Packaging firm Smurfit Kappa will expand its corrugated plant in Rethel in north-east France with an investment of €24 million.
The amount will consolidate two existing facilities at the plant and see the installation of a new state-of-the-art corrugator and conversion equipment.
Commenting on the announcement, Edwin Goffard, COO of Smurfit Kappa Europe – Corrugated and Converting, said, "Smurfit Kappa’s ambition to strengthen its position in France continues with this significant new investment.
"This investment will allow us to grow further and improve our quality of service to the food and industrial markets that we serve."
The initiative will result in a positive environmental outcome at the plant, including reducing CO2 emissions of at least 150 tonnes annually.
Jean-Christophe Burgeon, CEO of Smurfit Kappa France, added, "This investment will not only expand the capacity at our site, but it will also help us to tackle the ever-growing environmental issues our planet faces by significantly reducing the plant’s carbon footprint."
The company reported an underlying revenue growth of 6% to €2.27 billion in the first half of its financial year, driven by increased e-commerce demand.
The company said that corrugated volume growth was up 7% in the quarter in both Europe and the Americas, which demonstrated the group's exposure to high-growth markets such as e-commerce and sustainable packaging.
The company aims to complete the first phase of the project in the first half of 2022, which includes the installation of the new corrugator.
A new 8200 square-metre building, designed specifically for installing the new high-tech corrugator, will also be constructed, the company added.
The project will be fully completed by 2023 and include measures such as modernisation and expansion of the plant.