BASF, the world’s largest chemicals company, has agreed to buy surface treatment business Chemetall for $3.2 billion from U.S. peer Albemarle, the Ludwigshafen-based firm said Friday.
Chemetall, a company headquartered in Frankfurt, produces chemicals that protect metal from corrosion and make it easier to shape, paint or coat metal.
“Chemetall offers a strong strategic fit for our coatings business and supports BASF’s aim to grow profitably,” BASF’s executive board member Wayne T. Smith said in a statement.
Chemetall had a turnover of $845 million last year and employs 2,500 people globally.
BASF’s shares initially erased their gains of 0.5 percent after the news broke on Friday afternoon, but the stock was up again 0.2 percent at €67.94 ($76.49) by 4.57 p.m. in Frankfurt.
There has been speculation for months whether BASF would participate in the wave of mergers and takeovers in the chemicals industry, following Bayer’s $62-billion bid for U.S. seeds and pesticides maker Monsanto last month, ChemChina’s $43-billion takeover of Swiss seed and pesticides maker Syngenta and the planned merger of U.S.-listed DowChemical and DuPont.
Gilbert Kreijger is an editor with Handelsblatt Global Edition in Berlin, covering companies and markets. To contact the author: email@example.com