UpdateUS Ashland's $3.2bn ISP deal widens food, pharma portfolio

23 August 2011 23:34  [Source: ICIS news]

Ashland CEO(adds paragraphs 1, 5-10)

HOUSTON (ICIS)--US-based Ashland's $3.2bn (€2.2bn) acquisition of International Specialty Products (ISP) will allow the former to widen its portfolio in food and beverages, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics, the company said on Tuesday.

Ashland will integrate ISP into its Ashland Aqualon Functional Ingredients commercial unit, which has been renamed to Ashland Specialty Ingredients, effective immediately, it said.

The unit produces several food, cosmetic and pharmaceutical ingredients. It also produces coatings additives, construction chemicals and oilfield chemicals.

However, the food, cosmetic and pharmaceutical products illustrate the extent that ISP complements Ashland's former products, according to the company.

For food and beverages, Ashland sells texture modifiers and thickeners while ISP sells clarifiers, Ashland said. For pharmaceutical ingredients, Ashland focuses on controlled release while ISP focuses on immediate release.

For skin care, ISP brings ultraviolet (UV) protection and anti-wrinkle treatments. For oral care, ISP brings tartar and gingivitis control.

Likewise, the two companies complement each other for hair care, Ashland said.

For oil-field chemicals, the two companies similarly complement each other, with Ashland offering drilling aids and cement additives and ISP offering fluid-loss additives and hydrate inhibitors.

"We have taken a defining step toward becoming the best specialty chemical company in the world," said Ashland chief executive Jim O'Brien. He made his comments in a broadcasted statement.

By the end of the second year, Ashland expects to achieve $50m “in annual run-rate savings” by eliminating redundancies and capturing operational efficiencies, it added.

Last month, Ashland said it also expects $40m/year in savings from its ASK Chemicals joint venture with Germany's Sud-Chemie (now part of Swiss Clariant), as well as the sale of its distribution business.

Ashland announced the ISP deal in May.

Ashland also produces water-treatment chemicals, resins used in composites and Valvoline lubricants.

ISP produces agrochemicals, biocides, food ingredients, pharmaceutical ingredients and styrene butadiene rubber (SBR).

($1 = €0.70)

By: Al Greenwood
+1 713 525 2645

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