Futamura to acquire Innovia’s cellophane business

Japanese food packaging films maker expands

Innovia’s Cellophane business continues at the existing Wigton, UK plant, run by Futamura
Innovia’s Cellophane business continues at the existing Wigton, UK plant, run by Futamura

UK-based producer of high-tech film products Innovia Group is seling its Cellophane business unit to Futamura Chemicals Co., major Japanese manufacturer of plastics and cellulose films for the food packaging industry in a deal due to complete in June.

Innovia has decided to focus on the polymer bank note business. The firm says that by the end of 2016 it will have manufactured more than 50 billion banknotes for central banks around the world. A plant recently built on the Wigton site will produce a new polymer banknote substrate, under the Guardian trademark, for the Bank of England beginning with a £5 note due to be issued in September 2016 and a £10 note in 2017.
Futamura is rated second in the world in terms of market share in cellulose films, which are made from plant-derived materials such as wood, with sales of 67.1 billion Yen (approximately US$ 631 million or Rs. 4,200 crore) in fiscal year 2014. Company president Yasuo Nagae sees the acquisition enhancing its global presence and says, “It supports our ambition to serve our key customers through local manufacturing facilities offering the highest standards of delivery by experienced personnel. We look forward to welcoming Innovia’s Cello employees into our family.” The Innovia Cellophane business serving the food packaging, confectionery and twist wrap sectors had 2015 revenues of € 118 million (approximately Rs. 850 crore).

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The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

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