Shareholder favors Dow Sentrachem bid
JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA — Dow Chemical Co. of Midland, Mich., has offered to buy Sentrachem Ltd. of Johannesburg, and Sentrachem's largest shareholder has agreed to the deal.
Sentrachem's products include polypropylene and polyethylene, but a majority of its sales come from specialty and agricultural chemicals, according to a joint news release. Dow offered a total of $426.6 million for Sentrachem.
Gitto/Global Corp. adds mixer, space
LUNENBERG, MASS.—Compounder Gitto/Global Corp. of Lunenberg has installed a new Pomini twin-screw mixer and is adding a warehouse.
The line will increase capacity by 25 million to 30 million pounds per year; much of the increase will be in the company's halogenated and nonhalogenated flame-retardant compounds, the company said in a news release.
The plant, which is 65,000 square feet, will be joined by a 45,000-square-foot warehouse by the end of the year. Cost was not disclosed.
The company, which has annual sales of $50 million, makes specialty PVCs, nitrile and urethane blends, thermoplastic olefins, thermoplastic elastomers, thermoplastic rubbers, polypropylene and polyethylene compounds.
Hanna combines CTI with materials unit
NORCROSS, GA. — M.A. Hanna Co. is merging its Compounding Technology Inc. business unit with its engineered materials division in Norcross.
Cleveland-based Hanna acquired CTI, formerly the compounding unit of Cimco Inc., in 1995. The Corona, Calif.-based business produces electrically conductive compounds for static dissipation, as well as compounds that are fiber-reinforced, wear-resistant and formulated for thermal stability.
CTI's compounds are based on several materials including polyphenylene sulfide, polyetheretherketone and filled polycarbonate and nylon resins.
In addition to the Corona plant, CTI operates facilities in St. Etienne, France, and Singapore. Those three locations employ a total of 120.
CTI President Frank Jackson will remain with Hanna as a business consultant until he retires next year.
Sales figures for CTI were not released.
Borealis expands LDPE compounding
LYNGBY, DENMARK — Borealis A/S is expanding a low density polyethylene compounding plant, and also adding ethylene production capacity.
The firm will invest 120 million Danish kroner ($16.5 million) to upgrade its LDPE compounding plant at Antwerp, Belgium. That will include a new in-line compounding unit. The plant's existing compounding capacity of 265 million pounds per year will be boosted to 375 million pounds per year.
The new unit is scheduled to start production by the end of the first quarter of 1999, according to the Lyngby-based firm. Borealis' LDPE operations at Antwerp produce material for the wire and cable industry markets in Europe and overseas.
The new installation will enable the company to close other compounding facilities in Antwerp, as previously announced.
Borealis also plans to invest $172 million to expand ethylene capacity to 1.34 billion pounds per year at its plant in Stenungsund, Sweden.
The increase from 882 million pounds per year will be operational in the fourth quarter of 1999.
The Stenungsund site also has polyethylene production capacity of 1.01 billion pounds per year. Borealis will consider expanding its PE production capability there when the added cracker capacity becomes available, the firm said.
VCM reaffirms plans for Malaysian plant
SINGAPORE—Vinyl Chloride (Malaysia) said it plans to start building an 880 million-pound-per-year vinyl chloride monomer plant in the east coast of Malaysia early next year, shrugging off months of industry speculation that the project had been shelved.
The joint venture is owned by Tokyo's Mitsui VCM Holdings (20 percent), Malaysia's national oil company Petroliam Nasional Bhd. (60 percent) and Land and General Bhd., a Malaysian property, shipping and resources conglomerate (20 percent).
They plan to have the plant operating in Kerteh, Malaysia, in mid-1999 instead of the end of next year as originally planned.
In addition, another Mitsui & Co. Ltd. joint venture, Industrial Resins Malaysia, plans to build its second 330 million-pound-per-year PVC plant in Kerteh using VCM feedstock from the Mitsui plant.
Surplus VCM will be exported to Vietnam, Indonesia and Thailand, according to industry sources.
Industrial Resin presently operates a similar-sized PVC plant in Johore, Malaysia.