US Dow closes on $1.63bn Styron sale to Bain Capital

17 June 2010 21:16  [Source: ICIS news]

Dow headquartersHOUSTON (ICIS news)--US major Dow Chemical closed on the $1.63bn (€1.32bn) sale of its Styron division to private-equity firm Bain Capital, the companies said on Thursday.

Dow would retain a 7.5% equity position in Styron, the company said. The deal also included several long-term supply, service and purchase agreements between Dow and Styron.

Dow said it expected that those deals would generate about $400m for the company.

The Styron sale was part of a larger Dow strategy to concentrate on higher-margin products and materials.

“The Styron divestiture is another major step in Dow’s transformation and a strong example of our disciplined approach to portfolio management and business prioritisation,” said Andrew Liveris, Dow chief executive.

With the Styron sale, Dow exceeded its goal of divesting $5bn in what it deemed as non-strategic assets. The target was achieved in five quarters, Liveris said.

“These divestitures have enabled Dow to both reduce debt and liberate capital and resources for Dow’s higher growth, higher margin businesses,” he said.

In 2009, Dow acquired specialty materials maker Rohm and Haas.

Later, Dow said it could eventually line up its chlorine business in its asset-light pipeline. Dow's asset-light strategy involves a partnering in a joint venture to reduce capital requirements.

Styron included Dow’s polycarbonate (PC), acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS)/styrene acrylonitrile (SAN) resins, polystyrene (PS) and styrene monomer operations, as well as the company’s stake in the Americas Styrenics joint venture with Chevron Phillips Chemical.

Styron reported $3.7bn in revenue based on 2009 data. It has plants at 20 sites in 13 countries.

Earlier, Bain Capital named Christopher Pappas, former head of NOVA Chemicals, as the chief executive of Styron.

($1 = €0.81)

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By: Al Greenwood
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