Ardagh Group, a Luxembourg-based producer of glass and metal products, that operates 109 glass and metal manufacturing facilities in 22 countries, has announced to shut down in March its glass container production in Milford, Massachusetts. The closure, which is a response to a decline in the US mass beer market, will effect approximately 250 people. Production and customer orders will be transferred to Ardagh’s other North American facilities.
Paul Richard Coulson, an Irish billionaire, who is the largest shareholder and became Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Ardagh Group last September after the surprise departure of CEO Ian Curley, said that “the decline in mass beer shows no sign of abating.”
“Our issues are really that we have too much capacity for beer and too little capacity for wine and food, and that’s why we are carrying out this review to see how we best recalibrate our production capacity,” Colson added.
And he went on, “Johan Gorter took over as CEO of our global glass division in September, and Johan, together with our new CEO of our glass business in North America, Bertrand Paulet, have investigated a comprehensive review of our capacity, transportation, logistics and supply chain to ensure that the business once again performs in line with our expectations for it and that it successfully meets the challenges posed by the changed conditions in the US glass market.”
The decision also marks a shift in business, which already has become apparent in July 2016, when Ardagh bought 22 can manufacturing plants in Europe, USA and South America from Ball Corporation for approximately $3.1bn (£2.3bn), following the $6.1bn (£4.5bn) takeover of Rexam by Ball
Ardagh Groupemploys today approximately 23,500 people and has global sales of approximately €7.7 bn. It is estimated that in an average household globally, you will find at least six products in packaging produced by Ardagh Group.