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Omnova Solutions Completes Acquisition of Eliokem

December 10, 2010

The acquisition creates larger, more diverse global specialty chemical and functional surfaces company with sales over $1 billion.

Omnova Solutions has completed its acquisition of specialty chemicals manufacturer Eliokem International from AXA Private Equity. Omnova paid €227.5 million for Eliokem, or approximately $302 million at current exchange rates. 

"This combination creates a significantly enhanced, more diversified performance chemicals business that is well positioned to serve customers on a global basis," said Kevin McMullen, chairman and CEO of Omnova Solutions. "It contributes to all three of our company's strategic objectives by providing entry into several new higher growth markets, expanding our portfolio of value-added technology solutions and significantly broadening our global manufacturing footprint. Additionally, synergies are expected to provide savings in manufacturing, logistics, purchasing and SG&A by leveraging the resources of an integrated global team.

"Together, with our decorative products functional surfaces business, Omnova Solutions will be a $1.1 billion company, based on last twelve months sales through August," McMullen said. "Over 40 percent of those sales will be outside the U.S."

While 75 percent of Eliokem's sales are in product markets that Omnova has not previously served, Eliokem's business model, including manufacturing process, key raw materials and go-to-market approach, is very similar to Omnova's. Focusing on the same basic emulsion polymerization process, the acquisition adds a number of new acrylic, styrene butadiene and nitrile chemistries and applications, including coating resins, elastomeric modifiers, antioxidants, specialty rubbers and reinforcing resins, as well as complementary products for oil field and specialty latex applications.

Omnova Solutions' performance chemicals business has been primarily a producer of styrene butadiene, acrylic and other latices and specialty chemicals used in coatings for high-end paper and packaging, carpet, durable and consumable nonwovens, tape and release coatings, floor polishes, construction, oil field, textile finishes, digital printing, graphic arts and other specialty applications.

Both chemical businesses have achieved solid growth in 2010, with combined last twelve months sales of approximately $788 million and $122 million, respectively.

In addition to Omnova's five chemical production facilities in North America which provide products and services worldwide, the acquisition adds global manufacturing capability to serve Europe and the high growth, developing markets in Asia with one plant in France (Le Havre), two plants in China (Ningbo and Caojing) and one in India (Valia). In addition, the Eliokem plant in Akron, Ohio, will provide Omnova with important new processing capabilities.

"Our performance chemicals business will remain headquartered in Fairlawn, Ohio, with global manufacturing and product line management structured regionally around first North America, second Europe, India and the Middle East, and third Asia," said Jim Hohman, president of Omnova's performance chemicals segment. "This structure will assure an aligned business strategy focused on providing value-added solutions to our customers on a global basis and achieving profitable sales growth."

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