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Toothpaste tube producer snapped up in private equity deal

Gresham Private Equity has announced a secondary buyout of Betts Global, the UK-headquartered manufacturer of printed laminate tubes for the oral healthcare market, from Permira, Royal Bank of Scotland and the Bank of Scotland in a deal with a total funding package of over £110m.

Headquartered in Colchester, UK, and with a “hole-in-the-wall” plant manufacturing toothpaste tubes for Colgate-Palmolive in Salford near Manchester, Betts has manufactured packaging for over 150 years, and claims to be a “global market leader” in toothpaste tube production, also supplying companies including GlaxoSmithKline, Procter & Gamble and Unilever. The group has over 1,300 staff working from 14 sites in eight countries ¬– including the UK, Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Poland and the US. Gresham says the global market for laminate tubes is growing, with demand in emerging markets “particularly strong”. It says the acquisition will provide Betts with “significant capital in order to develop the business, with opportunities to expand its capabilities into the personal care market and enter new market segments”.

Under the deal, former Boots group operations director Paul Bateman, who was responsible there for areas including manufacturing, supply chain logistics and it and human resources, becomes Betts chairman. Bateman’s previous experience includes a spell in charge of global home care product supply at Procter & Gamble.

Christian Bruning, partner at Gresham, who led the deal and has joined the Betts board, says: “The management team at Betts has a real focus on customers service, quality and innovation, and, with the additional investment we are bringing, the business is well-positioned to support its customers and capitalise on future growth opportunities. One of the areas Betts will be looking particularly at is increasing sales of laminate tubes for use in packaging other toiletries such as shampoos and hair dyes.”


Christian Bruning of Gresham (left) and Paul Bateman, Betts’ new chairman, who led the secondary buyout of the global toothpaste tube supplier Gresham Private Equity