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20 years already! The more things change, the more they stay the same...

20 years ago Pap' Argus was born. It was originally a newsletter which focused on prices for paper, board and recycled papers. Pap'Argus became the title after the initial use of les Mercuriales in a more casual way in 1996 / 1997.( It was impossible to officially keep that name as it could not be registered.)

Talking about paper and board prices was one of many taboos in the paper industry all those years ago. Paper federations were carefully avoiding this dangerous universe and companies would address them very sparingly, afraid of getting accused of collusion by Brussels ...

It was necessary to have some distance, to try to be a messenger going from the buyer to the seller, listening to both, trying to understand the scale of the lies (for the seller the increase had always already happened, for the buyer it hadn't never happened yet...), etc.

The subtleness goes much farther. A contact could announce a price reduction even if he didn't market the product simply to bother a competitor. For this game of liar's poker, you didn't have to be misled by the papermaker's lingo, to understand the subtleties of contracts you also needed a good address book which I had thanks to 15 years of publishing the magazine La Papeterie.

These past 20 years have changed the world and particularly that of the paper which has splintered itself with the shrinkage of graphic grades and the strong resistance of packaging.
In 1998 Chirac was the president of France and the GIP was growing 3.8 % a year. Paper's production sang a similar song.



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