BASF targets 20% margin in performance products business – exec

12 January 2012 17:49  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--BASF aims to further raise margins in its performance products business, an executive board member of the Germany-based chemicals major said on Thursday.

“We want to raise margins - in terms of earnings before interest, tax and depreciation – to 20% over the mid-term”, compared with the 17% the performance products business achieved in 2010, Michael Heinz told German business daily Handelsblatt in an interview. The paper provided a transcript.

BASF’s performance products business includes dispersions and pigments, care chemicals, nutrition and health, paper chemicals, performance chemicals, and advanced materials and systems research.

Heinz, who joined BASF’s executive board last year with responsibility for performance products, said the company would achieve the targeted margin through organic growth and acquisitions.

“We continue to be interested in reasonable acquisitions, and we are permanently looking around for opportunities,” he said without disclosing details about possible targets.

“However, we also see considerable potential in organic growth,” Heinz said.

One focus for BASF’s performance product business is to further develop recently-acquired businesses, including water chemicals, specialty lubricants, mining chemicals, and paint and coatings additives, he said.

“Through our acquisitions, we have a number of ‘raw diamonds’ which we aim to refine,” he added.

Before joining BASF’s board, Heinz led the integration of BASF’s acquisitions of Cognis and Ciba.

In related news on Thursday, BASF announced that it acquired, for $50.0m (€39.5m), an equity stake in Sion Power, a US-based firm focused on the development of lithium-sulphur batteries for electric vehicles.

($1 = €0.79)

For more on BASF and other producers visit ICIS company intelligence

By: Stefan Baumgarten
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