A Solvay SA joint venture is buying Mabo Group, a pipe-making operation of Norsk Hydro ASA.
Pipelife Group, a 50-50 venture between Solvay and building materials company Wienerberger Baustoffindustrie AG of Vienna, Austria, said it expects to complete its purchase of Mabo Group by the first quarter of 1999.
Mabo, taken over by Norsk Hydro of Oslo, Norway, in 1993, operates 10 plants in five countries producing a range of plastic pipe systems, primarily from polyethylene and polypropylene. The firm recorded 1997 annual sales of more than 800 million Norwegian kroner ($115 million).
A leading pipe manufacturer in the Nordic region, Mabo has built up sales in Poland and the Baltic States. The company employs a total of 652, according to Solvay.
``Its extended product range, especially in polypropylene and polyethylene pipes, as well as its geographic positions make Mabo an ideal partner to complement the activities of Pipelife,'' said Brussels, Belgium-based Solvay.
Solvay expects Mabo, headquartered in Oslo, to benefit from the resources and expertise of Pipelife Group.
Vienna-based Pipelife, one of Europe's top three manufacturers of plastic pipe and fittings, employs 1,900 at 22 plants in 17 countries, including Germany, France, Austria, Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain and Greece. In 1997, annual sales reached 5.6 billion Austrian schillings ($450 million).
Wienerberger has 167 plants for construction materials, chiefly bricks and pipes, in 23 countries. Its annual sales total Sch15 billion ($1.2 billion).