Obituary: Lars Emilson ‘a real can maker’
Former Rexam chief executive Lars Emilson passed away earlier this month.
Emilson became chief executive of Rexam in October 2004, having joined the firm in 1999 when it acquired the European beverage packaging business PLM.
He worked in the consumer packaging industry nearly his entire career, joining PLM in 1970, starting out in plastic packaging.
Emilson then moved into the recycling business that PLM had bought before moving on to PLM’s food can operation.
He then headed up its beverage can operations and, when Rexam acquired PLM, he took over as chief executive of PLM overseeing the integration process.
In 2000 when Rexam expanded again to acquire American National Can, Emilson was the natural choice to take responsibility for Rexam’s entire beverage can business.
His knowledge of consumer packaging and his close relationship with major customers was a key part of the foundations for Rexam’s ongoing success today.
Rexam’s chief executive, Graham Chipchase, who joined the company at the start of 2003 and worked alongside Emilson in the company’s leadership team, said “Lars was a can man through and through.
“He was a person of great integrity and a much respected and valued member of an industry to which he dedicated his life.
“Those of us who worked closely with him will cherish his wry observations and great sense of humour.
“He will be remembered not simply as one of the architects of Rexam but also of the modern global drinks can industry.”
CanTech International editorial board member, Simon Jennings added, “He was a good man, a real can maker.”