Both partners in the joint venture yesterday underlined the geographical importance of Poland as a brigde into Eastern Europe and the potential gains to be made as the country's economy grew as they unveiled the acquisition of Tektura Opakowania Papier’s (TOP).
The firm, based in the southern town of Tychy, produces corrugated board transport and sales packaging and employs 170 workers. In 2010, it posted a turnover of €17m. Its paper and board divisions are not part of the deal.
Subject to approval from Polish competition authorities, Thimm will have a 51 per cent stake in TOP’s corrugated business while Saica will own the remaining 49 per cent of the shares. The partners said they had been working together in a strategic sales alliance since the late 1990s.
Poland – key location
Thimm said the move to acquire TOP’s corrugated arm was part of its strategy to expand into Eastern Europe, where the market is less developed and growth potential greater than in the mature Western European segment.
The Northeim-based business already operates its own plants in the Czech Republic and Romania. The newly acquired asset will open up most of Poland and neighbouring export markets, it added.
Thimm said this would increase its appeal to major players which are increasingly centralising their purchasing and select European suppliers offering services over wider geographical areas.
Company managing director Jens Fokuhl said: “Strategic takeovers such as the acquisition of TOP in Poland are key part of our growth strategy. We thus continue to focus on the internationalisation of our business and are developing the largest Eastern European market in the EU for our packaging operations.”
Spain-based Saica said the buyout was part of its strategy to become a leading European player
Susana Alejandro, managing director of Saica Pack, said the firm had “ambitious expansion plans with regard to corrugated business in Poland”, which it viewed as a vital market for the company.