Clariant Ltd. will boost its North American and global compounding and plastic additives and pigments businesses next year in a deal with Hoechst AG. Clariant and Hoechst announced Dec. 10 that they agreed to merge their specialty chemicals businesses into Clariant. Hoechst will own about 45 percent of the expanded Muttenz, Switzerland, firm.
The combined masterbatches, additives, pigments and other specialty businesses have annual sales of about 9.2 billion deutsche marks (US$5.98 billion). Officials did not disclose North American sales or what portion is sold into the industry.
A day after the Clariant announcement, Hoechst announced Cookson Group plc's organic pigments business will be included in the deal. Hoechst agreed to buy that business for US$19 million in cash. Cookson Pigments of Newark, N.J., accounted for about 80 percent of the business's 1995 sales of more than US$40 million.
Clariant Corp. of Charlotte, N.C., owns ReedSpectrum of Holden, Mass., a producer of custom color and additive concentrates with plants in Holden; Lawrenceville, Ga.; Minneapolis; Albion, Mich.; and Phoenix; and a sales office in Naucalpan de J£arez, Mexico. Clariant also owns Bay Resins, a Millington, Md., compounder of proprietary engineering compounds. It bought Bay Resins in spring 1996.
Hoechst's compounding operations include Polymer Color, a color concentrates producer based in McHenry, Ill., and Plastic Materials Co., a Milford, Del., compounder of engineering resins and color concentrates. It bought both firms this year to expand its small U.S. compounding business at Coventry, R.I.
Clariant and Hoechst officials said it is too early to know if the firms will consolidate any North American operations or sales offices. Clariant and Hoechst have extensive pigments and additives product lines. Hoechst makes specialty chemicals at Coventry, and has sales offices in Charlotte and Somerville, N.J.