M&As: Ascend to acquire Indian engineering materials firm; SK Geo Centric invests US$55 mn in PureCycle

M&As: Ascend to acquire Indian engineering materials firm; SK Geo Centric invests US$55 mn in PureCycle

Texas-headquartered Ascend Performance Materials has reached an agreement to acquire Formulated Polymers, an engineered materials manufacturer in Chennai, India. Expected to close on 1 May, this acquisition includes a worldscale manufacturing facility in Chennai as well as several warehouses throughout India. Formulated Polymers is currently a licensee of Ascend's Starflam flame-retardant polyamides. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

"Demand for our materials in India is strong and growing," said Phil McDivitt, Ascend's president/CEO. "The team at Formulated Polymers has built an excellent, diversified business with a proven track record of technology development in polyamides. We are excited to build on their expertise to drive additional value-added growth in India and beyond."

Ascend, a fully integrated producer of durable engineered materials, has grown its global production footprint with five acquisitions over the last four years, each focused on specific synergies with the company's core business. This acquisition provides a significant growth opportunity for Ascend in India, one of the highest growth economies in the world.

"Being customer-focused is one of our values," said John Saunders, Ascend's vice president for Europe, the Middle East, North Africa and India. "We look forward to supporting our customers in a fast-growing market by continuing to invest in capacity, technical resources and product development to meet their needs."

Ascend is set to close on its previously announced acquisition in San Jose Iturbide, Mexico on 1 April.

Meanwhile in other news, SK Geo Centric, a subsidiary of SK Innovation, has made an equity investment of US$55 million in PureCycle Technologies, an American plastic waste recycling company.

PureCycle has a proprietary chemical recycling technology that utilises a solvent to remove contaminants, odours, and colours from plastic waste to extract ultrapure recycled polypropylene (UPR PP). It will complete Plant 1, with a capacity of approximately 50,000 tonnes/year, in the fourth quarter of this year, and is planning to break ground for Plant 2, which can produce about 300,000 tonnes/year, in Georgia this month. Through the private equity capital raise, PureCycle attracted investments worth US$250 million.

SK Geo Centric participated in the equity investment as a strategic partner and plans to jointly push for global business expansion in China and Asia.

SK Geo Centric and PureCycle are planning to establish a plastic waste recycling facility in Ulsan-Mipo Industrial Park, South Korea. The facility is expected to have a capacity of 60,000 tonnes/year and an expected completion at the end of 2024.The firms will establish a joint venture and start the plant construction this year. SK Geo Centric will have an exclusive right to sell the UPR PP in Korea, and the two companies are planning to expand their business to China and the Southeast Asian region.


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