Glasgow packaging group Macfarlane seals multi-million German takeover

Scottish protective packaging provider Macfarlane Group has sealed its first overseas acquisition in a number of years.

The firm is buying PackMann, a packaging distribution business based in Eppelheim near Heidelberg, Germany, in a multi-million euro deal.

PackMann has been established for nearly 28 years and supplies customers across Germany and neighbouring countries. The business has a team of 112 employees, including its founder and director Frank Westermann and director Volker Thorn, both of whom will remain with the company following its acquisition by Glasgow-headquartered Macfarlane.

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Peter Atkinson, chief executive of Macfarlane, said: “PackMann is Macfarlane’s first acquisition outside the UK in recent years and I am delighted that we have secured this excellent business with its strong history of profitability and an experienced management team.

“This transaction strengthens our ‘follow the customer’ strategy, giving us a solid platform from which to accelerate the growth of our protective packaging business in Northern Europe.”

The group said the acquisition was in line with its strategy of building its protective packaging business in Northern Europe through a combination of organic and acquisitive growth and is immediately earnings enhancing.

Headquartered in Glasgow, Macfarlane Group employs more than 900 people at 36 sites, principally in the UK, as well as in Ireland and the Netherlands, and now Germany. It supplies more than 20,000 customers, chiefly in the UK and Europe.

In February, the group reported a strong full-year performance and flagged further progress in 2022 despite inflationary pressures. Sales from continuing operations grew by 26 per cent year on year to £264.5 million.

PackMann has been established for nearly 28 years and supplies customers across Germany and neighbouring countries. Picture: PackMann

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