BASF to sell unit

Berlin – BASF, the world’s largest chemicals maker, said Wednesday it has agreed to sell its industrial coatings business to Dutch group AkzoNobel for 475 million euros ($530 million).

“BASF and AkzoNobel have reached a general agreement on the sale of the industrial coatings business of BASF’s Coatings division to AkzoNobel for 475 million euros,” the German giant said in a statement.

“The transaction would include technologies, patents and trademarks, as well as the transfer of two dedicated production sites, one in Deeside, England, and one in Vanderbijlpark, South Africa.”

The transaction was subject to the necessary regulatory approval and was expected to be completed “by the end of 2016,” BASF said.

The industrial coatings business generated sales of approximately 300 million euros in 2015 and supplies products for a number of end uses, including coil, furniture foil and panel coatings, as well as coatings for wind energy plants, general industry and commercial transport, the statement said.

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By selling the industrial coatings business, BASF aimed to “further strengthen its focus on its core automotive coatings businesses,” it said.

The German group is progressively selling off non-core activities as it grapples with falling oil prices, which are eroding margins, and ferocious competition from rivals in Asia.