Supporting Ball Corporation’s Acquisition Of Rexam plc
Ball Corporation, one of the world’s largest providers of metal packaging for beverages, foods and household products; aerospace and other technologies, retained FTI Consulting to advise on its acquisition of Rexam plc. In February 2015, Ball announced it had reached a £4.4 billion agreement on the terms of a recommended offer for Rexam plc, a U.K.-listed can producer. Challenges communicating the transaction included ensuring the U.K. and EU media understood the nature of the proposed deal, avoiding a negative reaction from the U.K. media to another transatlantic takeover, and allaying anti-competition fears. Although the deal had previously been agreed upon between the boards of both companies, the news leaked earlier than expected, resulting in FTI Consulting being engaged to put a communications strategy in place within a tight timeframe.
Our Work With Ball Corporation
FTI Consulting developed and executed a communications strategy within 24 hours of being engaged by the management team to frame the investment case for the media and the U.K. analyst community, as well as contain the damage done by incorrect information that had been picked up by the media. Efforts in the first few weeks were focused on helping the management team understand the U.K. media landscape, communicating the key points of the deal to the city stakeholders, and continuing to coordinate communications efforts around significant events in the deal timeline. The FTI Consulting team in London worked closely with the firm’s Brussels team to address the anti-competition concerns circulating in the Brussels media and to make the case to those in a position to influence the outcome of the European Commission review of the deal, activity that ramped up as the companies negotiated regulatory hurdles.
At the time of the announcement, FTI Consulting achieved a large volume of positive or balanced coverage in order to neutralize the anti-competition issue and any negative sentiment around the transatlantic merger. This success avoided the kind of negative situation that Kraft faced in their takeover of Cadbury and prepared the ground for positive sentiment towards the enlarged company, once formed. Ball successfully completed the acquisition of Rexam in 2016.