Press Releases

COMPETITIVE PRESSURES DRIVES RIGID FILM AND SHEET RESTRUCTURING

AMI, Bristol, 26/08/08 – Rising costs and competitive pressures are driving restructuring and reorganisation within the rigid film and sheet business according to new research from Applied Market Information Ltd, looking at Europe’s leading players. Private equity groups are also increasingly involved which is further driving restructuring to improve profitability.

 

The largest rigid film and sheet producer in Europe is Klöckner Pentaplast, a supplier of rigid PVC film and sheet. The group has expanded significantly in recent years with several key acquisitions, not only expanding its core business but also moving it into complementary film and sheet markets such as PET.  There has also been some restructuring and consolidation of its units with the closure of plants in Norway, Netherlands and Spain and the sale of its flexible packaging business, although it has also built new facilities in Portugal and Russia. This has enabled it to consolidate its position as Europe’s leading player with production in Europe last year estimated to have reached nearly a quarter of a million tonnes of product and 500,000 tonnes worldwide. The group has been under private equity ownership since 2001 when it was acquired by Cinven. In May 2007 it changed ownership with Cinven selling it to the Blackstone Group.

 

The company AMI estimates as the second largest producer in Europe is also a major rigid PVC film and sheet producer. However, Ineos, with production for 2007 estimated at 135,000 tonnes, is some 100,000 tonnes smaller than Klöckner. Ineos is the former EVC Films business which was acquired by the Ineos Group in 2001 and delisted in 2005. Under Ineos control the group has been attempting to improve returns through fixed cost reduction programmes, and reorganising and simplifying business organisation and structure. It moved to consolidate its position in the rigid films business through its acquisition in 2005 of the Solvay rigid films business, based on two other Italian companies, the former Caleppiovinil and Adriaplast. This latter site was closed in 2007 in order to improve operational efficiency across the Ineos Film sites in Italy.

 

The Finnish group Huhtamaki is Europe’s leading manufacturer of thermoformed polystyrene packaging whose production is estimated by AMI at just over 120,000 tonnes for 2007. It too has been restructuring its sheet business to improve its competitiveness. Expanded polystyrene packaging units in France and Portugal were sold in June 2006, while two sheet and thermoforming plants were closed in the UK during 2005. Production was also transferred from Göttingen in Germany mainly to Poland and Spain during 2006 and the site closed.  Its plant at Portadown in Northern Ireland was sold to an unnamed buyer in January 2008.

 

AMI’s research also reveals that there are three other groups producing over 100,000 tonnes/year of product in Europe: RPC, Linpac and Vitasheet.  The latter two are both owned by private equity groups, and recent announcements from RPC that it is looking at its strategic options, has led to speculation it may soon join them.

 

AMI estimates that the 50 largest rigid film and sheet producers profiled in its report were responsible for 2.6 million tonnes of polymer consumption in 2007, equivalent to 60% of the total European market.

 

 

EUROPE’S 10 LEADING RIGID FILM AND SHEET PRODUCERS

Ranking

Company Name

Head office location

Polymers processed

1

Klöckner Pentaplast

Germany

PVC, APET

2

Ineos Group

UK

PVC, PET

3

Huhtamäki

Finland

PS, PP, PET

4

Linpac Plastics

UK

PS, PP, APET

5

RPC Group

UK

PP, PS, PET

6

Vitasheet Group

UK

ABS, PP, PE, PS

7

Coexpan

Spain

PS, PET, PP

8

Groupe Guillin

France

PS, PP, PET

9

Quinn Group

UK

PMMA, PETG, PS, PC, SAN

10

Veriplast Solutions

France

PS, PET, PP

 

 

PUBLICATION DETAILS:

FURTHER INFORMATION:

Title

Corporate performance and ownership among rigid film & sheet producers – A review of Europe’s 50 leading players

Name:

Tel:
Fax:

Carole Kluth

+44 (0)117 924 9442

+44 (0)117 989 2128

Edition:

2nd

E-mail:

cmk@amiplastics.com

Date:

2008

 

 

No. of pages:

127

 

 

Format:

A4

 

 

Price:

£350/€490