Visy began manufacturing corrugated cardboard boxes in Melbourne, Australia, in 1948 and has grown to become one of the world's leading privately owned packaging, paper and recycling companies. Visy's past, present and future is linked by a commitment to growth, through meeting its customers' needs and the wise use and re-use of scarce resources.
Over 60 years of sustainability
In 2008, Visy celebrated its 60th year in business. The Visy story is a remarkable one of success, determination and entrepreneurship. It also demonstrates that sustainability has been a key part of the Visy story for all of those 60 years and will continue to be so well into the future.
• 1948 - Modest beginnings
With a £1,000 loan from Richard Pratt's Aunt, Ida Visboard the early signs were there that this would be a company with a sustainable future - the first corrugator used by Visy is made from recycled scrap metal.
• 1950s and 60s - Building a sustainable business
Visy steadily builds its customer base through establishing a reputation for strong customer service, competitive prices and innovation. These key pillars of the Visy business guaranteed a sustainable base from which to expand the business and they endure until this day.
• 1969 - A new era begins
Richard Pratt becomes chairman of Visy. With an annual turnover of $5 million and workforce of more than 200 employees, Visy enters a new and exciting phase of expansion.
• 1970s - Geographical expansion
Visy establishes a new plant at Warwick Farm in Sydney. Through the 1970's new plants are built in Victoria and Queensland and by the early twenty first century, Visy is the largest employer in a number of regional communities, including Tumut in NSW and Wodonga in Victoria.
• 1978 - A philanthropic tradition is established
The Pratt Foundation was established by Richard and Jeanne Pratt with the vision of assisting a wide range of community needs, covering such areas as medical research, education, the arts, religion and the relief of poverty.
• 1980s - A leader of the recycling movement
In the late 70's and early 80's, Visy opens its first paper recycling mills.
This investment recognised the need to not only use our resources more sustainably, but it also put Visy at the forefront of the recycling movement.
• 1990s - Global expansion
Visy continued to grow building a paper recycling mill and acquiring box plants in the United States. In 1995, Pratt Industries USA signed a waste paper recycling contract with the City of New York to recycle more than 150,000 tonnes of the city's waste paper annually.
• 1998 - World class, environmentally sustainable manufacturing and recycling facilities
Visy selected the town of Tumut as the location for a world class $450 million pulp paper mill.
Visy was determined to build and operate a mill that was sustainable in every sense of the word. This included the design and implementation of a project that would set the highest environmental standards while also delivering substantial economic and social benefits to the Tumut and surrounding communities.
• 2000s - One of the world's largest privately owned packaging and recycling companies
Visy effectively doubles its size with the acquisition of Southcorp Packaging. It provided a key means for Visy to achieve its goal to provide, through vertical integration, world leadership in the packaging and recycling industry. New products were added to the Visy brand, including PET bottles and jars, aluminium and tinplate cans, paperboard cartons and rigid plastic packaging.
Visy was now operating across more than 100 packaging and recycling sites across Australia, New Zealand and the United States.
Supporting Employee Giving
At Visy, a dollar for dollar matching program encourages Visy’s people to support the causes and charities that are closest to them. Together with the Pratt Philantropic trusts, Visy staff have raised in excess of $10 million in charity through the Visy Employee Matching Gifts program.
Visy Cares promotes social responsibility for Visy by developing projects that enhance the quality of life for the community. A key purpose of Visy Cares is to establish community projects in locations where Visy has large manufacturing sites or areas of substantial community need. Each Visy Cares project is owned by its surrounding community.