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Business Roundup

April 29, 2013 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 91, Issue 17

Ecolab will acquire AkzoNobel’s Purate water treatment business for an undisclosed sum. With sales last year of about $23 million, the Purate business provides chlorine dioxide-based antimicrobial treatments for cooling towers and other water applications.

Automakers working under the aegis of SAE International have concluded that the low-global-warming refrigerant hydrofluoroolefin-1234yf is safe to use for car air-conditioning systems. The review followed assertions by automaker Daimler that the refrigerant could contribute to a post­collision fire.

Fujifilm will spend $10 million to double capacity for touch-screen sensor films at its site in Ashigara, near Tokyo. Fujifilm says its Exclear film is made with silver halide photographic chemistry rather than the indium tin oxide found on traditional touch-screen films.

Kemira, a Finnish water treatment chemicals company, is closing a paper chemicals plant in Vaasa, Finland, and consolidating six European support service hubs into one facility in Gdańsk, Poland. The plant closing could affect 60 people. The support center consolidation will affect up to 210 people.

Vertellus Specialties has formed a joint venture with China’s Weifang Green Olive Chemical to produce pyridine and picolines at Green Olive’s 10,000-metric-ton-per-year facility in Weifang, China. Green Olive built the plant in 2011 but never started it up.

Methanex will spend about $550 million to relocate a second 1 million-metric-ton-per-year methanol plant from Chile to Geismar, La., by early 2016. The firm says its first relocation, undertaken to tap low U.S. natural gas prices, is proceeding on schedule and on budget.

Merck & Co. is licensing small-molecule cardiovascular compounds from Canada’s Xenon Pharmaceuticals. Under a four-year-old agreement, Merck will pay an option fee, along with milestone and R&D payments of up to $87 million.

Elan Corp. has rejected a takeover offer from the investment firm Royalty Pharma. With the help of outside advisers, Elan decided that the $11.25-per-share offer “grossly undervalues Elan’s current business platform and our future prospects.”



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