Sonoco has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Highland Packaging Solutions.
Owned by CEO Steve Maxwell and John Durham, along with select members of the company’s leadership team, Highland has grown from a regional supplier of agriculture packaging products into a global packaging company with 2017 net sales of approximately US$90 million. The company operates a production facility in Plant City, Florida producing packaging for customers that includes sophisticated engineered containers, flexographic printed labels and inventory management through distribution warehouses in the US Southeast and West Coast.
Rob C. Tiede, Sonoco executive vice president, chief operating officer and CEO-elect, said: ‘We are extremely excited to have Highland join the Sonoco family as it significantly strengthens our “Perimeter of the Store” strategy, serving consumers’ growing demand for fresh and natural foods.
‘Highland’s recognized best-in-class manufacturing and effectiveness in product integration with automated filling machines will add breadth to our growing produce customer mix through a dedicated manufacturing facility located in the important Florida produce market, while also providing us an important entry into egg packaging – a fast-growing protein source in North America.’
When the transaction, valued at US$150 million is completed, Highland’s financial results will be reported within Sonoco’s Consumer Packaging segment and the business will be operated as part of Sonoco’s global plastics operations.
Maxwell added: ‘Highland and Sonoco each have their own strengths, with a similar passion for crusading for our customers. Joining our two companies together will enable the best of both companies to be integrated and serve our customers, and will enable Highland to further enhance our speed to service and our ability to offer customers the most diverse consumer packaging formats and solutions in the industry.’
Maxwell, Highland President John Baird and many of Highland’s leadership, sales and operations teams will remain, and Highland expects no changes in customer relationships.