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Grace acquires Albemarle catalyst business

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Hydrocarbon Engineering,

W. R. Grace & Co. has completed a US$416 million acquisition of the Polyolefin Catalysts business of Albemarle Corp. The acquisition includes production plants in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, US, and Yeosu, South Korea; R&D and pilot plant capabilities; and an extensive portfolio of intellectual property.

The acquired business primarily develops and manufactures proprietary and custom-manufactured single-site catalysts, as well as metallocenes and activators used in the production of plastic resins. The transaction also includes a comprehensive series of highly optimised Ziegler-Natta catalysts for polyethylene production.

Over the last five years, Grace has invested well over US$1 billion to create a leading position in polyolefin catalysts and process technology. The company now has the broadest portfolio of polyolefin catalyst technologies of any catalysts producer.

“This acquisition significantly enhances our position in the fastest growing polyethylene segment and fills out our polyolefin catalysts portfolio,” said Grace Chairman and CEO, Fred Festa. “With the rising demand for sophisticated resins, Grace is committed to growing this business by investing in single-site catalysts technologies to fully support our global polyethylene manufacturing customers.”

“We are very pleased to welcome the approximately 175 employees, including commercial, R&D, and operating professionals, who run this business today,” said Al Beninati, President of Grace’s Specialty Catalysts business. “The combination of talent, technology, and manufacturing capabilities strengthens our team and aligns directly with our strategy to provide our customers the most advanced technologies in the market today.”

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