25 July 2013 16:26 [Source: ICIS news]
HOUSTON (ICIS)--Ashland has initiated a process to sell its elastomers business, the CEO of the US-based specialty chemicals firm said on Thursday.
"The decision to sell our elastomers business fits with Ashland’s well-established strategy of divesting non-core assets and reinvesting in higher-margin, specialty chemical businesses where we see attractive growth opportunities," James O’Brien told analysts during Ashland’s fiscal third-quarter results conference call.
The elastomers business accounted for about 22% of Ashland’s Performance Materials’ $1.5bn (€1.1bn) in sales for the 12 months ended 30 June.
Ashland operates an elastomers facility in Port Neches, Texas, that has a staff of 250 people.
The elastomers business primarily serves the North American replacement tyre market. Ashland acquired it as part of its acquisition of ISP in 2011.
Also on Thursday, Ashland announced it may sell its water technologies business. O'Brien said that Ashland will likely use the proceeds from the disposals to buy back stock, increase dividends, or reinvest in higher-growth businesses.
($1 = €0.76)
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