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International Paper signs agreement to acquire DS Smith

April 16, 2024  By P&PC Staff

International Paper and DS Smith have reached an agreement on the terms of a recommended all-share combination.  The combined company will be headquartered in Memphis, Tennessee, with plans to establish an EMEA headquarters at DS Smith’s existing London headquarters.

“Combining with DS Smith is a logical next step in IP’s strategy to drive profitable growth by strengthening our global packaging business,” said Mark S. Sutton, chairman and CEO of IP. “DS Smith is a leader in packaging solutions with an extensive reach across Europe, which complements IP’s capabilities and will accelerate growth through innovation and sustainability. We are confident this combination will drive significant value for our employees, customers, and shareholders.”

CEO-elect of IP, Andrew K. Silvernail added, “Bringing together the capabilities and expertise of both companies will create a winning position in renewable packaging across Europe, while also enhancing IP’s North American business. I firmly believe this strategic combination offers a unique and highly compelling opportunity to create tremendous shareholder value. I am also committed to working with the teams to deliver the expected synergies, along with the ongoing profit improvement initiatives across the IP portfolio.”


CEO of DS Smith, Miles Roberts, said, “The combination with IP is an attractive opportunity to create a truly international sustainable packaging solutions leader that is well positioned in attractive and growing markets across Europe and North America. It combines two focused and complementary businesses. DS Smith has grown significantly through a dedication to customers, focus on innovation, quality of packaging and high levels of service. In a dynamic sustainable packaging landscape, the combination will enhance our global proposition to customers, create opportunities for colleagues and drive value for shareholders who can remain fully invested in such an exciting business. I am proud of all that DS Smith has achieved to date and am sure that the business will continue to flourish as part of a combined group with IP due to the capability and continued commitment of our colleagues.”

Andrew K. Silvernail will be CEO of the combined company and Miles Roberts will be retained as a consultant to assist with integration matters.

International Paper shared in its press statement that this move creates a global leader in sustainable packaging solutions, focused on the attractive and growing North American and European regions. It establishes a differentiated corrugated packaging company with approximately 90 percent of its revenue from sustainable fibre-based packaging. It also expands IP’s footprint and capabilities in the attractive European region. Additionally, the move enhances IP’s business in North America’s eastern region with the addition of DS Smith’s complementary box network.

International Paper notes that the complementary business models increase vertical integration to improve profitability. Integration of approximately 500-600k tons of containerboard from DS Smith into the IP mill system will increase the combined integration rate to approximately 90 percent.

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