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Paper mill company Appvion has filed for a stalking horse bid to sell the company. Stalking horse bid is a financial term meaning the first bid of a proposed asset sale. The motion comes after the company went into bankruptcy in October. Corporate Communications Director Bill Van Den Brandt said if an offer is accepted the company will no longer be an employee owned company. "Many employees and former employees have retirement investments in the form of company stock. Under the purchaser's offer, the current ESOP structure would not continue and any interests in the ESOP by plan participants would not have any value." Appvion has been 100% employee owned since 2001. The company creates product solutions through its development and use of coating formulations and applications. The company produces thermal carbonless, security, inkjet, digital specialty and colored papers. The bidding process is currently underway. Officials said the agreement with the purchaser which is subject to higher or otherwise better offers, provides a total consideration of $325 million, plus the assumption of substantial liabilities. Currently, Appvion has a company locally in Roaring Springs. Van Den Brandt said 440 employees work at the mill. According to a release, Appvion intends to allow other qualified bidders the opportunity to submit competing bids through a court supervised sale process.