The Vision

Founded in 1892 by the inventor of bottle cap, Crown Holdings is one of the world's leading suppliers of metal packaging for foods, beverages and household and industrial products, with revenues of US$8.5 billion in 2012.The Philadelphia-based company aimed to build upon its already formidable global footprint –149 plants in 41 countries with nearly 22,000 employees – by increasing its presence in the strategically important Iberian segment of the European food can market.

The Backstory

Crown identified a highly attractive prospect: Mivisa Envases, the largest food can producer on the Iberian Peninsula, with sales of more than 555 million euros in 2013. It would be a great fit with the Crown brand and could deliver compelling benefits to customers and shareholders.

Crown understood very well the complexity and delicacy of such global acquisitions. To gain the best expertise for the transaction, Crown turned to Dechert. Crown had worked with Dechert on a range of global matters over the years. These included several complex M&A transactions and capital markets transactions, such as:

  • a series of acquisitions involving the Continental packaging group, Constar International and Van Dorn Company in the early and mid-1990s
  • the industry-transformational US$5.9 billion acquisition of Europe's leading packager CarnaudMetalbox in 1996
  • the company's critical US$3.2 billion refinancing and holding company restructuring in 2003
  • the company's spin-off of Constar in 1992 and its divestiture of the company's global plastic closures business for approximately US$750 million in 2005.

More recently, Dechert represented Crown in a US$1 billion offering of senior notes in January of 2013. Dechert has provided Crown a comprehensive legal resource for ongoing expansion into Europe, China and the Middle East, handling matters ranging from deals, to financings, to labor relations, to litigation.

This extensive experience with Crown allowed Dechert's team to carefully thread the needle among the competing legal needs of the company as it helped to negotiate the client's deal with Mivisa and its representatives.

The Result

On October 31, 2013 Crown announced that it had reached an agreement to acquire Mivisa Envases for US$1.65 billion.

The deal is expected to close in 2014, pending the approval of the European Commission and other relevant regulatory bodies.

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