BASF renames Engelhard, announces strong results

By Simon Pitman

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Chemical industry BASF

BASF announced that it is re-naming the recently acquired Engelhard
business in an effort to integrate it into its operations, on the
back of a strong financial performance that beats forecasts.

The chemicals giant, which supplies a number of key ingredients and chemicals for both the formulation and packaging of cosmetic and personal care products, said that Engelhard would be renamed BASF Catalysts LLC in the US, a name that would be extended to its other operations throughout the world in the next few months.

The company said that businesses not included in the Catalysts division will continue to operate under this name until they are later transferred to other BASF divisions.

This means that newly acquired specialty chemical and personal care ingredients operations that formed part of the take over deal are likely to be integrated into other BASF divisions.

Engelhard was bought out by BASF as the result of a long drawn out battle between the two companies that resulted in the buy-out, estimated to have cost $5bn - the biggest transaction in BASF's history.

BASF says that the deal should serve to boost its Catalysts division in particular, while also serving to increase its research and development facilities.

Engelhard had been struggling in the face of stiff competition and rising production costs, but now the business is part of the world's largest chemical company and one that is currently in a strong financial position.

Today the company announced that it had recorded a rise of 16 per cent in its quarterly sales to €12.3bn and EBIT up 15 per cent to €1.9bn - with both of these figures beating market expectations.

Likewise cumulative sales for the six month period stood at €25bn, a jump of 20 per cent on last year's figures, while EBIT came in at €3.8bn for the period.

Its strong financial position has given the impetus to go on the acquisition trail, having acquired Degussa's construction chemicals business and Johnson Polymer and CropDesign on top of the Engelhard acquisition during the past few months.

And the company has not ruled out further acquisitions in the course of the year.

In view of the acquisitions and the current positive sales trend, the company believes that global sales will be considerably more than €50m during the course of 2006.

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