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Cargill acquires NatureWorks from Teijin
02
Jul '09
Teijin Limited announced that it had transferred its 50% ownership in NatureWorks LLC back to Cargill and terminated the joint-venture contract with Cargill regarding NatureWorks as of June 30.

NatureWorks, established in 1997 and operated as a Teijin-Cargill 50:50 joint venture since October 2007, produces its INGEO biopolymer at the world's largest commercial polylactic acid (PLA) manufacturing facility with an annual capacity of 140,000 tons.

Teijin, which is currently proceeding with a business portfolio restructuring in response to the global economic downturn, has made the decision to focus its corporate resources on technological and commercial development of BIOFRONT, its proprietary heat-resistant PLA plastic and accordingly transferred its ownership back to Cargill as a result of shift in emphasis.

NatureWorks, which has reverted to being a wholly owned company by Cargill, operates business-as-usual under the leadership of current CEO Marc Verbruggen with prospects for continued growth. The financial impact of the ownership transfer was included in Teijin's fiscal 2008 (ended March 31, 2009) results, and will have no impact in the current fiscal year.

As a key issue in promoting sustainable environment initiatives, Teijin has been working on the development of materials using renewable resources in place of oil. Considering the possibility that the importance of bioplastic will increase more than ever in the coming years, the company will continue to focus on the bioplastic business for overall market expansion. Teijin believes that cooperative efforts among industry players are essential for continued market expansion going forward and intends to maintain cooperative relations with NatureWorks and Cargill, which share the same belief.

Teijin is a global technology-driven group operating in five main fields: synthetic fibers; films and plastics; pharmaceuticals and home health care; trading and retail; and IT and new products. Teijin Limited, the holding company for the Teijin Group, is listed on the Tokyo and Osaka stock exchanges. The group had consolidated sales of USD 9.4 billion (JPY 943.4 billion, USD 1=JPY 100) in fiscal 2008 and employs approximately 19,000 people in 160 companies worldwide .

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