Irish-owned Zeus Packaging, Europe’s leading independent packaging manufacturer and distributor, has today announced a €15 million investment in Aldar Tissue, the Dublin based tissue manufacturer. Zeus acquired Aldar Tissue in 2019, as part of a three year €40million acquisition strategy which concluded in February of this year.
Zeus will invest €10 million in the construction of a new 100,000 sq ft Aldar production facility in Rathcoole, providing a purpose-built facility to relocate and expand existing production. Located close to Zeus’ headquarters and Dublin distribution centre to drive operational efficiencies, this new facility will be ready early 2022. A further €5 million will be invested in two new fully automated, state-of-the-art production lines. The new facility will enable Aldar to quadruple capacity and introduce new premium brands to large retailers across the island of Ireland along with exporting to customers in the UK & Europe.
Speaking on the announcement, Zeus CEO Keith Ockenden said: “Aldar is one of only two toilet tissue manufacturers on the island of Ireland, who combined, represent just 20% of the market. The rest of the Irish toilet tissue market is completely reliant on import. Not only is this a negative from a sustainability perspective, it also highlights the additional challenges brought on by Brexit and the knock-on impact of high distribution costs on the consumer.
“At Zeus, we wish to remove this reliance in the Irish market on UK and European imports by strengthening indigenous manufacturers such as Aldar. Since 2019, we have worked with Aldar to improve financial performance by streamlining costs, maximising efficiencies, leveraging economies of scale, and developing new product lines. Through this continued investment by Zeus into infrastructure and technology, Aldar is on track to becoming the largest toilet tissue producer on the island of Ireland, increasing our Irish capacity to 40% of market needs. This investment protects employment and brings further job creation to the area.’
Commenting on the announcement, Project Manager of Aldar Tissues, Darren Farrell, added: “Since 2013, we have been committed to supplying high-quality products, with a strong emphasis on sustainability. Over the last 3 years, we have invested €4million in in world class paper converting machines, diversified our product ranges and expanded our customer base.
“This investment by Zeus will accelerate our growth path, enabling us to become the largest Irish manufacturer of own brand and private label paper products.”
In February 2021, Zeus acquired Austrian-based food packaging solutions business, Petruzalek, expanding and strengthening Zeus’s geographic presence across 12 countries in Western, Central and Eastern Europe. Established by Brian O’Sullivan in 1998, Zeus today employs 600 people across 26 countries. The group’s turnover has grown substantially over the past three years, reaching €208m in 2020 and expected to reach €280m for 2021.