Albemarle Reaches Agreement to Purchase Specialty Chemicals Business

Apr 27, 2001, 01:00 ET from Albemarle Corporation

    RICHMOND, Va., April 27 /PRNewswire/ -- Albemarle Corporation (NYSE:   ALB)
 said today that it has signed an agreement in principle to purchase for
 approximately $44 million Martinswerk GmbH, a specialty chemicals company,
 including manufacturing facilities and headquarters in Bergheim, Germany, and
 Martinswerk's 50% stake in Magnifin Magnesia Produkte GmbH, which has
 manufacturing facilities at St.Jakobs/Breitenau, Austria.  The sale, which is
 subject to regulatory approval, is expected to be completed May 31, 2001.
     Martinswerk had annual sales in 2000 of about $100 million in three
 businesses.  The majority came from mineral-based flame retardants for the
 plastics and rubber markets.  In addition, the company produces brightening
 pigments for high-quality paper applications and specialty aluminum oxides for
 polishing, catalyst and niche ceramic applications.  Magnifin produces high-
 purity magnesium hydroxide flame retardant products used in applications
 requiring higher processing temperatures.
     Floyd D. Gottwald, Jr., chief executive officer of Albemarle, said,
 "Martinswerk's halogen-free flame retardant business would be an excellent
 complement to Albemarle's growing flame retardant portfolio and would
 strengthen our global focus on fire safety systems.  The acquisition would
 significantly expand our global reach and customer base in polyolefins,
 especially in the wire and cable market.  In Martinswerk's oxide and paper
 pigment products, we see potential fits with our catalysts and performance
 chemicals businesses."
     Mark C. Rohr, president and chief operating officer of Albemarle, said:
 "This acquisition would be in line with the stated goal for our flame
 retardants business to become a leader in fire safety in all areas, including
 non-halogens.  In these mineral-based flame retardants, Martinswerk has the
 number one global position in alumina trihydrate flame retardants and Magnifin
 is a leader in magnesium hydroxide flame retardants.  Both are materials of
 choice for applications requiring low smoke and low gas emissions.  These
 products would allow us to expand into a broader base of flame retardant
 markets than we currently serve with our industry leading position in
 brominated products.
     "In addition," Rohr said: "We believe we can efficiently integrate
 Martinswerk into our existing businesses very quickly."
     A global leader of specialty and fine chemicals that enhance consumer
 products, Albemarle Corporation serves markets for polymers, surfactants and
 biocides, pharmaceuticals, agricultural chemicals, photographic chemicals,
 water treatment and petroleum products.
 
     Albemarle Cautionary Note on Forward Looking Statements
     Some of the information contained in this release constitutes forward
 looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation
 Reform Act of 1995.  Although Albemarle Corporation believes its expectations
 are based on reasonable assumptions within the bounds of its knowledge of its
 business and operations, there can be no assurance that actual results will
 not differ materially from its expectations.  Factors which could cause actual
 results to differ from expectations include, without limitation, the timing of
 orders received from customers, the gain or loss of significant customers,
 competition from other manufacturers, changes in demand for the Company's
 products, increases in the cost of the product, changes in the market in
 general, fluctuations in foreign currencies and significant changes in new
 product introduction resulting in an increase in capital project requests and
 approvals leading to capital spending.
 
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SOURCE Albemarle Corporation
    RICHMOND, Va., April 27 /PRNewswire/ -- Albemarle Corporation (NYSE:   ALB)
 said today that it has signed an agreement in principle to purchase for
 approximately $44 million Martinswerk GmbH, a specialty chemicals company,
 including manufacturing facilities and headquarters in Bergheim, Germany, and
 Martinswerk's 50% stake in Magnifin Magnesia Produkte GmbH, which has
 manufacturing facilities at St.Jakobs/Breitenau, Austria.  The sale, which is
 subject to regulatory approval, is expected to be completed May 31, 2001.
     Martinswerk had annual sales in 2000 of about $100 million in three
 businesses.  The majority came from mineral-based flame retardants for the
 plastics and rubber markets.  In addition, the company produces brightening
 pigments for high-quality paper applications and specialty aluminum oxides for
 polishing, catalyst and niche ceramic applications.  Magnifin produces high-
 purity magnesium hydroxide flame retardant products used in applications
 requiring higher processing temperatures.
     Floyd D. Gottwald, Jr., chief executive officer of Albemarle, said,
 "Martinswerk's halogen-free flame retardant business would be an excellent
 complement to Albemarle's growing flame retardant portfolio and would
 strengthen our global focus on fire safety systems.  The acquisition would
 significantly expand our global reach and customer base in polyolefins,
 especially in the wire and cable market.  In Martinswerk's oxide and paper
 pigment products, we see potential fits with our catalysts and performance
 chemicals businesses."
     Mark C. Rohr, president and chief operating officer of Albemarle, said:
 "This acquisition would be in line with the stated goal for our flame
 retardants business to become a leader in fire safety in all areas, including
 non-halogens.  In these mineral-based flame retardants, Martinswerk has the
 number one global position in alumina trihydrate flame retardants and Magnifin
 is a leader in magnesium hydroxide flame retardants.  Both are materials of
 choice for applications requiring low smoke and low gas emissions.  These
 products would allow us to expand into a broader base of flame retardant
 markets than we currently serve with our industry leading position in
 brominated products.
     "In addition," Rohr said: "We believe we can efficiently integrate
 Martinswerk into our existing businesses very quickly."
     A global leader of specialty and fine chemicals that enhance consumer
 products, Albemarle Corporation serves markets for polymers, surfactants and
 biocides, pharmaceuticals, agricultural chemicals, photographic chemicals,
 water treatment and petroleum products.
 
     Albemarle Cautionary Note on Forward Looking Statements
     Some of the information contained in this release constitutes forward
 looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation
 Reform Act of 1995.  Although Albemarle Corporation believes its expectations
 are based on reasonable assumptions within the bounds of its knowledge of its
 business and operations, there can be no assurance that actual results will
 not differ materially from its expectations.  Factors which could cause actual
 results to differ from expectations include, without limitation, the timing of
 orders received from customers, the gain or loss of significant customers,
 competition from other manufacturers, changes in demand for the Company's
 products, increases in the cost of the product, changes in the market in
 general, fluctuations in foreign currencies and significant changes in new
 product introduction resulting in an increase in capital project requests and
 approvals leading to capital spending.
 
                     MAKE YOUR OPINION COUNT -  Click Here
                http://tbutton.prnewswire.com/prn/11690X88805845
 
 SOURCE  Albemarle Corporation