The Swedish packaging group AR Packaging Group AB broadens its offering to the UK food and healthcare customers by adding local folding carton production through the acquisition of Firstan Holdings Ltd, including its subsidiary Firstan Ltd.
This strategic move makes the Group a key multi-category provider of folding cartons, flexibles and fibre-based containers in the UK. AR Packaging’s strategic direction to grow in selected segments and geographies continues successfully. The group already holds a strong position as a specialist in flexible barrier materials and carton-based containers for the UK market. The acquisition of Firstan now adds local manufacturing of folding cartons, and thereby enables a unique wide offering of multicategory packaging solutions mainly to the food and healthcare customers.
“It is with great pleasure we welcome the Firstan company and its employees to our AR Packaging family. This addition is of significant strategic importance to strengthen our position on the UK market”, said Harald Schulz, CEO and President of AR Packaging. “Together with our existing two plants in the UK, Firstan provides an excellent platform for further growth in this important and fast-moving market.”
Firstan Ltd is a leading independent folding carton manufacturer with focus on quality, customer service and operational efficiency. Its factory, located in Godmanchester, Cambridgeshire, is a streamlined production facility with best in class machinery and operating systems. The company’s 140 skilled employees are dedicated to the design and manufacture of printed cartons for the food, pharmaceutical, healthcare and cosmetic sectors.
“I am happy to see our company take the next step in its development and join AR Packaging”, said Andrew Hartwig, previous majority shareholder and Managing Director of Firstan Holdings Ltd. “Our strategically located and well invested facility will together with our skilled team add further capabilities to AR Packaging and we will together offer extended services to all UK customers.” Paul Hartwig, also a former shareholder of Firstan Holdings Ltd, added, “This is a very exciting new chapter for our business. Together with the rest of the management team, I am looking forward to working with the AR Packaging team to take our business to the next level.”
AR Packaging is one of Europe’s leading companies in the packaging sector with net sales of more than € 900 m, 5,500 employees and 29 factories in 13 countries. The group offers a unique range of packaging solutions from its specialised plants. Added value is created to its customers through its broad product offering and deep knowledge of carton-based and flexible packaging. The head office is located in Lund, Sweden. AR Packaging has an objective to grow both organically and by way of acquisitions.