Minister Michael McGrath - ‘Zeus Packaging is an ‘inspirational example of a home grown company scaling internationally’
THE Fermoy entrepreneur who was named the 2021 EY Entrepreneur of the Year has added another string to the bow of the succesfuil company he founded – creating 40 new jobs for the North Cork region in the process.
Brian O’Sullivan, the founder and owner of Zeus Packaging, was joined by Finance Minister Michael McGrath at the opening of the company’s new logistics facility in Watergrasshill.
The new 70,000sq ft facility is the latest addition to the company’s extensive operations, further bolstering its position as a global leader in the highly competitive packaging solutions sector.
Set to be operational next month, the new site one of four facilities in locations across the island of Ireland that will support the company’s ambitious national logistic and distribution strategy.
The 40 new Cork roles, which will be filled in phases over the next 18-months, will be created across logistics, distribution, commercial and administration.
Mr O’Sullivan founded Zeus in 1998 and despite the challenges of recession and the Covid pandemic, has overseen the growth of the company into a global leader in its field with a turnover of more €300 million and a workforce of 900 employees operating at over 50 locations across more than two-dozen countries.
Customers across a wide range of sectors include supermarkets chains Kaufland, Lidl & Aldi, Harrods, Musgrave, Ryanair and McDonald;s.
Mr O’Sullivan’s strategy since establishing Zeus has been one of expansion, with acquisitions financed by bank credit rather than outside investment.
In February 2021 Zeus completed a €40million, two-year programme of strategic acquisitions, which began with the purchase of Dublin-based Essential Supplies and manufacturer, Aldar Tissues.
It has also included the acquisition of three UK-based packing and distribution businesses and one in the Canary Islands.
In 2021 Zeus invested a further €15million in Aldar Tissues, quadrupling its capacity and announced the acquisition of Limerick Packaging.
Six further acquisitions last year across Ireland, the UK and Canada will see annualised revenues exceed €470 million this year.
Speaking at the opening of the new Watergrasshill facility, Mr O’Sullivan said he was proud to be investing in the area of his “local roots”, where he started his working life.
“This will greatly improve our capability within the region, create new jobs, deliver a better work life balance for our colleagues and importantly, deliver greater service options to our customers,” said Mr O’Sullivan.
Minister McGrath said Zeus was an “inspirational example of a home-grown company scaling internationally.”
“Having followed their global growth with interest, I am delighted to today open the new Watergrasshill logistics facility, which will provide a major boost for the local economy,” said Minister McGrath.