More than four years of talks were necessary before finalizing the operation, which is now closed: Cosfibel is joining North America’s GPA to form a global leader in secondary packaging for the premium and luxury markets.

“We started our discussions even before the pandemic,” says Adam Melton, co-founder and CEO of GPA Global to Premium Beauty News. Cosfibel and founder Alain Chevassus are renowned for their work with premium and high-luxury brands, and we wanted to be sure to fully understand their vision for the company’s transition to the next step”.

Strong European foothold

Created in 2001 by Alain Chevassus, the Cosfibel group is one of the leading players in luxury promotional packaging, luxury gifting, and merchandising solutions. From L’Oréal to Chanel, LVMH to Remy Martin, and La Durée to Damman, Cosfibel has many prestigious clients and has established itself as one of the world’s most acclaimed suppliers.

Based in France, with global service centres in 16 locations, and working across verticals such as beauty and personal care, wine and spirits, and fine foods, Cosfibel employs more than 200 staffs and operates four manufacturing facilities in Spain, Portugal and Belgium. In 2022, the company achieved a turnover of around 100 million euros.

Regional solutions

This latest acquisition, which comes hot-on-the-heels of the take-over of Jenco Productions in North America, sees GPA establish itself as a global leader in luxury packaging. It also furthers their strategy for nearshore and onshore manufacturing, creating a strong European foothold through Cosfibel’s key manufacturing and to the facilities previously acquired, in particular in Poland (ASG), and in the UK and Ireland (Lucas Luxury Packaging).

“Our vision is to be as close as possible to our customers through regional packaging solutions. With this acquisition we can now produce in Europe for European customers, in North America for Americans and in China for Asian customers,” continues Adam Melton. “Our global supply chain and manufacturing capabilities will enable us to better support Cosfibel’s customers and increases our prominence in the beauty and food sector, whilst growing our dominance in wine & spirits. In terms of geography, the addition of France is a perfect piece of the puzzle that was missing to our European footprint. The acquisition of Cosfibelalso helps to grow our rigid packaging offering and to strengthen in the beauty segment.”

This move is key to GPA’s strategy of helping clients to reduce carbon emissions and shorten supply chains for speed-to-market, with better use of capital, while at the same time helping to de-risk the supply of materials.

Reducing the environmental footprint of packaging is, actually, the other key focus of the operation. The two entities intend to pool their respective expertise in this field, whether in terms of design or materials science.

“By joining GPA, Cosfibel will provide its customers an even more thorough global service. The two companies are very complementary, both geographically and in terms of products. The synergies will be incredible, across all verticals and segments,” highlights Marie Sermadiras, CEO of Cosfibel. “The complementarity of GPA and Cosfibel’s know-hows, creativity and excellence in execution should enable us to grow even quicker, accelerate our diversification and foster the transformation of the pack & gift sector. I am convinced that we are in the best possible position to lead the consolidation of the luxury and premium packaging industry in the next years”

Well-oiled integration process

The integration of new entities is a well-oiled process for GPA, which has been built up through successive acquisitions since its creation by Tom Wang and Adam Melton in 2007.

The founder of Cosfibel, Alain Chevassus, will assist in the transition process as Senior Advisor, while Marie Sermadiras, the current Managing Director, joins GPA’sexecutive committee.

“This is an historic moment for GPA, we have single-mindedly sought out the best talent, no matter where it was in the world, to enhance our GPA community and create a high-touch, consultative service model for the businesses we work with. Our ambition with each acquisition is to help our new partners to grow with us. This is a goal that we fully share with Ontario Teachers, our financial partner,” concludes Adam Melton.

GPA Global is headquartered in the USA and employs more than 3,000 people globally. The company is established on three continents in 38 sites.