BorsodChem's expansion plans have backing, CEO

01 February 2010 16:57  [Source: ICIS news]

PRAGUE (ICIS news)--All parties in the new ownership structure of BorsodChem are committed to investing in realising the producer's major isocyanate expansion plans, the company's CEO said on Monday.

“Both BorsodChem’s majority owners, [UK-based private equity firm] Permira Advisers along with Vienna Capital Partners (VCP) and the company’s [new] minority shareholder, [Chinese isocyanates producer] Yantai Wanhua are committed, in terms of the current ownership solution, to contributing new investment into the future operation of BorsodChem in an amount that is sufficient to enable the company to re-embark on its growth path,” said Wolfgang Buchele.

BorsodChem's sales of toluene di-isocyanate (TDI) increased by 15% and methyl di-p-phenylene isocyanate (MDI) sales moved up 6.5% in the second half of last year compared to the first half, Buchele noted. This provided more encouragement for the strategy of sticking with the investment plans, he suggested.

These plans envisage BorsodChem becoming Europe’s number one TDI maker - lifting capacity to 260,000 tonnes/year from 90,000 tonnes/year - and number two MDI producer - by upping capacity to 360,000 tonnes/year from 160,000 tonnes/year.

However, the company must first reach a refinancing agreement on its major loans before it can finalise its strategy.

“We are close to a consensual solution with regards to the long-term future of BorsodChem. If Permira and Yantai Wanhua  ... manage to sign an agreement in the coming weeks, it will put an end to several weeks of the intensive negotiations which took on new impetus when the parties agreed on various open issues following their preliminary agreement last October," said Buchele.

The agreement allows Permira and VCP to retain ownership of BorsodChem for at least three years and Yantai Wanhua to take a minority stake in the company in return for writing off a proportion of its mezzanine debt. It also provides for Yantai Wanhua to utilise the right to make a bid for majority control of BorsodChem in 2013.

For more on TDI and MDI visit ICIS chemical intelligence
To discuss issues facing the chemical industry go to ICIS connect


By: Will Conroy
+44 20 8652 3214



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