Updated — Ineos Barex AG and MSM Poly LLC have terminated talks on MSM's plans to buy the intellectual property and production support related to the Barex resin product line.
Despite continual discussions following the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU), the parties were unable to finalize a transaction and Ineos has now has terminated discussions.
As a result, Ineos will retain the IP and continue to produce material until the end of September for its contracted customers before closing the business. Barex is a polyacrylonitrile (PAN) resin known as a high-performance material in pharmaceutical and food packaging films.
“While both Ineos and MSM Poly do agree that there continues to be a niche market for Barex resins, the parties could not agree to terms for the Barex IP and technology,” Ineos Barex CEO Paul Overment said in a news release.
“Ineos will therefore retain the IP and continue to produce material until the end of September for our contracted customers before commencing closure and demolition activities,” he added. “A small amount of Barex material was earmarked as part of the deal with MSM which could now be made available for sale.”
In a separate news release from MSM, CEO Patrick Mickle said that both parties agree that there is a market for acrylonitrile methyl acrylate co-polymer resins, but could not come to agreement on terms for the IP.
“MSM Poly is continuing to move forward in commercializing production of its Anobex resin, and is working with processors and end users in demonstrating product equivalence and finalizing regulatory approvals,” he said.
The AMAC material has been successfully tested by several customers and is being toll-produced for MSM Poly by Tiarco Chemical at a plant in Greenville, S.C. MSM Poly is reviewing two South Carolina sites for its own AMAC pelletizing plant and intends to choose one of those sites by the end of the year. Polymerization would continue to take place at the Tiarco location.
The two parties announced the MOU in July, with the view to MSM Poly purchasing all existing IP from Ineos as well as specific physical assets, commercial/operational support and a supply of Barex resin. Barex is made at only one plant, in Lima, Ohio.
Ineos Barex, is a Swiss-based company wholly owned by Ineos and is the parent of Ineos Barex which currently manages the Barex production site.
The firm announced closure of the Barex business in October 2014 but has continued to operate in an effort to meet guaranteed production volumes for contracted customers. Ineos operates two additional businesses at the Lima, Ohio, manufacturing site both of which are unaffected by this closure.
Several materials makers rushed to fill the void left by Barex, which was known as a high-performance material in pharmaceutical and food packaging films. Several Barex customers in the pharmaceutical packaging market contacted Montesino Associates LLC — a Wilmington-based consulting firm — about finding a replacement material.
Montesino Managing Director Peter Schmitt then contacted plastics industry veteran Mickle about finding a Barex replacement. Mickle agreed that there was a continuing need for Barex — a decision that led to the formation of MSM Poly. Schmitt is part-owner of the firm.
Staff from sister publication PRW contributed to this report.