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W.R. Grace to acquire Polyolefin Catalysts business from Albemarle

By Mary Page Bailey |

W.R. Grace & Co. (Columbia, Md.; www.grace.com) today signed an agreement to acquire the Polyolefin Catalysts business of Albemarle Corporation (Charlotte, N.C.; www.albemarle.com) for $416 million. The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2018, subject to regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions.

The Polyolefin Catalysts business is a global leader in proprietary and custom-manufactured single-site catalysts as well as metallocenes and activators. The acquisition also includes a comprehensive series of highly optimized Ziegler-Natta catalysts for polyethylene production.

The acquisition significantly strengthens Grace’s catalysts technology portfolio, commercial relationships, and manufacturing network. Approximately 175 employees will join Grace’s global team. The two manufacturing operations in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and Yeosu, South Korea add important flexibility to the company’s global catalysts manufacturing network, enhancing Grace’s ability to meet customer needs across multiple regions.

“This transaction aligns perfectly with our strategy to expand our leadership position in polyolefin catalysts,” said Grace Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Fred Festa. “I am excited about the opportunities created by adding the talent, advanced technology, and manufacturing capabilities of the business. Both the catalysts and activators product lines are tied to high-growth applications and the manufacturing assets bring important scale and capital synergies.”

Grace expects to finance the transaction with a combination of debt and cas

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