BUSINESS ROUNDUP | Chemical & Engineering News
Volume 85 Issue 46 | p. 25 | Concentrates
Issue Date: November 12, 2007


Department: Business

Bayer MaterialScience has purchased UCSC, a Phoenix-based maker of rigid polyurethane spray foam roofing and wall insulation. Bayer will gain UCSC's facilities as well as 50 employees.

DSM has invested in Ganeden Biotech, a U.S. probiotics company that markets dietary supplements for digestive health. Ganeden's products are based on a spore-forming and lactic acid-producing bacterium, Bacillus coagulans. DSM joined Capital Resource Partners, a Boston-based private equity firm, in the $12 million financing round.

Israel Chemicals Ltd. has agreed to purchase Biogema, a French maker of wildfire retardants and foams based on specialty phosphates. The acquisition follows ICL's acquisition earlier this year of Fire-Trol, a Canadian maker of wildfire retardants.

Sigma-Aldrich's SAFC Hitech electronic materials business has signed a memorandum of understanding with South Korea's Gyeonggi Province about the possible construction of an electronic materials plant there. In September, Sigma-Aldrich announced it was investing in a new site in Wuxi, China.

BASF is expanding a plant in Tarragona, Spain, that makes catalysts used to produce polypropylene. The 25% expansion, expected to be completed in September 2008, is intended to serve a polypropylene market that is growing at 4–5% per year.

Kyowa Hakko will raise capacity for isononanoic acid at its plant in Chiba, Japan, by 65% to 20,000 metric tons per year. The company raised capacity by a similar percentage in 2005. The material is mainly used as a specialty lubricant in air-conditioning compressors.

Akzo Nobel overcame the protests of some shareholders to win approval for its acquisition of ICI. At a special meeting on Nov. 5, 79% of Akzo Nobel's shareholders approved the deal. The following day, 99% of votes cast by the 92% of voting ICI shareholders agreed to the takeover, which is expected to close on Jan. 2, 2008.

Direvo Biotech, which specializes in bioengineered products and processes for industrial and pharmaceutical applications, has acquired fellow German firm AC Biotec. AC provides bioprocess development and contract manufacturing to the industrial biotechnology and pharmaceutical markets.

Inion, a Finnish company specializing in biodegradable polymer implants, will close its research facility in Cambridge, England. Four R&D jobs will be lost, saving the company $2 million per year. The company says the lab completed work to identify the mode of action of N-methylpyrrolidone, the bioactive component in its OptimaPlus implants.

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