Clariant acquires US attapulgite assets from BASF

Clariant announced that it has completed the acquisition of BASF’s attapulgite business assets in the United States for $60 million in cash. Structured as an asset transaction, the transaction includes the transfer of land as well as mineral rights, processing facility and inventory, which will be integrated into Clariant’s functional minerals business. The finalized agreement also includes an agreement for the long-term supply of attapulgite products to BASF. The transaction will improve the EBITDA margin profile of Clariant’s Natural Resources business area while supporting the company’s path to achieving its 2025 goals.

Adsorbent clays, such as attapulgite, are an important catalyst for the growth of edible oil purification and renewable fuels. In edible oil they remove contaminants, improving the shelf life and quality of the oil, while in renewable fuels they play a key role in removing contaminants during the pre-treatment process, protecting thus the catalyst. This enables a particularly stable and economically viable process. Clariant offers unique technologies for the purification of biodiesel to reduce greenhouse gases in road transport and for the purification of pyrolysis oil to enable the chemical recycling of plastics. With this acquisition, Clariant’s Functional Minerals business will increase its production capacity and subsequently its presence in the attractive North American market.

“This acquisition is a perfect example of our disciplined approach to add-on acquisitions, as it delivers tangible synergies, strengthens one of our core segments and brings us closer to our 2025 goals,” said Conrad Keijzer, Chief Executive Officer of Clariant. at the same time, the acquisition is a new step in the energy transition away from fossil fuels.

The newly acquired attapulgite business is one of the largest attapulgite miners and producers in North America. It encompasses mining operations in Georgia as well as Florida and processing operations in Quincy, Florida. This company is recognized in the industry for its unique combination of mineral quality, mining reserve size and strategic location. It produces attapulgite products for a wide range of applications and end markets, and generated sales of approximately US$36 million in 2020.

“We are very pleased with the completion of this acquisition in the United States,” commented Angela Cackovich, president of adsorbents and additives at Clariant. “In addition to a strategically valuable company, we also welcome 75 highly qualified professionals. Our increased presence in the region will allow greater proximity to customers and strengthen our ability to meet the demands of an attractive and growing market.

North America is a strategic region for Clariant with many growth opportunities in the edible oils and renewable fuels markets. Thanks to its expertise and through this acquisition, Clariant will increase its production capacity to be able to meet the growing demand for renewable fuels while maintaining the integrity of its supply in the edible oil market, in particular by expanding its Tonsil® range. Tonsil bleaching earths from Clariant are the benchmark for effective and long-lasting purification of oils, greases and biofuels. The product line has been used successfully to remove impurities from crude oils and fats for over 100 years.

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