Dor Chemicals Ltd. took a new step in its bid to become a global giant in oriented polypropylene film with its Oct. 31 announced purchase of Trespaphan GmbH from Celanese AG.
A consortium comprising Dor's film subsidiary, Dor-Moplefan, and private equity firm Bain Capital LLC of Boston agreed to pay 200 million euros ($196 million) for the Neunkirchen, Germany-based business. Dor will hold a 51 percent share while Bain will have the remaining 49 percent.
Trespaphan employs 1,400 at four plants in Neunkirchen; Mantes, France; Zacapu, Mexico; and Chamdor, South Africa. The business, part of Celanese's performance products division, recorded 2001 sales of 281 million euros ($275 million) and can manufacture 286 million pounds of film annually.
The deal will make Dor the largest manufacturer of biaxially oriented PP film in Europe and one of the three largest in the world, according to the Haifa, Israel-based company.
Dor officials said they plan additional acquisitions.
Including the Trespaphan operations, Dor-Moplefan will have combined production capacity of 551 million pounds and annual sales of about 500 million euros ($490 million).
``Trespaphan is a well-established company with the potential for further growth ... it has the right people, know-how and equipment to be growing and [is] a major player in the field of BOPP,'' said Dor-Moplefan Chairman Zvi Mor, in a news release.
Dor-Moplefan currently concentrates in the commodity sector of the BOPP market. The Trespaphan deal gives the company a larger stake in the specialized part of the market, including films for packaging and labels.
Kronberg, Germany-based Celanese said it was selling the film business to focus on its core business, which includes engineering resins.
Dor started out with one modest, 28 million-pound-per-year BOPP plant in Israel a year ago, but has grown rapidly.
In November 2001 it bought an 80 percent stake in Moplefan, the European PP film business of Basell NV, with plants in Italy and Belgium. In June, Dor-Moplefan acquired Australia's biggest BOPP manufacturer, Shorko Australia Pty. Ltd., also from Basell, which is based in Hoofddorp, the Netherlands. That buy brought Dor-Moplefan's annual capacity to more than 300 million pounds.
This summer Dor expressed an interest in buying Applied Extrusion Technologies Inc. of Peabody, Mass., although AET officials decided against a sale.
The Trespaphan deal, which is subject to approval by European regulatory authorities, is set to be concluded by the end of this year.
Dor Chemicals is owned by Dankner Group, an Israeli investment company with interests in banking, petrochemicals, telecommunications and cable television.