Expanding ECO Plastics in £24 million capital raising

Plastic bottle recycler ECO Plastics has raised £24 million from Ludgate Environmental Fund and Close Brothers to fund its expansion.


Plastic bottle recycler ECO Plastics has raised £24 million from Ludgate Environmental Fund and Close Brothers to fund its expansion.

Plastic bottle recycler ECO Plastics has raised £24 million from Ludgate Environmental Fund and Close Brothers to fund its expansion.
 
The Lincolnshire company, which is backed by cleantech private equity and venture capital investor Disruptive Capital and SAM Private Equity, plans to use the funding to ramp-up its production of food-grade recycled material (rPET) for soft drinks bottles.
 
Overall processing capacity will increase from 100,000 tonnes to 140,000 tonnes of plastic bottles a year – equivalent to 420,000 bottles an hour or 2.8 billion bottles a year. This represents just under half of the total plastic bottle recycling in the UK last year.
 
In March, the company, which is led by managing director Jonathan Short, agreed to a joint venture valued at £200 million with Coca-Cola Enterprises to develop a new purpose-built recycling facility in Lincolnshire.
 
The fresh expansion funds will be financed by the £5 million equity investment by AIM-listed LEF, the £5 million from Coca Cola Enterprises via the joint venture, and with the balance funded through new banking facilities from Close Brothers.

Peter Gangsted, chairman of ECO Plastics says, ‘We will recycle used British packaging in Lincolnshire, for re-use in packaging sold in Britain. This represents an important milestone for both the drinks manufacturing industry and the recycling industry. We are delighted that the markets have recognised the value of this model. The UK sustainable packaging market has huge growth potential and our expansion will make ECO Plastics a world leader.’

Disruptive Capital partner Cédriane de Boucaud comments, ‘The ECO Plastics team, with a leading history in plastics trading, came to us in 2007 with an ambitious plan to turn a large proportion of the UK’s old plastic bottles into new ones – keeping old bottles out of landfills.’
 
Boucaud adds, ‘This further expansion is validation of their technical and commercial leadership in a rapidly growing market, and proof that – with the right combination of operational, financial and strategic support – it is possible to transform markets. We are very proud of the team, and look forward to demonstrating that recycling is an attractive business model.’
 
In December last year, AWS Eco Plastics relaunched as ECO Plastics four weeks after the company officially reopened its Hemswell plant following a fire in the summer of 2009.
 
ECO Plastics’ £17 million sorting facility claims to be the largest and most sophisticated plant of its kind in Europe.

Todd Cardy

Todd Cardy

Todd was Editor of GrowthBusiness.co.uk between 2010 and 2011 as well as being responsible for publishing our digital and printed magazines focusing on private equity and venture capital. Connect with...

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