Ball buys out remaining shares of joint venture

Ball Corporation has acquired the remaining 60 per cent share of a joint-venture beverage can making plant that it operates in Qingdao, China. Ball has owned 40 per cent of the plant since 1993.

The company is set to build a new, expanded plant in Qingdao to meet customer demand. Equipment from the existing facility will be relocated to another Ball plant in China.

Construction at the new plant is already underway. It will supply 330ml and 500ml cans and is expected to start production by the end of this year.

“Our volumes in China in the first half of 2011 experienced strong growth compared to the same period last year due to increased market demand and the acquisition of our Foshan joint venture beverage can plant in June 2010,” says Raymond Seabrook, executive vice president and chief operating officer, global packaging. “The relocation of the existing Qingdao plant offers an opportunity for us to build a larger, high-speed plant to supply our customers’ growing demand for beverage cans in northeastern China.”

Ball expects to report an after tax gain of approximately $6 million in the fourth quarter of 2011 on its previous ownership interest in the joint venture, subject to the appraisal of the business.

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