Today, Berry Plastics Group, Inc. (NYSE: BERY) and Klöckner Pentaplast Group, announced that the companies recently entered into a marketing alliance to offer innovative form-fill seal packaging solutions, on a global basis to the food, consumer, pharmaceutical, and medical markets. Klöckner Pentaplast manufactures multiple types of forming films used to produce trays, while Berry Plastics manufactures non-forming lid stock films using various sealant chemistries.
Huhtamäki Oyj's subsidiary has entered into an agreement to acquire Butterworth Paper Cups Sdn Bhd, a privately owned paper cup and foodservice packaging manufacturer in Malaysia. The company employs approximately 120 people in its manufacturing unit in Penang, Malaysia. With the acquisition Huhtamaki expands its foodservice manufacturing footprint to Southeast Asia and significantly strengthens its presence and capability to serve customers in Malaysia, Singapore and other regional Southeast Asian markets.
Mr. Mario Plourde, President and Chief Executive Officer, had the following comments on the fourth quarter results: "Even if it ended the year on a weaker note, as expected, 2014 was a year of strategic repositioning during which we completed several initiatives designed to move us towards our stated goals of rationalizing and modernizing our equipment deck. These decisions, while having a negative impact on our financial results for the year, are now behind us and we can now expect improved results going forward. I am particularly encouraged by the performance of our Containerboard Group that benefits from the important investments undertaken over the last few years and from improving market conditions. The Tissue Papers Group continued to be faced with challenging market conditions as well as one-time costs related to the start-up of the new paper machine on the West Coast and the new converting facility in North Carolina. On a sequential basis, the activities of our Specialty Products Group were impacted by lower demand and seasonal downtimes. In Europe, we expected a sequentially improved EBITDA but we were impacted by lower prices and the ramp-up of the new equipment installed at the Santa Giustina mill in Italy.
Smurfit Kappa’s innovative portable beer chilling solution, the Cooler, has been awarded Product of the Year 2015 by German trade journal Lebensmittel Praxis, in cooperation with market research institute Innofact AG. Demonstrating the originality and inventiveness that can be achieved through corrugated packaging materials, the Cooler is a conventional fit-for-purpose beer case which transforms into an all-in-one beer chilling party pack for use in the home, at BBQ’s or festivals. The Cooler allows beer bottles to be cooled in a solid cardboard basket filled with ice. It is a convenient solution for consumers who want to enjoy a cold beer on the move, without the need to use a cumbersome cooling box.
Owens-Illinois, Inc. (NYSE: OI) today reported that its Dutch subsidiary, OI European Group B.V. (OIEG), has prevailed in an international arbitration against Venezuela. OIEG has been awarded more than $455 million for Venezuela's unlawful expropriation of OIEG's majority interest in two plants in Venezuela. The three-member tribunal found that Venezuela violated its obligations under the 1991 bilateral investment treaty between the Netherlands and Venezuela and awarded OIEG more than $372 million in compensation plus interest (calculated at a rate of 1 year US dollar LIBOR plus 4 percent). Under the award, interest compounds annually from the date of expropriation until the date of effective payment. The expropriation occurred on October 26, 2010, and the interest, calculated to date, exceeds $84 million. The tribunal also awarded costs and legal fees to OIEG.
"We are confident in our strategy to achieve our growth and performance targets over the next five years,” said Austen. “Our strategy to accelerate growth, focus innovation, and continuously improve is reinforced by the changes we have made to how we execute – with focus, alignment, accountability, and rigor.” Management expects revenue to grow from $4.3 billion in 2014 to $5.8 billion in 2019, assuming constant currency. Revenue growth through 2019 is anticipated to be equally balanced between organic and inorganic growth.
Workers at the Rock Tenn containerboard mill in La Tuque, Que., are ready to restart operations at the mill, after a short strike came to an end on March 10, 2015. A 36-hour strike began on March 6. The next day, Rock Tenn locked out employees. The situation was resolved on Tuesday, when about 77% of the 130 striking workers accepted Rock Tenn’s offer.
Rock-Tenn Company (“RockTenn”) (NYSE: RKT) and MeadWestvaco Corporation (“MWV”) (NYSE: MWV) today announced that the waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976 (HSR Act) with respect to the pending business combination transaction between RockTenn and MWV has expired. The 30-day waiting period is required by the Federal Trade Commission and U.S. Department of Justice as part of the premerger notification program before such a combination transaction can close.
Sonoco (NYSE:SON), one of the largest diversified global packaging companies, today announced the signing of a definitive agreement to acquire a majority interest in Graffo Paranaense de Embalagens S/A (Graffo), a closely held flexible packaging business located in Pinhais, Curitiba, Brazil. Terms were not disclosed, and the transaction is expected to close in the second quarter of 2015. Founded in 2001, Graffo had sales of approximately $35 million USD in 2014. It operates high-quality rotogravure printing presses, including a new 10-color press, as well as sophisticated lamination applications at its Pinhais facility. With approximately 230 employees, Graffo serves the confectionery, dairy, pharmaceutical and industrial markets in Brazil.
Smurfit Kappa Group is pleased to announce that it has agreed to acquire Grupo CYBSA, a non-integrated corrugated, folding cartons and flexible packaging manufacturer with operations in El Salvador and Costa Rica. CYBSA is a private company with approximately 1,000 employees and net assets at 31 December 2014 of approximately US$40 million. It operates five packaging plants located in the higher growth markets of El Salvador and Costa Rica, from which it services a growing customer base in its domestic markets, along with Guatemala and Honduras.