October 20, 2005 Lehigh Valley, Pa.
Air Products (NYSE:APD) today announced that it has sold its sodium vinyl sulfonate (SVS) North American distribution activities, effective October 1, 2005, to Proviron Fine Chemicals NV of Ostend, Belgium. With this acquisition, Proviron reinforces its worldwide sales and marketing activities for SVS. Air Products' decision to exit the SVS business was related to recognition of Proviron's superior position to serve North American customers, allowing Air Products to focus on the growth of its Performance Materials business.
The sale includes Air Products' SVS customer lists, but does not directly impact any employees or physical production facilities. Previously, Air Products was purchasing SVS from Proviron and conducting North American sales, marketing and distribution for the product. These activities will all be fully assumed by Proviron with the sale. "Through this acquisition, and with our world-scale capacity already installed, we are ready to serve all American customers directly," said Bruno Reyntjens, business manager of Proviron.
"Proviron is in a better position to serve customers on an on-going basis as the world's largest producer of SVS. We see this as another move to again increase focus on the growth of our Performance Materials business," said Mark Wydra, general manager of Performance Solutions at Air Products. Air Products' growth platforms beyond Performance Materials include Electronics, Refinery Hydrogen and Homecare, as well as focus on Asia as a growth region.
SVS is used as an emulsifying agent in water-based systems. Diverse end-product markets served include paints, glues, photography, and galvanic baths for metals processing, among other applications.
About Proviron Fine Chemicals NV
Proviron Fine Chemicals NV is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Proviron Holding NV. The Proviron group of companies produces chemical products under its own brand and as a sub-contractor for large multinational chemical customers (toll-manufacturing). Proviron branded chemicals include plasticizers and organic intermediates. Proviron operates 2 sites in Belgium and 1 in the US, employs more than 300 people and realised a turnover of 130 million USD in 2004.
About Air Products
Air Products (NYSE:APD) serves customers in technology, energy, healthcare and industrial markets worldwide with a unique portfolio of products, services and solutions, providing atmospheric gases, process and specialty gases, performance materials and chemical intermediates. Founded in 1940, Air Products has built leading positions in key growth markets such as semiconductor materials, refinery hydrogen, home healthcare services, natural gas liquefaction, and advanced coatings and adhesives. The company is recognized for its innovative culture, operational excellence and commitment to safety and the environment and is listed in the Dow Jones Sustainability and FTSE4Good Indices. The company has annual revenues of $7.4 billion, operations in over 30 countries, and nearly 20,000 employees around the globe. For more information, visit www.airproducts.com.
NOTE: This release may contain forward-looking statements. Actual results could vary materially, due to changes in current expectations.