Huhtamaki Focuses on Emerging Markets With the Acquisition of Elif

Huhtamaki Focuses on Emerging Markets With the Acquisition of Elif

Huhtamaki has entered into an agreement to acquire Elif Holding A.Ş. (Elif), a major supplier of sustainable flexible packaging to global FMCG brand owners, with operations in Turkey and in Egypt. With this acquisition, Huhtamaki reinforces its position as a leading flexible packaging company in emerging markets and strengthens its existing flexible packaging business in attractive consumer product categories.

In line with Huhtamaki’s 2030 growth strategy, the acquisition adds scale in strategic geographies and supports Huhtamaki’s progress towards reaching its high sustainability ambitions. The acquisition also expands Huhtamaki’s technology capabilities and product range, allowing it to serve its customers even better.

Founded in 1972, Elif is a trusted long-term partner for major global consumer brand owners in Europe, Middle East, and Africa. Similarly to Huhtamaki, sustainability is embedded into Elif’s strategy and it is committed to the three areas of sustainability, environmental, social, and governance, and to enable its customers to reach their sustainability goals by providing continuous innovation.

Specialized in high-quality sustainable flexible packaging, Elif uses both post-industrial and post-consumer recycled polymers as raw materials. It also has an advanced system of collecting and utilizing production scrap from both its own as well as from customer locations.

More than 90% of Elif’s current product portfolio is recyclable and the product portfolio also includes compostable films. In 2020, Elif’s net sales were approximately EUR 163 million (USD 195 million) and it employs approximately 1,500 highly skilled people in its two state-of-the-art manufacturing locations in Istanbul, Turkey, and Cairo, Egypt.

The acquisition of Elif supports Huhtamaki’s 2030 growth strategy by leveraging scale, strengthening capabilities, and improving competitiveness. The acquisition adds state-of-the-art flexographic printing capability with in-house cliché production to the Huhtamaki technology offering.

It expands Huhtamaki’s flexible packaging product range and creates cross-selling opportunities across customers and geographies. With the acquisition, Huhtamaki also expands its flexible packaging manufacturing footprint into Turkey, one of the top future growth countries.

With the vast majority of Elif’s product range already recyclable or compostable, the acquisition is also a significant milestone in reaching Huhtamaki’s ambition to have 100% of its products designed to be recyclable, compostable, or reusable by 2030.

Charles Héaulmé, President and CEO of Huhtamaki, said, “I am thrilled to announce this acquisition. With a great portfolio, a strong focus on sustainability, and high growth ambitions, Elif is a perfect fit for Huhtamaki. We are impressed by Elif’s focus on its customers with decades of strategic partnerships with blue-chip multinational companies who are leaders in their field and Elif’s strong and capable leadership team. Our 2030 growth strategy is particularly focused on sustainability and competitiveness, which Elif strongly supports. I look forward to working with Elif’s management to continue their success under the new ownership. I am delighted to welcome Elif’s Group CEO Selçuk Yarangűmelioğlu, Elif’s Group CFO and MEA GM Mehmet Çayirezmez, the leadership team and the entire Elif organization to the Huhtamaki family. We are looking forward to building on the existing strong foundations together, to further grow the business and deliver innovative sustainable packaging solutions to current and new customers globally.”

Selçuk Yarangűmelioğlu, CEO of Elif, said, “We are excited to join Huhtamaki, a company that shares our sustainability and growth vision. Elif has always been a dedicated partner for multinationals with a best-in-class asset base, service, and quality. Under new ownership, we will continue to deliver sustainable solutions to our customer base globally, enhance our focus on fast-growing emerging markets, realize synergies through scale and expand our capabilities.”

Huhtamaki will acquire Elif for a cash-free debt-free purchase price of EUR 412 million ($483 million). The business will become part of Huhtamaki’s Flexible Packaging business segment. To support the financing of Huhtamaki’s acquisition of Elif, Huhtamäki Oyj has signed a bridge financing facility of $500 million with Citi, who has also acted as an advisor in the transaction. The transaction is subject to the approval of competition authorities in Turkey, and it is expected to be closed after regulatory approval. Both companies will continue to operate on a business-as-usual basis until closing.

Chris Fernando

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