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DS Smith in discussions with Carlyle to acquire majority interest in Otor

DS Smith and The Carlyle Group have entered into exclusive discussions regarding the acquisition of the entire interest controlled by Carlyle in Otor.

The contemplated transaction would involve, directly and indirectly, the sale of 94.75 per cent of the share capital of Otor.

In addition, shares detained by Otor’s chairman would also be sold to DS Smith, which would post closing of the transaction control more than 95.00 per cent of the share capital and voting rights of the company.

The price per Otor share offered by DS Smith is EUR8.97. Following completion of the transaction, DS Smith intends to launch a squeeze out offer on the remaining listed shares.
 
DS Smith is a supplier of recycled corrugated packaging. Otor is a French corrugated board packages producer. Otor’s network of licensees covers countries all over the world. Otor had revenues of EUR315m in 2009.
 
Miles Roberts, group chief executive of DS Smith, says: “The acquisition of Otor realises a number of key strategic objectives for DS Smith. It makes us one of the leading players in corrugated packaging in France with 80 per cent of Otor’s sales derived from the fast moving consumer goods sector. We are confident that Otor is a high quality business with structural growth opportunities notably in shelf-ready packaging. Otor also offers an excellent platform for DS Smith to increase its European presence.”
 
Franck Falézan, managing director, Carlyle, adds: “Under Carlyle’s ownership and with our continued support, Jean-Marie Paultes and his team have refocused Otor on its core packaging business while dramatically improving its operations and financial results. The company is performing extremely well and has excellent prospects that would be even further improved by the transaction announced today.”

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