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Fiber World

LANXESS To Sell Dorlastan To AKF

Germany-based LANXESS AG has announced plans to sell its Dorlastan® fibers business to Japan-based Asahi Kasei Fibers Corp. (AKF) for an undisclosed price. The companies are expected to sign a sale and purchase agreement soon. The transaction then will be subject to the approval of antitrust authorities.

The Dorlastan sale, which includes production facilities in Dormagen, Germany, and Bushy Park, S.C., will mark Lanxess’ first portfolio adjustment since the company became independent in July 2004 (See “ Lanxess Stands Alone, Renames Dorlastan Unit,” TW, August 2004). A plan to make the Dormagen site competitive calls for the gradual reduction of employees, with about 170 of the business’s 280 employees being transferred to AKF. Additionally, AKF plans to retain 160 of the approximately 190 Bushy Park employees.

The deal enables Lanxess to avoid closing the Dormagen site, which has been unprofitable for years, according to Axel C. Heitmann, Ph.D., chairman, Lanxess Management Board.

“This solution offers future perspectives for a substantial proportion of the workforce. Acquiring the Dorlastan business will enable AKF to strengthen its position as a major manufacturer of synthetic elastic fibers and expand its geographical presence,” Heitmann added.

January/February 2006