Forest Paper and Packaging Deals. Branching Out – 2009 Annual Review

Forest, Paper and Packaging Deals 2009 reviews deal activity in the FPP industries. We examine the rationale behind deal trends and key individual deals. This year we include discussion of restructuring activity in North America in order to address the impact of financial distress on that region's deal market, and look at the reasons behind the high level of deals which took place in Latin America. We highlight some of the critical issues for companies engaging in deal activity within the sector, including timberland investments, biopathways, and sustainable packaging issues. Drawing on our global experience as an adviser to FPP M&A players, and in assisting in restructuring programmes, our commentary addresses the sector's key markets.

Key findings

  • Deal numbers up, but values drop sharply - this year saw just three billion dollar-plus deals in the sector
  • Latin America leads the way, and was home to four of this year's top five deals.
  • Interest in timberland investments set to continue, especially in Australasia
  • North America restructures high debt loads, while consolidation remains elusive in Europe
Looking ahead, the immediate prospects for any significant recovery in deal value look limited until real confidence is restored amongst the mainstream players. The fundamental drivers for deals remain, so a return of confidence could release pent up demand – the uncertainty is over timing. We expect that distress and selective “voluntary” transactions will drive a continuing flow of small value deals. Download the publication to read our perspectives in more detail