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Quebecor expanding

April 08, 2000

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - With the addition of 75 new employees and a new press, Quebecor World - formerly Quebecor Printing - will soon be able to turn out 80 million books a year.

The production expansion is a result of the 1999 consolidation of Quebecor and World Color, said Frank Diehl, Quebecor human resources manager

Quebecor has about 500 employees in Martinsburg.

"The company is maximizing efficiency in both the Martinsburg and Fairfield, Pa., plants," Diehl said Friday. That means functions that were previously duplicated are consolidated in one location now.

Located at 1989 Arcata Boulevard off W.Va. 9 east of Martinsburg, Quebecor produces hardback and paperback trade books and bestsellers.

Kevin Kelley, regional vice president and division manager, said the expansion plans speak highly of the corporation's confidence in the local employees.

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Originally called Arcata Graphics when it came to Martinsburg in 1989, the firm became Quebecor Printing in 1994, Diehl said.

Operating six presses, Quebecor prints between 63 million and 64 million books a year. When the company started operations 11 years ago, it produced about 100,000 books a year.

About 90 percent of the employees are from the Panhandle counties of West Virginia, and most live within 25 miles of the plant. Average pay is between $11 and $12 an hour, Diehl said.

The 380,000-square-foot Martinsburg plant operates 24 hours a day. Pressroom employees work 12-hour shifts and employees in other departments eight-hour shifts.

The companies that send books to Quebecor are among the who's who of publishing houses: Random House, Simon and Shuster and Warner Books. McMillan, Microsoft Press and McGraw-Hill are among the publishers that send their computer guides to Quebecor for printing.

The plants in Fairfield and Martinsburg are part of a network of 12 related facilities which comprise Quebecor World Book Services Group.

Other facilities are in Tennessee, Iowa, Massachusetts, Vermont and Kentucky.

Quebecor's Web site is at www.quebecorusa.com.

- Marlo Barnhart

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