IPL in talks to re-enter Europe through proposed Dutch tie-up

IPL Plastics, formerly One51, is in talks to merge with Dutch packaging firm Schoeller Allibert Group.

Its understood a deal could see the Dutch business reversed into IPL, retaining the Irish company’s stock market listing in Toronto.

Both companies’ biggest shareholders are Canadian. IPL Plastics is an Irish company and retains cohort of Irish shareholders. It is headed by CEO Alan Walsh.

A tie-up would meet IPL’s desire to diversify back into Europe, after it sold off its non-core Irish assets as it emerged as a focused plastics business concentrated in North America.

Bloomberg News first reported that Schoeller Allibert, majority owned by Brookfield Asset Management, has been in merger talks with IPL for several months, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the matter is private.

News of talks with Schoeller Allibert follow the appointment by IPL of corporate financier Conor McCarthy to oversee mergers and acquisitions activity at the company.

He was previously a director of Investec in Dublin.

IPL raised CA$191.7m from its flotation on the Toronto Stock Exchange in June.

Irish shareholders who remained with the company when it floated received new shares in IPL Plastics in return for their old stock.

Six months after the stock-market listing, which is in late December, these B-class shares will convert and can be traded in Canada.

The Irish company originally entered the North American market through the majority purchase of Canadian packaging company IPL in 2015. It has since acquired a number of businesses in that market.

Schoeller Allibert is headquartered in the Netherlands, its operations are mainly in Europe, though it has plants in the US and China. Sales last year were €500m.

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