( Courtesy Proseal )

JBT Corp., Chicago, is purchasing United Kingdom-based Proseal, which specializes in tray sealing technology for the produce and other industries.

The $220-million-pound ($258.67 million U.S.) purchase gives JBT access to Proseal’s packaging model, described in a news release as environmentally-friendly through reduced use of plastics and prolonging shelf life of products.

"The acquisition of Proseal represents an important expansion of JBT's capabilities, adding significantly to our end-of-line market position and advancing our strategy of providing full-line customer solutions,” Tom Giacomini, JBT's chairman, president, and CEO. “Moreover, we believe Proseal's technology affords growth opportunities around the globe.

The deal allows Proseal to expand business through JBT’s global sales and service network, according to a news release from the U.K.-based Proseal, which also has facilities in Richmond, Va., and Melbourne, Australia.

Closing on the deal, which is subject to regulatory approvals, is expected in the second quarter of this year, according to the release.

Proseal managers and founders Steven Malone and Robert Hargreaves remain in place, and the Proseal brand will remain.

“We are delighted to announce that Proseal is to become part of JBT, which will significantly enhance our global presence,” Malone said in the release. “This deal will ensure Proseal’s continued growth and success through access to JBT’s global sales and service network, enhancing our customer support overseas as well as growing our business into new markets.”

Carlos Fernandez, JBT’s executive vice president and president of the liquid foods division, said tray sealing is relevant to many of the company’s FoodTech customers, especially in the expanding convenience foods market.

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