18 September 2012 10:56 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS)--European chemical companies will use cash on their balance sheets to pursue strategic acquisitions, as well as new product development, business advisors KPMG said on Tuesday.
Around a third of a European chemical sector executive survey sample (32%) indicated that they are actively seeking acquisitions.
In the survey, 68% of the European chemical company executives who responded indicated that their companies have significant cash on the balance sheet, and more than 40% said their cash positions have improved since last year.
Some 84% believe their companies are likely to be involved in some form of merger and acquisition (M&A) activity over the next two years, up from 62% in KPMG’s 2011 survey.
“Large chemicals companies in Europe are on the look-out for opportunities to reorganise their portfolios to better suit these more straitened times,” said Paul Harnick, global COO of KPMG’s Chemicals and Performance Technologies practice.
“The top trump assets are therefore those speciality businesses which have high intellectual property value, and which operate at high margins” he added. “Intrinsically, high technology businesses also have the magic ingredient of high barriers to entry, which makes them particularly attractive for those with cash to spend.”
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