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Evonik Acquires JM Huber Silica Business

Evonik Industries AG acquired the silica business of the US company J.M. Huber for $630 million. This enables Evonik to expand its position in North America and Asia in this profitable and resilient business.

“Huber Silica will significantly strengthen our growth segment Resource Efficiency,” said Klaus Engel, chairman of the Executive Board of Evonik. “In addition, it offers the opportunity to strategically develop Evonik’s portfolio.”

“The silica business has been part of Huber since the 1950s and paved the way for our company’s global expansion into engineered materials,” said Mike Marberry, president and CEO of Huber. “While it is difficult to part with a longstanding business, we see Evonik as an excellent strategic fit for both our silica customers and employees.”

The silica market is characterized by its variety of applications and shows above-average annual growth of 4% to 6%. Huber’s business is especially oriented towards applications in the consumer goods industry, the dental sector for example. To date, Evonik’s silica business has been focused rather on industrial applications, for example in the tire and coatings industries.

“Combining the complementary silica businesses of Evonik and Huber will strengthen an important pillar of our portfolio,” explained Christian Kullmann, executive board member for strategy at Evonik. “Also, Huber Silica is an excellent regional fit with its focus on the US, China and India.”

For the 2016 financial year, Huber Silica is expected to achieve sales of close to $300 million and an EBITDA of $60 million ]. This corresponds to an attractive EBITDA margin of more than 20%.

Through the ideal complementarity of the two business areas, Evonik expects to generate synergies of $20 million. The transaction is scheduled to be completed in the second half of 2017, subject to approval by the responsible authorities.