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Jarvis Porter exits

July 19, 2005

Jarvis Porter exits
the label world
News of the takeover by CCL Industries Inc. of Jarvis Porter’s UK, French and Dutch labels operations came too late for the last column. But an event that leaves the Toronto-based group as one of Europe’s leading label converters, servicing major global consumer and healthcare companies, needs a passing mention.
By paying £7 million in cash, or just under US$10 million, it would appear that CCL obtained a bargain. Headquartered in Leeds, Yorkshire, Jarvis Porter Group plc was soon renamed Grovebirch plc. The label operation worked primarily in the healthcare and consumer sectors. In the year ending Feb. 28, 2001, it registered a $4.11 million loss on sales of £33 million.
The ailing company said it had achieved a “considerable recovery” in its labels business, but current market dynamics demanded a massive injection of cash and a North American alliance due to customer consolidation. Its downfall can be traced to ill-judged acquisitions under a previous management. In July 2001 it closed a large-scale packaging plant followed two months later by the sale of its swing tickets and tags business, as well as a promotional print division.
CCL President Geoff Martin said the deal would allow the company to provide global customers with a single source supply chain for innovative label packaging solutions throughout the NAFTA and EU trading blocks. (UK-born Martin was senior group vice president of Avery Dennison before joining CCL last year.)
The label group specializes in servicing the personal care, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, household and specialty food products sectors. Annual turnover is around $US255.6 million (C$400 million). The company has 12 sites across Canada, the US, Mexico and Puerto Rico.
Stuart Lang, currently president of CCL Label Canada, has relocated to Leeds to head up the combined European, Canadian and Latin American businesses as president of CCL Label International. Peter Brady, the former JP sales and marketing director, continues this role with CCL Label Europe. Michael Maher remains as executive chairman.