The PBGC is taking over the pension plan of Saint-Gobain Containers Inc., Muncie, Ind., because it is being sold to a below-investment-grade company, a PBGC spokeswoman confirmed.
In January, Compagnie de Saint-Gobain agreed to sell the firm for $1.7 billion to a unit of Ardagh Group SA, a glass and metal packaging company based in Luxembourg.
“We are acting now to prevent the increased risk of a future pension default created by the sale,” said Sanford Rich, PBGC’s chief of negotiations and restructuring, in a news release.
The pension plan has $876 million in assets and $1.4 billion in projected benefit obligations, for a funding ratio of 63%, according to PBGC estimates.
The agency says it expects to cover $497 million of the $524 million shortfall.