Kemira has agreed to divest its oil and gas chemicals portfolio to Sterling Specialty Chemicals, a US subsidiary of India’s Artek Group for €260 million subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals. The company said that this will enable it “to focus on its core businesses and accelerate its profitable growth strategy”. The two parties expect to complete by the end of Q1 2024.
‘Carbon negative’ materials company Origin Materials has announced an organisational realignment. With immediate effect, the California-based firm has cut the workforce by about 30%. It will will incur about $500,000 in severance costs and about $2.2 million “for the accelerated vesting of certain equity awards”.
Evonik has revealed that it is building a $7.9 million plant to produce ultra-high purity colloidal silica at its site in Weston, Michigan. Due onstream in 2024, this will be the first of its kind in North America. The investment was supported by a $900,000 performance-based grant under the Michigan Business Development Programme.
During its Q4 earnings update, Ashland announced plans for a series of “portfolio optimisation actions to further strengthen the company’s resilience and improve margins and returns in this uncertain environment”. These are expected to improve adjusted EBITDA margins by about 2% and returns on net assets by 1.5-2%.
Ingevity has announced that it will close its site at DeRidder, Louisiana, by the end of 1H 2024 plus other cost reduction actions. Combined with previously announced cuts, these are expected to yield savings of $65-75 million/year from 2024 onwards.
DeRidder makes a range of products based on crude tall oil (CTO), primarily for the Industrial Specialties business. The company is seeking to transition away from CTO-based fatty acids and towards those based on soy, canola and others. This is because of the high costs of CTO as a result of demand from the biofuels market.
Aashi Mishra shares some highlights from a recent Research Nester study
Oleochemicals are chemicals that are obtained from fats and oils, both vegetable and animal. They find use across diverse industries and are gaining popularity owing to their eco-friendly and sustainable characteristics.
Oleochemicals have a range of qualities, including being biodegradable, low toxicity levels and being derived from renewable sources. Moreover, they can be customised to exhibit attributes like enhanced lubrication or increased solubility.
At its latest Capital Markets Day on 27 September 2023, Arkema revealed its plans to strengthen its decarbonisation initiatives as well as its financial targets. This followed the recent validation of Arkema’s emissions reduction plan by the Science-Based Targets Initiatives.