Neville Prior

Cornelius Presents "Naturals" in Personal Care at SCS Formulate

Neville Prior  22 August 2017 08:27:55 PM
Image:Cornelius Presents "Naturals" in Personal Care at SCS Formulate
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Cornelius to Launch New Care Product Solutions at 2017 Customer Conference

Neville Prior  22 August 2017 08:24:57 PM
Image:Cornelius to Launch New Care Product Solutions at 2017 Customer Conference
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Chemical Makers Criticise U.K. Brexit Plan

Neville Prior  21 August 2017 01:36:56 PM
Image:Chemical Makers Criticise U.K. Brexit Plan
The United Kingdom government is making the full transition to Brexit "unnecessarily complex," according to the Chemical Industries Association which represents the chemicals and pharma manufacturing sector—the U.K.'s largest exporter of manufactured goods with roughly $65 billion in annual exports.

London-based CIA wants Westminster to retain existing membership of the single market and customs union, rather than pursue a "close association" with the customs union that still leaves key questions around regulatory continuity, tariff and non-tariff barrier impacts.

While the government's latest position would give flexibility to start negotiating other free trade agreements (FTA's), the European Union market remains, by far, the most critical for chemical imports and exports, said Steve Elliott, the association's chief executive.

"Simultaneous negotiations on new FTAs and our future EU relationship will be inter-related and therefore incredibly complicated," Elliot said.

The Hut Group Acquires

Neville Prior  21 August 2017 01:34:28 PM
Image:The Hut Group Acquires
The Hut Group has announced the acquisition of GLOSSYBOX from majority shareholders Rocket Internet and Kinnevik Online. GLOSSYBOX, founded in 2011 in Berlin, is Europe’s provider of beauty box subscription services. Operating in ten core markets, with offices in the UK, Germany, France, Sweden and the USA – its model is such that customers subscribe to a box of beauty products on either a rolling monthly or fixed term basis. Berlin, home to a highly tech-savvy community, will see THG build on GLOSSYBOX’s presence – evolving it into a tech-hub for the Group; with plans to invest in talent and thus provide significant opportunities in the market.

Strengthening Foundation Globally
The acquisition represents a strategic move for THG as it looks to extend further its international reach. THG has built the foundations and infrastructure in subscriptions to accommodate the scope of GLOSSYBOX, with its propriety e-commerce technology platform already underpinning the successful subscription models of its lookfantastic, Beauty Box, MyGeekBox and PopInABox brands.

The Group looks forward to serving and growing GLOSSYBOX’s worldwide base of engaged beauty buyers.

Matthew Moulding, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of The Hut Group, said:  “This is another significant investment for The Hut Group. In GLOSSYBOX, we have acquired a great brand, with a solid and engaged customer base that, once powered through our platform and marketing infrastructure, should be capable of further significant growth. At THG we have a relentless focus on both Technology and Beauty. With our world-class proprietary ecommerce platform, we are confident we will continue to deliver strong growth and extend our global reach.”

Caren Genthner-Kappesz, CEO of GLOSSYBOX said: “I am very excited about this acquisition. It was extremely important to us to find the right buyer for our brand; one that complements us and can use its retail know-how and technological capabilities to accelerate and strengthen GLOSSYBOX further in its journey of being a global industry-leading brand and a well trusted beauty advisor for our engaged subscribers. I am very proud of the team and everything that we have achieved to date with GLOSSYBOX. I am confident that, in The Hut Group, we have found the right strategic partner to drive our business forward. It’s a truly exciting time for the future of GLOSSYBOX.”

US Officially Announces Paris Accord Exit

Neville Prior  7 August 2017 08:59:27 PM
Image:US Officially Announces Paris Accord Exit
The US officially informed the United Nations on Aug. 4 that it will withdraw from the Paris Accord.  However, it said it would continue to participate in the UN’s climate change meetings during the withdrawal process, due to end on Nov. 4, the day after the 2020 US elections. Under the Accord, the country would have been obliged to slash its greenhouse gas emissions by as much as 28% against 2005 levels by 2025. In a press release, the State Department said the US supports a “balanced approach to climate policy that lowers emissions while promoting economic growth and ensuring energy security."

Announcing the decision to withdraw on Jun. 1, President Donald Trump said he hoped to renegotiate the US role in the agreement, which he claimed would cost the country “trillions of dollars” as well as killing American jobs in fossil fuels industries.  Leaders of major American companies, including DOW Chemical CEO Andrew Liveris and DuPont CEO Ed Breen, published an open letter to Trump in the business newspaper Wall Street Journal, urging him not to pull out. On World Environment Day, Jun. 5, more than 1,200 US mayors, companies, university presidents and state governors announced the creation of a US Climate Alliance supporting the treaty.

Walgreens Boots Alliance Set for Long-Term Global Supply Agreement

Neville Prior  7 August 2017 07:31:49 PM
The pharmacy and personal care retail giant has announced a supply agreement with Fareva, a household, cosmetics and pharmaceutical contract manufacturer.

Dow Chemical and DuPont to Close Merger Aug. 31

Neville Prior  7 August 2017 06:35:45 PM
Image:Dow Chemical and DuPont to Close Merger Aug. 31
DuPont and The Dow Chemical Company say they have cleared all regulatory hurdles and will complete their planned merger at the end of the month. The two companies issued a statement Friday saying the merger will become official after the markets close Aug. 31, and that shares of the new DowDuPont company will trade on the New York Stock Exchange beginning Sept. 1 under the ticker symbol DWDP.

DuPont, based in Wilmington, Del., and founded in 1802, employs about 46,000 workers, according to its annual report. Dow Chemical, based in Midlands, Mich., employs about 56,000 people. After the merger, the company will have dual headquarters in Michigan and Delaware. The companies announced their plans to merge in December 2015.

