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Business Roundup

January 2, 2017 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 95, Issue 1

Afton Chemical, a lube and fuel additives subsidiary of NewMarket Corp., has agreed to buy Aditivos Mexicanos for $183 million. The Mexico City-based firm also makes lube and fuel additives.

Honeywell International is suing Illinois-based MEK Chemical seeking royalties and monetary damages from sales of HFC-245fa, a polyurethane foam blowing agent. Honeywell contends that MEK is importing a product from China that violates Honeywell’s production patent.

Eastman Chemical has licensed rights to a nematicide developed by Eden, a U.K.-based provider of terpenes for agricultural use. Eastman, which already makes metam-based nematicides, will pay an up-front fee and make annual milestone payments until sales of the product, called Cedroz, begin in 2019.

ES FiberVisions, a joint venture between Indorama Ventures and Japan’s JNC, plans to expand production of polyolefin bicomponent fiber in Covington, Ga., and Jiangsu Province, China. In December, ES completed a 14,000-metric-ton-per-year fiber plant in Rayong, Thailand. Bicomponent fiber is used to make diaper cover stock and wet wipes.

BioAmber is forming a joint venture with South Korea’s CJ CheilJedang to produce biobased succinic acid in China. The venture intends to produce up to 36,000 metric tons of the intermediate per year at an existing fermentation facility.

Agilent Technologies has signed an agreement to acquire Multiplicom, a Belgium-based genetic testing company, for $71 million. Agilent says the acquisition will enhance its diagnostics and next-generation sequencing capabilities.

Bristol-Myers Squibb will pay $50 million up front for worldwide rights to PsiOxus Therapeutics’ NG-348, an oncolytic virus that addresses solid tumors. Oncolytic viruses selectively replicate in tumor cells, stimulating an inflammatory response against the cells.

Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute has spun off Microbiotica, a new company that seeks to treat disease by harnessing the intestinal microbiome. The investment firms IP Group and Cambridge Innovation Capital are each investing about $5 million in Microbiotica.



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