Johnson & Johnson is close to making a deal to acquire Crucell. Already holding a 17.9 percent stake in the company, Johnson & Johnson is offering $2.3 billion for the rest. The two companies have been partners since September 2009 when they began collaboration on the development of influenza and other vaccines. According to the two companies, Crucell’s discovery and manufacturing capabilities will create a strong platform for Johnson & Johnson in the vaccine market.
Westlake Vinyls will pay $800,000 to the federal government and the state of Kentucky under an agreement to settle accusations of environmental violations at a western Kentucky plant. The company doesn’t admit any wrongdoing or liability, but has agreed to take corrective actions. The federal government will receive $687,500 of the civil penalty, while Kentucky will receive $100,000. Westlake will pay $12,500 to the federal Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund, a $2.7 billion pool of money the federal government and states use to offset the cost of cleaning up spills, along with research and development.
A chemical spill in Spacesaver Corp.’s Fort Atkinson, Wisconsin manufacturing plant sent five people to the hospital. Fire officials said phosphoric acid spilled after a valve broke on a 330-gallon container. The plant was evacuated and five people exposed to the acid were taken to the hospital as a precaution.
Momentive Performance Materials Holdings Inc. and Hexion LLC have agreed to combine to create one of the world’s largest specialty chemicals and materials companies. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but the boards of both companies have approved the deal and expect it will close on Oct. 1. Hexion makes resins for wood and industrial markets. Momentive makes silicon and other specialty materials. The new company will operate as Momentive Performance Materials, but the companies’ capital structures will remain separate and in place.
$50 Million Investment
Braskem America plans to invest $50 million in its U.S. polypropylene business through 2011 to better serve its customers and to position the company for growth in the North American market. The investments will focus on upgrading facilities’ infrastructure, integrating business processes with the parent company (Braskem S.A.), and implementing Braskem’s quality and productivity programs. More than $35 million will be invested in manufacturing assets, with $15 million targeted to the La Porte, Texas plant.
Eastman Chemical Co. will increase capacity by approximately 32,000 metric tons and will include a 4,500 metric ton debottleneck for a total capacity increase near 37,000 metric tons at its Longview, Texas site. The company expects to complete the expansion by mid-2012. In support of the 2-EH expansion, a 40,000 metric ton expansion of butyraldehyde will also occur at the site.