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Kadant Inc. (KAI) – Pulp Non-Fiction is Kadant’s Story

Kadant Inc. (KAI) is a leading supplier of technology-based systems to the global pulp and paper industry. Located in Westford, Massachusetts, they provide paper machine accessories and systems for stock preparation, fluid handling, and water management to the pulp and paper industry. In addition, their fluid-handling products find use in production within the steel, rubber, plastics, food, and textile industries.

The company received incorporation as a wholly owned subsidiary of Thermo Electron in November of 1991. Their name was Thermo Fibertek Inc. at that time. They went public in 2001 as a spin-off from Thermo and – as a fully independent public company – they changed their name to Kadant Inc. Many parts of their business have been in operation for over 100 years, due to their history with Thermo.

Kadant Inc, today, has 2,000 employees in 16 countries. They conduct major operations in North America, South America, Europe, and Asia. Their 2007 revenue was $366 million. As part of the Paper and Paper Products industry, they trade on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).

The company’s main product lines are stock-preparation systems for obtaining usable fibers from recycled materials. Their systems also prepare virgin fiber for entry into paper machines. The company also manufactures accessories such as doctor blades, which clean roll surfaces to keep machines running with optimal performance. Kadant also produces water-management systems that clean and condition papermaking fabrics. These systems can also filter and recycle process water during paper formation.

Kadant’s fluid-handling systems are valuable to the paper industry because they transfer fluids, steam, or air between rotating cylinders and fixed piping. This helps improve the drying rates of the paper. The company also produces granules from papermaking byproducts for agricultural and lawn and garden applications.

On March 4, 2008, Kadant Inc. announced they had been awarded a new contract worth over $4 million from an Asian producer for a stock-preparation system to produce linerboard. With their constant innovation in equipment that enhances process efficiency and product quality for their customers, Kadant Inc. hopes to continue their pulp non-fiction story for years to come.

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