Film major Pliant Corp. is buying Uniplast Industries Inc., Pliant announced June 18.
Pliant said it would pay $55 million in stock and cash and assume about $40 million of debt. It expects to finalize the deal by July 31.
Uniplast's sales are about US$100 million a year and would push Pliant's sales to about $850 million a year. Uniplast, based in Orillia, Ontario, makes multilayer packaging films, including stretch films, industrial films and cast-embossed films at six plants.
Uniplast has two plants in Orillia, two in Palmer, Mass., and one each in Harrisville, R.I., and Columbus, Ind. The latter facility used to be owned by PCL Packaging Inc. of Oakville, Ontario.
The deal will launch Pliant into a new market, blown polyester film, according to Pliant spokeswoman Margaret MacBeth. Uniplast makes PET film in Harrisville. Last year Uniplast expanded the operation's capacity by 40 percent to 2 million pounds per year. Blown PET film use is growing, Uniplast said last year. Its main application is in film laminations.
Pliant of Schaumburg, Ill., was formerly known as Huntsman Packaging Corp. until its name change last fall. Purchasing Uniplast will boost its annual processing capacity to more than a billion pounds.
Uniplast Chairman Andy Smith said smaller firms are finding it harder to compete. The acquisition by Pliant reflects a trend toward consolidation in the film industry, he said in a telephone interview. The agreement with Pliant ``is an opportunity to be part of a bigger company.''
Perry Corp. of New York owns more than 90 percent of Uniplast. The investment firm also owns more than 30 percent of AT Plastics Inc., a film and resins firm headquartered in Brampton, Ontario.