capital management is critical during the crisis"

By Joachim Klein and Ralf Möbus, 2009

Download (PDF, 60 KB)

SSC Image

"Personnel Development —
Survey Summary"

Results of industry study 2009

Download (PDF, 30 KB)

Merchants Quo Vadis

"Merchants Quo Vadis —
Challenges and developments in the merchant industry"

Presentation PRIMA 2008 by Paul Sheridan

Download (PDF, 270 KB)

Survey Summary

"Merchant: Quo Vadis? —
Survey Summary"

Results of merchant study 2008

Download (PDF, 120 KB)

Wood Sourcing in Europe

By Paul Sheridan and Florian Dussler published in PPI May 08

Controlling the wood value chain is the critical success factor for being part of the re-dimensioned European industry.

Download (PDF, 2,4 MB)


Paper Merchant — "Is there margin in merchanting", May 2006

Only informed and efficient demand- & supply-side processes combined with lean organizations & performance management will allow management of the controllable and provide the best possible assurance against surprises.

The following is a selection of quotes received from board members and MDs of leading merchants:

"Outlines the challenge faced by paper merchants perfectly — and I must compliment you on getting so close to the issues we face."
"I have read your document and can nothing else than fully agree to the
                                       statements made."
                                      "This is quite a good analysis of the situation and the need we may have to improve."

                                      Download (PDF, 45 KB)

Trucking Around

Logistics — "Trucking Around?", August 2006

Published in Pulp and Paper International September 2006.

Beyond transport rates — a guide to improvement opportunities in logistics. It is necessary to consider all parameters that drive total transportation requirements and constraints. Releasing some of these constraints will provide a broader basis for optimization and endorse long-term market success.

Download (PDF, 180 KB)