Amcor Flexibles is to produce gravure printed packaging films in Russia from next August. The company is investing €25M in a new company Amcor Flexibles Novgorod to serve the rapidly growing market.
The company has bought a 10hectare greenfield site alongside sister company Amcor Rentsch’s carton plant at Novgorod, some 500km from Moscow and 200km from St Petersburg.
The first phase includes plans to install two gravure presses, a solvent free laminator and three slitters. The site is expected to produce more than 100Mm2/year. Expecting to employ 150 staff the company will bring in its own printers to train young local people, said Amcor’s John Durston at the opening of the European Rotogravure Association recent packaging conference in Freiburg.
“Manufacturing in Russia is a challenge, but for us it is a strategic necessity. It will be a blueprint for further expansion,” he added. “There is under capacity in Russia for high quality gravure printing with most local suppliers printing only in flexo.”
Other legs in the strategic rationale behind the new business are the establishment of a low cost operation in a high growth market. Real GDP growth over the last five years is 6.6 per cent and it is predicted to remain strong. The move will also avoid import duties and logistics problems.
According to Maciej Malec, project manager for the Novgorod development: “The investment is, in part, a response to requests from several of our multinational customers for us to produce locally for their own Russian operations. Currently our customers in Russia are generally served from Amcor Flexibles sites in Finland and Poland, but with this new site we will offer them local supply at the same standard of high quality flexible packaging.”
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