Leaders of two United Kingdom organizations representing producers of industrial film and flexible packaging aim to complete merger negotiations by the end of this year.
Britain's Flexible Packaging Association, whose members include producers of printed film and foil or paper laminate packaging, and the Packaging and Industrial Films Association aim to form one powerful body with combined membership representing more than 80 percent of Britain's flexible and rigid packaging and industrial films market.
The merged organization, with member sales of £2 billion ($3.7 billion), will give the sector greater influence at the government level and throughout the supply chain. It also will broaden the services and support it can offer its membership, the organizations agreed.
``This is a milestone in the history of both associations. ... [We] have very different skills and strengths, which when combined will result in a far more powerful and focused organization with stronger representation of our members' interests,'' said PIFA Chief Executive Officer David Tyson.
Traditionally, the bodies have represented businesses operating in separate areas of the flexible and rigid packaging market. But industry globalization, leading to a process of company mergers and acquisitions, has brought members common interests and challenges better served through a single powerful voice.
``I do not see any reason why we should not have completed our detailed negotiations on the merger by the end of the year,'' said Martin Unwin, director of Tetbury, England-based FPA.
Urwin plans to retire in June.
PIFA, founded in 1957, has greater plastics interests and has played a bigger lobbying role than its partner association. Earlier this year it moved from an industrial area to larger offices in Nottingham, England.
The merger comes just as the industry is facing increasing regulation and legislation nationally and Europewide on top of cost and competitive pressures.