Berry Plastics Corp. expanded into the European market with its July 3 acquisition of Norwich Injection Moulders Ltd. of Norwich, England.
``This acquisition adds a new dimension to Berry,'' said Martin Imbler, Berry president and chief executive officer.
``With a growing number of multinational customers, it is vital that Berry be well-positioned as a global supplier,'' he said. ``NIM will give us the opportunity to introduce our product lines to the European market and to better meet the needs of our customers on both sides of the Atlantic.''
NIM has annual sales of about $13 million. The company will be managed as a Berry subsidiary. NIM employs about 90 and operates 24 injection presses, one injection blow molding machine and pad printing equipment.
``We have had a relationship with [NIM] for several years,'' Imbler said in a telephone interview. ``We had talked about exchanging molds. When the primary owner and chairman [James Barlow] decided to sell and retire, we were at the top of the list to sell to.''
Berry, based in Evansville, Ind., injection molds and markets polypropylene and polyethylene containers, aerosol overcaps, drink cups and houseware products to the domestic market.
Like Berry, NIM makes injection molded overcaps. However, the company's closures line represents a new market for Berry, Imbler said.
NIM's caps and closures are marketed to the dairy, food and beverage, personal-care, household and aerosol markets in Europe.
``With the full resources of Berry Plastics behind us, we are confident we can grow our European business significantly over the next few years to become an even more important player in our key markets,'' Alan Sandell, NIM managing director, said in a news release.
``This acquisition allows us to supply present [U.S.] customers who operate overseas,'' Imbler added. ``For example, we only supply Gillette in the U.S. We will have a great advantage in supplying them in the U.S. and in Europe.''
As part of its international strategy, Berry also opened a sales office in Mexico City earlier this year.
``We plan to be more focused on expanding internationally,'' Imbler said. ``Asia and Latin America are growing and we will supply those areas as the needs arise. We are a big player in the U.S. and we have designs on becoming a big player internationally.''
Berry operates 10 facilities with about 190 injection molding presses. The company employs about 2,000.
Last year, Berry reported sales of $227 million, placing it 23rd in Plastics News' most recent ranking of North American injection molders.