Business Roundup | January 12, 2009 Issue - Vol. 87 Issue 2 | Chemical & Engineering News
Volume 87 Issue 2 | p. 27 | Concentrates
Issue Date: January 12, 2009

Business Roundup

Department: Business

Ashland has sold its 34% interest in polyolefin fiber maker FiberVisions to its partner in the venture, the private equity firm Snow Phipps Group, for $7 million. Ashland obtained the interest when it acquired Hercules in November.

Gulf Resources, a Chinese bromine maker, has acquired a bromine and salt facility in Shouguang City, China, for $11.5 million. The purchase will give the company 3,000 metric tons of additional bromine and 200,000 metric tons of additional crude salt capacity per year.

Genencor, a division of Danisco, and the German biotechnology firm Brain are joining forces to develop biobased fermentative production of industrially relevant chemicals from renewable raw materials. The new collaboration expands upon another, established in 2004, to develop a new enzyme product platform.

Endo Pharmaceuticals will pay $370 million in cash to acquire Indevus Pharmaceuticals, a specialty drug company focused on treating conditions in urology and endocrinology. Indevus could earn an additional $267 million if two drugs in development, the hypogonadism treatment Nebido and an implant that mimics the hormone somatostatin, achieve certain milestones.

Onyx Pharmaceuticals has forked over $25 million to Singapore-based S*BIO for an option to license two compounds that block Janus kinase 2 (JAK2), a key cancer target. SB1518, an orally available selective inhibitor of JAK2, is in Phase I studies, and SB1578 is in preclinical development.

Chiral Technologies Europe, a subsidiary of Daicel Chemical Industries, has bought ChromTech, a Congleton, England-based maker of chromatography columns. ChiralTech says the companies have complementary lines of enantioselective chromatography columns.

Ratiopharm, a German generic pharmaceuticals producer that had sales of roughly $2.5 billion in 2007, is up for sale by the family of billionaire Adolf Merckle. Merckle, 74, who founded Ratiopharm in 1973, committed suicide last week under financial stress.

Adventrx Pharmaceuticals is undergoing a second round of job cuts as it tries to stretch its cash while it evaluates its strategic options. In October 2008, the company shed 27% of its staff. With the current move, it has shrunk by another 55% and has 14 employees left.

 
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