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Mergers & Acquisitions

Nouryon buys cellulose business and sells polymer business

by Alex Scott
February 7, 2020 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 98, Issue 6

A photo of Huber's carboxymethyl cellulose plant in Äänekoski, Finland.
Credit: Nouryon
Nouryon will take over this Huber facility in Äänekoski, Finland.

Nouryon, the former chemical business of AkzoNobel, has agreed to sell its Elotex-brand vinyl acetate redispersible polymer business, including plants in Asia and Europe, to Celanese. Elotex powders are used to improve the performance of mortars for the construction industry. Celanese says the acquisition will enable it to leverage its acetyl chemicals supply chain. Simultaneously, Nouryon has agreed to purchase J.M. Huber’s carboxymethyl cellulose (CMC) activities. Like the Elotex business, the CMC business makes additives for improving the performance of mortars. But unlike Elotex powders, CMC is derived from biobased raw materials. Nouryon says the deal will substantially broaden its portfolio of sustainable, biobased water-soluble polymers for use as thickeners, binders, stabilizers, and film formers. The Huber business has annual sales of $150 million and 240 employees, and includes a plant and R&D center in Äänekoski, Finland. Nouryon expects to complete both deals by the end of June.


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