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Business Roundup

October 23, 2006 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 84, ISSUE 43

Ultrapar Participações, a Brazilian conglomerate, has promoted Pedro Wongtschowski, managing director of its Oxiteno chemical arm, to the position of CEO, effective Jan. 1, 2007. He will replace Paulo Guilherme Aguiar Cunha, who will remain chairman of Ultrapar's board.

Bayer MaterialScience says it expects a January 2007 restart of the damaged production line at its Baytown, Texas, toluene diisocyanate plant. One of two TDI lines at the site was downed by an explosion that occurred on Sept. 26.

Sanofi-Aventis has sold its remaining 8% stake in Rhodia's shares for about $242 million. Rhodia was formed in 1998 as the chemicals spin-off of Rh??ne-Poulenc, a predecessor to Sanofi-Aventis.

Pfizer says it is embarking on a new cost-reduction effort to create a "leaner and more agile organization." Although the firm is not providing details, it says the effort is on top of an ongoing $4 billion cost-cutting program.

H.B. Fuller will sell its powder coatings business to Valspar in a deal expected to generate pretax income of $50 million to $60 million. Fuller says the business had sales in fiscal 2005 of about $75 million.

Chemir Analytical Services has established a new company, Cyanta Drug Development Services, dedicated to serving the pharmaceutical industry. Cyanta will be based adjacent to Chemir in Maryland Heights, Mo., in facilities now being renovated.

Wacker Biotech will carry out clinical-trial production of Evolutec Group's autoimmune disease drug, rEV576. Wacker will use its proprietary secretion system, in which Escherichia coli secrete proteins directly into the fermentation broth.

SAFC, the fine chemicals arm of Sigma-Aldrich, has opened a new medicinal chemistry facility in Bangalore, India. SAFC says the $12 million facility will cooperate with an existing site in Manchester, England.



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