“We are looking beyond Bangladesh”

Dhaka’s Pran Group at Pack Expo International

L–R: Md. Muniruzzaman, COO of Packmat (right) with Sayed Hossain Chowdhury, COO, Allplast at the Pack Expo booth

South Asia was overwhelmingly represented by India at Pack Expo International, which was held in Chicago recently. Pakistan had a couple of companies exhibiting while Bangladesh had a sole representative at the event. Dhaka-based Pran Group had two of its group companies—Allplast Bangladesh and Packmat Industries—promoting their products at the expo.

Logo 2Allplast manufactures a variety of bags such as inline ziplock bags, wave top bags and die-cut bags as well as stretch films. It has 60 extrusion machines and 45 bag making machines. Packmat, on the other hand, makes flexible packaging solutions such as 2-, 3- and 4-layer films for snacks, candy, noodles, etc. It also makes alu-foil packaging, co-extruded films, OPP/PVC labels, heat transfer foils, etc. It makes plastic solutions such as bottles, jar preform, jar caps, HDPE bottles, as well. Packmat also has a corrugated and carton division.

Pran Group’s packaging operations are undertaken from six plants across Bangladesh. According to Md. Muniruzzaman, COO of Packmat, the preform manufacturing capacity is about 3,500 tons per month while laminated film manufacturing capacity is about 600 tons per month. Coca-Cola and Pepsi are some of the big customers they cater to.

This was Pran Group’s second participation at Pack Expo. At the moment, Pran Group’s packaging division generates almost all its business from the domestic market but the company wants to change that. “We have been focusing extensively on expanding into the global market. Being at Pack Expo gives us an opportunity to meet potential customers from North America, which is a huge market for packaging solutions,” says Muniruzzaman.

He informed that for the US market they are looking to appoint distributors and are talking directly to end users as well. “We got some good inquiries during the four days,” he adds.

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As we present our 2024 publishing plan, India’s real GDP growth for the financial year ending 31 March 2024 will exceed 6%. The packaging industry growth will match the GDP growth in volume terms and surpass it by at least 3% in terms of nominal growth allowing for price inflation in energy, raw materials, consumables, and capital equipment.

The capacity for flexible film manufacturing in India increased by 45% over the past four years. With orders in place, we expect another 20% capacity addition in 2024 and 2025. Capacities in monocartons, corrugation, aseptic liquid packaging, and labels are grown similarly. As the consumption story returns over the next six months, we expect demand to return and exceed the growth trajectory of previous years. The numbers are positive for most of the economies in the region – and as shown by our analytics, our platform increasingly reaches and influences these.

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The coming year looks to be an up year in this region, and this is the right time to plan your participation and marketing communication – in our rich and highly targeted business platform with human resources on the ground. Share your thoughts and plans to inspire and mobilize our editorial and advertising teams!

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– Naresh Khanna (25 October 2023)

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