RPC makes £261m offer for BPI

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RPC Group is poised to buy Greenock-based British Polythene Industries (BPI) in a £261 million deal.

The respective boards announced an agreement has been reached on the terms of a “recommended cash and share offer”. RPC said the move was a “compelling strategic opportunity” and an “excellent fit” with its Vision 2020 strategy.

BPI is a major producer of polythene films, supplying approximately 275,000 tonnes per annum for markets including industrial and consumer products, food and related packaging and recycled products. BPI is also one of the largest recyclers of waste polythene film in Europe.

Pim Vervaat, RPC chief executive officer, said, “With today’s announcement, RPC is taking another important step in delivering its Vision 2020 strategy. The proposed Offer for BPI represents a compelling strategic opportunity for RPC to enter the European polythene films market through an established platform. BPI has a strong product portfolio with attractive market positions in its core markets in Europe.

“The combination will further broaden RPC’s range of polymer conversion technologies in line with global peers, establish a new growth platform with a strong cost synergy potential whilst enhancing the Group’s overall polymer buying capability.

“I believe the combination of RPC and BPI is an excellent strategic fit and look forward to growing the enlarged platform to continue generating value for our customers and our shareholders.”

Cameron McLatchie, chairman of BPI, added, “The last five years have seen consistent improvements in BPI’s performance and prospects, but not all of this progress has been reflected in the price or rating of BPI’s shares.

“RPC has recognised the value inherent in our business and prospects by making an offer at an attractive premium to the share price. BPI’s business should benefit from the ability of a larger group to expand its footprint in Europe and beyond. Shareholders will benefit from enhanced liquidity for their investment, and employees will have access to the opportunities available in a larger group. The BPI board is therefore unanimously recommending acceptance of the Offer.”