Basell to buy Lyondell for $19 billion

By OGJ editors
HOUSTON, July 17 -- Polyolefins manufacturer Basell Service Co. BV plans to buy Lyondell Chemical Co. of Houston for about $12 billion, plus the assumption of Lyondell's $7 billion debt. The transaction will create one of the world's largest chemical companies.

Basell, of Hoofddorp, the Netherlands, agreed to pay $48/share for Lyondell. The boards of both firms approved the acquisition. The transaction is expected to close within several months, subject to regulatory approvals and approval of Lyondell shareholders.

The combined 2006 revenues of Basell and Lyondell would have been $34 billion. Together, the two companies have 15,000 employees worldwide. New York industrial holding group Access Industries privately owns Basell.

Lyondell owns a 282,600 b/cd refinery in Houston that processes very heavy, high-sulfur crude. Analysts said Lyondell's assets, access to raw materials, and refining capacity complements Basell's assets.

Basell produces polypropylene and advanced polyolefin products and provides technical services for its proprietary technologies. Together with its joint ventures, Basell has manufacturing facilities in 19 countries and sells products in more than 120 countries.

Lyondell manufacturers chemicals and plastics, refines heavy, high-sulfur crude, and produced ethylene, polyethylene, styrene, propylene, propylene oxide, gasoline, and ultralow-sulfur diesel. It produces fuel oxygenates methyl tertiary butyl ether and ethyl tertiary butyl ether.

Basell had been looking for chemical acquisitions. Recently Huntsman Corp. terminated a $5.6 billion agreement to be acquired by Basell. Huntsman agreed to be acquired by Apollo Management LP for $6.5 billion.

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