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March 21, 2016 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 94, Issue 12

BASF and South Korea’s Kolon Plastics have formed a joint venture to build a 70,000-metric-ton-per-year polyoxymethylene, or polyacetal, plant at Kolon’s site in Gimcheon, South Korea. Both companies already make the engineering plastic. BASF will close its German polyacetal plant after the Korean plant opens.

Covestro has secured $1.7 million from the German government to develop a process for making elastomers from waste carbon dioxide. Covestro will work on the three-year project with RWTH Aachen University and the Technical University of Berlin.

Ineos will buy Solvay’s 50% share of the two firms’ chlorovinyls venture Inovyn by the second half of 2016. Solvay had originally planned to exit the business in July 2018.

Hitachi Chemical has acquired a stake in New Jersey-based PCT, a manufacturer of cells used in regenerative medicine, particularly cancer treatments. As part of its deal with Hitachi, PCT will become a contract manufacturer for Japanese drug companies, hospitals, and research institutes.

Bayer has opened an East Coast Innovation Center in Boston to tap into the life sciences community there. Bayer says the site will allow it to expand its drug development partnering activities in the region, where it already has relationships with organizations such as the Broad Institute, Crispr Therapeutics, and Dimension Therapeutics.

Takeda Pharmaceutical and Frazier Healthcare Partners have formed Outpost Medicine to develop TAK-233 (now OP-233), a clinical-stage small molecule being studied for the treatment of stress urinary incontinence. Outpost has raised $41 million in financing.

GlaxoSmithKline’s CEO, Andrew Witty, says he plans to retire in early 2017. Witty has led the British drugmaker for nearly 10 years. GSK says it will search internally and externally for his replacement.


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