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Possible Options in Evonik Carbon Black Divestiture

In addition to its possible sale to a new Russian/Polish joint venture (detailed below), there are three major possibilities with regard to Evonik’s divestiture of its carbon black business:

1. Sale to an investment bank (such as Deutsche Bank) and keep as a stand-alone company. 2. Acquisition by another carbon black company. At this point, I have heard rumors involving essentially all major suppliers, but it does appear as though a few producers are seriously investigating an acquisition. 3. Finally, acquisition by or merger with another chemical conglomerate. One logical choice would be Lanxess, which has a similar culture, a complementary product line of rubber chemicals and additives, is interested in acquisitions, and sought to acquire Evonik’s specialty chemical business back in 2007. But Lanxess, which has done wonders with Bayer’s former synthetic rubber business, appears to have removed itself as a bidder for the carbon black business.

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