Oystar has sold its Brazilian unit, Oystar Fabrima, to Sao Paulo-headquartered firm Masipack in an effort to focus its business on country’s the primary and secondary packaging markets.
The deal, terms of which were not disclosed, sees Fabrima’ facility, suite of blistering, cartooning and bagging technologies and its 170-strong workforce join Masipack, which aims to build its presence in the Brazilian market.
Oystar CEO Tom Graf explained that: “It was questionable whether running our own production site for pharmaceutical packaging solutions in Brazil would be an asset in the long run.”
He added that Oystar now will concentrate its bagging machine manufacturing in North America and India.
The divestiture follows just days after the firm formed Oyster North America, merging its New Jersey-based sales unit, which primarily sells machines made in Europe, with its Kentucky-based Oystar Jones arm.
The new North American unit, which will be led by form Oystar Packaging Technologies president Barry Shoulders, will employ 650 people and, according to Oystar, is worth some $250m.
The Fabrima sale also fits with the restructuring plan Oystar has undertaken over the last few years in response to the economic downturn, which caused many of the firm’s customers to delay orders.
These delays, coupled with lower demand overall, left Oystar with a loss of €75.8m ($104m) for the full year 2009, down from the €30.6m profit it recorded the previous year, with sales of just €402m.
Since then the firm has sought to cut cost and streamline its global business units according to Graf who spoke about the restructuring efforts late last year.
He explained that: “From the onset it was our goal to centrally manage individual product and consumer groups, and no longer through several subsidiaries.”
And, according to predictions Oystar issued in December, the strategy seems to have worked in 2010, with sales for the full 12 months expected to increase 6 per cent year on year to €420m.
The firm’s order book is also looking healthier than it did in with a volume of €450m anticipated for 2010 compared to €387m in 2009 and orders worth €186m already on its books for 2011.