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Merger planned for US and Dutch flexible packaging companies

By: Frank Antosiewicz

December 12, 2013

Flexible packaging powerhouses Scholle Packaging Inc., of North Lake, Ill., and Innovative Packaging Network of the Netherlands are combining forces.

Both companies plan to retain their identities but noted that the combined entity will provide a more diverse worldwide packaging operation with more than 2,000 employees. Terms were not announced.

“What we want to do is to maintain both brands and establish a similar culture across the two companies,” said Richard Heath, vice president of mergers and acquisitions for Scholle, in a telephone interview.

Tilburg-based IPN is known for its precision injection molding in packaging and makes various flexible components including connectors, spouts and pumps for pouches and bag-box systems. It makes a range of products for infant formula packaging, and owns 35 patents.

Scholle is known for its bag-in-the-box products. The global supplier focuses on aseptic packaging and filling equipment along with innovative fitments. It serves food, beverage, and non-food bag-in-box applications.

Heath said the two businesses are complementary and both can benefit from the combination.

“The two can solve more problems in flexible packaging — a lot of customers ask for different sizes and IPN’s skills can help us grow,” Heath said.

He also noted that IPN can take advantage of Scholle’s worldwide footprint and use it to grow its own business worldwide.

“We’ve known each other since the beginning of IPN,” Heath said.

Ryan Balock, senior manager for marketing communications at Scholle, said IPN has grown through the retail market, while Scholle, for the most part, has grown via the institutional markets.

Scholle Packaging is part of Scholle Corp. of Irvine, Calif.