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Wacker finalizes acquisition of Polymer JV
04
Feb '08
Wacker Chemie AG has successfully concluded its acquisition of full ownership of Air Products Polymers (APP) and Wacker Polymer Systems (WPS), its two joint ventures with Air Products and Chemicals, Inc.

The transaction announced in December 2007 has now been cleared by the European and U.S. antitrust authorities. WACKER's stake in APP had been 35 percent, with Air Products holding the remaining 65 percent. As for WPS, WACKER held 80 percent and Air Products, 20 percent. WACKER expects APP and WPS to be fully integrated into the Group structures by year-end.

As already reported on December 11, 2007, WACKER is to take over vinyl acetate/ethylene operations from APP and WPS. Consequently, WACKER will take full ownership of the two companies' activities in Allentown (PA, USA), Calvert City (KY, USA), Cologne and Burghausen (Germany), South Brunswick (NJ, USA) and Ulsan (South Korea).

WACKER plans to coordinate this business out of the Lehigh Valley (PA, USA). In return, Air Products is to receive the production facilities at Elkton (MD, USA) and Piedmont (SC, USA), as well as related business and a payment of $265 million. WACKER estimates that the acquisition will help boost the Group's 2008 polymer business to about €1 billion.

As the world's leading supplier of dispersible polymer powders for construction applications, WACKER expects the acquisition to benefit its global polymers business on several strategic fronts. Advantages include backward integration at U.S. and Asian dispersion plants, as well as the expansion of its supply chain outside the eurozone. In addition, WACKER strengthens its portfolio in application areas such as adhesives and coatings.

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