US Huntsman, Clariant in talks to merge – report

22 May 2017 00:23 Source:ICIS News

Huntsman officeHOUSTON (ICIS)--US-based polyurethanes producer Huntsman and Switzerland-based Clariant are close to agreeing to a merger, creating a company with a combined market value of about $14bn, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday.

In an emailed statement to ICIS, Huntsman said it does not comment about market speculation.

Clariant shareholders would own about 52% of the new company, and Huntsman shareholders would own the rest, the Wall Street Journal reported. The new company would be called HuntsmanClariant.

Huntsman CEO Peter Huntsman would keep the same title under the merged company, while Clariant CEO Hariolf Kottmann would become the chairman, the Wall Street Journal reported. Representation on the board would be evenly split.

Some kind of deal had been expected on the part of Huntsman. Back in March, the company said it would be considering a range of options, including a possible merger-of-equals deal, following the spin-off of its pigments and additives business, called Venator Materials. That spin-off should take place later this year.

If Huntsman and Clariant do pursue a merger as reported by the Wall Street Journal, the combined company would have little overlap, something that should help the deal receive approval from anti-trust regulators.

Huntsman derives a good portion of its income from its polyurethanes business.

Its performance-products segment makes amines, surfactants and maleic anhydride (MA). The textile-effects segment makes textile chemicals dyes and digital inks.

Advanced materials makes epoxy resins. Huntman has been using its expertise in epoxy resins and polyurethanes to develop composites.

By contrast, Clariant makes polymer additives, flame retardants, masterbatches and catalysts used in chemical processes. Other business units include functional minerals, pigments and oil-and-mining services.

Its industrial and consumer-specialties business unit serves end markets such as automotive fluids, aviation, construction chemicals, crop solution, gas treatment and heat-transfer fluids, as well as industrial and home care.

Clariant also has a new businesses unit, which concentrates on electronic materials, food ingredients, renewable chemicals and VitiSpheres. These are used to integrate active ingredients into cosmetics.

The image above shows a Huntsman office

By Al Greenwood