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Scholle Packaging buys Brazilian pouch manufacturer

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January 9, 2013

NORTHLAKE, ILL. (Jan. 9, 2:40 p.m. ET) — Scholle Packaging Inc. has acquired Brazilian performance packaging manufacturer Flexpack, a move that expands Scholle's product offerings.

Flexpack specializes in stand-up and lay-flat pouches. That’s a new area for Scholle, a Northlake, Ill.,-based company known for bag-in-box packaging.

Pouches are one of the fastest-growing segments of the packaging industry, said Richard Heath, vice president of new ventures for Scholle, in a phone interview.

The medium has several advantages – pouches are lightweight, use less material, and give brand’s an advantage in packaging design and messaging. Customers are also attracted to the convenience offered by liquid and semi-liquid products in pouches, he said.

South America is a big area for pouch manufacturing, said Ryan Balock, manager of marketing communications, by phone.

“It’s a good area to cut our teeth on stand-up pouches,” he said. “We see a potential for a lot of growth there, that’s why we picked that area and that company.”

Flexpack is a small operation. The company has less than 15 employees and operates one plant in São Paulo, Heath said.

Scholle plans to transfer operations, and employees, from that plant to Scholle’s facility in Vinhedo, Brazil, located about an hour outside of São Paulo.

The 96,000-square-foot Vinhedo plant currently manufactures bags for retail beverages, fountain syrup, food ingredients, food service products and non-food applications. It also serves as the headquarters for Scholle’s Latin American business.

In addition to pouches, Flexpack also makes multi-layer barrier films. The company primarily serves retail customers – its products are used to package meats, cheese, nuts and other foods, Balock said.

Flexpack also serves the automotive, healthcare and pharmaceutical markets.

The acquisition will open up more possibilities for Scholle in smaller, retail packaging. With the exception of bag-in-box wine, Scholle’s food and beverage packaging is mainly for institutional and restaurant end markets, Balock said.

Scholle would not disclose financial details of the transaction.

Scholle Packaging has 10 facilities worldwide. The company is a subsidiary of Irvine, Calif.,-based packaging firm Scholle Corp.