"We have spoken for some time about the opportunities in emerging markets and I am delighted that we are seeing our strategy bear fruit with the acquisition of a controlling stake in United Arab Can," Chipchase said, pointing to attractive growth prospects for beverage cans in the Middle East.
"UAC is a modern business with respected partners, well established customer relationships, a strong competitive position in an attractive market with good returns. While the plant is operating well, given our own global scale and technical expertise, we see a number of opportunities for synergies," he added.
UAC makes beverage cans and can ends and its plant is located in Dammam, Saudi Arabia. The site has an annual capacity of 1.8bn cans in both standard and specialty sizes, and generated EBITDA of circa. $29m in 2012.
Other UAC shareholders include The Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Saudi Arabia; the transaction is subject to regulatory approvals and is expected to complete in Q3 2014.