Richard (Dick) Giesen, former owner of Chicago-based Continental Packaging Solutions, died on April 19 at the age of 83. Survivors include son Mark Giesen, chairman of the National Association of Container Distributors.
Continental was a nationwide packaging distributor that was acquired by Berlin Packaging in 2010. It was founded in 1936 as Continental Glass Company, initially supplying glass bottles to beverage companies including Pepsi Cola, 7-Up, Dr. Pepper, and Jim Beam. Giesen was part of a 1988 buyout that helped build the company into a business with branches from coast to coast as well as in mainland China, and value-added services ranging from component assembly and package decoration to warehousing and logistics management.
Giesen was a prominent local businessman who also served as president and CEO of some of Chicago’s best-known companies, including Field Enterprises, whose properties included The Chicago Sun-Times Newspaper; Science Research Associates.