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Industry News (Week of 7/2/07)

July 2, 2007
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BASF APPOINTS KAMIETH BUSINESS DIRECTOR FOR ACRYLIC MONOMERS AND SUPERABSORBENTS

BASF has appointed Dr. Markus Kamieth business director for its global Acrylic Monomers and Superabsorbent business unit covering North and South America. The business unit is located in the company’s Charlotte Technical Center in North Carolina. Kamieth replaces Dr. Frithjof Netzer, who is returning to BASF’s Ludwigshafen site to a new assignment as director of Procurement.

Kamieth joined BASF’s Specialty and Process Chemicals Research Center in Ludwigshafen, Germany, in 1999, serving in several research positions.

From 2001 to 2003, he was the assistant to BASF’s research executive director. In 2003, Kamieth joined BASF’s Inorganics division in Germany as manager for New Business Development. Since 2005, he’s served as global business manager for the company’s Inorganics business located in Evans City, PA.

Kamieth holds a Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the University of Essen in Germany.

For more information, visit www.basf.com.

BASELL TO ACQUIRE HUNTSMAN FOR $25.25 PER SHARE

Basell, a global leader in polyolefins technology, production and marketing, and Huntsman Corporation (NYSE: HUN), one of the world’s largest manufacturers and marketers of differentiated chemicals and pigments, have announced the signing of a definitive agreement pursuant to which Basell will acquire Huntsman in a transaction valued at approximately $9.6 billion, including the assumption of debt.

Under the terms of the agreement, Basell will acquire all of the outstanding common stock of Huntsman for $25.25 per share in cash.

The transaction was unanimously approved by the Boards of Directors of both Basell and Huntsman. Huntsman's Board of Directors approved the transaction agreement at the recommendation of a Transaction Committee comprised of Huntsman independent directors.

The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approval in the U.S. and Europe, as well as the approval of Huntsman shareholders. Entities controlled by MatlinPatterson and the Huntsman family, who collectively own 57% of Huntsman’s common stock, have agreed to approve the transaction. Closing is expected in the fourth quarter of 2007.

The combined company will have an extensive geographic footprint, with operations on all continents of the world, and will be well positioned in fast-growing markets such as China, India, Eastern Europe, and Latin America. In 2006, Basell and Huntsman had combined revenues of more than $26 billion and employed approximately 20,900 people.

For more information, visit www.huntsman.com or www.basell.com.

BUCKINGHAM CAPITAL PARTNERS ACQUIRES ISOCHEM INC. FROM GROUPE SNPE

Buckingham Capital Partners II, L.P., New York, NY, has announced the acquisition of ISOCHEM, Inc. of Lockport, New York, a U.S. subsidiary of GROUPE SNPE, Paris, France. The company is being renamed VanDeMark Chemical Inc., taking the name from the company’s founding years. GROUPE SNPE purchased VanDeMark Chemical in November 1999.

With a customer base encompassing North America, Europe and Asia, VanDeMark manufactures phosgene, phosgene derivatives, custom and proprietary chemicals for the pharmaceutical, agricultural-chemical, polymer, and fine chemical industries. In addition, its proprietary PTSI is used to remove moisture during the manufacture of adhesives, sealants, paints and coatings to enhance the quality and extend the shelf-life of the end products. In 2006, VanDeMark received the Excellence Award from the Synthetic Organic Chemicals Manufacturers Association (SOCMA); in 2007, the company received the Energy Efficiency Award from the American Chemical Council (ACC).

“We have been pursuing ISOCHEM for nearly a year and are excited about this opportunity,” said Albert Naggar, managing partner of Buckingham. “The VanDeMark facility is one of the best of its kind in the world for specialty chemicals, and the staff has a superb record for quality, efficiency and safety.”

HERCULES RECEIVES PRESIDENTIAL GREEN CHEMISTRY CHALLENGE AWARD

Hercules Incorporated, in collaboration with Professor Kaichang Li of Oregon State University and Columbia Forest Products, has received a 2007 Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award in the Greener Synthetic Pathways category. Winners in five categories were recognized during an awards ceremony on June 26, 2007 at the National Academy of Sciences in Washington, D.C.

Established in 1995 and administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Awards recognize chemical technologies that incorporate the principles of green chemistry into chemical design, manufacture, and use. The American Chemical Society convenes the independent panel of technical experts who judge the award applications.

Hercules Incorporated received this award for its part in the “Development and Commercial Application of Environmentally Friendly Adhesives for Wood Composites.” Professor Li, Columbia Forest Products, and Hercules developed and commercialized a formaldehyde-free adhesive made from soy flour and Hercules’ unique polymer chemistries.

“Hercules is pleased to have received this award,” stated Paul Raymond, president, Paper Technologies and Ventures. “(The company) is committed to utilizing its technologies to promote the use of more environmentally friendly and sustainable chemical products and processes.”

