Netherlands-based drinks giant Refresco has acquired US-based VBC Bottling Company, a fellow contract manufacturer.

Refresco, which has 30 manufacturing sites in North America, said VBC “complements” its presence in the market.

The deal also “further enhances” Refresco’s canning assets in North America and “improves our ability to service our contract manufacturing customers”, a company spokesperson said

Refresco bought California-based and family-owned VBC from the Varni brothers. It said the company’s “management will remain with the business after the transaction”. More than 180 staff work at VBC, who will also join Refresco. Financial terms were not disclosed.

In a statement, Refresco CEO Hans Roelofs said: “The company’s strong customer base, strategically located facility, and warehousing capacity further strengthen our footprint in North America. Additional canning capacity along the West Coast improves our ability to service all our contract manufacturing customers.”

The group, which employs more than 14,000 staff worldwide, carries out contract manufacturing for brands such as Aquajuice, Del Monte and Old Jamaica.

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In the final quarter of 2023, Refresco confirmed two changes to its business in Europe.

In December, PepsiCo announced plans to bottle in-house in Germany from this year, ending its contract with Refresco amid efforts to “simplify” its network.

Two months earlier, Refresco said it was shutting down production at a plant in France as “soaring” raw material and energy costs contributed to the site’s “persistent and growing financial losses”.

In 2022, US-based private equity firm KKR agreed to acquire majority control of Refresco.

The same year, Rotterdam-based Refresco bought Hansa-Heemann, a German mineral water and CSD producer, as well as three US production sites from The Coca-Cola Co.