VPK Group has come to an agreement with COPI Holding to buy Encase Ltd, which operates two integrated corrugated packaging plants in England and one sheet plant in Scotland. It is VPK’s intention to merge Encase with its UK corrugated operations, formerly known as Rigid.
VPK’s corrugated operations in UK and Ireland experienced consistent yearly growth since it entered the VPK Group in 2000. Under its ownership, VPK invested more than £100m into the division.
In 2015, the acquisition of ICS Europaks in Limerick, Ireland, further strengthened the geographical spread. Earlier this year, VPK acquired a majority stake in Corrboard UK Ltd.
As part of its long-term strategy, it is now VPK’s intention to fully merge Encase with the existing VPK UK corrugated operations. The combined businesses are expected to achieve yearly sales of more than £200m in corrugated packaging and sheets. All six corrugators combine a yearly containerboard consumption of 300,000 tons, which represents a major part of the non-integrated recycled containerboard consumption in UK.
VPK has a proven track record of successful investments and acquisitions in corrugated manufacturing assets. These include four sheet feeding plants in Poland and Germany – known under the brand name Aquila, an ultra-modern greenfield investment project in Halden (Norway) which was recently put into operation and the acquisition of Viallon Emballages in France. With regards to containerboard production, the pioneering conversion in Strasbourg, France, of the former UPM Stracel assets by Blue Paper, set a new standard for the recycled containerboard industry.