Issue Date: January 1, 2018
W.R. Grace buys Albemarle catalyst unit
W.R. Grace & Co. has agreed to acquire Albemarle’s polyolefin catalysts business for $416 million. Grace, which already claims to be the largest polyolefin catalyst supplier, says the deal will strengthen its position in single-site and metallocene catalysts for polyolefins and Ziegler-Natta catalysts for polyethylene. The deal includes plants in Baton Rouge, La., and Yeosu, South Korea, that employ 175 people in total. Albemarle chalked up the sale to “portfolio management.” Vertical Research analyst Kevin McCarthy suggests Albemarle will invest cash from the sale in its growing business in lithium compounds for batteries.
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