Spanish group buys Americk Packaging

Saica Group has signed an agreement to acquire Irish packaging business Americk Packaging, subject to regulator approval, as it looks to expand in the flexibles market.

The acquisition, which is subject to approval by the Irish Competition and Consumer Protection Commission, includes all six of Americk’s UK and Ireland packaging manufacturing facilities as well as its separate businesses PP Global and Starfish Brand Solutions. The Dublin-headquartered group posted a combined turnover of £110m in 2015.

Americk's new family-owned parent firm has global sales of €2.4bn and employs around 8,000 employees worldwide. It has sites in Spain, Italy, Portugal, Turkey and Luxembourg as well as a number of existing sites in Ireland and the UK including a £325m papermill in Manchester. It has operated an aggressive growth strategy for a number of years, most recently acquiring €67m-turnover Italian flexibles group Centroplast, in July.

Saica’s operations comprise four divisions: Paper (recycled paper production), Natur (integrated waste management), Pack (corrugated packaging production) and Flex (flexible packaging production). This acquisition will help the company to expand its activities in the latter.  

“This agreement allows us to enter the flexible packaging market in Ireland and the UK more actively, hand in hand with a leading player,” said Saica president Ramon Alejandro. 

“Enabling the Saica Group to continue its development in the flexible packaging sector with the aim of offering a wider range of products and services to our customers.”

The deal follows a period of growth for Dublin-headquartered Americk Packaging, during which it has acquired Suffolk-based packaging printer Adare Advantage and expanded its flexibles operations with a £7m relocation to Wigan. The group employs 691 people across the UK and Ireland.

On signing the agreement, Americk stressed that the deal would not affect its operations or its existing management team. 

Americk Packaging chief executive Patrick Doran said: “This approach has taken some careful consideration by me and our senior management team. Saica are a family-run business with a strong code of ethics and compliance which has been of paramount importance when considering the fit with our business, culture and most importantly our staff and customer base.

Doran added that the move would "catapult" the Americk Packaging brand into the international packaging market and add value and opportunities for staff, customers and suppliers.

In July this year former managing director of Benson Group Mark Kerridge took a non-exec position on the board of Americk, his first official role in the packaging industry since stepping down as managing director of Benson following its acquisition by packaging giant Graphic Packaging International

At the time Kerridge said that his role with the company would be to support its growth "both organic and acquisitive".