Dutch injection molder Ten Cate Plasticum is negotiating to buy one or more European manufacturers of spray-can plastic components, including nozzles.
Plasticum, owned by conglomerate Royal Ten Cate NV of Almelo, the Netherlands, has ambitious plans to use its European expansion as a springboard to enter the U.S. aerosol component market, according to Chief Executive Officer Hans Kroeze.
His company, which already molds spray-can caps and activators, plans to extend its range of plastic parts to offer all components. Meanwhile, it sees ample opportunities to acquire U.S. market players.
Kroeze said there are U.S. consumer product manufacturers that still make spray-can parts and are keen to sell that business off.
However, before the Dutch company, with injection molding plants in the Netherlands, Britain and France, can launch its assault on the U.S. market, it will need to broaden its base in its chosen niche in Europe.
With annual sales of about 100 million Dutch guilders ($49 million), TCP claims to hold a 60 percent market share in Britain and a 35 percent share in Western Europe for components it already produces.
Kroeze said Plasticum's priority is to buy a regional nozzle producer.
``Our customers expect us to have that know-how. If we add the associated micro-injection molding technology to our capabilities, it will also become easier for us to develop related products such as a deodorant pump,'' Kroeze said.
He said TCP is ``in discussions with four or five parties'' in Europe with a view to acquisition. ``We expect to undertake specific transactions this year,'' he told a Dutch newspaper, adding that target firms involved have average annual sales of about 35 million guilders ($17 million).
TCP is an affiliate of Ten Cate Mouldings BV, an Oldenzaal, Netherlands-based blow molder. RPC Group plc of Raunds, England, is negotiating to buy TCM — that deal would not include TCP.