Dow Chemical will not rule out mega deals – CEO

13 December 2007 20:22  [Source: ICIS news]

NEW YORK (ICIS news)--Dow Chemical will not rule out multibillion dollar acquisitions the size of Air Liquide, its chairman and CEO said on Thursday.

“We’re not afraid of acquisitions that size,” Dow chairman and CEO Andrew Liveris told ICIS in an interview. “If it makes sense, is a pure play and fits within our areas of focus, then our company will definitely look at it.”

Air Liquide had sales of €10.95bn ($16bn) in 2006.

There have been rumours in the financial community that Dow was mulling a bid on France-based Air Liquide or US-based Air Products, among other potential targets. Some industry observers had wondered if such a mammoth acquisition would be viable.

Dow had previously said it was looking at up to 60 potential acquisition transactions.

“Air Liquide is in inert gases that serve some of the markets we’re targeting such as electronics and human health,” he said. “If it made sense, we’d be looking at that.”

Dow’s four areas of focus include human health (food, nutrition, wellness), energy (alternative energy solutions, energy efficiency solutions), infrastructure & transportation (construction, water treatment, transportation), and electronics & communication (advanced materials), Liveris said.

An Air Liquide spokesperson said the company will not comment on market speculation. Air Products officials were not immediately available due to a storm which has temporarily closed corporate headquarters in the US state of Pennsylvania, a receptionist at the company said.

($1.00 = €0.68)

By: Joseph Chang
+1 713 525 2653

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