Dallas, Texas; November 23, 2004 – Celanese announced today that it has agreed to purchase Vinamul Polymers, the emulsion polymer business of National Starch and Chemical Company (NSC), for $208 million, subject to regulatory approvals and other customary conditions. NSC is a subsidiary of Imperial Chemical Industries PLC (ICI).
“This acquisition is the latest development in a strategy of diversifying our product offering with higher-value chemicals that are customized for end-use applications,” said David Weidman, CEO-Designate of Celanese Corporation, the global parent for the Celanese businesses.
Emulsion polymers enhance the performance of adhesives, paints and coatings, textiles, paper, building products and other goods. The Vinamul Polymers product line includes vinyl acetate-ethylene (VAE) copolymers, vinyl acetate homopolymers and copolymers, and acrylic and vinyl acrylic emulsions.
For the year ended December 31, 2003, Vinamul Polymers had sales of $335 million, of which $97 million were internal sales to other NSC and ICI businesses. Operating profit was $18 million. The business has approximately 600 employees and operates manufacturing facilities in the U.S., Canada, the U.K., and The Netherlands.
The acquisition is expected to be financed through an amendment and expansion of the senior credit facilities of a subsidiary of Celanese Corporation.
“The Celanese and Vinamul Polymers businesses complement each other geographically and technologically”, Weidman noted. “Together, we can offer customers a wider range of product solutions, a more reliable source of supply, and the ability to expand with them globally.”
Celanese’s current emulsion polymers business, which was acquired from Clariant in 2002, is primarily focused in Europe, while the Vinamul business includes complementary positions in both Europe and North America. Celanese employs state-of-the-art emulsions technology for use in low-emission paints and coatings, adhesives and other applications. Vinamul, among other things, is a recognized leader in emulsions for use in non-woven fabrics, paperboard and glass fiber coatings.
As part of the agreement, NSC will continue to supply Vinamul Polymers with starch, dextrin and other specialty ingredients following the acquisition. Celanese will supply the Vinamul business with vinyl acetate monomer (VAM) and polyvinyl alcohols (PVOH).
Celanese Corporation is controlled by a group of investment funds, which are advised by The Blackstone Group, a leading global investment firm. Celanese holds worldwide leading positions in its key products and world-class process technology. The Celanese portfolio consists of four main businesses: Chemical Products, Acetate Products, Technical Polymers Ticona and Performance Products. In 2003, Celanese generated sales of around USD $4.6 billion with about 9,500 employees. Celanese has 24 production plants and six research centers in 10 countries mainly in North America, Europe and Asia.
Celanese Corporation is a Delaware corporation headquartered in Dallas, Texas, USA.
Forward-looking statements (statements which are not historical facts) in this release are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Investors are cautioned that all forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, including those risks and uncertainties detailed in the Company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, copies of which are available from the Company.