Family Owned and Operated, made in the U.S.A

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Northwest Paper Box is a leading manufacturer of the highest quality set-up boxes and custom corrugated available.  We offer a full line of packaging products and services, on time, at competitive or better prices, in an environment that supports employee growth and development. A staple of the Pacific Northwest business community, we’ve provided innovative products and unsurpassed customer service for over 60 years. 


1940's:

THE WEDDING! 
  • Following college, Marvin “Van” Van Allen takes a job as supervisor of the cutting area at Grigsby Brothers in Portland. In 1946 he tells his fiancée, Betty, that someday he will own his own paper box plant.

  • The couple marry, move to Baltimore, and start saving money and collecting equipment so they can realize their dream.

  • Betty and Van sell their Baltimore home, and Van makes the first of two trips to Portland driving trucks filled with the equipment they’ve acquired.


1950's:

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  • In 1953, Van and Betty, along with Van’s brother Bud and his wife Elsie, buy the Simpson Paper Box facility, complete with equipment, outbidding rival Grigsby Brothers by a mere five dollars.  Northwest Paper Box opens its doors at 419 S.E. 13th Street.
  • The original 5,000 sq. ft. shop is heated by a woodstove filled with chipboard scraps. Most of the machinery runs from one motor, with drive belts dropped from the ceiling and clutch mechanisms on each machine. 

  • Van and Betty’s son Brad is born in 1954; Rod follows in 1959.


1960's:

  • John, Van and Betty’s third son, is born in 1963.

  • The four senior Van Allens continue to grow the business, supplying rigid set-up boxes to the candy and stationery industries.

  • Elsie retires in 1968 and Betty takes over her responsibilities for bookkeeping, payroll and running the office, a role she manages until retirement in 1983.


1970's: 

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  • Marvin and Betty buy out Bud and Elsie Van Allen in 1973, and NWPB moves to a third-floor, 10,000 sq. ft. shop at 322 N.W. 14th Street.

  • The average shop employee earns about $2.60 per hour.

  • Brad was in college and attending Disco Dance classes, and hanging out at Earthquake Ethell's

  • Rod too was going through his P-funk, Parliament, Commodores, Earth Wind and Fire era.  Rod had huge platform shoes, gold chains, and an open collars 

  • John was innocent and spending his time in grade school and high school.


1980's:

  • Brad Van Allen returns to NWPB in 1980, and works with Van until his death in February 1983, taking the reins shortly thereafter.

  • Rod Van Allen joins brother Brad at NWPB following Van’s death.

  • A third move in 1984 brings NWPB to 400 N. Thompson, a 25,000 sq. ft. facility where John Van Allen joins NWPB in 1987.

  • The typical employee earns $5.00 per hour.

  • The company passes $1 million in sales in July 1988.


1990's: 

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  • In 1990 NWPB opens a second facility at 3223 N.W. Guam – an 18,000 sq. ft. space dedicated to corrugated boxes.

  • NWPB acquires Taylor-Made Packaging in 1993, a 15,000 sq. ft. facility on Shaver Street.

  • In 1994, Guam and Shaver Street locations are merged into the current operation on Basin Street, a 95,000 sq. ft. facility that is larger than all the previous shops combined.

  • NWPB acquires the set-up divisions of Grigsby Brothers in 1996 and of Pacific Paper Box in 1998.

  • The Portland Business Journal names NWPB one of the 100 Fastest-Growing Private Companies in Oregon in 1996, 

  • NWPB employees earn an average wage of $9.50 per hour; by decade’s end, the company yields 7.5M in annual sales, with $2M coming from set-up boxes.


2000's: 

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  • Acting in advance of any city mandates, NWPB installs a recovery system in which 65-75% of scrap corrugated and 100% of scrap chipboard is baled and recycled, and an ink containment system in which wastewater from the production process is collected, cleaned and recycled.

  • NWPB invests over $5 million in capital improvements to take a lead role in environmental responsibility, enhance the efficiency of the operation, and improve product quality.

  • Annual sales reach $17M in 2009.


2010 to Current:

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  • In 2011, NWPB installs a Apstar 5-color rotary diecutter allowing to print process work directly onto corrugated. 

  • 2013 NWPB achieved 20 Million Dollars in sales for the year. 

  • 2015 NWPB was voted one of the best companies to work for in Oregon, by the Oregon Business Magazine.

  • May of 2016 we just completed the installation of an Eterna Platen diecutter to replace our aging Bobst diecutter.  With the Eterna, we expect to achieve greater registration as well as additional sheet size and speed.

  • Also in May of 2016 Northwest Paper Box transitioned to a new website and started using this new-fangled thing called social media. Don't forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram.

  • As of May 17th 2016 Northwest Paper Box is AIB certified. Yippie!! 

  • December 5th 2016 Northwest Paper Box integrated to using a new software system, Amtech.

  • Starting Janurary 1st 2017, NWPB  we are proud to announce the purchase of all the assets of Universal Paper Box, a rigid setup box manufacturer, in Seattle, WA. We will be able to integrate their equipment, customers, and some of their employees into our business.