UPM and Artek to introduce two new wood plastic composite products at the Milan design exhibition

(UPM, Helsinki, 20 April 2009 at 11:00) – UPM’s ProFi wood plastic composite will make its debut in two new applications at the Salone Internazionale del Mobile exhibition, to be held in Milan on 22–27 April 2009. The UPM ProFi Floor for patio floor tiling, and the 10-UNIT SYSTEM furniture range are both to be presented at this design fair.

‘There are numerous end use possibilities for this environmentally innovative material. It is very rewarding to see how it inspires designers and architects. The co operation with design professionals provides a match of looks, functionality, and material performance that we want to continue far into the future,’ says Markku Koivisto, Director of UPM ProFi.

UPM ProFi Floor, designed by Artek STUDIO

Designed by Artek STUDIO, UPM ProFi Floor introduces a fresh way to furnish both old and new balconies and terraces. The marbled surface of each floor tile is unique. The clever X-clip system for assembly enables quick and easy installation and disassembling. The tiles can be manufactured in several colours, and tiling comes with two surface alternatives. The combination of the natural feel and smoothness of the material exudes the experience.

UPM ProFi Floor can be used as a furnishing element that allows the same surface to continue from a floor to a wall. The intelligent design of the underside enables electrical cables to be run unexposed inside the tile. The thickness of each floor tile is the same as that of UPM ProFi Deck decking board, which allows combination of the two.

10-UNIT SYSTEM, designed by Shigeru Ban for Artek and enabled by UPM ProFi

Artek presents its new furniture range, the 10-UNIT SYSTEM, designed by Japanese architect Shigeru Ban. This is a fully modular furniture range based on the use of one fundamental element, an L-shaped unit. The L-unit can be assembled in various positions to form a chair, a table, or a bench. The unit is manufactured from UPM ProFi wood plastic composite material.

Ville Kokkonen, R&D Manager and Head of Artek STUDIO, says that the feel of the material is very important for Artek: ‘UPM ProFi has a unique, slightly fuzzy but soft and warm intrinsic feel, which clearly bears no resemblance to any other material’.

The successful co-operation of UPM, Artek, and Shigeru Ban started back in 2007. Ban, a forerunner in ecological architecture, designed the Artek Pavilion, made of UPM ProFi, for the Triennale garden in Milan. After Milan, the pavilion was erected in Helsinki, reconstructed for Design Miami, and sold at Sotheby's Important 20th Century Design sale in 2008.

Emphasis on engineering and materials’ performance

The first UPM ProFi products were manufactured with extrusion moulding technology. With the new floor tiling and the furniture system, UPM is adding another manufacturing technology, injection moulding, to its range. Combined with the patented raw material processing technology, it opens up new possibilities for applications.

‘We are putting a lot of emphasis on engineering and on materials’ and applications’ further development. The UPM ProFi material is very hard-wearing and is resistant to humidity and UV light. These intrinsic properties make it ideal for outdoor end uses, where our focus is at the moment,’ explains Koivisto.

One great example of an innovative use of the composite material in a new area of application is Shanghai World Expo 2010. UPM is participating in a special project, in which the Finnish Pavilion will receive modern shingle cladding made from UPM ProFi.

UPM ProFi Floor and 10-UNIT SYSTEM will both be presented at Artek's stand, C14 in Hall 12.

For further information, please contact:
Mr Markku Koivisto, Director, UPM ProFi, tel. +358 40 861 2852
Mr Ville Kokkonen, R&D manager and head of Artek STUDIO, tel. +358 50 324 3285

UPM, Corporate Communications
Media Desk, tel. +358 40 588 3284
communications@upm-kymmene.com

Images can be downloaded below this press release from the web site www.upm-kymmene.com > Media

The UPM ProFi business unit develops, manufactures, markets, and sells high-quality wood-plastic composite products for a variety of end uses. UPM ProFi is an innovative and environmentally friendly material, made mainly from surplus paper and plastic left over from the production of self-adhesive label materials. Source of further information: www.upmprofi.com.

UPM is one of the world's leading forest-industry groups. UPM consists of three business groups: Energy and Pulp, Paper, and Engineered Materials. Our competitiveness stems from our cost leadership, change-readiness, and leading innovation. UPM employs around 25,000 people and has production facilities in 14 countries. In 2008, UPM enjoyed sales of 9.5 billion euros. The company is listed on the NASDAQ OMX Helsinki stock exchange.

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UPM ProFi Floor 1(jpg) »

UPM ProFi Floor 2(jpg) »