Headquartered in Wilmington, DE, Hercules Incorporated manufactures and markets chemical specialties globally for the manufacture of a range of products for home, office and industrial markets.

For more information, visit the Hercules web site at www.herc.com.

PSTC ANNOUNCES 2007 DAHLQUIST AWARD WINNER

Cornelis Beyers, Ph.D., BASF-AG, is the 2007 Carl Dahlquist award winner for his paper, “Advanced Polymer Design for Adhesives,” presented during Tech 30 Global Conference VI. Tech 30 was part of the Pressure Sensitive Tape Council (PSTC) 2007 Week of Learning, held May 14-18 in Orlando, FL.

The winning paper can be viewed at www.pstc.org/technical.

Dr. Beyers is a development chemist in the BASF business unit for performance polymers in Ludwigshafen, Germany. The summary of his winning paper states: “A tailored particle morphology achieved by a staged emulsion polymerization process gives special polymer film morphologies. Either small-sized polymer domains or bi-continuous film structures provide premium adhesive properties, which cannot be obtained by a blending process. Advanced polymer design, well fitting formulation know-how and the newest coating technology continuously result in new classes of high performance adhesives.”

The PSTC award is given to one speaker at each technical seminar who is voted by judges to have demonstrated the very best in research relating to adhesive tape technology. The selection covers a range of criteria, concentrating on originality and scientific contribution, but also including presentation and quality of visuals. The award is named after Carl A. Dahlquist, best known for his work to determine the modulus value of a material necessary for it to be deformable and tacky enough to be considered a pressure-sensitive adhesive. Widely used today, this work is known as the Dahlquist criteria.

The PSTC 2008 Week of Learning is set for May 5-9 at the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront in Baltimore, Maryland. The TECH 31 call for papers is available at www.pstc.org/weekoflearning08/call.php. Abstracts are due August 31, 2007.

POLYMERIC SYSTEMS MOVES TO EXPANDED CORPORATE HEADQUARTERS

Polymeric Systems Inc. has announced a move from its corporate home of many years in Phoenixville, PA, to a larger facility located in Elverson, PA, about 19 miles to the west. The new factory includes 210,000 sq ft of usable space. PSI’s previous facility had a total of 68,000 sq ft, with 45,000 sq ft for manufacturing, 15,000 sq ft for warehousing, 3,000 sq ft for laboratory and 5,000 sq ft for office. PSI plans to offer a new, fully integrated epoxy line, which will expand capacity by 50 percent.

For more information, visit www.polymericsystems.com.

SEA-LAND CHEMICAL COMPANY DOUBLES SALES

Sea-Land Chemical Company, a national distributor of specialty chemicals, has more than doubled its annual sales over the last four years, the company reported.

“We have greatly expanded our operations in the United States and are establishing a presence in markets in Canada and Mexico,” said Joe Clayton, president of Sea-Land Chemical Company.

To accommodate this growth, Sea-Land has increased its sales force by 30 percent, added new product lines and hired more administrative staff.

The company also recently revamped its Web site. The new site has a more attractive look and feel, as well as links to suppliers and industry organizations. While it does not currently offer a product-ordering capability, Clayton says that this is a possibility for the future.

“Our industry is changing very quickly,” Clayton added. “We are moving fast to incorporate technology that keeps pace with these changes, while maintaining very hands-on customer service.”

In November 2006, Sea-Land relocated its headquarters to a state-of-the-art, 7,000 square foot distribution facility located at 821 Westpoint Parkway. The company also maintains seven strategically placed warehouse facilities on the East Coast, in the Midwest and on the West Coast to provide rapid delivery to customers.

Sea-Land Chemical Company is an employee-owned distributor of specialty chemicals. The company provides a variety of products to the lubricants, household and industrial cleaners, coatings and adhesives, and rubber and plastics industries.

For more information, please call 440-871-7887 or visit www.sealandchem.com.

TOTAL'S HYDROCARBON RESINS TO BE SOLD UNDER CRAY VALLEY NAME

The global hydrocarbon resins business unit of TOTAL's Chemical branch will be marketed in the Americas under the Cray Valley name, effective July 1. Sartomer and Cray Valley, sister companies within TOTAL Chemicals, jointly announced the move designed to reinforce the existing global hydrocarbon resins organization. All packaging, technical data and commercial documents will indicate Cray Valley, but the change will not affect product names (Wingtack® or Norsolene®), specifications, manufacturing facilities, or product codes.

The sales headquarters for the Americas will remain in Exton, PA, and will include dedicated customer service representatives for the hydrocarbon resin product line.

"For years, we were selling hydrocarbon resins under the Cray Valley name in Europe and Asia while marketing through Sartomer in the Americas,” said Thierry Razat, Sartomer's business director, hydrocarbon resins. “This change allows us to bring these products together under one corporate entity and make it easier to do business worldwide.”

For the full press release, visit www.crayvalley.com/index.php?language=EN&content_id=180573.

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