26 July 2013 08:43 [Source: ICB]
Belgium-based Solvay is in discussions to sell its 70% stake in Latin American polyvinyl chloride (PVC) producer Indupa, its chief executive said on 12 July.
"We are negotiating with potential acquirers and expect to communicate something to the market in the next few months," said Jean-Pierre Clamadieu, CEO of Solvay.
Clamadieu spoke to ICIS on the sidelines of the Solar Impulse event at JFK Airport in New York. Solavy is one of the main sponsors of the ultra-lightweight solar powered plane that crossed the US in six trips from San Francisco, California on the west coast to New York City on the east coast.
Solvay owns 70% of Indupa while the remaining 30% of Indupa is owned by public shareholders.
Solvay aims to eventually exit the PVC business with the exception of a specialty grade that can be used in aerospace and automotive applications, Clamadieu said.
Solvay recently announced a joint venture with Switzerland-based INEOS to combine their European vinyls businesses. INEOS has an option to buy out Solvay's stake in four to six years, Clamadieu added.
Solvay plans to close the vinyls joint venture deal by the end of the year, Calamadieu said.
"We are working with EU antitrust authorities and expect to close the JV by the end of the year. Our objective is to compete in PVC in the European market with US product."
US PVC producers have enhanced their cost position in recent years because of shale gas, which offers lower energy costs for chlorine production as well as lower cost ethylene feedstock.
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