Evonik Industries AG expects to have found a buyer for its methyl methacrylates (MMA) and polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) business in the first quarter of 2019, a company spokesman has told Plastics News Europe.
“There was a slight delay of a few weeks in the process to carve out the business, which means the original schedule of the year-end had to be postponed,” explained company spokesman Jörg Wagner to PNE.
The delay, according to Wagner, was due to the complex internal process and negotiations with works council to ensure a smooth transition.
The information memoranda were sent to the interested parties at the beginning of October instead of September and Evonik has since November started reviewing concrete bids.
According to a source close to the company, there has been strong interest in the business, with a “significant number of companies” sending their bids to Evonik.
The methacrylates business, which is part of its Performance Materials segment, has an adjusted EBITDA of roughly €400m with sales of around €1.7bn annually.
The operation has been defined by Evonik “outside” its growth areas.
The business on sale includes 18 operation sites spread across the US, Europe and China.
Evonik’s overall MMA and PMMA production capacities are roughly 600 and 400 kilotonnes per annum, respectively.
The company’s main MMA production sites are at the two German locations of Wesseling and Worms. Two other facilities in Fortier, Louisiana, and Shanghai, China, also produce the materials.
The Essen, Germany-based company announced 6 March that it was pursuing potential partnerships or a complete divestment for the business, as part of a strategy to sharpen its focus on its fourth growth engines of health & care, smart materials, speciality additives and animal nutrition.