Neville Prior

Arkema Makes Bid for Adhesives Manufacturer Bostik

Neville Prior  2 October 2014 01:48:58 PM
French chemical producer Arkema has offered to acquire German adhesives manufacturer Bostik from its former parent company, oil and petrochemicals major Total. Arkema did not say how much it planned to pay for the manufacturer of adhesives and sealants used in products ranging from aircraft components and building materials to diapers. However, news agencies put the price at €1.74 billion. Bostik, which claims to be world's number three adhesives producer - rivals are Henkel and H.B. Fuller - has annual sales of just over €1.5 billion and nearly 5,000 employees.

The chemical company said it hoped to finalize the deal, designed to expand its position in a fragmented global adhesive and sealants market, over the next several months. It plans to fund the deal through a €350 million rights issue, the issuance of hybrid securities worth €600-700 million and a senior bond issue for the remainder. Under pressure from shareholders to improve its cash flow and raise dividends, Total has embarked on a major divestment program. After selling assets of $15-20 billion over the 2012-14 period, the company on Sept. 22 announced plans to divest assets worth an additional $10 billion in 2015-17. Total has already put one of its offshore Nigerian oil fields up for sale after a 2012 deal with China's Sinopec Corp failed.

Arkema CEO Thierry Le Hénaff said the planned acquisition complements the company's strategy of establishing acrylics and thiochemicals in Asia, restoring the profitability of fluorogases, implementing its recently announced €100 million savings plan and realizing strong growth prospects in the oil and gas sector.
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