Akzo Nobel CEO Quits Due to Illness as Chemicals Breakup Looms

Neville Prior  24 July 2017 03:06:39 PM
Image:Akzo Nobel CEO Quits Due to Illness as Chemicals Breakup Looms
Akzo Nobel NV was forced into a surprise change in chief executive officer, adding to the upheaval engulfing the Dutch paintmaker as it splits in two in response to a failed takeover attempt by a U.S. rival. Chief Executive Officer Ton Buechner resigned for unspecified health reasons, to be replaced with immediate effect by specialty chemicals head Thierry Vanlancker, the Amsterdam-based company said in a statement on Wednesday. The sudden switch comes as rival-turned-suitor PPG Industries Inc. could return with another bid later this year and U.S. hedge fund Elliott Management Corp. pursues a court battle to remove Chairman Antony Burgmans. Buechner, who took a months-long leave of absence for a bout of fatigue shortly after taking the helm in 2012, will be replaced by 52-year-old Belgian national Vanlancker. In what represents a meteoric rise to the top job, the former DuPont Co. executive joined Akzo Nobel only last year after overseeing the spinoff of pigment maker Chemours Co. from the U.S. company.

The management change comes as a deadline looms on Akzo Nobel’s pledge to hive off by April its specialty chemicals division, a plan put forward after PPG approached the company for a takeover earlier this year. Buechner, 52, and Burgmans’s refusal to engage with PPG over its failed $29.5 billion offer angered some investors, with Elliott taking its push for talks to court in the Netherlands. Pittsburgh-based PPG pulled its offer on June 1, saying it was in its best interests “at this time.” Under Dutch takeover law, it has to wait six months before making another move.

“Akzo’s management is under massive pressure to deliver value creation,” Baader Bank analyst Markus Mayer wrote in a note. The CEO change isn’t likely to make any renewed PPG bid more successful, and shouldn’t be taken as a sign that Akzo Nobel’s supervisory board will be any less determined to fend off Elliott, he said. 

Speaking on a call with reporters, Vanlancker reaffirmed the company’s plan to exit the specialty chemicals business, a split that it has said would generate more value for shareholders than a sale to PPG. As well as overseeing the breakup, either via a spinoff or disposal, he will also face Elliott, which earlier this month filed a second lawsuit in Dutch court aimed at removing Burgmans. The case is part of the U.S. fund’s campaign to get Akzo Nobel and PPG to the negotiating table. A spokesman for Elliott declined to comment on the CEO change.

“The chemicals plan, and the separation that is ongoing is in full motion, and there is no change to that at all,” Vanlancker said. There is no reason why Buechner’s resignation would “cause any delay or hiccups in that process.” A chemical engineer by training, the executive worked for DuPont and Chemours for almost three decades, leading operations in polymers, performance coatings and chemicals in Switzerland, the U.S., Germany, France and Belgium, according to the Dutch maker of Dulux paint and chlorine.

“He has a perfect background to take over the helm at this company,” Burgmans, 70, said on the call. “Will it change the strategy? No.”

The Dutch company didn’t disclose the nature of Buechner’s decline in health, which Burgmans said came on in the last few days and is unrelated to the company’s strategy. “This is a very recent development. This is not from weeks ago, but from days ago,” Burgmans said, adding Buechner decided to make a preemptive move to stand down to avoid any deterioration.

“He felt that if he would continue to subject himself to the pressure of his office that would have adverse effects for his health,” said Burgmans, who is on the front lines of the battle with Elliott and is scheduled to leave his position next year. “Whether this would have led to the same situation as in 2012, I don’t know. I am not a doctor, and I don’t speculate about his medical details. I think, personally, it’s not very respectful if we go into details of medical issues.” Buechner has had health problems in the past. He took a leave of absence in September 2012, less than six months after taking the helm, because of fatigue. He returned after about three months.  Buechner can be credited with taming an unwieldy, sprawling Akzo Nobel that had failed to streamline businesses after its $17 billion acquisition of Imperial Chemical Industries in early 2008. With margins lagging behind leading coating companies such as Sherwin-Williams Co., the Dutchman merged plants and undertook a forensic analysis of costs to raise profitability in line with industry standards. After years of restructuring and before PPG burst on the scene, Buechner had switched to a more growth-led focus. One of his first moves was the sale of Akzo Nobel’s U.S. decorative paint business to PPG for about $1 billion. The U.S. company immediately boosted results at the unit, which included the Glidden paint brand, getting a taste for the opportunity and returns of acquiring the whole business.

“Ton’s departure will be seen by many as the loss of a strong operator who delivered a substantial recovery in margin and cash flow generation, enabling the business to deleverage,” said Andrew Benson, an analyst at Citigroup.

“For me this was an extraordinarily difficult decision to make but my focus must now be on my health," Buechner said in Akzo Nobel’s statement. Buechner didn’t join a conference call discussing his resignation, leaving Burgmans to specify that unlike his last medical leave, the former CEO won’t be returning.

Intercos and Cosmint: New Partnership Set to Create Major B2B Beauty Group

Neville Prior  24 July 2017 02:44:36 PM
Intercos, a leading player on the international colour cosmetics and skin care scene, and Cosmint, a major manufacturer of skin, hair and body care, have announced a partnership.

"Yes, Cosmetics Matter"

Neville Prior  14 July 2017 02:17:39 PM
European consumers assert: ‘Yes, cosmetics matter’
By Lucy Whitehouse +, 13-Jul-2017
Sometimes considered non-essential, consumers have come out in support of cosmetics in a recent survey conducted by trade association Cosmetics Europe.
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