ERJ staff report (PR)
Geismar, Louisiana – Ashland Inc. and Lion Copolymer Holdings LLC is to purchase Ashland Inc.’s elastomers business based in Port Neches, Texas, the companies announced 9 Oct.
The acquisition is set to close by 31 Dec subject to regulatory approvals, though financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
The elastomers business accounted for around 17 percent of Ashland Performance Materials' $1.6 billion in sales for the 12 months to June 30. The unit is focused mainly on the North American replacement tire market.
Ashland acquired the business as part of its $3.2 billion acquisition of International Specialty Products in August 2011.
"This decision fits Ashland’s well-established strategy of divesting non-core assets and reinvesting in higher-margin, specialty chemical businesses where we see attractive growth opportunities,” said James J. O'Brien, Ashland chairman and CEO.
“We are pleased with the value we received for the business and believe this transaction represents a good strategic fit for Lion," added O’Brien.
“With the acquisition of the Ashland elastomers business, we are pleased once again to be in this segment of the synthetic rubber business,” said Jesse Zeringue, executive VP of Lion Copolymer and president of Lion Copolymer Geismar LLC.
Lion, he added, sees growth potential for the 250-employee facility in Port Neches, based on its size, access to feedstock and storage capacity, combined with speciality products such as hot styrene-butadiene rubber polymers and high styrene polymers.
“We were also impressed by the quality of the operations and the plant, which has benefited from significant investment over the years,” Zeringue concluded