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Sonoco to acquire Clear Lam Packaging for $170m

By Jim Cornall+

26-Jun-2017
Last updated on 27-Jun-2017 at 07:09 GMT2017-06-27T07:09:56Z

Sonoco's acquisition of Clear Lam is expected to close in the third quarter of 2017.
Sonoco's acquisition of Clear Lam is expected to close in the third quarter of 2017.

Packaging company Sonoco has signed an agreement to acquire 100% of the stock of Clear Lam Packaging, Inc., a developer and manufacturer of flexible and forming plastic packaging films, for approximately $170m in cash.

Founded in 1969, Clear Lam, which is based in Elk Grove Village, Illinois, is projecting 2017 sales of approximately $140m.

In addition to its manufacturing facilities in Elk Grove Village, it also operates a facility in Nanjing, China, with nearly 400 employees.

Markets include dairy industry

Clear Lam develops and produces high barrier flexible and forming films used to package a variety of products for consumer packaged goods companies, retailers and other industrial manufacturers, with a focus on structures used for perishable foods.

Clear Lam serves markets including dairy, condiments, confectionery, fresh and prepared foods, nuts and snacks, food service and personal care.

According to Jack Sanders, Sonoco president and chief executive officer, the acquisition of Clear Lam will further build on Sonoco’s strategy of expanding its global flexible packaging and thermoforming plastics operations to provide offerings serving grocery and retail food stores.

Developing new products

Sonoco executive vice president and chief operating officer Rob Tiede said the addition of Clear Lam provides technology advantages as well as being able to drive synergies through the internalization of materials for Sonoco’s existing flexible and thermoforming customers.

“We’re especially interested in opportunities to leverage their expertise in modified atmosphere packaging, which comes from a strong base of material science knowledge when it comes to films, additives and adhesives,” Tiede said.

“Clear Lam has developed new portion control condiment packaging, peel-reseal films for fresh fruits and vegetables, forming films for healthy yogurts, lidding films for fresh guacamole, special drinking pouch films and several new packaging films that expand shelf life.”

Hartsville, S.C.-based Sonoco has annualized net sales of $4.8bn, with 20,000 employees working in more than 300 operations in 33 countries.

The transaction is subject to regulatory review and is expected to close in the third quarter of 2017.

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