Ardagh acquires beverage can manufacturing sites from Ball and Rexam for $3.42bn

Posted on 17 May 2016 by Aiden Burgess

Global packaging manufacturer Ardagh Group has agreed to acquire metal beverage can manufacturing assets in Europe, Brazil and the US from fellow manufacturing giants Ball Corporation and Rexam for $3.42bn (£2.36bn).

Ardagh is one of the UK’s, and world’s, largest glass and metal packaging producers - image courtesy of Ardagh
Ardagh is one of the UK’s, and world’s, largest glass and metal packaging producers (image courtesy of Ardagh).

The deal with its fellow consumer packaging companies will see Ardagh acquire 10 manufacturing and two end plants in Europe; seven manufacturing plants and one end plant in the US; two manufacturing plants in Brazil, and a number of support functions in the UK, Germany, Switzerland and the US.

The assets acquired by Ardagh had sales of $3.5bn in 2015, and standalone earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of approximately $400m.

The acquisition will make Ardagh the third biggest global beverage manufacturer, the second biggest in Europe and the third biggest in the US and Brazil.

The company expects to finance the acquisition with a combination of cash and secured and unsecured debt with the deal expected to close by the end of June, which is expected to coincide with the closing of Ball’s acquisition of Rexam.

Ball and Rexam to merge

The US-based Ball Corporation’s planned £4.4bn takeover of Britain’s Rexam would merge the world’s two largest beverage can makers by volume, with both companies supplying beverage giants Coca-Cola and Anheuser-Busch InBev, the latter itself currently undertaking an acquisition.

The sale of Ball and Rexam assets to Ardagh was orchestrated so the so the two companies could meet antitrust regulations before their planned merger.

Ardagh chairman Paul Coulson said the acquisition of Ball Corp’s and Rexam’s assets would complement his company’s own existing business fortes.

“We are pleased to expand our consumer packaging business with the addition of a leading beverage can business,” he said.

“Whilst we do not currently operate in the beverage can market, the business we are acquiring is highly complementary to our existing metal and glass businesses. The acquired business has an excellent management team and strong customer relationships.”

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The acquisition of metal beverage can manufacturing assets comes on the back of Ardagh’s recent first quarter figures for 2016, which showed a 1% increase in revenue to €1.22bn as EBITDA rose by 6% compared to the same quarter in 2015 to €217m.

Revenue from its glass packaging business was up by 1% to €743m, while EBITDA rose by 6% to €148m.

Ardagh Group is a global leader in glass and metal packaging solutions, who produce packaging for most of the world’s leading food, beverage and consumer brands.

Following the completion of the acquisition of the metal beverage can manufacturing assets, Ardagh Group will operate 110 facilities in 22 countries while employing over 23,000 people.

Ardagh Group have global sales exceeding $8.8bn, and it is estimated that in an average household across the world you will find at least six products in packaging produced by Ardagh Group.

Ardagh Group is based in Luxembourg and was founded in 1932 as the Irish Glass Bottle Company.