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Business Roundup

July 26, 2010 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 88, Issue 30

Vantage Specialty Chemicals has invested in Lipo Chemicals, a Paterson, N.J.-based provider of ingredients to the personal care industry. Vantage, owned by H.I.G. Capital, runs the former Chicago oleochemical operation of Uniqema. The combined operation has sales of almost $500 million per year.

Chevron Phillips and Saudi Industrial Investment Group will build a nylon 6,6 plant in Al Jubail, Saudi Arabia, by 2013. The two companies have two aromatics joint ventures in Saudi Arabia and are building an integrated ethylene cracker complex there.

Air Products & Chemicals’ India subsidiary will supply nitrogen and hydrogen to a steel plant that South Korea’s Posco will set up in the Indian state of Maharashtra. The steel plant will be Posco’s second outside of South Korea and its first in India.

Novozymes and Piedmont Biofuels have opened a pilot plant in the Biofuels Center of North Carolina that uses enzymes to generate biodiesel from low-grade waste grease. Separately, Novozymes and Brazil’s Dedini will collaborate on an enzymatic route to ethanol based on bagasse, a by-product of crushing sugarcane.

American Vanguard has acquired the cotton defoliant product tribufos, sold as Def, from Bayer CropScience. American Vanguard has marketed another cotton defoliant, Folex, since 2002. It sells several cotton insecticides as well.

Siemens will use an $8.9 million Department of Energy grant to build a carbon dioxide capture demonstration facility at Tampa Electric’s Big Bend power plant in Florida. The facility will absorb CO2 using an amino acid salt formulation that Siemens says is nontoxic and biodegradable.

Reaxa will lead a five-member consortium—which includes Cambridge University, Leeds University’s Institute of Process Research & Development, AstraZeneca, and Pfizer—to develop tethered catalyst ligands for pharmaceutical manufacturing. The three-year project is supported by a $1.1 million grant from the U.K.’s Technology Strategy Board.

Cypress Bioscience has received an unsolicited takeover bid from Ramius, a hedge fund that already owns nearly 10% of the biotech firm. The offer values Cypress, which develops drugs and personalized medicine services, at about $150 million. Cypress’ board is reviewing the proposal and has advised shareholders not to take action.



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