Visy Cartons to be acquired for around EUR 43m / Growth seen in beverage cartons in Australia and New Zealand / SIG's parent company Onex sells 9.8% stake in SIG
Swiss packaging manufacturer SIG Combibloc (Neuhausen; signed an AUD 70m (EUR 43m) deal to buy Visy Cartons (Melbourne / Australia; in yet another move that signals its goal to expand in the Asia-Pacific region. The seller is VisyPak Operations, a subsidiary of Pratt Consolidated Holdings, an Australian company operating in the packaging, paper and recycling industries. Subject to customer conditions being met, the transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2019.

Visy Cartons, a leading player in Australia’s beverage carton market, has been producing SIG aseptic cartons under license from SIG for sale in the Australia and New Zealand markets. Its revenue in fiscal 2019 ending June 2019 totalled AUD 84m, of which around 80% was generated from SIG aseptic cartons with the rest from fresh milk cartons not covered by the SIG licensing arrangement.

The Australia and New Zealand market for aseptic beverage cartons is projected to grow at around 3% compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) over the next five years, driven mainly by investments in dairies for the export of aseptic milk to China and other Asian countries, SIG said. In August 2019, the Swiss company said it would invest EUR 180m for a second factory for aseptic carton packaging in Jiangsu province as part of its expansion into China – see of 01.08.2019.

In announcing the acquisition deal, SIG noted demand in China for premium milk imported from Australia and New Zealand is expected to grow by around 7% CAGR over the next five years. It plans to leverage its product portfolio to tap into the New Zealand market, where it has very limited presence. SIG believes it is already strongly positioned in China, with an expanding local manufacturing presence and a newly opened regional tech centre.
Sales and earnings rise in first nine months
The Swiss company separately announced that private equity firm Onex (Toronto, Ontario / Canada; and its affiliates have cut its SIG stake to 31.8% – see of 07.09.2018 – after selling 31.4m shares, or about 9.8% of the capital, to a number of institutional investors following an accelerated bookbuilding process. The free float shares will increase to 67.1% as a result.

SIG Combibloc generated sales of EUR 446m in Q3 2019, and adjusted EBITDA was at EUR 124m. For the first nine months of 2019, the company recorded sales of EUR 1.25 bn (compared to EUR 1.17 bn in the same period of 2018), while adjusted EBITDA was up at EUR 329m (from EUR 311m the year before) – a 26.4% margin.
18.11.2019 [243914-0]
Published on 18.11.2019

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