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Zeus buys Dublin packaging firm

LIMERICK-based packaging company Zeus has bought Dublin firm AC Tape and Packaging in a ?11.6m deal and it now expects to grow the combined group's turnover to ?25m.

Zeus Packaging is owned and managed by Cork entrepreneur Brian O'Sullivan. Previously called Johnson Packaging, it has made a number of acquisitions in the past three years.

These deals include the acquisition of Cosgrave Packaging, Elite Packaging and RJ Sales amongst others.

Fast-growing Zeus will now have offices in Dublin, Cork and Limerick and a manufacturing facility in Lithuania, the company said in a statement yesterday.

Established in 1998 the business has 79 staff. Mr O'Sullivan said Zeus supplies a range of packaging products to the Irish market including retail, catering, healthcare and industrial packaging to customers like Musgrave, BWG, Dunnes, Cuisine de France, Baxter Healthcare and Wyeth.

Mr O'Sullivan said Zeus had been seeking an opportunity to further expand its product offering and was in the market for a suitable acquisition that would offer access to new and complementary markets.

AC Tape and Packaging has operations in Dublin and Lithuania. Its focus was on packaging products for the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries.

Founded by Aidan Corless in 1985, AC Tape had grown to an annual turnover in excess of ?7m prior to its acquisition by Zeus Group.

Corporate finance advisers to the acquisition included Louis O'Neill of BDO Simpson Xavier and funding for the transaction was provided by National Irish Bank.

Companies Office records show Zeus made pre-tax profits of ?1.4m in 2003 and had retained profits of more than ?3m that year.

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