TIMELINE: Major chemical mergers and acquisitions

31 December 2008 11:04  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS news)--Total mergers and acquisitions (M&A) in chemicals in 2008 were expected to be well below the previous year due to the credit squeeze, but this should give cash-rich industry players new opportunities to make strategic buys.

The Huntsman-Hexion merger collapse epitomised the way the market for M&A has shifted since the credit crisis hit.

On 15 December US chemicals producer Huntsman settled for $1bn (€71m) to end its controversial multi-billion dollar merger deal with rival Hexion and its parent - private equity firm Apollo Global Management LLC. The legal action against Credit Suisse and Deutsche Bank, which refused to provide the required $10bn funding in October, remained active.

But some major deals, including Ashland's acquisition of rival Herkules, did manage to get final approvals.

Listed below are some of the largest chemicals M&A deals over the past few years:

14 November 2008 - US specialty chemicals company Ashland completed its $2.60bn acquisition of Hercules in a deal that created a major, global specialty chemicals company.

15 September - BASF said it planned to buy Switzerland's Ciba Specialty Chemicals for Swiss francs (Swfr) 6.1bn. Ciba shareholders voted in favour of all motions proposed by the board of directors in December and the deal was expected to close in the first quarter 2009.

10 July 2008 – Dow Chemical announced it would buy US-based specialty chemicals maker Rohm and Haas for $18.8bn in what it described as a “game changing move”.

2 January 2008 - US paints and coatings company PPG Industries completed its $3.2bn acquisition of SigmaKalon in a deal which was expected to increase sales at PPG by $3bn a year.

2 January 2008 - Dutch coatings company Akzo Nobel finalised its £8bn purchase of ICI after a lengthy takeover process, in which Henkel agreed to acquire ICI’s adhesives and electronic materials division for ₤2.7bn in an on-sale agreement with Akzo Nobel.

20 December 2007 – Lyondell and Basell completed their $19.4bn merger, forming the third largest independent chemical company in the world, LyondellBasell Industries.

9 July 2007 – Ulysses Luxembourg, a CVC Capital company, bought Univar in a deal worth $2.1bn.

4 July 2007 – CVC Capital agreed to buy alkylamines and derivatives producer Taminco from AlpInvest Partners for 1.1bn.

21 May 2007 - SABIC, the Saudi Arabian Petrochemical major, agreed to buy GE Plastics of the US for $11.6bn (€8.6bn) after beating both Basell and Apollo.

19 March 2007 - Brazil’s Petrobras reached an understanding with Ultra Group and Braskem to purchase Ipiranga Group's businesses in a transaction worth about $4bn, one of the largest such deals in Brazil ever.

12 March 2007 - Dutch life sciences, coatings and chemicals group Akzo Nobel said it planned to sell Organon BioSciences (OBS) to US pharmaceutical group Schering-Plough for €11bn and dropped plans to issue an initial public offering (IPO).

26 February 2007 - Saudi Arabia-based National Industrialisation Co (Tasnee) said it was to buy US major Lyondell Chemical’s titanium dioxide (TiO2) business for $1.2bn through a subsidiary.

15 February 2007 - Huntsman agreed to sell its base chemicals and polymers business to Flint Hills Resources for $761m (€579m).

4 December 2006US private equity firm Apollo completed the $3.8bn acquisition of General Electric’s Advanced Materials (GEAM) business. Apollo is launching it as Momentive Performance Chemicals, focusing on silicones, quartz and ceramics.

14 December 2006Wilmar International agreed to buy PPB Palm Oil for $2.7bn, creating one of the largest palm oil producers and refiners in Asia.

18 December 2006 – Norwegian energy majors Hydro and Statoil agreed to merge their oil and gas activities, creating the world’s largest offshore operator.

18 December 2006 - Dow Chemical agreed to acquire cellulose firm Wolff Walsrode from Bayer in a deal which would create a $1bn (€764m) water soluble polymers business.

23 November 2006 - Bayer said it would sell its metals and powders company H C Starck to Advent International and the Carlyle Group for €1.2bn.

28 September 2006 - Huntsman said that SABIC was acquiring its European base chemicals and polymers business for $700m in cash.

5 September 2006 – German industrial gases group Linde completed its takeover of rival BOC. The bid valued UK-based BOC at about £8.2bn.

28 August 2006 - Western Refining and Giant Industries said Western would acquire Giant for $1.5bn, creating the fourth largest publicly-traded independent refiner and marketer in the US.

14 June 2006 - Bayer clinched its biggest-ever takeover deal in the European mergers and acquisitions market when Merck KGaA backed out and decided to sell its 21.8% stake in pharmaceuticals firm Schering for €89 per share.

12 June 2006 - BASF completed its $5bn acquisition of US catalysts maker Engelhard.

21 February 2006 - Henkel forked out $420m for a range of deodorant brands from Procter & Gamble, which it had to dispose of as part of the approval for its $57bn acquisition of Gillette

16 December 2005 - Ineos, a private UK-based chemical producer, completed the spectacular takeover of BP's Innovene petrochemicals business. The $9bn sale was the biggest single divestment in BP’s history.

1 August 2005 - BASF and Shell Chemicals sold their Basell polyolefins joint venture in a Euro4.4bn deal to Nell Acquisition, an affiliate of US-headquartered private equity vehicle Access Industries.

1 December 2004 - Lyondell Chemical acquired Millennium Chemicals, creating North America’s third largest publicly quoted chemicals maker after DuPont and Dow Chemical. The newly created company had a market capitalisation of more than $6.5bn at that time.

28 June 2002 - Dutch group DSM sold its petrochemicals business to Saudi Basic Industries Corp (Sabic) for Euro2.25bn. The deal gave the Saudi giant a foothold in Europe, moved it from 22nd to 11th in the global petrochemical rankings by sales and established Sabic as the third and fourth global player in the polyethylene and polypropylene businesses, respectively.

3 June 2002 - German chemicals and life sciences giant Bayer completed its Euro7.25bn acquisition of Franco-German agrochemicals maker Aventis CropScience.

7 February 2001 - Dow Chemical merged with Union Carbide through a $7.4bn deal in which Carbide became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Dow, making Dow one of the world's leading chemicals, plastics and agricultural products producer.

9 February 2000 - TotalFina and Elf Aquitaine merged, leading to an $800m investment in petrochemicals and the creation of Atofina. Atofina was split in 2004 to form Arkema and Total Petrochemical. Vinyls business specialist Arkema will be spun off from Total this spring.  

31 December 1998 - The BP and Amoco merger was completed creating a new unit worth over $140bn, making it Britain’s biggest public company and the world's third largest energy major at that time. The merger also spawned a huge chemical business which BP slowly pared culminating in the Innovene sale.

1 December 1998 - Exxon and Mobil merged in an $80.1bn deal to creat the world’s largest industrial company. Chemical earnings in 1999, after the merger, amounted to $1.3bn of total earnings of $7.9bn.

8 July 1997 - ICI completed the $8bn purchase of four units from Unilever, a move that positioned ICI as a major world player in speciality chemicals. The Unilever units were National Starch and Chemical Co, Quest International, Unichema International and Crosfield.

To discuss issues facing the chemical industry go to ICIS connect


By: Hilde Ovrebekk
+44 20 8652 3214



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